Collaborating Authors

Demi Lovato hit with copyright lawsuit by Sleigh Bells

Los Angeles Times

Demi Lovato is the latest artist to be slapped with accusations of lifting from someone else's work -- and to get sued for it. More than nine months after indie noise-pop duo Sleigh Bells publicly called out the pop singer over alleged similarities between a track from her latest album and one of its own, the band has turned to court. In the complaint filed Monday in California federal court, Sleigh Bells accuse Lovato and her collaborators of lifting material from "Infinity Guitars" -- a single off the band's critically acclaimed 2010 debut, "Treats" -- to create "Stars," which appears on the deluxe edition of Lovato's most recent album, "Confident." "A comparison of the two songs reveals that, at the very least, the combination of the hand claps and bass drum, structured as 3 quarter beats and a rest, with the bass drum providing a counter-rhythm to the hand claps, is at least substantially similar in both works," stated the complaint. The complaint, which was obtained by The Times, alleges that the similarities between the two tracks "transcend the realm of coincidence."

Comcast's NBCUniversal completes purchase of DreamWorks Animation

Los Angeles Times

NBCUniversal has completed its 3.8-billion acquisition of DreamWorks Animation, a blockbuster deal that alters the face of Hollywood and accelerates the pace of consolidation in the media industry. Monday was the final day that DreamWorks' shares traded on the Nasdaq stock exchange, according to a regulatory filing. Jeffrey Katzenberg, chief executive of the boutique studio behind such animated hits as "Kung Fu Panda" and "Shrek," officially segued into a new role as a consultant to Comcast Corp., which is the parent company of NBCUniversal. Another Jeff is in charge: Jeff Shell, chairman of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group. Shell now will oversee DreamWorks Animation, which becomes part of his business unit that includes movie studio Universal Pictures, online ticket service Fandango and NBCUniversal Brand Development.

Frank Ocean releases new album 'Blonde' and gives away copies at pop-up shops

Los Angeles Times

Frank Ocean has released "Blonde," his second album in as many days, turning the enigmatic R&B crooner's comeback into both a test of endurance and an ambitious reworking of the album release. After weeks of rumors, the singer on Saturday released "Blonde," the official follow-up to his heralded, Grammy-winning 2012 major-label debut, "Channel Orange." The 17-track LP is available exclusively to Apple Music streaming subscribers, with one exception: Copies of the work accompanied a free print publication titled "Boys Don't Cry" at pop-up shops in cities including New York, Chicago, London and Los Angeles (on Fairfax Avenue). Dozens of pop music heavyweights are credited on the album including Andre 3000, Beyoncé, James Blake, Jamie XX, Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar, Malay, Om'Mas Keith, Tyler the Creator, Rick Rubin and Pharrell Williams. David Bowie, Elliott Smith and the Beatles are also credited as contributors, though it is unclear if Ocean is crediting samples or if he got his hands on unreleased recordings.

Frank Ocean's 'Blonde' embraces contradictions of clarity and ambiguity, simplicity and complexity

Los Angeles Times

So much about Frank Ocean's gripping new album, "Blonde," seems to put it in line with recent high-profile records by Beyoncé, Rihanna and Kanye West, from its short-notice release to its limited availability to its expansive roster of collaborators. Push beyond the branding strategy, though, and actually listen to "Blonde" -- which appeared in physical form Saturday at pop-up shops in four cities and can now be streamed or downloaded only through iTunes and Apple Music -- and you quickly realize how different the R&B singer's project is from "Lemonade," "Anti" and "The Life of Pablo." Where those earlier albums seemed to take in as much of pop music as possible -- to use every sound and texture at the disposal of today's Internet-equipped creator -- "Blonde" is rigorously contained, almost ascetic in its clean-lined minimalism. One song is even called "Self Control." Many of the 17 tracks feature Ocean's sturdy but yearning voice over acoustic or undistorted electric guitar; others add keyboards, strings or programmed beats but avoid the layered density that defines virtually everything on the radio -- and that's despite a crowded credits list that includes Beyoncé, West, Kendrick Lamar, Rick Rubin, Jonny Greenwood of Radiohead and the Beatles (from whom Ocean borrows a bit of "Here, There and Everywhere" at the end of his "White Ferrari").

Don't freak out but Frank Ocean's new album is finally here


Frank Ocean has finally stopped toying with our emotions. After four long years and many delays, the enigmatic singer has given the clamouring masses not one, but two new albums. His second studio effort Blond was released Saturday on Apple Music, following a surprise 45-minute visual album Endless that debuted on the streaming service late Thursday. SEE ALSO: 10 WTF moments from Frank Ocean's NSFW'Nikes' music video For some reason, the album is called Blonde not Blond on Apple Music. It could be an auto-correct error, or it could be Ocean playing with your mind.