Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: Hot Chip release Peanuts-themed shirts

With the approval of the estate of Charles M. Schulz, Hot Chip have released a line of limited-edition shirts inspired by 1960s designs featuring the Peanuts characters. (Pitchfork)

The Foo Fighters have cancelled all remaining European tour dates, including a slot at the Glastonbury festival, as Dave Grohl recovers from a broken leg he suffered due to a fall off a stage in Sweden on Friday. (Rolling Stone)

James Murphy will not be deterred from trying to turn New York City’s subway turnstiles into musical instruments. The Metropolitan Transit Authority has repeatedly rejected the plan, so Murphy is starting a grassroots campaign—sponsored by Heineken, no less—to make the musical turnstiles happen. (Rolling Stone)

The long list of finalists for the 2015 Polaris Music Prize has been announced. This year’s contenders for the award, which recognizes the best Canadian album of the year based on artistic merit, include artists ranging from Drake to Buffy Sainte-Marie to Death From Above 1979 to Alvvays to Viet Cong. (Billboard)

Apple launched its new Apple Music streaming service before consulting with indie labels, and now that the labels have been presented with the service’s 250-page licensing contracts, they’re not so sure they’ll sign up. A key point of contention involves Apple’s decision not to offer payments to labels for streams that happen during the service’s free three-month trial period. (Rolling Stone)

Longtime MGM owner Kirk Kerkorian has died of a “brief illness” at age 98. Kerkorian is credited with helping to turn Las Vegas into a major entertainment destination by building the MGM Grand Hotel and attracting artists like Elvis PresleyFrank Sinatra, and Barbra Streisand to play high-profile gigs at his resorts. (Billboard)

An all-star album assembled to fight the mining practice of hydraulic fracturing is aptly titled Buy This Fracking Album. Among the contributing artists are Natalie MerchantBonnie RaittIndigo GirlsMichael Franti, and Meshell Ndegeocello. (Billboard)

Donald Trump kicked off his Presidential campaign to the strains of Neil Young‘s “Rockin’ in the Free World.” Predictably, Young was miffed. “Donald Trump was not authorized to use ‘Rockin’ in the Free World’ in his presidential candidacy announcement,” said Young’s management company in a statement. “Neil Young, a Canadian citizen, is a supporter of Bernie Sanders for President of the United States of America.” Trump responded by saying he used the song legally since he paid the ASCAP license fee—but as Rolling Stone points out, even candidates who meet the legal licensing requirements to play a song may still be liable for legal action if their use of the song seems to imply that the musician endorses the candidate.

Meanwhile, Billboard contacted Monsanto and other companies targeted by Young on his new album The Monsanto Years. Chevron had no comment, Walmart touted a recent wage increase, Starbucks said they favor “a national solution” to issues regarding genetically-modified crops, and Monsanto itself said that Young’s music contains “myths” about their company. However, they noted, “Many of us at Monsanto have been and are fans of Neil Young.”

Mac DeMarco impersonates Michael Jackson in a new video for his song “Another One.” (Pitchfork)

Sleater-Kinney have announced a new string of U.S. tour dates, including several shows in New York and one in Chicago. (Pitchfork)