8 of music's best April Fools' Day pranks

by Tyler Munro

April 1, 2014






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New sources uncovered today actually reveal that Beatles bassist Paul McCarthey has for real actually been dead for forty yeaHahaHaHahHahHa JOKING IDIOTS WE GOT YOu.

Listen, we get it: April Fool’s Day was a lot of fun when you were 12. But we’re grown up now, and couple that with the natural over-saturation that comes with the Internet, and the day is basically absolutely insufferable. Still, it’s not to say there haven’t been some gems over the years. Below, we’ve outlined a brief history of music’s best, brightest and lulziest pranks.


Hanson’s Slipknot cover album

Three years ago, Hanson announced they were going to record an album consisting entirely of Slipknot covers, and they went full in on the joke. First, they told VH1 they thought Slipknot were underrated, and concurrently released a horribly filmed clip of them covering “Wait and Bleed” in their hotel room.

Honestly? We’d be into listening to this.


Animalia, Sony’s line of headphones for cats and speakers for hamsters

In addition to its K9 friendly TV,

Last year, Sony totally #pranked the internet with its #techforpets line Animalia, which in addition to its K9-friendly TV offered consumers the chance to buy Kitty Can headphones and In-Cage Speakers, offering sound solutions for their cats and hamsters. But it was all a hilarious joke!


YouTube RickRolls the Internet

Like most things on the Internet, Rickrolling—bait-and-switch linking to Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” instead of the expected video—started on 4Chan. Within the year, millions of suckers were tricked into watching the gangly ginger singer dance around in his denim jumper, and by April 2008, YouTube had gone full in on the joke when it linked every video on its front page to the clip.

Unrelated, but click here for an exclusive leak of the new Kanye West song.


The White Stripes reunite with Tilda Swinton on drums

As an actress, Tilda Swinton is almost amorphous, able to cloak herself in seemingly any role. So, then, it was almost plausible when The Beat reported last year that she would back a White Stripes reunion on the drums.

“White’s roots are routed to the crossroads. Crossroads can reveal themselves to be mobius,” said Swinton, allegedly from inside a glass box at the MOMA. “And here we are, re-routed to the roots of Jack White as he rediscovers his roots.”

The reunion was supposed to culminate in a Record Store Day full length called Evangelical Trout only, y’know, April Fools.


Nine Inch Nails collaborate with Timbaland

This one is great because of the added context Trent Reznor’s upcoming tour with Soundgarden provides. Before becoming buds again to co-support the 20th anniversaries of The Downward Spiral and Superunknown Trent Reznor could be found online talking shit about Chris Cornell’s solo album. Namely, his collaboration with Timbaland.

“You know that feeling you get when somebody embarrasses themselves so badly YOU feel uncomfortable?” said Reznor in a since deleted Tweet in 2009. “Heard Chris Cornell’s record? Jesus.” Then, a few months later, he announced Strobe Light, Nine Inch Nails’ own collaboration with the hip-hop super producer and an album that would reportedly feature everyone from Sheryl Crow and Bono to Maynard James Keenan and Alicia Keys.

Its press quote is below, and the original website is still totally accessible for your smirking pleasure.

To download NIN’s new full-length album Strobe Light, PRODUCED BY TIMBALAND, enter a valid email address in the fields below. A download link will be sent to you immediately. Your credit card will be charged $18.98 plus a $10 digital delivery convenience fee. Your files will arrive as windows media files playable on quite a few players with your name embedded all over them just in case you lose them. You will also receive an exclusive photo and a free email account with our partner Google’s Gmail service.
Your email will be kept confidential and will not be used for spam, unless we can make some money selling it.


Islands singer Nicholas Thorburn announces his own death

Check. Mate.


Soundcloud’s Dropometer

Similar to our dubstep machine, which added wubs and drops to any website of your choosing, Soundcloud announced its Dropometer last year with one simple concept: Preparation.

“The drop in a track can be unpredictable and surprising,” read the prank’s official press release. “Some of you have even told us that you find it unsettling, not knowing when to expect that sense of overwhelming euphoria. Inspired by your feedback, we’ve invented the Dropometer.”

Using a “unique algorithm,” the Dropometer was an indicator for when the drop was coming, which Soundcloud said was as useful for 17th-century symphonies as Skrillex’s “Bangarang.”


Bald Justin Bieber

There’s two sides to this one, and while neither happened on April 1st, it’s too good not to share. In August 2012, Justin Bieber went on record dissing Prince William’s bald spot. “I mean, there are things to prevent that nowadays,” he told Rollercoaster magazine. “You just take Propecia and your hair grows back.”

That led us to have some fun at Bieber’s expense with some admittedly crude artist renderings of what he’d look like with a similar receding hairline. But the joke came full circle in October when false rumours started circulating that Bieber had been diagnosed with cancer, and with that came the #BaldForBieber. Because the Internet, a bunch of gullible tweens joined in, shaving their heads in solidarity for the pint sized pop star.

Tags: Music, News, Animalia, Chris Cornell, Dropometer, Hanson, Justin Bieber, Kanye West, Nine Inch Nails, skrillex, Slipknot, Soundgarden, The White Stripes, Tilda Swinton, Timbaland, White Stripes






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