The coronavirus pandemic has upended the world, and the arts are reeling. Pop music critics are asking (and facing) hard questions. Guests: The Ringer's Rob Harvilla, New York's Craig Jenkins and Lindsay Zoladz.
From “Rocketman” to “Her Smell,” “Blaze” to “Vox Lux,” the film industry seems to think all musicians have the same ups and downs. Guests: The New York Times's A.O. Scott; Vanity Fair's K. Austin Collins; Kristen Yoonsoo Kim.
Ezra Koenig’s literate group has returned, sparking questions about how it was received in the past, and where it stands in the current climate. Guests: The New York Times's Jon Pareles; The Ringer's Rob Harvilla
Backstreet’s back, the New Kids put out a new single and groups in the K-pop ecosystem are thriving. Why are boy bands so central to pop music? Guests: Jezebel's Maria Sherman and Billboard's Andrew Unterberger
The documentary “Leaving Neverland” details devastating allegations of sexual abuse. How do fans process them, and Jackson’s body of work? Guests: The New York Times's Joe Coscarelli, Aisha Harris and Ben Sisario
The musician has been accused of dangling career opportunities while pursuing female artists for sex, then turning domineering and vengeful. He denies the claims. Guests: The New York Times's Joe Coscarelli and Melena Ryzik.
Is rock music in 2018 a sound, a mood or a retail category? Where do Twenty One Pilots, the 1975 and Greta Van Fleet fit in? Guests: The New York Times's Caryn Ganz; Rolling Stone's Kory Grow; the Ringer's Lindsay Zoladz
What does Bradley Cooper’s remake starring Lady Gaga say about the pop music business — and the film industry — today? Guests: The New York Times's Joe Coscarelli, Manohla Dargis, Caryn Ganz, Wesley Morris and Jon Pareles
The 26-year-old rapper and producer stood at the crossroads of movements that have been shaping popular music over the past decade. Guests: ItsTheReal's Eric and Jeff Rosenthal; Pitchfork's Sheldon Pearce; and Eric Renner Brown.
Forty years of writers and editors share memories about helping invent a language to talk about music, and the artists they critiqued — some grateful, some not. Guests: Ann Powers, Evelyn McDonnell, Chuck Eddy, Rob Harvilla and Tom Breihan.
Forty years of writers and editors share memories about helping invent a language to talk about music, and the artists they critiqued — some grateful, some not. Guests: Robert Christgau, Jon Pareles, Nelson George, Kyle Gann and Joe Levy.
“Sweetener” has taken the singer to new heights at a moment of transition for the top ranks of female vocalists. Guests: The Ringer's Lindsay Zoladz; VF.com's Josh Duboff; and Billboard's Nolan Feeney.
What happens when a band wipes a stain from its historical record? Or when physical albums vanish, replaced by different digital versions? Guests: Mark Richardson; Rolling Stone's Christopher R. Weingarten; and The New York Times's Caryn Ganz.
Two documentaries have attempted to unpack the life of one of pop’s transformative figures, whose complex legacy is still riddled with questions. Guests: Naima Cochrane; Jezebel's Rich Juzwiak; Alan Light; and The Times's Joe Coscarelli.
A writer critiqued Nicki Minaj online; the rapper’s fans responded in force. How does celebrity fandom become a vicious tool online, and what’s behind stan culture? Guests: iOneDigital's Janeé Bolden; Who? Weekly's Bobby Finger and Lindsey Weber; The New York Times's Joe Coscarelli and Caryn Ganz.
With his new double album, “Scorpion,” the rapper and singer is grappling with brand maintenance. Is he innovating, and where can he go next? Guests: The New York Times's Joe Coscarelli and Reggie Ugwu; Sheldon Pearce; and Jasmine Sanders.
Was "Ye" rushed, and does it matter? How do women fit into Kanye’s world? Are conversations about politics with him fruitless? Guests: The New York Times's Joe Coscarelli and Reggie Ugwu, and the Ringer's Justin Charity.
The 20-year-old broke out of the SoundCloud rap scene and reached No 1. But he faced accusations of violent crimes against a woman, and leaves behind a troubling legacy. Guests: Noisey's Lawrence Burney and Miami New Times's Tarpley Hitt.
After a series of bizarre shows, Kanye West canceled the remainder of his "Saint Pablo" tour last week. This weekend, we're listening back to the conversation Jon Caramanica led at the time of the album's release.