Tag: Rick Rubin

  • Beastie Boys: How Ya Like ’Em Now?

    “Beastie Boys: How Ya Like ’Em Now?” August 15, 1989 On the rap report card Kool Moe Dee stuck into How Ya Like Me Now back in ’87, the old-schooler proved an easy marker — only two of the 25 pupils fell below Public Enemy at 80 B. The token nonentity Boogie Boys got 7 or […]

  • Rick Rubin: The King of Rap

    In 1964, Tom Wolfe wrote “The First Tycoon of Teen” about the 23-year-old Phil Spector. The Righteous Brothers’ “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ ” was on its way to number one and Spector’s label, Philles, was in its hit-making prime. Wolfe described Spector as a jittery, Jewish, misunderstood boy-genius — the first youth to cre­ate […]


    It’s hard to believe that famed record label Def Jam Recordings was founded just 30 years ago in producer Rick Rubin’s NYU dorm room. The label simultaneously feels as if it has existed forever and is completely brand-new. That’s a testament to the type of talent it has continued to attract since the mid ’80s, […]

  • The Band Perry

    If 2013 goes down as the year of Rick Rubin’s resurgence, with pundits and list-compilers pointing to his work on Kanye’s Yeezus and Eminem’s “Bezerk,” the Band Perry’s Pioneer will be the one that got away, a record that the Def Jam founder was initially going to produce but which ended up in the hands […]

  • The Cult

    British hard rockers the Cult began life as a swirly, gothy hippie-punk hybrid, playing “whoa, dude!” anthems like the tongue-twister “She Sells Sanctuary.” Then they met barefooted producer extraordinaire Rick Rubin, who turned them into riff-minded hard rockers who weren’t afraid to cover Steppenwolf. The LP they recorded together, Electric, broke the band out of […]

  • The Graying of Hip-Hop

    Andre Young is 48 years old. Gary Grice is 46, and Shawn Carter? Forty-three. O’Shea Jackson is 44 and Tariq Trotter is 41. Nasir Jones can boast that he’s still in his 30s, but whatever pleasure he gathers from that ends September 14. Dr. Dre, Gza, Jay Z, Ice Cube, Black Thought, and Nas aren’t […]


    Last year’s unabashedly prog-influenced Audio, Video, Disco seemed to befuddle as many Justice fans as it satisfied, which might be one reason the French electro-house duo is only now arriving in the United States for an accompanying tour. Then again, Gaspard Augé and Xavier de Rosnay (who’ll also play Coachella while they’re here) are known […]

  • Gogol Bordello

    Gogol Bordello calling a record Trans-Continental Hustle is like the New Year’s Baby’s top hat and sash: it’s part of the program, the reason for being, the thing that makes the motor go. GB’s devilish, dervishy jam pot of gypsy freaknik, punk rock grease trap, and influences downloaded from across continents or across a LES […]

  • Game Rebellion Party for Their Right to Fight

    Embedded with Game Rebellion in the psychedelic bunker of Jimi Hendrix’s fabled Electric Lady Studios, it’s clear that this brown punk band’s abiding creative aim may be that their shit never come off corny, but these brothas’ vibe is also imbued with a great deal of gravitas. What was never in doubt from the git-go […]

  • Soundtrack a K-Tel Comp of Metal Wimpier Than the Cure

    I’m pretty new to the whole “Pretty Metal” scene, represented by the lovely soundtrack to Resident Evil—of the bands here, I’ve only got CDs by H.I.M., Massive Attack (who don’t really count), and Cradle of Filth—not even the Cure (!), who play against type here by rocking, in protest. Robert Smith yelps about “I don’t […]