4/23/2014

Tobacco - “Streaker” Video (Dir. Eric Wareheim) (NSFW)



When Eric Wareheim gets the time out of his busy schedule to direct a music video it’s always worth your time. His Major Lazer and Beach House videos were two of the very best of last year. But while those videos were silly-weird and beautifully-weird respectively, this new Tobacco clip is terrifying-weird. Beginning as a late night infomercial for a family-run massage parlor, it quickly takes you on a first person tour through hell that plays out almost like a creepy amusement part ride as the various masked (and naked) family members lurch toward you like horny zombies. Filmed with a Texas Chainsaw-style graininess it’s really creepy, but it’s a good fit for “Streaker” (which finds Tobacco at his most abrasive and strange, which is really saying something) and you can’t take your eyes off it. Watch, but be warned that it’s NSFW.

Bruce Springsteen – “American Beauty” (Official Video)



On Record Store Day this past weekend, Bruce Springsteen released American Beauty, a new four-song EP on which he played almost every instrument. Springsteen and his E Street Band were playing a show in Charlotte on the night of Record Store Day, and before the show started, they shot a quick-and-dirty live video for the EP’s title track. The video won’t change your life or anything, but Springsteen’s sheer industry, his drive to continue doing stuff, is a thing to be admired.

Black Lips - "Funny" (Official Video)



Black Lips recently released the album Underneath The Rainbow, and now have a video for the track “Funny.” Starring the band playing on stage while puppeteers make marionettes dance around them, it’s an easygoing and silly video that must have been a good time to make. At least it’s definitely a relief from the last time we had a puppet-themed video in these parts.

Damon Albarn - “Heavy Seas Of Love” (Feat. Brian Eno) (Official Video)



The gorgeous Brian Eno collab “Heavy Seas Of Love” was one of the many tracks Damon Albarn released ahead of Everyday Robots. Now it’s the third to get a video, joining the beat-driven laments “Everyday Robots” and “Lonely Press Play.” Albarn shot it himself on his iPad as a sort of travelogue of all the places he visited while making the record. Watch below as slightly psychedelic, mostly realistic footage of landscapes and cityscapes unfold, and look out for our man Damon at the end.

tUnE-yArDs - “Water Fountain” (Official Video)



The playground-stomping “Water Fountain” gets an appropriately child-friendly video, with Merrill Garbus acting as our kooky schoolteacher in a zany after-school special. There’s an overabundance of ideas in the video, from a potato-wielding scientists to a trippy 8-bit interlude. It’s confusing and schizophrenic and proudly operates in a world where everyone is a caricature and everything is bright, which makes it a perfect companion to the tUnE-yArDs aesthetic. “I’d had plenty of ideas for a kid’s show that had been waiting to see the light of day,” director Joel Kefali says. “I didn’t want to make a straight homage piece; there are moments of nostalgia in there but the video is our own modern, manic, collage of a kids show. Like many great kids shows I wanted to cram in as many ideas as possible and sneak in the occasional wink to the art world, contemporary and historic.”

Watch Beck Cover Arcade Fire’s “Rebellion (Lies)” At Coachella



Beck - Rebellion (Lies) / Blue Moon (Coachella Festival, Indio CA 4/20/14)

Lily Allen - “Sheezus” (Official Video)



