Entertainment Music

Grammy Snubs and Surprises: boygenius Thrives, Nation and Rap Wither

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Songs from the Greta Gerwig movie “Barbie” — a canny assortment of up to date pop hitmakers discovering artistic methods to wrestle with the movie’s themes — are in all places on this 12 months’s nominations. Billie Eilish’s familiarly melancholy “What Was I Made For?” is up for report and tune of the 12 months, and Dua Lipa’s “Dance the Night time” can also be nominated for tune of the 12 months. “Barbie World” by Nicki Minaj and Ice Spice will compete for finest rap tune. Tracks from the soundtrack additionally hog up 4 of the 5 obtainable slots in finest tune written for visible media. CARAMANICA

After a 12 months through which Latin music continued to blow up on streaming providers and forge all types of cross-cultural hybrids, this 12 months’s Grammy nominations are, nicely, puzzling. Edgar Barrera, the Mexican American songwriter who has collaborated on hit after hit for singers throughout the Americas, is rightfully a nominee for songwriter of the 12 months. However there’s no finest new artist nomination for Peso Pluma, the cutting-voiced Mexican songwriter whose profession skyrocketed in 2022 and 2023 — he’s touring arenas this 12 months — and who bridges regional Mexican corridos and Latin entice. Peso Pluma’s 2023 album, “Génesis,” is simply tucked among the many nominees for música mexicana. Different rising Mexican-rooted acts that had a blockbuster 12 months — amongst them Eslabon Armado, Grupo Frontera, Grupo Firme, Christian Nodal and Natanael Cano — go unmentioned.

Then there’s the oddity of the música urbana class. Its three — solely three — nominees are deserving: the reggaeton producer Tainy, the electronics-loving pop experimenter Rauw Alejandro and the Colombian songwriter Karol G, whose 2023 album, “Mañana Será Bonito,” was the primary Spanish-language album by a girl to achieve No. 1 on the Billboard 200. However música urbana — encompassing reggaeton, Latin hip-hop, dembow, Latin entice and extra — is a crowded, aggressive, vastly standard format. The Grammys couldn’t discover 5 nominees? All they needed to do was activate the radio. JON PARELES

The Grammys’ rock classes are dependable head-scratchers, however finest rock tune supplies an sudden delight this time: Olivia Rodrigo’s “Ballad of a Homeschooled Girl” goes up towards the Rolling Stones’ “Angry,” pitting a few of this 12 months’s oldest nominees (common Stones age: 78) towards one of many youngest (at 20, Rodrigo remains to be not sufficiently old to order a celebratory champagne). Rodrigo is the one nominee within the class who isn’t a part of a band, however her monitor has the fewest variety of writers: simply two, herself and the producer Daniel Nigro. (The opposite rivals embody boygenius, Foo Fighters and Queens of the Stone Age.)

“Ballad of a Homeschooled Lady,” with its gleeful pop-punk thrash, is an ode to social awkwardness that attracts on ’90s rockers like Veruca Salt; “Offended” is constructed on a basic Stones riff with loads of room to breathe — in contrast to the troubled relationship Mick Jagger describes in its lyrics. Each describe uncomfortable conditions; each sound like a load of enjoyable. And it’s good to see Rodrigo’s newest album, “Guts,” acknowledged within the rock discipline, the place it belongs. CARYN GANZ

If anybody ought to have been capable of depend on respect from the Grammys, it’s Paul Simon. His 2023 album, “Seven Psalms,” performs as a considerate, complicated, tuneful farewell, anticipating his demise. It’s a serious assertion couched in intimate acoustic preparations, with the craftsmanship and creative ambition that awards reveals declare to acknowledge. Simon has received 16 Grammys, relationship again to his days with Simon and Garfunkel. However “Seven Psalms” was shut out of high-profile classes like album of the 12 months, and acquired only one obscure nomination, for finest folks album, the place Simon competes with the touching comeback (and beloved, acquainted songs) of “Joni Mitchell at Newport.” The Grammys used to reward late-career albums by musicians like Steely Dan (“Two Towards Nature”), Bob Dylan (“Time Out of Thoughts”) and Tony Bennett (“MTV Unplugged”). Now, Simon’s knotty confrontation with mortality appears to have gotten stranded between Grammy generations. PARELES