Friday, October 31, 2014
Somewhere at a crossroads where Public Enemy, Tricky, Massive Attack, Death Grips, and TV on the Radio meet in a head-on collision, you find Scottish trio Young Fathers. They are up for the Mercury Prize for their album Dead, which is a collection of dark, experimental hip-hop tracks. It is hard to pick one track from the record as it all sort of works together as a collective whole. One of the standouts for me, though, is the lumbering, clanking track "Just Another Bullet."
Happy Halloween, and Happy Friday! Here are some spooktacular and just everyday videos to get your weekend going right:
Extremely creepy video from Flying Lotus.
While not really a Halloween-esque video, this clip from FKA twigs has some sinister moments to it.
The Growlers perform in a creepy evangelical church in this eerie black and white clip.
Dark and twisted clip from The Afghan Whigs.
The only scary thing about this OK Go video is thinking about how many times they had to do this routine before they got it right.
Thursday, October 30, 2014
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Fantastic collaboration between UK duo Thumpers and Hunger Games' actress Jena Malone, who also releases solo material under the name The Shoe.
Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Florida-based singer-songwriter JMR (Joshua Michael Robinson) releases another single today, the dreamy and hypnotic "Shivers." JMR's gorgeous falsetto floats over a sensual bed of R&B and jazz inflected electronics.
Monday, October 27, 2014
Skittering beats, pastoral guitar, washes of synths, and natural sounds punctuate this track from Wild Kid, a.k.a. Ryan Glassman. The track is featured on his debut EP New Bethlehem.
My first introduction to The The, a.k.a. Matt Johnson, came from the pages of Rolling Stone magazine and their yearly feature Ten Bands You Must Hear, which also included stories on then unknowns Prefab Sprout and General Public. What struck me about the article on The The was that Johnson was the sole member of the band and had pretty much recorded every note on the album Soul Mining. Being from the relatively small town of Savannah in the 1980s didn't provide much in the way of easy access to alternative music, but one day in my local Record Bar was one shiny cassette tape of Soul Mining, begging me to take it home. Since that day, I have worn out approximately three cassette copies of the record, until I finally preserved it on CD and now digital media. This album is such a seminal part of my musical growth in the 80s that it amazes me sometimes that I forget to mention it in my top albums of all time. I tend to overlook it, not because it somehow is inferior, but because it is such a monolithic work that it towers so far above as to be god-like. What strikes me most about this album now is that it still sounds well ahead of its time with very little aging. Usually in these features I highlight one song that I like the most off a record, however, in this case, I like every song equally. If you have yet to hear this record, prepare to be blown away by its inventive sonic attack, brazen and witty lyrics, and the sheer melodic force of these tracks. For those that adore this record already, be prepared to be welcomed back into its warm cocoon. In honor of its 30th anniversary, Sony Music is reissuing the album. The re-packed and expanded version contains an authentic reproduction of the album, with newly remastered audio from the original master tapes (overseen at Abbey Road by Matt Johnson), as well as an extra 12” gatefold vinyl of alternative versions and remixes.
Friday, October 24, 2014
London-based, Nigerian-born singer Oyinda singer's "Rush of You" is a fairly minimal alt-R&B track that hits all the right marks for me. Her subtle voice is the key to this track, as it equates love to a drug addiction, with the withdrawals giving her false hope that her lover will come back. The end of the track is simply the voices in her head clipped and chopped into another instrument as the feelings wash over her.
Friday cometh! Herein lies this weeks best videos:
Lonely and forlorn video for Interpol, finds the band playing in a dive bar.
A mother leaves her child in a forbidding forest that is inhabited by some weird cultists, in this eerie and odd clip from Thurston Moore.
Really cool clip from Museum of Love (a collaboration between former LCD Soundsystem drummer Pat Mahoney and Run-Roc labelhead Dennis McNan) shows a sculptor working on a piece in fast-motion.
Elaborate video from The Head and the Heart.
Chvrches share this anime-inspired video for their song "Under the Tide."
Extremely bizarre clip for this collaboration between art-pop icon Scott Walker and drone-metal titans Sunn O))).
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Monday, October 20, 2014
As a rule, I don't discount any song/genre of music until I have heard it for myself and determine whether I like it or not. Pop music seems to the be the one area where certain friends of mine become surprised that I like something. In my opinion, if a song is good, a song is good, and I will be the first person to try and get the word out. There is nothing monumentally striking about atmospheric pop duo Aquilo, aside from the fact that they know their way around a dramatic ballad. "I Gave It All" is just 4 minutes of pop song beauty.
