25
Sep

Watch/Listen to Perfectly-Devastating New Dirty Projectors Song “Keep Your Name”

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Dirty Projectors‘ new song Keep Your Name tellingly opens with (wedding) church bells that go to glitch. So life has apparently gone for leader Dave Longstreth and a lost love of his. In the opening lines of the song, Longstreth lays open his ventricles with, “I don’t know why you abandoned me, you were my soul and my partner, what we imagined and what we became, we’ll keep ’em separate and you keep your name.” The song manages to be complex, inventive and multi-dimensional all at once, and bodes incredibly well for the impending new album from the band, their first in four years following their breakthrough Swing Lo Magellan. Check it out below via the song’s superb, official video in black-and-white directed by Longstreth and Kanye West’s associate, Elon Rutberg. We love Longstreth’s affected and heartfelt vocals, the sample from the band’s own 2012 song Impregnable Question, the rapped interval (couldn’t agree more with the Gene Simmons assessment), and the inventive electronic mix. With Keep Your NameDirty Projectors are giving Bon Iver a strong run for best production of 2016. Lyrics at bottom.

Keep Your Name:

“I don’t know why you abandoned me
You were my soul and my partner
What we imagined and what we became
We’ll keep ’em separate and you keep your name

You keep your name
You keep your name
You keep your name
You keep your name
You keep your name

There is a place that we both know
It lives in our hearts, we built it together
Fear is a manacle but love is unchained
So we’ll keep ’em separate and you keep your name

You keep your name
You keep your name
You keep your name
You keep your name

[Rap]
I wasn’t there for you
I didn’t pay attention
I didn’t take you seriously and I didn’t listen
I don’t think I ever loved you
That was some stupid shit
I wanted what you wanted but we never really felt the same
I kept my name ’cause we were just different
Your heart is saying clothing line
My body said Naomi Klein, No Logo
We shared kisses and visions
But like KISS shithead Gene Simmons said
A band is a brand and it looks that our vision is dissonant

You always hurried to grow up
I think I’ll always just feel kinda the same
What I want from art is truth
What you want is fame
Now we’ll keep ’em separate and you keep your name

You keep your name
You keep your name
You keep your name”

16
Sep

Watch Anderson .Paak and Mac Miller Smoothly Slaughter on Colbert

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It was a phenomenally fine week for music for the weak and the strong on late night TV. We had some Bon Iver and some Chance, 2 Chainz and Lil Wayne (more about that tomorrow–who’s the fool said we would never list the latter on this website?). And we had some Mac Miller (wait, what???). Oh yeah, as accompanied by the talented lad from The ‘Nard, Anderson .Paak. Watch below as Miller, in support of his new album The Feminine Divine, performed the smoothly funkified track Dang backed by the phenomenal .Paak on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. The duo is also supported admirably by Colbert’s band Jean-Baptiste and State Human. Watch below as .Paak sings of lost ones while Miller raps of one he lost. Gonna have to pay more attention to this Miller kid. .Paak’s a given.

15
Sep

Watch Bon Iver Perform Song “8 (circle)” on Fallon’s Tonight Show

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Photo by: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC

Bon Iver will soon release highly-anticipated new album 22, A Million. Last night on Fallon’s Tonight Show, Bon Iver appeared and performed another new song entitled 8 (circle) (lyrics at bottom). Check out the enthralling performance below, featuring the elevating support of various vocal heavies such as The Staves and Anaïs Mitchell. Great stuff. Bon Iver will play five sold out dates in California next month before heading out on a European tour early next year. Stay tuned.

8 (circle):

“Philosophize your figure
What I have in heaven, hell
You called, I came, stand tall through it all
Fallen fixture just the same thing

Say nothing of my fable, no
What on earth is left to come?
Who’s agonized and not through it all
I’m underneath your tongue

I’m standing in your street now, no
And I carry his guitar
And I can’t recall it lightly at all
But I know I’m going in

Too much for me to pick up, no
Not sure what forgiveness is
We gather at the squall of it all
I can leave behind a harbor

I will run
(All the way round it)
Have to crawl
(Still can’t stop it)
Along the fires
One more time just pass me by
I’ma make it half the night
All night wishes

To walk aside your favor, I’m an Astuary King
I would ask you where it came
I’ll keep in a cave, your comfort and all
I’m burning down, you’re coming

I will run
(Fill it all, fill all your run, you’re running)
Have to crawl
(Carry off and I shall see)
Along the fire
(Carry off your fairly on, your fairy time)
Now, Mona

Baby, I’ve locked up my failures
(You’re on, you’re on)
Here and I’ve been the last to see
See you laugh it off your fingers
Was it all I could find?”