Here’s the video for the new Lily Allen song we heard earlier today, the title track (and opener) from her forthcoming third album Sheezus. Apparently this is not one of the rubbish songs that have been serviced to radio, but the singer’s preferred choice for a single. She talked to Rolling Stone about its provocative lyrics earlier this month:
I would have liked to see “Sheezus” as a single, but it’s not up-tempo enough. It’s also got the word “period” in it, which is really offensive to people, even though half the world has to deal with it once a month. … I think that “period” is going to be my “surfboard” with Beyoncé. People will wear sweatshirts to my concerts that are just going to say “period.”
“Sheezus” also features tongue-in-cheek references to the competition, namely Beyoncé, Katy Perry, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, and Lorde. (“Lorde smells blood, yeah, she’s about to slay you / Kid ain’t one to fuck with when she’s only on her debut.”) She explained that to RS, too:
I don’t like being compared to other people because I’m quite aware that there are people who are far more talented and have better singing voices than me. I don’t like being put in the same category as people because we have the same genitals and boobs. Nobody is going to write “Lily Allen vs. Ed Sheeran.” It just doesn’t happen. … It feels like the reason we play women against each other is because it’s the last bit of power that men have. They’re like, “Let’s make them feel shit about each other.”
Now that you’ve got all that context, you can watch the video which features a bunch of Warholian Day-Glo Lilys with animated scribbles.

Ricky Martin - "Vida" ( Official 2014 FIFA World Cup Song) (Official Video)



Ricky Martin -- Vida ( Official 2014 FIFA World Cup Song) -- Released. The Latin heartthrob dropped the music video for his own anthem on One Love, One Rhythm: The Official 2014 FIFA World Cup Album.

SchoolBoy Q - “Studio” (Feat. BJ The Chicago Kid) Video (NSFW)



On Schoolboy Q’s jagged and fired-up new album Oxymoron, “Studio,” a collaboration with the promising R&B singer BJ The Chicago Kid, stands out as a rare languid moment. It’s a song about being at work but wishing you were having sex instead, and, I mean, we’ve all been there. The black-and-white video takes just about the most literal approach you could imagine, with Q finishing up a verse in a booth somewhere while some girl crawls around on a bedspread and gets tastefully naked.

Scarface - “No Problem” (Official Video)



The Geto Boy and Houston rap originator Scarface is one of the greatest rappers of all time — any era, any region, any subgenre, no qualifiers. Face announced a low-key retirement after his last album, 2008′s great Emeritus, and other than a few guest appearances here and there, he’s mostly stuck to it. But Face is evidently finished being finished, and he’s announced that he’ll have a new LP called Deeply Rooted coming out sometime soon. This is great news for us, since Scarface is the rare rapper who has managed to reach middle age while losing barely any of his vitality. He’s now shared a video for “No Problem,” the first song we’ve heard from the album, and it’s really just a gritty, nasty, no-chorus harangue. Director Mr. Boomtown films him with zero frills, stalking through a Houston neighborhood while images of online news headlines flash on the screen.

4/22/2014

Owen Pallett - “Song For Five & Six” (Official Video)



The Canadian art-pop auteur and violin virtuoso Owen Pallett will release his new album In Conflict, and “Song For Five & Six,” which rides a wriggling John Carpenter-esque synth oscillation to some unexpected places, is the latest album song that Pallett has shared, after “The Riverbed” and “On A Path.” Director Jeff Scheven’s video for “Song For Five & Six” has dancers from Canada’s National Ballet School performing an intense, graceful, emotive dance that Robert Binet, Choreographic Assistant of the National Ballet Of Canada, choreographed. I know basically nothing about ballet, but I found it to be pretty entrancing.

London Grammar - “Sights” (Official Video)



London Grammar’s “Sights” has already been a very popular song, and now it’s gotten a music-video treatment by director Giorgio Testi. Shot mostly in one elegantly sweeping take, it begins intimately, with the band performing in a stylishly lit space (plenty of lens flare here), before pulling out to the audience. It ends with a little camera trick of faux-seamlessness that’s seen used everywhere from Pharrell’s 24-hour video for “Happy” to Hitchcock’s “one-take” movie Rope. It’s a cool effect, and one that sneaks up on you due to the way London Grammar’s performance (and “Sights” in general) lulls you into such a comforting place.

