VIDEOS OF THE DAY: From the guys in Mache have a web series called cabin tapes with band and singer song writer performances by Victoria Reed, Christopher Watson, Wil Farr (Hurrah A Bolt Of Light) and Sarah Aili. All good stuff. I’m out of steam or I would write more about this but you should know the artists are all really talented and I’m happy they shared this project with RS. Enjoy, sit-back and chill, spark a joint and pass it around.
Chris Watson – “Something about the dark that gives you light”
VIDEOS OF THE DAY: First up is the ultimate hip hop point of view vacation video by Def Manic; and I mean this bro in the most complimentary way. Peejay Svoboda the editor has mad story telling skills and moves the picture nicely to the lyrics of “Thank You”. Sahara Beck’s singing is pretty in-between Def Manic’ emo-emmininen-esque raps – he speaks some truths and we dig it and it’s the song that gives rise to this film and not the other way around. The scenery is Thailand so every shot just looks amasolutely beautiful by default. It’s funny too without being too brass it looks like this kid got something classy going on from up in Serbia, New York (USA). From the album D.R.A.W. (Do Right And Win) avail on iTunes Single – Stalk him Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud
WATCH: “THANK YOU” BY DEF MANIC FEATURING: SAHARA BECK
Ok people, the funniest, funky and most hilariously serious mustache video award goes to Bootleg Rascal and their brand of unique dub-glactic trance with their tune “OH I KNOW”. Except one of them has a beard and they rock music playing actual rock implementation instruments but other than that this single is straight-up solid. This video is also filmed incredibly well and the ad libbing is laugh out loud pee-pee hysterical – so win-win. Being that I am part Mexican I can say these spanish looking dudes are the puerto rican power (you know by ween) that hold the lock-n-groove of Sublime with the nice manly bits of fish bonin’ danceability. The joke though is that they are actually from hard-on’s land of Sydney/Gold Coast of Australia and the singer is named Carlos so whatever. A sense of humor is what is missing in so many video, and music reviews I guess (Scruggs*), that we get these days, our number one complaint is that bands take themselves way too fucking serious and stretch the cool factor like a exploding cigar trick gone limp. Nobody likes that. (Did I use enough dick jokes in this paragraph?) Anyway, directed by Bootleg Rascal & Danielle Payne,
Filmed and edited by Danielle Payne. Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud
WATCH: “OH I KNOW” BY RASCAL BOOTLEG
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VIDEO OF THE DAY: We like these guys from South Bend Indiana with their very fun video created with a couple large stocking puppets by Elizabeth Powell Wislar from CCC.INC that share utterly bizarre likeness to them. We also love the back-drop of old analog looking television gear they shot the band’s performance in front of. There is a storyline too which is rare in most videos we see around here these day. They get an A-Plus for location scouting for “Shiny Destination” which is one side of a very good indie “pop” 7″ just released with Triple Eye Industries out of Milwaukee. Their sound is geared for fans of The Wedding Present and some Brit pop akin to Pete and The Pirates but in an american decadent style that is head bopping to the point where you might knock off your ski-cap or hipster eyewear. Joshua Wayne Hensley (guitarist/singer) tells a sincere tale of hope and placebos. The flip side is a track called “Ladder” which is reminiscent of The Pernice Brothers and The Posies. The Rutebega’s music is good like waffles, bacon and syrup because it is filling and tasteful. Band Website | Bandcamp
VIDEO OF DAY / SINGLES: Meet Me in Orbit’s music is created out of analog synthesizers, vintage gear and decent knowledge of what is possible with soundscapes. This dream-synth duo (Yea I know we rag on duo’s around here a lot but mostly regarding a band that is just a drummer and guitar player and too lazy to find a third member to play the fucking bass.) Anyway, these San Francisco based guys Jared Brannan and Brandon Bews will release their debut EP, called Traveller on April 7, 2015 via Sky Council Recordings. If you are fan of grandaddy, trip hop and old sounding keyboard tones then you might dig them. Due website
