The Weeknd: “After Hours”

The Weeknd’s epochs can be clearly defined as pre- and post-“Can’t Feel My Face.” The mysterious character of his mixtape trilogy cut an enigmatic figure lurking seedy club and hotel corridors, and producer Max Martin transformed him into a radio-friendly Kids’ Choice Award nominee, a progression that led to an eventual rebirth as a Daft Punk-retrofitted Starboy. He straddled the line on his last EP, My Dear Melancholy, but there has always been an explicit conflict between the volatile, shapeless R&B of his breakthrough and the sophisti-pop of his star turn.

The Weeknd did it Martin’s way on the upbeat, incandescent “Blinding Lights,” an obvious contender for Top 40 radio charts. Now he’s reverting back to old habits for “After Hours,” the title track from his upcoming album. Well, sort of—while the track is moody, long, and somewhat restless, it is never as spellbinding as his old work nor as advanced as his newer material. Co-produced by the Weeknd, Trilogy mastermind Illangelo, frequent collaborator DeHeala, and singer-songwriter Mario Winans, the song opens with his old signature style—falsetto, echoes, and recurrent tones—until suddenly it erupts into dance production. “I turned into the man I used to be,” he sings, but the transformation is incomplete, and he seems stuck halfway.

While the song’s dark atmospherics are reminiscent of the Weeknd’s early music, there is a noticeable thematic shift: “After Hours” is an apology for who he was and a vow to change. It is a remorseful pivot away from unapologetic hedonism. “I was running away from facin’ reality/Wastin’ all of my time on living my fantasies,” he sings. This is the Weeknd at his most repentant and cliche, willing to give it all up just to hold her close. The irony is that the man he’s apologizing for is the same emotionally abusive low-life featured on the album’s lead single, “Heartless.” It seems these shifts in the Weeknd’s mood are as inevitable as the phases of the moon he prowls under.

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Complicated Blastomycosis of the Skull Base Presenting as Otitis Media

Blastomyces dermatitidis is a fungus endemic to the Mississippi, Ohio, and St Lawrence River regions of the United States and Canada.1 Although pulmonary infection is its most common clinical manifestation, B dermatitidis can disseminate secondarily to any organ. We describe a case of complicated skull base osteomyelitis caused by B dermatitidis presenting as treatment-refractory otitis media.

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Bad Bunny & Sech: “Ignorantes”

It seems crazy that it took this long to get a Bad Bunny and Sech collab. “Ignorantes” is a reggaetón romantico Arnold Palmer; Sech’s sweetness perfectly contrasts with the bite of Bad Bunny’s AutoTune croon. The Valentine’s Day ballad is credited to Panamanian producer Dimelo Flow, who was behind Sech’s world-conquering smash “Otro Trago,” and who has become an artist in his own right since signing to Interscope late last year. “Ignorantes” is essentially “Otro Trago pt. II,” only slightly boosting the BPM on the dembow riddim as Bad Bunny and Sech similarly lament a breakup and wallow in self-pity (“La soledad no me asusta, pero dormir solo no me gusta”).

Over a sparse beat bolstered by well-placed hype man harmonies, the duo glosses over fights and dwells on the good times, like wearing your lover’s hoodie post-coitus, or waking up to their kisses. Yet, el conejo malo also sounds downright despondent, and though he may not be known for the sharpest diction, here it seems like he can barely get the words out. As he wails “pero qué rico cuando chingamo,” it’s clear he misses the booty—a lot. “Ignorantes” finds the duo at their most self-reflective; this isn’t either artist’s first song about a failed relationship, but it’s a rare urbano example of shouldering the blame without embracing the shittiness that led to the collapse (“Soy Peor,” anyone?). This newfound self-reflexiveness expressed in the song combined with the music video, a celebratory display of next-level futuristic fits and r and mixed race couples, reminds us that bah boni is a different kind of urbano artist.

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Louise Redknapp pays tribute to Caroline Flack in heartfelt post

Louise Redknapp has remembered her “kindest, brightest friend” Caroline Flack in an emotional Instagram post following her death on Saturday.

The former Eternal star took to her social media page to share a picture of herself and the Love Island presenter pouting for the cameras, and broke her tribute down into sections as she paid tribute to her close pal.

“Caroline when things were tough for me and you were going through equally such a tough time you reached out to me and it was so nice to have someone that had been there and been through the same emotions and feelings as me even though different circumstances,” she began. “I always think it takes a certain soul to be able to reach out to someone who they don’t really know that well and speak from the heart but you did that for me and from that moment a close friendship was founded. I feel so proud that I was someone that you felt you could trust and that you could speak to at any time about anything.”

Touching on the difficult time Caroline had prior to her death, including being arrested for allegedly assaulting her boyfriend Lewis Burton, Louise continued: “You didn’t deserve any of this what has happened. You were the kindest, brightest fun and sincere friend I’ve met in this industry. You turned up to every show I ever did coming back in to the industry you helped me believe I could go back and do something I never thought I could do again. Whether it was a little DJ set, a west-end show or a music gig you were there being the brightest loudest biggest loyalest supporter.”

