LG unveils new G4 smartphone, with pro camera features and curved leather back
Now that Samsung and HTC have rolled out their new flagship smartphones this year, it's LG's turn. The company today announced its newest flagship phone at an event in New York City — the G4. The G4's main selling points are a much improved camera, …
LG's new G4 is a powerhouse phone wrapped in leather
LG G4 officially unveiled, impressive specs in tow
LG G4 specs leaked ahead of official launch
Dawn Spacecraft Enters Science Orbit Around Dwarf Planet Ceres
NASA's Dawn probe has reached its first science orbit at Ceres, marking the start of the spacecraft's serious scrutiny of the mysterious dwarf planet. Dawn arrived at the science orbit on Thursday (April 23), spiraling down to an altitude of 8,400 miles (13,500 …
NASA Wants You to Guess the Cause of Mysterious Bright Spots on a Dwarf Planet
NASA Sets Up Website To Gather Votes Regarding Bright Spots On Ceres
NASA wants to know if YOU think Ceres' 'lights' are proof of aliens or natural …
Google aims to transform European newsrooms
Google will give €150 million (US$163 million) to European publishers and digital journalism startups in the next three years as part of a wider package that aims to support the news sector. The Internet giant has had a difficult relationship with publishers in …
Google tries to play nice with European publishers with $163M fund
Google admits it made mistakes over news as it cosies up to Europe's publishers
Google Pledges $162M for European Digital Journalism Fund
SwiftKey's new keyboard corrects whole phrases
SwiftKey has a new Android keyboard that will autocorrect entire phrases. Named Clarity Keyboard Beta, it aims to constantly scan the last few words typed in order to offer better corrections than rival apps. Like other SwiftKey keyboards, it'll also learn from …
SwiftKey's new app autocorrects sentences, not just words
SwiftKey's prototype “Clarity” keyboard autocorrects multi-word phrases
SwiftKey Introduces Greenhouse Initiative To Experiment With New Ideas …
Doug DeLoach selects ten bluegrass and newgrass albums that offer both an illuminative historical and contemporary perspective on America’s signature roots music
Elephant Revival – These Changing Skies (Itz Evolving, 2013)
Echoing the way American folkies in the 60s gravitated toward the jazz-inflected sound of English import Pentangle, progressive bluegrass fans have embraced Elephant Revival, a Colorado-based string quintet that mixes folk, jazz, country, Celtic, even rock and reggae elements in its performance. A Top of the World in #99.
Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs & The Foggy Mountain Boys – Foggy Mountain Banjo (Columbia, 1961)
Both members of the seminal Bluegrass Boys led by Bill Monroe, three-finger banjo picker Earl Scruggs and guitarist Lester Flatt were pioneers of bluegrass in their own right. Without their performances of ‘Foggy Mountain Breakdown’ and the theme from The Beverly Hillbillies TV show, the evolutionary path of bluegrass, as well as the emergence of newgrass, are up for grabs.
Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn – Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn (Rounder, 2014)
Fleck necessarily belongs on almost any essential bluegrass list. This duet album with his wife represents a fresh assessment of the banjo’s amazing flexibility and range, offers up new perspectives on familiar songs such as ‘(I’ve Been Working on the) Railroad’ and ‘Pretty Polly’, and contributes worthy additions to the repertoire, such as Washburn’s ‘Shotgun Blues’. A Top of the World in #105.
David Grisman Quintet – 25th Year Reunion Concert (Acoustic Disc, 2011)
There is arguably no more important progenitor of progressive bluegrass than mandolinist David Grisman. The creator of ‘dawg’ music, which combines Django-esque jazz with American folk and bluegrass elements, Grisman is perhaps best known these days for collaborating with Jerry Garcia. The original DGQ members reunited to play a concert that now marks the apotheosis of a movement.
Sarah Jarosz – Build Me Up from Bones (Sugar Hill, 2011)
Jarosz’ deep talent as an instrumentalist, singer and songwriter is on full display here, superbly augmented by regular trio mates Alex Hargreaves (violin) and Nathaniel Smith (cello), plus a host of like-minded souls including Chris Thile, Jerry Douglas and Aoife O’Donovan. Reviewed in #98.
Alison Krauss & Union Station – Paper Airplane (Rounder, 2011)
Paper Airplane incorporates all of the qualities that have made Alison Krauss & Union Station the poster band for the 21st-century bluegrass revival. The album showcases Krauss with her all-star cadre – Jerry Douglas (dobro, lap steel, vocals), Dan Tyminski (guitar, mandolin, lead vocal), and Ron Block (banjo, guitar) – in a style predominantly reminiscent of earlier, rootsier performances, yet still retaining the band’s penchant for experimentation. A Top of the World in #76.
Bill Monroe – Music of Bill Monroe from 1936-1994 (MCA, 1994)
To fully appreciate contemporary bluegrass, you have to dig into the ancestral foundations of the category, which means listening first and foremost to Bill Monroe. This 4-CD set is the best bet for beginners, covering Monroe’s pre-Bluegrass Boys duets with brother Charlie through the mandolinist’s final recording session in 1994.