SINGLE REVIEW: For months I have been uninspired to click a single fucking link. You could say even 1,000s of them have been ignored. Obsessed with changing my reality to live in the now but every once in awhile I dare to see what others have dreamed-up and take a break from my bullshit; and so I discovered the band Why We Run from Sydney, Australia. They had the promise of something visually unique. Their video for their debut single “Comfortable Lie” Directed by Tim Gibbs; who is a rock video pioneer having worked with the likes of John fucking Lennon, Dire Straits, Motorhead, Billy Bragg, and XTC. Gibbs has taken the pin-hole camera obscura photographic technic and made something visually stunning. Inspired by this dream-scape song presented to him by the band and paired it with an idea that grew from his sleep flat. The unique part is he took this mobile and made them do actions in slow-mo in the back of a truck. Now the music stands all on it’s own so If you are fan of radiohead and a little bit of depeche mode mixed with eno’esque ear candy; then this song will speak to your hazy state. The melody is hypnotic like a pendulum swinging in front of your eyes. This will lift your soul up in the right place as you dream big along with me. I looped this song a few times and at every turn the rem chase was sweet. This is more than your normal video of the day. This is driving art musically and pushing imagery with a simple idea and turning you upside down with great care and patience. Here’s the Band’s Facebook | Twitter
Disclaimer: I am 46 years old and I very rarely listen to new music and I avoid leaving my home as much as possible. This means that much of what I’m aware of comes through my Facebook feed, which everyone knows is designed to make you keep scrolling, so I’m becoming less intelligent and my world is shrinking. If the reader feels my top ten things reflect myopia, tunnel vision, or the ramblings of an old man with his head up his ass, I’m sure you’re right. So here goes:
1) Terrifying cop videos.
This is where the facebook newsfeed/feedback loop really kicks in for me. I don’t intend to start discussing the Eric Garner and Michael Brown cases BUT there’s a reason why Spike Lee filmed a fictional version of the murder of Eric Garner back in 1989 in his classic “Do The Right Thing”. Back in 1989, you’d have to live in the world Spike Lee lived in to be aware that cops killing black men when it wasn’t necessary “was a thing”. So most everyone has seen the Eric Garner video but my Facebook feed (again, niche marketed to me, and I have all these anti-American pinko “friends” posting this shit all the time) has been coughing up countless videos of cops acting fucked up, and bullying and threatening, using undue force, threatening people at gunpoint inappropriately and behaving as evil machines rather than people. It used to be the case that if you were a very consistently meek and unnoticeable person you’d never be aware that cops could do such things. Here’s one of my personal favorites that resulted in a relatively “happy ending”.:
So now the squares gotta face it: cops are no less scary than the “criminal element” they purport to protect you from. Many of us have known this all our lives. So I think this trend of filming cops acting like Nazi Stormtroopers and posting it online is good for society. There is starting to be more of a real dialogue, and this is an example of how the new surveillance culture cutsboth ways.
DOWNLOAD: Bring the Noise MP3 by Public Enemy from It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988)
2) Delightful animal videos.
No one has time to click on every one of them but my personal experience is they always make me happy and are the perfect antidote to the aforementioned terrifying cop videos. Here’s a recent favorite:
Seriously you grumpy punks, John Houlihan from Live from the Barrage went to town on this NY exclusive FB Meme with some 800 group members. Think WFMU meets Howard Stern and that is what their Friday night podcast is like. The meme might be better but it’s the podcast is our favorite of the low-brow.
Correction: Kurt Gottschalk started the group but Houli invited us but he still gets credit for making it a thing – plus we think the podcast is the tits (yea we just said that). Not everything needs to be linear. -Ed
4) Matthew McConaughey
McConaughey is gonna have a hard time beating 2014 for his own personal best year. He’s a big muscular guy who was sooooo skinny in the AIDS movie and he’s an easy going southern party guy who portrayed an absolutely convincing functional alcoholic nihilistic genius ex-cop on the coolest new cable show. Alright, alright alright!