13
Sep

Watch Hamilton Leithauser + Rostam Make Their TV Debut on Colbert

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Hamilton Leithauser (The Walkmen) and Rostam Batmanglij (Vampire Weekend) will next week release their debut collaborative album I Had A Dream That You Were Mine. Last night they made their debut on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert and performed an infused version of their song A 1000 Times (which we first exposed HERE). Watch below as Leithauser lights up the stage with his singular vocals that have enthralled since we first heard The Rat. Batmanglij also adds some tasteful piano and fuzzed-up guitar along the way. Check out the :30 mark where Leithauser first unleashes his flamethrowing ache. Worthwhile lyrics at bottom.

We could watch this performance a thousand times!

A 1000 Times

“I had a dream that you were mine
I’ve had that dream a thousand times
A thousand times, a thousand times
I’ve had that dream a thousand times

I left my room, on the West Side
I walked from noon, until the night
I changed my crowd, I ditched my tie
I watched the sparks, fly off the fire

I found your house, I didn’t even try
They’d closed the shutters , they’d pulled the blinds
My eyes were red, the streets were bright
Those ancient years, were black and white

The 10th of November, the year’s almost over
If I had your number, I’d call you tomorrow
If my eyes were open, I’d be kicking the doors in
But all that I have is this old dream I’ve always had

A thousand times, a thousand times
I’ve had that dream a thousand times
A thousand times, a thousand times
I’ve had that dream a thousand times

I left my room, on the West Side
I walked from noon, until the night
I changed my crowd, I ditched my tie
I watched the sparks, fly off the fire

I found your old house, I didn’t even try
They’d closed the shutters, they’d pulled the blinds
My eyes were red, the streets were bright
Those ancient years, were black and white

I had a dream that you were mine
I’ve had that dream a thousand times

But I don’t answer questions, I just keep on guessing
My eyes are still open, the curtains are closing
And all that I have is this old dream I must have had.

A thousand times, a thousand times
I’ve had that dream a thousand times
A thousand times, a thousand times
I’ve had that dream a thousand times

A thousand times, a thousand times
I’ve had that dream a thousand times
A thousand times, a thousand times
I’ve had that dream a thousand times”

12
Sep

Listen to Chuck Prophet’s Soul-Searching Cover of Ezra Furman’s “If I Was A Baby”–New Album Coming

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We’ve been receiving semaphores from the Chuck Prophet hemisphere about a new album in the works. We can’t wait for the new release from one of this land’s finest songwriters.

In the meantime, Prophet has reminded fans of his high musical net-worth by reiterating the song If I Was A Baby from his last, under-appreciated album gem, Night Surfer. Night Surfer was one of our Best Albums of 2014, and you should pick it up HERE (and now) if you don’t already own it. If I Was A Baby is an extremely rare cover by Prophet (if you write songs as well as he does, why bother?). Check out Prophet’s cover below of the the song written by talented wordsmith-maestro, Ezra Furman. Prophet’s timing may relate to Furman’s announced departure from San Francisco to parts unknown. Prophet wows on the recording with his vocal prowess and agnostic seance (not to mention strings and rare use of banjo). Great stuff!

About the song and recording, Prophet says: “This is an Ezra Furman song. I’m a big fan. The drummer went home early that night [during the Night Surfer sessions] so we cut this spontaneously. I think this is from Ezra’s first record. He’s got a mess of great songs. We were supposed to play some gigs together in the UK on the LFR [Let Freedom Ring!] tour a while back. But he and his band got stopped at UK customs and sent back. I was disappointed, but it also kind of warmed my heart.”

After Prophet’s masterful cover, check out the Furman original on which Furman’s vocals remind of Neil Young circa Goldrush.

All is not lost–keep your mouth on mystery’s breast.

If I Was A Baby:

“If I was a baby with nothing to hide
I would be saying prayers all of the time
I would not think of to whom they’re addressed
I’d have my mouth on the mystery’s breast

Little boy blue in the corn with his horn
Pouring out music the day he was born
Son of a gun and it’s holster in love
He can’t remember what he is made of
Ooooh

Teenage Maria is caught in the door
Not understanding what her body’s for
All of the pieces begin to align
Sick to her stomach she feels like she’s flying

Man with a magazine over his face
Wishes that he was in some other place
Life is a waiting room for those who wait
All of it’s terrible, all of it’s great

Ooooh

Grandfather Elliott out on the beach
Watching Ma’s paper blow out of his reach
He cannot tell her his soul could be going
So busy always with his bluster and blowing

