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What happened to my attention span?

(08/26/19 4:00am)

I remember release night for “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” like people remember family births and weddings. I was seven and a superfan, so my dad woke me up at midnight to stand in a line which stretched three blocks through our sleepy Dutch city. When we reached it, the bookstore was filled with synthetic fog and plastic decorations, and a Hogwarts-robed cashier even comped my copy because we were tenth in line. We made a twelve-hour drive to vacation in Provence the following day, and I’d finished the book before we parked the car.

ZAYN grapples with the aftermath of superstardom on 'Icarus Falls'

(01/02/19 5:30am)

Do good things come to R&B fans who wait? After teasing listeners for months following his 2016 debut solo album “Mind of Mine,” former One Direction star Zayn Malik dropped “Icarus Falls” Dec. 14. But the stretch between initial promotion for “Icarus Falls” – in September 2017, Zayn told The FADER that he had “kind of finalized it”, though he was unable to resist fiddling with individual tracks – and its ultimate release isn’t the only endurance test Zayn has subjected fans to: A 27-song behemoth, “Icarus Falls” clocks in at 88 minutes. Although “Icarus Falls” shows flashes of talent, most notably Zayn’s vocals, album concept and homage paid to Islamic devotional music, long stretches toward the beginning of the album prove to be forgettable, albeit expertly produced, R&B-flavored pop whose excesses need pruning.

Small Town Records signs three new artists

(11/28/18 5:00am)

As a high-school sophomore, now first-year Jay Albright sold his video games and consoles to pay for music production equipment. The Atlanta native had indulged his love of beat-mixing for years, but it wasn’t until his late teens that he began to take himself seriously as an artist. In the end, his financial gamble paid off: Small Town Records, Duke’s student-run label, signed Albright, who raps under the pseudonym MAUI. STR also signed hip-hop duo FLONERS and Cliff Gilman, country-folk songwriter and senior, last month.