Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog

Aug. 2 2015 3:03 PM

Dr. Dre Announces His First New Album in 16 Years

The new N.W.A. biopic, Straight Outta Compton, has been getting rave early reviews, but regardless of reception it should now be eternally remembered for precipitating Dr. Dre’s long-awaited third album. On Saturday, during his weekly Beats 1 radio show, Dre announced that he’d release Compton: A Soundtrack on Aug. 7, marking his first new record in 16 years. Here’s a clip from the show, in which the rapper credits Straight Outta Compton with inspiring him to make the album:

The news also means Detox, the legendary unreleased album Dre has discussed, promoted, and vacillated on for the past decade, is finally dead. The reason is hard to argue with: According to Dre, the album “just wasn’t good.” Compton, on the other hand, seems pretty promising, with Kendrick Lamar, Ice Cube, and Snoop Dogg all making appearances. A cover and full track list can be found here.

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Aug. 2 2015 12:41 PM

The Zoolander 2 Trailer Is Here, and It’s Really, Really Ridiculously Good-Looking

Back in May, Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson crashed a runway in Paris, confirming after a decade of rumors that Zoolander 2 was in the works. Now the first trailer for the film has leaked online, and though it only briefly features Zoolander himself, rest assured that the world’s premier male model is as dumb, good-looking, and completely clueless as ever.

Aug. 1 2015 5:14 PM

How Four Very Different Directors Left Their Mark on the Mission: Impossible Franchise

Most action film franchises, upon locking down a formula and a star, cycle through an array of directors whose job is merely not to mess things up. Not so with the Mission: Impossible series. Each of the Impossible movies features a distinct directorial imprint, and Sean Witzke, as part of Grantland’s excellent Tom Cruise week, has made an erudite video essay that notes the influences Brian de Palma, John Woo, J.J. Abrams, and Brad Bird brought to bear on the series’ first four installments.

Aug. 1 2015 2:05 PM

Kendrick Lamar Is at His Multifaceted Best in the “For Free? (Interlude)” Music Video

Kendrick Lamar’s latest music video is for “For Free? (Interlude)?,” one of many brisk, virtuosic stretches on To Pimp a Butterfly in which the rapper unspools a thread of spoken-word brilliance while his band supplies some jazzy accompaniment. The video, which was directed by Joe Weil and the Little Homies, sees Lamar cavorting around a palatial estate, alternating between costumes and personas while pursuing a frustrated lover. 

July 31 2015 7:58 PM

“Uptown Funk” as Sung by the Movies Is a Masterpiece. (Don’t Believe Me, Just Watch.)

If you’re wondering why this video is only coming out now, months after the song hit No. 1, you obviously haven’t watched it yet. Mashup master dondrapersayswhat took three months to make this video, and it shows. Each of the more than 280 clips used is carefully selected, from the “too hot” (Spaceballs) to the “hot damn” (Robert Downey Jr. in Tropic Thunder) to the ones used for the dance interludes (Napoleon Dynamite, Morris Day in Purple Rain, and even the truly incredible dance-off from Mac & Me).

Supercutters have been putting together these “as sung by the movies” videos for more than three years now, but they’ve rarely been this good. Turn on closed captioning to see each title listed at the bottom of the screen, but the movies are iconic enough that you probably won’t need it.

July 31 2015 6:24 PM

This Cover of Taylor Swift’s “Style” on the Harp Is Surprisingly Beautiful

Emilie & Ogden are not your typical musical duo: Emilie is singer-songwriter Emilie Kahn. Ogden is a harp. Together, though, they do what all good musical duos do—they make music, in this case an ethereal cover of Taylor Swift’s “Style.”

July 31 2015 6:03 PM

Only Simba Can Avenge the Death of Cecil the Lion

Already weary of the Cecil the Lion outrage, I was more than a little skeptical about this reimagining of the news story as a mashup with one of my favorite childhood movies,The Lion King. Yet “The Lion King: The Retribution of Cecil,” by comedy news channel So That Happened, is actually quite funny, delivering some clever, morbid barbs about the whole situation through voice-over narration and dubbed line reading. (Mufasa—er, Cecil’s—instructions to Simba for avenging his death are particularly harsh.)

The lesson learned from this: The circle of life is a lot darker than how Disney imagined it.

July 31 2015 5:13 PM

Carly Rae Jepsen’s New Single Is More Restrained Than “I Really Like You,” Just as Catchy

“Warm Blood,” the new single from Carly Rae Jepsen’s third studio album, E•MO•TION, seems designed to get your pulse racing along with it. While “I Really Like You” was the bubblegum-pop spiritual successor to “Call Me Maybe,” Jepsen’s latest single is a breathier, more slow-burning synth track co-written by Rostam Batmanglij of Vampire Weekend. It’s still every bit as catchy.

July 31 2015 4:43 PM

LeBron James Steals the Show All Over Again in the Outtakes From Trainwreck

We already know LeBron James was the best part of Trainwreck. Even in these improvised outtakes, posted Friday by Universal Pictures, James continues to steal the show. Amy Schumer, of course, has a few zingers of her own (especially when it comes to penis jokes) but nothing is at once more charming and downright laughable than James asking if Schumer’s budding love for Bill Hader makes her want to take up sculpture. “Do you want to get a rescue dog together?” he demands skeptically. And don’t even get him started on good places to vacation in the Midwest.


July 31 2015 1:02 PM

Key & Peele Shows What Happens if You Dare to Admit You Don’t Like the Dark Knight Movies


It’s hard not to get chills the first time you watch Heath Ledger’s performance as the Joker in The Dark Knight, or the first time you figure out what Tom Hardy is saying as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises. But could Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy possibly be a little overrated?

That’s what Keegan-Michael Key’s character dares to imply in this new sketch from Key & Peele—and it doesn’t end well. Key should know better than to challenge an avid fanboy, but what can we say? Some men just want to watch the world burn.