Music

On the internet, we can be anonymous, hitting up a dating site as "smooth0perator1" in hopes of a hook-up, or subtweeting frenemies under the comfort of an inscrutable avatar.

Even outside of his music career, John Legend has led a pretty charmed life. The son of a Midwest factory worker, he was high-school prom king, graduated early at 16 and turned down Harvard to attend another Ivy League school — The University of Pennsylvania. Oh, and he's married to a model.

It may seem like a trivial thought, but one of the purposes of art is to make sense of the times that we live in — usually, though not always, by reflecting them back at the audience, as though through a prism. But great art — and music most definitely applies as a great art — can add a layer of meaning regardless of circumstance.

In the first 45 minutes after it was posted, it had generated half a million tweets, topping out at 17,000 a minute. There have been, at the time of writing, at least 2,679 (now 2,680) news articles cumulatively written in less than a day about it — 840 of those written within an hour of its appearance, at 1:39 p.m. ET.

Grails could never be accused of staying in its lane. The instrumental rock band plays with its far-reaching influences like a world-building card game, adding and taking away sounds with thoughtful strategy.

Jazz vocalist John Boutté feels he can no longer afford to live in his hometown of New Orleans. He's not alone. Rising housing costs are pushing many musicians and service workers — the backbone of New Orleans' tourism economy — further and further outside the city limits.

There's an electric thrill to Caddywhompus not heard in too many guitar and drum duos. Where others examine the extremes of the spare or the loud, Chris Rehm (guitar, vocals) and Sean Hart (drums) mine math-rock, frenetic punk and the bombastic end of pop to generate a signature, euphoric sonic boom.

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