Pharrell - “Happy” 24-Hour Music Video



The year of Pharrell is coming to an end, but not without this pretty huge finish. “Happy,” a song from the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack, has been made into what’s billed as the world’s first 24-hour music video. It’s a huge, happy, dance-y, smile-y adventure of a thing with cameos from Jamie Fox, Steve Carrell, Tyler, the Creator, Earl Sweatshirt, Jimmy Kimmel, and Magic Johnson, but better yet it just features a lot of normal folks having a good time. Directed by the We Are From L.A. group, the camera only cuts during occasional moments to focus on the ground or sky, making edits really subtle (kind of like what Hitchcock did in Rope) and giving it this really seamless flow over the day it takes to watch. And if 24 hours isn’t enough, it also ends right where it starts, Finnegan’s Wake style, so you could technically watch the video in an endless loop. Watch a 4-hour clip below, but the curious should check out the video 24-hour song.

DIANA - “Strange Attraction” (Official Video)



Toronto band DIANA’s Perpetual Surrender played with the dynamic between hooks and experimental oddity, and was one of the more overlooked and original takes on synth-pop last year. Album standout “Strange Attraction” blended blocky percussion, ear-worm synths, and Carmen Elle’s smoky vocals into a song that’s wonderfully catchy, but not without its avant touches. George Bok’s new video for the track achieves a similar quality in its emotive performances, tweaked with strange details like the masks seen above and moments played in reverse.

The Menzingers - “I Don’t Wanna Be An Asshole Anymore” (Official Video)



Grassroots Pennsylvania pop-punks the Menzingers release their new album Rented World today, and they’re marking the occasion with a video for the triumphant lead single “I Don’t Wanna Be An Asshole Anymore.” Director Whitey McConnaughy has given the colossal fist-pumper a humorous yet wistful treatment about a serial killer trying to turn over a new leaf. It’s a genius concept for a song that already sends hearts racing, so you’ll surely enjoy it below.

Hugh Masekela - 'It's All Over Now, Baby Blue' (Official Music Video)



The video is a unique township mbaqanga take on the Bob Dylan classic. It is also a moving tribute to Bra Hugh's lifetime friend, and legendary South African photographer Alf Kumalo.

Directed by Brett Rubin alongside cinematographer Robert Wilson, art director Nicole Van Heerden and editor Tom Glenn. The video was produced by House of Masekela in association with Vatic, and is endorsed by the family and estate of Alf Kumalo.
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The video features never-before-seen footage of Bra Alf Kumalo, at work in his darkroom and shooting street scenes in Alexandra Township.

The video also includes an incredible montage of some of Bra Alf's most iconic pictures spanning the last 50 years of world and South African history -- a dizzying array of images that capture some of the most important moments and icons in our country, and the world's, history. As well as striking photographs of the ordinary men and women who crossed Bra Alf's path.

Nelson Mandela, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Oliver Tambo, Robert Sobukwe, Steve Biko, Ruth First, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Father Trevor Hudddleston, Miriam Makeba, and Muhammad Ali are all featured in private and public moments, at ease in the eye of Bra Alf's lens.

The most telling part of the music video is a picture of a young 16-year old Hugh Masekela leaping in the air, clutching the trumpet that had been sent to him by Louis Armstrong. This iconic image became the starting point of a life-long friendship between the two young men, both of whom went on to change the world in their respective ways.

4/21/2014

Greys - “Guy Picciotto” (Official Video)



The Toronto post-hardcore ragers Greys, named “Guy Picciotto,” the first single from their debut album If Anything, after the eternally badass co-leader of Fugazi. And in the song’s new video, from director Amanda Fotes, the members of the band hurl an amp off the roof of an abandoned high-rise. The real Picciotto might not approve!

Jon Spencer Blues Explosion – “She’s On It” (Beastie Boys Cover) + “Jack The Ripper” (Link Wray Cover) Video



Jon Spencer Blues Explosion just released a Record Store Day recording of their popular live medley of “She’s On It” by the Beastie Boys blended with “Jack The Ripper” by Link Wray. Now you can watch the video for it, which patches together footage of the band playing it live.