Hard to believe this album came out 25 years ago today. Pretty Hate Machine was a seminal college record for me and still sounds as good as it did back then. While the album is chock full of amazing singles like "Head Like A Hole," "Down In It," and "Sin," by far my favorite track is and was "That's What I Get."
Friday, October 17, 2014
Happy Friday all! Here are some killer videos from this week:
Gorgeous song from The Drums gets a gorgeous video shot mostly in an aquarium.
Merchandise drop this clip featuring half performance and half theatrical performance based on John Byrne’s Slab Boys Trilogy, which tells the tale of three working-class Scots growing up.
Bizarre clip from Swedish psych-rocker's GOAT.
Ridiculously fun clip from power-pop group Ex Hex featuring them as space rockers visiting DC.
Post-metal band Tombs release this video for their cover of David Bowie's classic "Heroes," featuring the band walking around NYC at night.
Simple video focusing on singer Daniel Woolhouse, a.k.a. Deptford Goth, and some images of beaches and fields.
Atmospheric black and white clip for Adult Jazz' track "Am Gone," featuring a Christlike figure wandering through landscapes in gallows.
James Blake dropped an unreleased track on BBC1 Radio last night as part of his residency. It's a lovely, creaking mix of low end bass, juke joint piano, and disembodied voices.
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
In what sounds like a move more towards Future R&B, Jam City previews a track from his upcoming second record. "Unhappy" delivers some ice cold funk before breaking down into an ambient coda.
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Monday, October 13, 2014
Friday, October 10, 2014
This is Pride weekend here in Atlanta. Lots of good friends are in town from elsewhere and it should be a fun weekend. It was such a long week to get to this point, and here are the videos that kept me occupied:
Sometimes the simplest videos are the best. The clip for this outstanding track from Kindness' second record Otherness finds the lanky Adam Bainbridge with dancer Karla Garcia in front of a large LCD screen. His awkward, yet endearing dancing next to her professional moves is intoxicating.
This video for Canadian producer Ryan Hemsworth's new track with singer Dawn Golden, finds the producer shaving his head and wandering around Nepal.
Corbu uses one long, aerial tracking shot over a city using it as a light show.
Almost all white clip from Ballet School gets slight splashes of color.
Dark and unsettling clip from Son Lux.
San Francisco pop rockers The Tropics do a shot for shot remake of Mark Mark and the Funky Bunch's video for "Good Vibrations."
Video shows Mary J. Blige working in the studio with Disclosure.
Thursday, October 9, 2014
From her major label debut record Aquarius, which is the best R&B record of the year, Tinashe hits the club with this sleek banger. The track is produced by Stargate and Cashmere Cat.
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
From their upcoming eponymous EP, Line & Circle release this rush of a single, whose jangly guitars and tight rhythm section recall the early days of R.E.M. You can listen to the track over at Stereogum.com.
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Hard to believe Portland based singer/songwriter Grace Mitchell is only 16 years old, but she has a commanding performance on this elegant ballad, that sounds like a warmer, young sister version of Lorde. Expect big things from this up and coming talent.
Second track preview from TVOTR's upcoming record Seeds is "Careful You," a sleek and throbbing electronic track featuring a gorgeous vocal from lead singer Tunde Adebimpe.
Monday, October 6, 2014
Friday, October 3, 2014
Another Friday is upon us. Here are the videos that buttered my biscuit:
NSFW clip for Arca's track "Thievery." It is a hypnotic, unsettling, and brilliant CGI clip. Instant classic.
The video for Liars track "I'm No Gold" is all about leader Angus Andrew’s odd expressions and hair.
Fuzzed out track from Cloud Nothings gets a fuzzed out black and white video clip.
TV On The Radio's new single gets a strange clip featuring Paul Reubens as a visions-tormented race car driver.
Gorgeous clip for this collaboration between Tinashe and A$AP Rocky.
Stunning clip for this track from The Bug.
Thursday, October 2, 2014
The British band Childhood cull their sound from the best of dream pop, shoegaze, and indie pop, coming up with some wickedly catchy songs. One of the many highlights from their album Lacuna is the shimmering and shambling track "Blue Velvet."