If I was a baby and I could be blessed
I would sing true love out of your chest
I get the paper I get myself dressed
I keep my mouth on the mystery’s breast

Ooooh”

6
Sep

Watch Tom Brosseau’s Erstwhile New Video for “You Can’t Stop” Off Impending New Album

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Long-time fans of superb singer-songwriter Tom Brosseau know that he has eyes, ears and heart for the “good old days.” Whether evoking his native North Dakota or other nostalgic touchstones (Guy Lombardo, Johnny Cash or The Pixies), Brosseau repeatedly pins the past to his songs. And he does so effortlessly and well. We were once again wowed by Brosseau today with the release of his new-but-old video for You Can’t Stop off of his impending album, North Dakota Impressions (due on 9/16 from Crossbill Records). The song is a spare beauty that intends hope, though the video lends tension before ending at its desired destination. Ben Guzman and Angela Wood created and directed the video, which was filmed in a 1950 Spartan Mansion Trailer. Up and coming singer-songwriter/actress Alaska Reid (of band Alyeska, which will soon release its highly-anticipated debut album) adds good company to the video. Check it out below.

Brosseau told NPR that, “There’s an extra pull at all of us. Debt, too much sun, love. I wasn’t unlike the rest of the tenants at [his former Venice residence, the] Dolphin Court. I’m not unlike you, either. Every now and then I’ll get a glimpse of what it is. And when I do I’ll say to myself, ‘There’s got to be time left.’ Time to do things. At least some of the things. I am a ghost with a shadow. A person’s shadow can really be the heaviest thing.”

Be they large or small, “we’re living in dreams, our own little dreams.” Roll out from the shadow and dream a little.

Go HERE to pre-order/buy North Dakota Impressions.

 

4
Sep

Great Songwriter John K. Samson (The Weakerthans) Returns With New Album–Listen to Song “Postdoc Blues”

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Music lovers have cause for celebration: one of this era’s best songwriters, John K. Samson (of the much-lamented The Weakerthans) is returning from Winnipeg’s tundra with new album Winter Wheat, his first since 2012’s Provincial (our No. 3 Best Album of 2012). Evidently “inspired by the search for connection and community… and our individual and collective struggles with addictions to drugs, screens, and fossil fuels,” Winter Wheat will be available via Anti-Records on October 21st.

To entice your ears, Samson has unveiled a great new song, Postdoc Blues, which you can listen to below. In the song and the album’s tracklist (below) we hear and see that some of Samson’s totemic touchstones (Winnipeg, Highway 1) and characters (Virtue the Cat) are endearingly continued on the new album. Similarly Provincial’s Master’s Thesiswriter and his “controller” and “hard drive” yield to the Postdoc Blues and its “dongles.” Samson presents another character seeking community and hope while existing in an isolated, digitized world.

Samson has said that in Postdoc Blues he “wanted to see that character move beyond the immediate comforts of screens and solitude, and catch sight of the larger picture—that we need to keep working to build a community that will care for the world and for each other, and that there can be real joy in that labor. Postdoc Blues is also one of several songs on this record that I wrote in response to Neil Young’s 1974 album On The Beach. Young was uncannily prescient about our current addictions to screens and drugs and fossil fuels and nostalgia.”

We are thrilled by the new song and can’t wait for the album, which was co-produced by Jason Tait (The Weakerthans drummer), along with Samson’s partner, Christine Fellows, and also features Greg Smith (The Weakerthans bass player) and much of it was recorded by The Weakerthans sound tech Cam Loeppky.

You can pre-order Winter Wheat HERE.

John K. Samson – Winter Wheat – Track Listing:

  1. Select All Delete
  2. Postdoc Blues
  3. Winter Wheat
  4. Requests
  5. Oldest Oak at Brookside
  6. Capital
  7. 17th Street Treatment Centre
  8. Vampire Alberta Blues
  9. Carrie Ends the Call
  10. Fellow Traveller
  11. Quiz Night at Looky Lou’s
  12. Alpha Adept
  13. Prayer for Ruby Elm
  14. VPW 13 Blues
  15. Virtute at Rest
2
Sep

Watch Sampha Make His TV Debut on Colbert Last Night

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One of our favorite new UK artists, Sampha, will soon release his long-awaited solo album entitled Process (via Young Turks). Sampha’s been busy this summer, having revealed at least one stellar song (Plastic 100°C) from the new album (along with Timmy’s Prayer). But last night Sampha took things to a whole new level in his impressive TV debut on the Late Show With Stephen Colbert. Watch below as, backed by a killer band, he sings the sang-froid out of Blood On Me. Those unique vocals! That percussion! And bowed cello for no extra charge. Superb stuff!

