It’s a classic underdog come-from-behind in-your-dreams victory of band nerds against basketball jocks that reminded me waaaaay too much of my college basketball experience. Exceptional production on a simple concept really brings this track to life.
The track itself is a straight-forward rocking single. Good driving music, or get pumped up first thing in the morning music.
The video follows the exploits of the band as they challenge a group of jocks to street basketball … and promptly get their asses wupped. Lots of great fun moments and a well-plotted storyline.
Master of the remix, SBTRKT, is back with a new album.
One of the stand out tracks on Wonder Where We Land is ‘Look Away’ and guest vocalist Caroline Polachek’s performance is chill inducing. The song has an accompanying video that is as intriguing as the song itself and also happens to be interactive. It does require access to your computer’s web cam and is made to work best with Google Chrome (sorry, it won’t work on a mobile device, though you can see some of the video).
It’s an absolutely haunting song, in the most wonderful way.
There isn’t much to say about the video as it’s something you need to see rather than read about.
(*Hint- move around when you watch it and it’s more interesting).
So, K.Flay is back in a big way with her new album Life As A Dog. This is such an awesome way to kick off a post-label career.
The tracks are tight and mean and smart and painful. Each sounds absolutely gorgeous. Delightful ear candy. And the lyrics are honest. K.Flay still struggles with too much partying and guilt about love and life. But damn she makes beautiful music.
What the fuck do we label this? Post-hip-hop indie-drum-and-bass-trance-core?
If Notar was a company, he’d be called Amalgamated American. If he was a country, his primary export would be charisma.
This guy weaves rap, rock, hip-hop, soul, funk and metal into an effortless tapestry unmatched by anyone around today. He spits his rhymes like a meth addict out for blood on a Red Bull bender.
He’s a human machine gun in a live fire combat zone and he is lit up like a torch on the fourth of July.
With his socially conscious lyrics and an attitude that is part baller, part brawler, part joker and part kid down the block from the old neighborhood with a slice of pizza in his hand, he commands the stage in a supreme manner befitting a prince set to claim his rightful throne. Supported by a band that includes a lead guitarist who expertly works his axe like a Hells Angel works a tire iron on the head of an arch rival…they shred, they contract, they expand and they explode on command following Notar’s every move, inflection and intonation…no matter how subtle or extreme.
Performing to a crowd so diverse, it puts the United Colors of Benetton to shame, Notar’s masterful fusion of hip-hop and everything else under the sun demands inclusion. There is something in his Mulligan’s stew of a repertoire for everyone. About the only demographic I did not see represented at a recent high-energy NYC gig were Hasidic dwarves…but I’m sure it’s just because the word about Notar hasn’t gotten to their village in Middle Earth yet… but it will.
Rolling with the likes of Adam Duritz, who owns the label that Notar is signed to, this latter-day street poet covers topics from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to what its like being the resident bad ass of where ever he goes…and everything in between. His manner is such that you are hanging on every word he speaks. He is both super serious and a clown at the same time while on stage. He is the ringmaster of his own circus and he emits an energy that is positive, skilled, likable and most importantly, believable. He pulls off what very few can. Even at his bragadocio best… you observe that he is really just telling it like it is… and he’s right.
Stand out tracks on his “Devils Playground” album include the infectiously hooky “Matador” and “Stranger”…. which also features a cameo appearance from the aforementioned Mr. Duritz.
Words on a page cannot possibly do justice to describing Notar’s live show…so I’ll try and put it in terms that you might better understand.
Imagine you are hanging on a street corner slangin crack and all of a sudden a big U-Haul truck pulls up and stops short. The driver gets out, goes to the back of the truck and slides up the door.
You look in to see a mobile brothel filled with a dozen of the hottest Playboy centerfolds on the planet. You pause for a minute.. take a hit of crack, guzzle an energy drink, crush the can on the ground with your foot, than climb in and close the door behind you as the truck peels off down the highway towards a horizon of eternal destiny at warp speed. The last words you scream at the top of your lungs as the nitrous oxide kicks in and daylight disappears is “Go White Boy, Go White Boy, Go ! This…my friends… is Notar!
It’s always difficult to cover a classic but Los Angeles band Street Joy pulled it off. They kept the integrity of The Beach Boys’ much beloved song Don’t Worry Baby, but added their own lo-fi vibe to put a fresh spin on the track. The video is just as chilled out, showing the band as they spend a day at Venice Beach eating street vendor fare, playing catch in the sand, and enjoying a day of all around frivolity. I’m not entirely certain if the video is Street Joy wanting to pay homage to The Beach Boys or if they just wanted to hang out at the beach and film a really rad video. Whatever the reason, the track is great, as is the video.
I don’t remember how I stumbled onto these guys. It happened over the weekend when I was poking around on the internets minding my own business when suddenly I came face to face with a static TV screen like something out of my childhood.
The visuals came into focus, and we were trapped in a log cabin studio with a band surrounded by monitors showing themselves rocking out … though they were clearly too entranced by the music to notice their digital reflections. Instead they were playing this amazing hypno-psychadelic rock that I love dearly.
The guitarist reminded me of early days jamming with Tom Deis during our own hypno-psychadelic rock days, and the drummer … Jesus God … he is absolutely sick. Such precision and timing.
So the music swirled and grooved around for awhile, resolving into a strong verse and chorus before jamming out again. Totally my jams.
I love this shit.
I emailed Tom immediately with a link. “I would totally check them out if they came to town,” he wrote back.
Watching Anda Volley’s new video for “If I Turn Into A Black Rose” instantly reminded me of the first time I listened to PJ Harvey. A friend had burned me a copy of Uh, Huh, Her that I listened to repeatedly while driving around Boston booking gigs for my old band Good Little Monkey. PJ Harvey just had this deep melancholy that I resonated with. Bitter, angry, but also beautiful and melodic.
All of which is a good way to describe Anda Volley’s sound, and is well captured in the “Black Rose” video.
Side note: I wish she would shorten her song names.
Back to the video: it’s a simple enough production, shot in two or so takes with a single camera and layered on top of one another. Totally indie and low-budget, but the net result is an eery and poignant video that matches the song well.
Oh, and the song is really good. There’s a line or two that could be tightened lyrically, but this is exactly the kind of dark rock that I would enjoy listening to during one of my blacker moods.
Also it’s worth listening through to the next track, Laura Inside The Ghost Machine, as well. Brilliant music video.