Louise concluded her post by promising she will continue to “try and speak your messages, try and live by all the things that we spoke about and try to be your voice and be the best person I can be for you”.

Natalie Imbruglia also paid tribute to Caroline in a post of her own on Instagram over the weekend, sharing a snap of the 40-year-old presenter laughing while sitting in the front seat of a car, and writing: “I still can’t process what has happened. Caroline, such a shining light, always so friendly and kind. My thoughts and prayers go out to her friends and family and to everyone feeling this terrible loss. #bekind.”

Following Caroline’s suicide, Love Island bosses decided to cancel Sunday night’s episode of the show. The programme will be returning on Monday and will include a special tribute to the late star.

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Tame Impala’s Kevin Parker says working with Lady Gaga taught him to be confident

The Tame Impala star – who is back with new album ‘The Slow Rush’ today (14.02.20) – has revealed he was inspired by just how “human” the ‘Born This Way’ hitmaker was when they were in the studio for her 2016 LP ‘Joanne’. Buy tickets below.

In an interview with The Sun newspaper, Kevin shared: “It was great being in the same room as her.

“Not just to witness the conviction she has for what she’s doing but also to see how human she is.

“It was inspiring because I realised you don’t need a superhuman level of confidence to still be confident in what you’re doing.”

He added: “I decided to be confident because I was wasting my time not being confident.

“I’ve seen people around me that have conviction and I realised conviction is so important in moving forward with music or art.

“Although it’s a strong word, I’m kind of repulsed by lack of conviction.”

The ‘Let It Happen’ musician also admitted that he’s always been scared of getting up on stage and performing in front of thousands of people, but having music he released with the pop superstar heard by millions of people is not terrifying at all.

He explained: “The idea of me making anything that’s experienced 400million times would be terrifying if it wasn’t music.

“I can’t imagine anything worse than getting up on stage in front of however many thousand people and just talking.”
Meanwhile, Kevin recently revealed that Travis Scott and getting stoned inspired ‘The Slow Rush’.

The 34-year-old star admitted he’s willing to try “anything” that will get his creative juices flowing, and so he purposely made himself “uncomfortable” by being stoned in public.

He said: “I’ll do anything that gets me inspired, anything that kind of gives me, that causes those lightning bolts.

“Even with this album, I was doing things that made me uncomfortable just for the purpose of being creative because I’m the most creative when I’m uncomfortable.

“I hate being stoned in public, so I’ll like get stoned and go to the shops [so] the start of one of the songs was from that.”

Search and buy tickets safely and securely below.

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Justin Bieber: “Intentions” [ft. Quavo]

“Heart full of equity, you’re an asset”—is this a Justin Bieber lyric, or a Jeff Bezos sext draft? The pop star’s latest single, “Intentions” ft. Quavo, is a loving tribute to his wife that reads like an eerie mishmash of corporate slogans. Taking a page from “natural beauty” campaigns, Bieber croons “picture perfect, you don’t need no filter” over equally uninspired ringtone beats. Not only are his platitudes reheated leftovers from the likes of One Direction and Drakehey ladies, did you know you’re beautiful?—they’re also easy to dispense when the 23-year-old you’re talking about has modeled for Guess, Ralph Lauren, and Tommy Hilfiger.

In the “Intentions” music video, Hailey Bieber is notably missing. Instead, hedge fund jargon and feel-good clichés narrate the success stories of three women of color affiliated with Alexandria House, a Los Angeles-based transitional shelter that supports women and children experiencing financial hardship. (The video ends with an announcement of a $200,000 donation from Bieber, only slightly more than he’s paid for years of dumb stunts, like egging his neighbor’s house.) A noble cause to be sure, but whatever Bieber’s original intention, his presence risks turning charity into spectacle. The white millionaire dances with black and brown children and proffers empty advice to a foster care advocate. The attempts to center himself make “Intentions” feel more like a self-serving PR campaign for Bieber than an actual act of generosity.

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What If a Stapedectomy Were Not Cost-effective?

The management of otosclerosis is viewed by many as the sine qua non of an otologic practice. From the elegant otopathologic descriptions by Ádám Politzer1 in the 19th century to surgical breakthroughs by Julius Lempert2 and John Shea Jr3 in the mid-20th century, otosclerosis and its surgical management have inspired generations of students, researchers, and surgeons alike. The allure of stapedectomy may be, in part, the elegant tightrope walk to fix hearing loss along with the anticipation of a surgeon report card that arrives in the form of an audiogram. Although the surgical treatment of otosclerosis has not drastically changed since its description by Shea,3 otosclerosis and its management remain fertile ground for research, debate, and refinement. Indeed, novel 21st-century diagnoses—such as superior canal dehiscence syndrome; technological refinements, including otoendoscopy; and even inner-ear drug delivery4—appear to be viewed in connection to otosclerosis.