“Gray hoodie, they cover their heads
I can’t see their faces
I can’t see, see, see, see, see
They’re near me
There’s sweat on my hand
My heart was thumpin’, drummin’
No need, no need to take from me
Don’t throw the paint on me
I see this light formin’
I got lost astray
And as far as runnin’ away
I still puff, I’m on the edge now
They see me, and not nearly
I nearly lose my grip, but you held on to me
And assured me, and tell me that I’m okay

But I swear they smell the blood on me
I hear them coming for me
I swear they smell the blood on me
I hear them coming for me, for me

I wake up and the sky is blood red
I’m still heavy breathin’
Felt so much more than dreamin’
I get up, they’re at the edge of my bed
How did they find me, find me?
They said there’s somethin’ bleedin’ in me
Somethin’ screamin’ in me
Somethin’ perfect deep beneath
What I need to, need to get away
So I get it, still it’s get away
And I’d send away, and I’d send away
But my gears got stuck
I’m on this road now
I’m so alone now, swervin’ out of control now
And I crash the whip
And your strength runs through me
Arms out, you pull me
And wipe my wounds clean

I swear they smell the blood on me
I hear them coming for me
I swear they smell the blood on me
I hear them coming for me, for me, yeah”

1
Sep

Watch Laney Jones’ Official Video for “Who Could Love” From One Of The Best Albums of 2016

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The relentless rummage has been wasting our time and fracking our focus. In a rare moment of clarity, we submit that Laney Jones’ (and The Spirit‘s) self-titled album is easily one of the Best Albums of 2016. We confess our clarity was triggered by today’s release of their tranquillo video for the album’s Who Could Love (see below, with lyrics at bottom).

After catching Jones & The Spirit’s superb live act, we featured their Zika-catchy song Allston (Dance Around), and vowed to give the album its greater due. Three months later, we confirm that we had it right all along. The brilliant album has a broad and varied pallet that bears repeated listening and argues that Jones and her songwriting partner, Matthew Tonner, might be the next Lennon-McCartney, Jagger-Richards, Goffin-King or (the other) Jones-Strummer (OK, that might be minor hyperbole, but time will tell–don’t bet against them).

The album’s deceptively simple-sounding (but clandestinely-complex) songs are gems that will transport you. In addition to the great songwriting, vocals and playing, David Plakon has appropriately-framed the group with his deft production. Favorite songs include the sepia-toned Do What You Want, the Wilco-esque Bad Luck Charm, the ebullient Work It Out, the swaggering and audacious Firewalk (with it’s gripping off-count delays), the endearingly-confessional Lonesome Soul, the powerful The Simple Truth and the seasonally-apropos Endless Summer. That’s right–there’s not a bad song on the album. Do yourselves a favor and go pick up the album HERE.

And keep your eyes and ears open for Laney Jones & The Spirit, who are out on tour and headed to the West Coast (including Cali in two weeks). Check out the dates HERE.

“Tired and thankless
No room for the vanquished
The man at the banquet
Says there’s plenty of food
Just not for you
There’s no point in fighting
I used to play nicely
But damn Aphrodite’s got a hold on me

I’m not the person I used to be
No one stays in their infancy
I am leaving my history

Who could love a fool like me?
I’m beat, broke down
I’ve got nothing to give but mystery
Who could love a fool like me?

I need a new love
I’m kicking the old drugs
To the man up above
Let me go my way
I’ve got no reason to stay
I’m staring at pages
I’m lost in the spaces
Can’t get what they’re saying
What’s that say about me?

I’m not the person I used to be
No one stays in their infancy
I am leaving my history

Who could love a fool like me?
I’m beat, broke down
I’ve got nothing to give but mystery
Who could love a fool like me?”

31
Aug

Watch Spike Jonze’s Music Video for Kenzo World feat. “Mutant Brain” by Sam Spiegel & Ape Drums feat. Assassin

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Check out a fantastic new Spike Jonze music video for the Parisian clothier/parfumerie Kenzo World starring dancer Margaret Qualley (“Amelia” in Nice Guys) with original track Mutant Brain by Sam Spiegel [Jonze’ brother] & Ape Drums feat. Assassin. The video was choreographed by Ryan Heffington (the man behind Sia’s Chandelier video).

We can’t quite make out the opening speech, but we assume the dance (a “diss dance”?) is the speaker’s wife’s (?) reaction to the speaker’s opening words about his wife(?). Regardless, great work by all involved.