If you’re anything like us, we see an interesting headline during our daily scroll—pause to read it—but then keep scrolling without reading the actual story. So at the end of each week, we’re rounding up all the buzziest, news-worthy headlines you might have missed. Think of it like the “saved” feature on Instagram but for news instead of aesthetically pleasing photos. J.I.D and Smino are going on tour together, Lil Baby drops his highly anticipated new album, and Frank Ocean’s Blonde cover is in the MoMa—this is what you missed.
JID and Smino to Co-Headline North American Tour
The only thing better than seeing one of your favorite artists live is seeing two of them. It was a good week for J.I.D and Smino fans as the rappers announced their 2023 co-headlining tour, Luv is 4Ever. The name is a combination of J.I.D’s recently released album, The Forever Story, and Smino’s forthcoming record Luv 4 Rent. Starting in January, the duo is coming to 32 cities across North America with multiple stops in California and Texas and a Canadian detour in Vancouver, Montreal, and Toronto. To those who may not be familiar with a co-headline tour, the artists perform their individual sets and will likely wrap up the concert with a collab stage. Cue their joint song “Baguetti” with Kenny Beats. The pairing of these two hip-hop artists, whose individuals styles complement each other, brings a few memorable co-tours to mind namely Jay-Z and Beyonce’s (The Carters) On the Run Tour in 2018 and Meek Mill and Future’s Legendary Nights tour the year after.
Blink-182 Reunites for Worldwide Tour and New Music
‘90s pop-punk fans were crying, screaming, and throwing up this week when Blink-182 announced a reunion with founding member Tom DeLonge. The news arrives with a comeback single, “Edging”, which is now out and marks the first time the trio has been in the studio together in almost a decade. The 2023 world tour starts in March and covers North America, Australia, the United Kingdom, Europe, and Latin America. Popular band, Turnstile, will be opening for the North American dates merging the millennial and Gen Z generations of punk music fans (insert black heart emoji). The reunion also comes with a cryptic announcement about an album next year but no further details have been released. Tickets for the tour go on sale at 10 am on Monday, October 17th at blink182.com.
Lil Baby Drops ‘It’s Only Me’ Album Feat. Young Thug, Future, Nardo Wick, and More
Lil Baby is back. It’s been two years since his multi-platinum album, My Turn, and after winning a Grammy for his verse on Kanye’s “Hurricane”, releasing his Prime Video documentary Untrapped, and being a featured artist on countless songs he’s finally dropped his next album—It’s Only Me. The album’s cover (done by Mihailo Andic) was revealed over a month ago and depicts Lil Baby in various stages of life as the famed Mount Rushmore sculpture. It set a clear tone for the album because Mount Rushrome is a commonly used term when naming the four greatest in any category. The 23-track-long album has features from Nardo Wick, Future, Young Thug, EST Gee, Pooh Shiesty, Rylo Rodriguez, Jeremih, and Fridayy. The first song, “Real Spill”, starts off with a sample from Sade’s “The Big Unknown” and lyrically sees Lil Baby describe the pains and profits of personal growth. “They gon say that I been actin’ different, I’m beyond they mental” is one of the introspective bars from the song illustrating a common interpersonal tension when you mature and those around you don’t. The line “if I keep goin’, I’ll be the greatest” towards the end of the song references the meaning of the cover art. Elsewhere, Lil Baby and Nardo Wick go verse for verse on “Pop Out” which has no hook but a beat switch instead, and “Never Hating” showcases Lil Baby and Young Thug’s collaborative energy.
Frank Ocean’s ‘Blonde’ Cover On Display at MoMa
Another side quest was unlocked for Frank Ocean this week when his Blonde album cover art was displayed at the Museum of Modern Arts in New York City. Under the title “Frank in the Shower,” the photo of the devilishly handsome Frank sporting neon green hair was featured as a part of Wolfgang Tillmans’s To Look Without Fear exhibit. Call it perfect timing because the US platinum album celebrates its sixth birthday, and for all the people who put up a Blonde poster in their childhood bedroom, this is the official prompt for them to share their teenage dirtbag moment. Looking at Frank Ocean’s other ventures as of late, like his $25,000 cock ring and rumored directorial debut with A24, proves that the sky is the limit for Frank’s creative mastery. Outside of his outrageously creative endeavors, you often see Frank living his life as a normal person. Whether he’s biking in Manhattan or grabbing brunch with friends in SoHo, the wake up babe there’s a new Frank Ocean pics are always disarmingly casual. Even for an artist as highly revered as Frank, you can always count on Twitter for some duality and difference in opinions. NFR Podcast’s tweet showing the Blonde cover in the MoMa naturally made for an interesting thread with u/blahnded exclaiming “what an icon” while u/IsthatJDE claimed that it was a “mid album” and u/jusnjoo summed it all up with a screenshot. Art is naturally subjective to the viewer but Frank Ocean’s Blonde is way more than mid—in my opinion. So much so that mid and Blonde or Frank Ocean shouldn’t be used in the same sentence. It encapsulates years of my life that I wish I could relive again, and I shall forever have it on repeat.
Toronto-Based Trio, NOTFORTHEO, Release New Single “Interlock”
NOTFORTHEO is the up-and-coming artist trio you should keep an eye on if you’re looking for music to add to your autumn study-chill playlist. The newly-formed group is based in Toronto and after their well-received “just a little bit” debut single which fuses pop-punk and chillwave, they have more music to share. The new single “Interlock” is the ultimate synth-pop song with a nostalgic, ambivalent zing to it and gives listeners a deeper perspective on how punk has influenced them. It’s one of those songs that soothes your nerves and amps you up at the same time. The dreamy acoustic at the start invites you in, and the layback reverb and muffled vocals throughout the song make you want to stay. Before you know it, the song is over, and your finger is pressing the replay button. I’ll borrow Zane Lowe’s words on their debut single, “the first time I heard this, I was like…I need this. I need this now” and apply it to “Interlock” as well. The song dissects our relationship with technology, which can be an addiction in varying degrees, especially when you take into account the role dopamine plays in the equation. In the band’s own words, technology “remains a force that can both pacify and re-traumatize you simultaneously. We framed the lyrics around the depths of drug-induced psychosis and technology burnout. The two states of being are not only related and similar but now intertwined and attached to one another.” The inviting tempo balances out the lyrical intensity and adds a sense of familiarity and jive that’s disarming allowing listeners to find resonance while simultaneously feeling hope.