Minus Some Miley

Over the past decade, Baltimore’s weirdo-in-chief, Dan Deacon, has morphed from a guy screaming into a mike run through a bunch of effects pedals into an influential producer of experimental music. After forming the Wham City arts collective in 2004, Deacon crammed his growing reputation into a converted school bus and hit the road. His […]

For Art’s Sake

Last week, Jay-Z performed “Picasso Baby,” a track off his new album, “Magna Carta … Holy Grail,” at New York’s Pace Gallery. He lip-synched the song to a small crowd for six hours, part video shoot, part performance art. Jay has positioned this record as art on par with classical and modern works of all […]

On the Spot: Corvette LeFace

Corvette LeFace is a burlesque dancer who’s been doing variations on the pasties-and-panties striptease tradition in New York for about two years. Her performance Friday as part of the “And I Am Not Lying” showcase has a twist: She pretends to eat a horse’s heart. That’s because she’s performing as Khal Drogo, a warrior king […]

Industrial Strength

Jeebus, you’d think Kanye West invented industrial music the way people are flipping out about its fusion with hip-hop on “Yeezus.” But if you’ve ever worn fishnets as a shirt, you know that’s not true. You also know ’80s art-assault bands like Throbbing Gristle and Skinny Puppy paved the way for ’90s industro-darlings Nine Inch […]

Putting on the Kitsch

There’s a weird, Christmas tree-looking thing with legs and a bunny topper haunting the Hirshhorn. Missouri-born artist Nick Cave’s “Soundsuit” is one of the more experimental works in the museum’s “Over, Under, Next: Experiments in Mixed Media, 1913–Present” group show, on view through Sept. 18. The show features artwork from Smithsonian collections that “examine how […]

Something to Lose

A couple weeks back, M.I.A. debuted a new track on BBC Radio 1, “Bring the Noize,” from her new LP, which was due in April but keeps being shifted. The song has her spitting hard, with a singsong chorus of “Bring the noize/ When we run up on them,” the word “freedom” spread over throughout. […]

Taking Shape

Happy 90 years of life, painter and sculptor Ellsworth Kelly! If we knew your works were coming to the Phillips Collection in celebration of your May 31st birthday, we’d have baked a minimalist, monochromatic cake (which would be really easy to frost). Instead this month, the gallery has assembled a group of seven of Kelly’s […]

The Many Faces of ‘Yeezus’

Kanye West is not a regular person. According to his new record, “Yeezus,” he is “a god.” He is one of the best, most unpredictable rappers of today. And he’s rude (poor Taylor Swift). He’s curious but clueless, wearing a $400 Givenchy shirt to Occupy protests in New York. He hates the spotlight (“Maybe 90 […]

Mope Music

Lou Barlow always worried me. He and legendary ’90s indie rockers Sebadoh put out an amazing, weird record nearly every year between 1989’s “The Freed Man” and 1996’s “Harmacy.” I came for the hardcore-esque psycho-screamo, but stayed for frontman Barlow’s bare, jarring lyrics about the dread of loss (“I’d live in fear of losing you/Or […]

Essential Orientation

What makes this year’s Capital Pride parade (tagline: “Unleash the Superhero in You”) so super? Lynda Carter, best known for her role on the ’70s TV series “Wonder Woman,” is Super Grand Marshal of the affair. Imbued with the power to lead float after fabulous float of dolled-up drag queens, oiled-up muscle men and other […]