Mogwai Talks Soundtrack Work, Weird Song Titles, and the Rare Lyric

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The Scottish post-rock outfit Mogwai's been releasing albums for the past 20 years.

The band is now on its eighth full-length, Rave Tapes, if you do not count its two noteworthy soundtracks. In 2013, the group released the score for acclaimed French television mini-series Les Revenants, about zombies who want to come back home and live with their families. And seven years prior, Mogwai issued its sublime soundtrack for Zidane, A 21st Century Portrait, a "documentary" featuring French soccer player Zinédine Zidane, shot in real time, with 15 cameras fixed solely on him during his fateful final game before retirement.

Mogwai's lively approach to its music and its vivid, atmospheric quality works great for soundtracks. It also, as guitarist John Cummings reveals, inspires surreal yet evocative song titles, like "I'm Jim Morrison, I'm Dead." We recently spoke about writing music for film, weird song titles, the rare lyric, and more ahead of his band's first visit to Miami.

See also: Mogwai Talks Rave Tapes, Post-Rock, and Running "Very Much a Democracy"

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Juanes on the Power of Music: "It Opens Hearts, a Language Everyone Understands"

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See Juanes Loco De Amor at the Billboard Latin Music Awards.

As a two-time Grammy-winning artist and ganador of 20 Latin Grammy Awards, Colombian rockero Juanes knows a thing or two about the music biz.

That's why he was the talk of the Billboard Latin Music Conference's Digital Superstar Q&A session this week, and why he's headlining tomorrow's Billboard Latin Music Awards.

"What gives me the most joy is the opportunity to sing live," el cantante humbly says. "And, as you know, in Latin TV, there's not a lot of room for live broadcasts. For me, this opportunity, playing live at the Billboard awards is very special. It's like my dream."

See also: David Bisbal on His New Sound: "I've Always Been an Artist Who Likes to Be Current"

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Matisyahu on Akeda, His Religious Evolution, Divorce, and "Dealing With a Lot of Rejection"

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Photo by Mark Squires

The conversation didn't start well when I asked singer Matisyahu to comment on his new album, Akeda.

"Have you heard it?" he replied.

Since it's not out until June 3, I told him the truth, that I had not.

"Listen to these songs," he said, "and call me back."

See also: Matisyahu Shaves His Beard, Says: "No More Chassidic Reggae Superstar"

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Fernando Perdomo: "Miami Will Always Be the City in My Heart"

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It's never easy to see our hometown South Florida heroes venture off in search of greater glories.

Of course, we're happy for them -- just look at the successes achieved by the Mavericks, Marilyn Manson, and Johnny Depp after they took their talents to a national stage.

Still, it was particularly tough saying goodbye to Fernando Perdomo when he opted to leave Miami and move to L.A. in June 2012. Not that we blame him; as a musician, producer, and all-round entrepreneur, it's little wonder that the bright lights of the Left Coast beckoned.

See also: Space Between Words on the Miami Scene: "Live Music Has Always Been an Uphill Battle"

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Miami's Space Tapes Record Label Launches: "We Want Different, Cool, Creative"

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Miami's newest record label, Space Tapes, is set to launch.

Founded by three of the creative minds -- David Sinopoli, Jason Odio, and N.E.R.D.'s Shay Haley -- behind many of the Miami music scene's most interesting recent goings-on, Space Tapes seeks to help build a better infrastructure for the 305's emerging artists.

"It's crazy how much talent is coming out of Miami right now," Odio notes. "There's really no platform in the city that embraces that talent."

See also: Miami's 25 Best Electronic Music Acts

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Leslie Grace on Fame: "A Real Diva Doesn't Have to Compensate for Who They Are"

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Photo by Fadil Berisha
Do la rumba with Leslie Grace at the Billboard Latin Music Awards.

At a time when most 19-year-old pop stars are wagging their tongues and twerking on anything that moves, being arrested for DUIs, or getting caught in a sex tape scandal, bachata sensation Leslie Grace is focused on writing music, topping the charts, and hanging with music legends at the Billboard Latin Music Awards.

"I think it's huge," the singer enthuses. "I feel completely honored to be a part of the conference and awards show, and to be nominated twice so early into my career. I feel so blessed and see a lot of doors opening in the future, God willing."

Grace is a finalist for New Artist of the Year, and she's also up against industry vets Christina Aguilera, Thalia, and the late Jenni Rivera in the Hot Latin Songs Artist of the Year, Female category at this year's awards.

See also: Billboard Latin Music Conference 2014 Guide: Enrique Iglesias, Laura Pausini, Marc Anthony

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Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band Talks Blood, Whiskey, Motor Oil, and Fishin'

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Reverend Peyton is a fishin', huntin', hootin', hollerin' hillbilly from the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains.

He can cut a tree down faster than a forest fire. He can build a cabin in his sleep. He's got more beard than a black bear.

His overalls stay covered in other people's blood, his own homemade whiskey, and an 18-wheeler's worth of motor oil. But what Rev. Peyton does best is rock the jam box. On the guitar, he's a force of nature. And every strum of the axe is a tornado at a razor blade factory.

See also: Wanee 2014: Allman Brothers, Mushrooms, and Moonshine, a Recap From Juke's Eric Garcia

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James Murphy Returns to Bardot Miami: "He and DFA Demand a Different Type of Crowd"

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Photo by Ian Witlen
James Murphy, in the middle of a couch sesh at Bardot Miami.

Oh, James Murphy. The former LCD Soundsystem frontman, DFA Records founder, entrepreneur, and generally amazing human will soon be gracing our city once again.

He'll return to Bardot Miami (where last year's Red Bull Music Academy Couch Session was held during the inaugural III Points Festival) to spin some wax and rock our souls.

Now, anyone who is remotely familiar with Murphy's all-around genius will understand that such an intimate night is not to be missed. We personally are shaking with excitement at the thought of bumpin' our booties to his sweet, sweet grooves. And no doubt, so are the Bardot folks.

See also: Win Free Tickets for James Murphy's DJ Set at Bardot Miami

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Miami Record Store Days, "a Tribute to the Whole Era," From 1975 to 2000

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Courtesy of Bloodshot Records
Relive it all with Charlie Pickett.

Like the polar ice caps, the rainforests, and the Yangtze finless porpoise, the record store remains in peril. However, there is hope.

Over the last seven years, Record Store Day has become an increasingly visible global phenomenon, encouraging fans, artists, and proprietors to unite and breathe life into this once-thriving cultural entity.

For 2014, Grand Central will be joining the festivities in an unofficial capacity with Miami Record Store Days: 1975-2000, a live concert, record sale, and photo expo.

See also: Miami's Five Best Record Stores

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Mogwai Talks Rave Tapes, Post-Rock, and Running "Very Much a Democracy"

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It took long enough, but Mogwai will finally be playing a gig in Miami. The post-rock band from Glasgow, Scotland, has been around for nearly 20 years, but as its upcoming debut show in our town proves, there are still many firsts for the quintet to experience.

Speaking via phone from his home, guitarist John Cummings also proves that Miami Vice still has an unshakable influence on his perception of the Magic City.

"It's one of the few comfortable associations that I have with your fine city, sadly," he admits, referring to the knee-jerk TV reference. "But that can all change."

See also: Mogwai Talks Soundtrack Work, Weird Song Titles, and the Rare Lyric

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