Here Are 52 Bands Available to Play Your Office's Last-Minute Holiday Party

Categories: Lists

If you can't get Hall and Oates, maybe you can try to get Deck the Hall and Oates for your work's holiday party.
Corporate holiday parties can be SO dull. Gone are the days of photocopying butts and making out in the janitor's closet. Thankfully, just in time to save the season, comedian Joe Rumrill came up with a list of bands guaranteed to thrill and horrify even the most staid CEO.

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Ten New York Holiday Gifts for the Music Fan in Your Life

Categories: Lists

A Tribe Called Quest Sweater
A Tribe Called Sweater
Sure, you can buy some random music-related present online for your Yanni-lovin' granny or your Behemoth-worshipping nephew. But this is New York! Go local, go big, go small -- there's a plethora of great gifts for even the most persnickety music fan. Our criteria? Available in, made by, representing or featuring (mostly!) New York/New Yorkers. Happy local shopping, holiday revelers!

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The Ten Best New York Punk Releases of 2014

Photo by Rob Menzer for the Village Voice.
The pit at a Latino Punk Fest show at the Acheron back in August
New York is home to the world's premier punk scene, and has been for a while now. The spectrum of the sound and aesthetic are continuously warping; we see the lines of punk extending to hardcore and noise blur. New bands are born, the go-to bands keep on writing new material, and the nothing lasts just for the sake of lasting. As we pass from one January to the next, let's take a look back at the best that this great genre in this great city offered us this year. I would not say that 2014 was the strongest year in recent memory for recorded output. But it still killed, because New York punk is that good. Here are the 10 best releases, in no particular order.

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The 10 Best Britpop Albums of All Time (or At Least Since 1993 or So)

Oscilloscope Laboratories
Flying high: Jarvis Cocker and Pulp
True, the glowingly reviewed new Pulp: A Film About Life, Death & Supermarkets has bowed humbly out of NYC-area theaters -- though it is, ahem, available for rent or sale via iTunes -- but in any case our bet is that the Sheffield lads' doc signals just the tip of a looming iceberg. Surely, with Britpop's best-regarded exponents and their seminal records approaching 20-year jubilee status, we're in store for a whole lot more retrospective feting: reissues, remasters, deluxe editions; would a Justine Frischmann tell-all be too much to hope for?

Anyway, the presumptive coming flood led us to reflect on what "Britpop" even is, or encompasses. To keep things (relatively) brief, it's: bright, melody-forward, commercially intent guitar-band pop-rock; unabashedly British, of course, in pub-singalong sensibility and/or deployment of accent; and, crucially, for our purposes here, limited to post-'92 or thereabouts (the interregnum betwixt shoegaze and, well, Radiohead), meaning the some-might-say criminal exclusion of the progenitive Smiths and Stone Roses from consideration. All of which, naturally, then led to our wondering: If you absolutely gun-to-head had to choose, given these parameters, what would a list of 10 Best Britpop Albums of All Time, Ever, look like?

So, without further ado...

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The Village Voice's Top 10 Jazz Albums of 2014

Categories: Jazz, Lists

With so many worthy jazz recordings in 2014 -- from the likes of Vijay Iyer, Tyshawn Sorey, Melissa Aldana, Kris Davis, Ideal Bread, Otis Brown III, Fabian Almazan, Hafez Modirzadeh, and more -- it was, as always, insanely hard to pick a top 10. But decide we did. These are the albums that stood out most in the year in jazz, from duo to big band and between.

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The 10 Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 12/05/14

Categories: Concerts, Lists

Laura June Kirsch
Here are the Flatbush Zombies back in April. You can sweat with them this wekend.
For more shows throughout the weekend, check out our New York Concert Calendar, which we update daily!

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Steel Tipped Dove's Do's And Don'ts to Making an Instrumental Hip-Hop Album

Categories: Lists

The elusive Steel Tipped Dove
Brooklyn-based hip-hop producer Steel Tipped Dove dropped his new album this week. Titled Nothing Touches the Ground Here, the 15-track project showcases the beatsmith's talent for crafting instrumental rap soundscapes that veer in a contemplative and celestial direction. In honor of the album's release, we got Steel Tipped Dove to run through a list of do's and don'ts to consider when creating an instrumental hip-hop listening experience.

See also12 Important Life Lessons Gleaned From Kool Keith's Twitter Account

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Dave Grohl's Sonic Highways Documentary Series Isn't So Bad!

Categories: Lists, TV

As you may have already seen, there's been a fair amount of criticism leveled at Dave Grohl's new HBO documentary series, Sonic Highways, since it launched five weeks ago. And, in the week since the accompanying Foo Fighters album of the same name was released, yet more angry voices have emerged.

Accusations have been thrown at Grohl and the band for seeking "respectability by proxy," and at the show for being "nothing more than promotion for the Foo Fighters and their new record," as well as a "bloated, rambling...gimmick." Is the show perfect? Good Lord, no. Some of it is too much about who Dave Grohl knows in each city, rather than the city's musical history itself (the Los Angeles episode was particularly guilty of this). We also, like many other reviewers, could do without every show ending with the song the Foo Fighters just wrote about the city they're in for the episode. (Wouldn't it be more fun to watch the documentary series, then figure out which song goes with which city later?)

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The 60 Best Songs Ever Written About New York City

Categories: Lists, Music News

For the past few weeks we've been locked in the basement at Yankee Stadium, subsisting on nothing but Bergen Bagels, listening to the best songs about New York City through headphones endorsed by Lou Reed. Our mission: to come up with a list of the 60 best songs ever written about our city, songs that best capture what it's like to live, love, struggle, and exist in the sprawling, unforgiving, culturally dense metropolis we pay too much to call home. We started by agreeing on the songs we shouldn't include -- naked and clunky stabs at new New York anthems that fall flat and ring inauthentic, like Jay-Z's "Empire State of Mind," U2's "New York," and Taylor Swift's "Welcome to New York." Instead, we focus on tracks that are so New York, and so good, they can't be denied. Here they are. Listen to our Spotify playlist, which has most of the songs you'll read about below.

Contributors: Steve Almond, R.C. Baker, Heather Baysa, Jack Buehrer, Jesus Diaz, Tom Finkel, Chaz Kangas, Mike Laws, Linda Leseman, Brian McManus, Albert Samaha, Alan Scherstuhl, Mike Seely, Brittany Spanos, Katherine Turman

See also: The 50 Most New York Albums

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12 Important Life Lessons Gleaned From Kool Keith's Twitter Account

Categories: Lists

Kool Keith

Kool Keith is many things: a lyrical legend, an original oddball of the rap scene, and a man with a penchant for the kinkier side of the bedroom arena. He's also something of a top Twitter fiend, with a timeline lit up by his wonky witticisms and off-kilter musings. So in honor of the release of Keith's new album, Teddy Bass Presents: El Dorado Driven, here's a guide to living life the Kool Keith way, as revealed through his Twitter feed. Enjoy!

See also: Top 10 Greatest Kool Keith Aliases

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