Original Article

Moses Sumney: “Cut Me”

Moses Sumney has long been fixated on the detachment that comes with personal or political isolation. To that end, Sumney has called his upcoming album græ a “conceptual patchwork about grayness,” exploring statelessness, the shades of meaning in between, the feeling of being displaced from absolutes. The fourth single from the album, called “Cut Me,” lingers in the masochism of constantly learning things the hard way. The weight of the message is made nearly imperceptible by Sumney’s graceful touch. His surgical falsetto makes precise incisions in the air. He sings of hurt as both motivating and life-affirming, of a need for some kind of friction to create a spark in his soul.

“Well, if there’s no pain/Is there any progress?/That’s when I feel the most alive/Endurance is the source of my pride,” he concludes, his voice dissolving into harmonies as the beat builds. Piano keys and bass open up into buzzing synths and snapping drums, and a horn section swells into focus with Sumney’s voice during the hook. Eventually, this arrangement becomes a gorgeous play on dynamics, exhibiting its musical components individually and as a whole, with Sumney never straying from its center. “Sure, I could do better than this/But I don’t, I won’t, I don’t,” he yelps. As a frayed Sumney pushes through the pain, you’re left only with an intense euphoria.

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LeAnn Rimes launches new love songs initiative with Selena Gomez cover

LeAnn Rimes has launched a new weekly love songs initiative just in time for St. Valentine’s Day.

The singer plans to release a cover of one of her favourite love songs every Friday, and she has kicked off her LovE Songs series with a stripped-down rendition of Selena Gomez’s Lose You to Love Me, revealing she really connected to the song.

“Lose You to Love Me is such a beautifully written, honest portrayal of a woman putting her heart first and the drastic process in which one sometimes has to go through in order to heal from a broken heart,” Rimes tells Billboard. “It’s the kind of beautiful ballad you don’t hear very much in pop music anymore.”

Rimes is also planning to release her cover of a song “that had a big moment at the Grammys this year”, as well as one of her favourite Bon Iver songs.

“It’s basically a way to have fun with music,” Rimes adds. “Love is a big topic to cover, and not everyone is in a relationship with a lover, so we cover all bases, from falling in love to heartbreak.

“We keep it super simple, filming it in our house. My husband has an incredible eye, so we wrangle him in to film it all. Darrell Brown, my dear friend and creative partner, plays piano. We usually learn and arrange the song right before we film, so what you’re getting is very raw and real.”

Original Article

Cost-effectiveness of Stapedectomy vs Hearing Aids in the Treatment of Otosclerosis

Key Points

Question  Is stapedectomy a cost-effective method of treating otosclerosis compared with hearing aids?

Findings  This cost-effectiveness analysis found that, although stapedectomy was associated with increased lifetime costs by $2978.01 compared with hearing aids, stapedectomy had an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of $3918.43 per quality-adjusted life-year.

Meaning  This model suggests that stapedectomy is a cost-effective option for treating otosclerosis from a patient perspective.

Importance  Otosclerosis can be managed through surgical treatment, such as stapedectomy, or through hearing amplification with hearing aids. To our knowledge, there has been no cost-effectiveness analysis of these 2 treatment methods.

Objective  To determine the cost-effectiveness of stapedectomy vs hearing aid use for the treatment of otosclerosis.

Design and Setting  In this cost-effectiveness analysis, a decision tree was built to model the treatment choices for otosclerosis. The tree was run as a Markov model of a case patient aged 30 years. The model spanned the patient’s lifetime to determine total costs of management of otosclerosis with stapedectomy or hearing aids. Cost-effectiveness was measured using an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio, with a willingness to pay of $50 000 per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) considered cost-effective. One-way sensitivity analyses were performed for all variables. A 2-way sensitivity analysis was performed for the cost of stapedectomy vs the cost of hearing aids. Probabilistic sensitivity analysis was performed to determine the likelihood that stapedectomy would be cost-effective across a range of model inputs.

Interventions  Stapedectomy vs hearing aid use.

Main Outcomes and Measures  The primary objective of this study was to determine the cost-effectiveness of stapedectomy vs hearing aids in the treatment of otosclerosis. The secondary objectives were to determine which factors are associated with the cost-effectiveness of the interventions.

Results  Stapedectomy had an estimated lifetime cost of $19 417.95, while hearing aids had an average lifetime cost of $16 439.94. Stapedectomy also had a benefit of 16.58 QALYs, and hearing aids had a benefit of 15.82 QALYs. Stapedectomy increases lifetime costs by $2978.01, with a benefit of 0.76 QALYs compared with hearing aids. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio for stapedectomy is $3918.43 per QALY. The model was sensitive to the cost of stapedectomy and the cost of stapedectomy revision surgery. Probabilistic sensitivity analysis showed that stapedectomy was cost-effective compared with hearing aids 99.98% of the time.

Conclusions and Relevance  Stapedectomy appears to be a cost-effective option for treating otosclerosis compared with hearing aid use, from the patient perspective.

Original Article