Punch Brothers – The Phosphorescent Blues (Nonesuch, 2014)
Punch Brothers’ music draws on a multitude of sources ranging from traditional bluegrass, jazz and swing to folk, alt-rock and classical. This album is simultaneously bound by a theme – the plague of perpetual digital connectivity – and punctuated by distinctive compositions that form an impressionistic, almost surreal, soundscape. A Top of the World in #106.
Peter Rowan – The Old School (Compass, 2013)
A living link to the band that started the whole shebang, 73-year-old mandolinist and singer-songwriter Rowan is still contributing to the cause six decades after joining the Bluegrass Boys. Recorded ‘live to tape,’ The Old School serves as a foot-stomping testament to the enduring legacy of the genre. A Top of the World in #95.
Tencent Introduces An Operating System For Smart Devices And Wearables
Tencent today unveiled an operating system for smartwatches, TVs and other internet-connected devices today. The system, which was first discussed last year, leverages Tencent's hugely population social services, which includes QQ and mobile messaging …
China's Tencent takes on Xiaomi with new operating system
Tencent challenges Google, Alibaba with own smartphone software
Stance socks and the National Basketball Association are no strangers to each other, as the sock brand designed the official 2015 All-Star Game sock, and have collaborated with players such as Dwayne Wade in the past. Given their history, it should come as no surprise that Stance has been named as the official on-court sock for the NBA.
Along with this huge announcement, Stance has also added Golden State Warrior‘s All-Star shooting guard, Klay Thompson, to their pool of NBA Ambassadors, which includes the aforementioned Wade as well as Andre Drummond and Chandler Parsons.
The NBA x Stance sock will feature the sock brand’s state-of-the-art Triniti Technology, combining “anatomical cushioning, targeted compression and moisture wicking properties”, making them not only the most comfortable but the highest performance sock on the market.
The Stance NBA Collection will make its debut at the 2015 NBA Draft Combine next month, and on the feet of 2015 Summer League players. Check out the slideshow above for a taste of what to expect.
W Hotels Worldwide, will.i.am and The Coca-Cola Company are teaming up to bring eco-friendly bedsheets and bedside chargers to W Hotels Worldwide.
W Hotels Worldwide recently announced a new partnership which will be changing the experience of their hotel rooms. Ekocycle Brand are partially made with polyester constructed from recycled plastic. Each king size bed sheet contains approximately 31 recycled 20 oz. plastic bottles. Guests can expect these sheets to be just as comfortable as the ones used prior to the environmentally friendly shift. W Hotels and the Ekocycle further combined their efforts to bring guests the The “Mobile Charger and Accessory Valet” (MCAV), which is a three-in-one usb charger, jewelry/watch stand and alarm clock. Designed by Miniwiz, the MCAV partially consists of three recycled plastic bottles available in six colors including: gold, red, hot pink, black, white and silver. Sarah Doyle, Global Brand Director of W Hotels Worldwide said, “W guests want to live a stylish, more sustainable lifestyle and this partnership is a way to allow them to do so [and] working with will.i.am and Coca-Cola’s Ekocycle brand allows us to ‘change’ our sheets, reset our alarm clocks and pledge to make a difference one W Hotel stay at a time.” Will.i.am’s initiative to reuse and recycle waste left behind at Black Eyed Peas concerts jumpstarted Ekocycle, in partnership with The Coca-Cola Company. will.i.am said, “When it comes to finding partners for the Ekocycle initiative, Coca-Cola and I want to work with those who understand our message: that being more sustainable can be stylish.” Guest can keep the sustainable style going after they checkout by purchasing the the sheets (starting at $207) and MCAV ($75) which will be available via whotelsthestore.com.
If you are unfamiliar with the dastardly ways of CZARFACE, you need to go ahead and listen to their first album. The Wu-Tang emcee combined evil forces with the talented emcee Esoteric and producer 7L for a concept album centered around an evil hero, CZARFACE. Their first album featured Ghostface Killah, Cappadonna, Action Bronson and Roc Marciano and their new one, Every Hero Needs A Villain, is going above and beyond. This time they will have Method Man, GZA, MF Doom, Large Professor, JuJu, RA The Rugged Man, and Mayhem Lauren.
Aside from the aggressive raps and beats to knuckle up to, the album will come with a 70+ page, hardcover CD casebook and artwork by Gilberto Aguirre Mata (El Ultimo Codice) and L’amour Supreme, with “Death & Abduction,” a comic written by MC Esoteric. The album will also be available as a Double LP on clear vinyl which will include the full comic book and a limited edition cassette. There are bundle packs also available through Get On Down that include t-shirts, stickers, and other items.
You can pre-order the album on iTunes. Every Hero Needs A Villain will be available June 16th. You can peep the artwork, comic book, and bundle packs below.
Bryan Hahn wish he had a CZARFACE action figure as a kid. He’s on Twitter (@notupstate).
ESPN sues Verizon over move to slimmer cable packages
ESPN filed suit against Verizon on Monday for creating cheaper, smaller cable offerings that include the sports network's channels, allegedly without permission. The lawsuit intensifies the battle between networks and providers that erupted in the face of …