5) True Detective
This is my kind of TV. The coolest weirdest most intense artsy fartsy television show since Twin Peaks. This show actually caused me to start posting shit on Facebook, my theories about it and insights and whatnot. Slippery fucking slope.
6) Breaking Bad
Vince Gilligan and his posse really did this right. As of now, I believe Breaking Bad is the most perfect cable long form storytelling multiple season television show ever made. They never made a bad move and ended it in a way that was utterly satisfying. Best series ending since that HBO show about the family that ran a funeral home.
7) Tom Petty “Hypnotic Eye”
Maybe there are new people playing this kind of seriously deeply righteous tradational guitar driven rock and roll and I’m oblivious to it, please refer back to my disclaimer. If you haven’t dug into this and have ever liked Tom Petty in your life, listen to the whole thing for free right now. Mike Campbell dominates this album, more than usual, even. This album makes this year’s Black Keys album sound like Taylor Swift. And I like the Black Keys and have no problem with T.S. either.
8) Prince “ART OFFICIAL AGE”
Sort of the same deal as with Petty. Pick whatever the last time a Prince album totally blew you away and I’ll tell you this is his best thing since that album. For me it’s his best since the “unpronounceable symbol” album that opened with “My Name Is Prince”. And I sucked up the one hundred or so albums he made between that one and this one. For me what makes this album great is it just reeks and oozes of everything that has made Prince the greatest singular talent on Earth for the entirety of his recording career. Underrated.
9) Nick Cave
Nick Cave may well be the most consistently right on the money “cool” artist ever. The album he put out this year, “Push the Sky Away” is great as usual but live he’s proving to be the new Bowie as far as I’m concerned. Specifically, he has a surplus of the quality of poise that Bowie has, which is an exceedingly rare trait among rock and roll frontmen, even the greatest of which tend to be organ grinder monkeys (the Jagger/Tyler tradition). At the same time, much of his greatness is expressed through the group mind of the amazingly powerful and sensitive and idiosyncratic Bad Seeds. Bowie in his best eras had a similar thing going, where the band gets Bowie’s intention/vibe and fucking runs with it and jams the shit out of it. You want dynamics? There’s no greater range of moods, rhythms and volumes than a Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds concert. I was fortunate to catch their show last summer at Prospect Park in Brooklyn. A truly magical night. Here’s an audience filmed thing from that. Dig the reaching hands and think about the end of the Ziggy Stardust concert film:
10) Scott Walker and Sunn 0))) “Soused”
I’m a long time Scott Walker fan but this was the one release I heard this year that blew my mind by not sounding like anything else I ever heard, yet hooking me in with the traditional elements of a beautiful voice, great melodies and instrumental hooks. If you’re curious you should read Tim Sommer’s piece on this, I agree with every word he says, but I’m not smarticulate (my neologism) enough to cough up this level of analysis:
And here’s the”single”:
2014? Could have been worse. 2015 holds some promise. I have total faith that “Better Call Saul” will deliver the goods at the very high standard of quality we’ve come to expect from Vince Gilligan and company. Also, my favorite fresh and current band, Radiohead, is working on a new album, so 2015 may well be a Radiohead year. My new year’s resolution is to tweet. Have a happy.
Very good band that does the swamp rock thing right if you dug the Black Keys when they made good music. Check-out The Owsley Brother’s new album “TOB” which comes out Dec 2nd. http://owsleybros.bandcamp.com
LIVE VIDEO: DRIVE LIKE JEHU is one those groups we all hear from so many good indie rock bands that they influenced their sound in some way. Your truly unthankfully included. Jehu existed at the same time as Rocket from the Crypt in the 1990s and we dug them both. And it’s funny we (i mean me) talk about the 90’s like we do the 1960’s like we do Hendrix, Zep and The Who. Not that there is any comparison with the notoriety or the level of world wide influence as lets say Nirvana got who existed at the same time as Jehu. In fact they over-shadowed 100 of bands and Interscope was never really able to cash-in on them when there was the free-for-all. But basically bands from the 90’s are the results of having heard those bands and going the complete other directon by disregarding harmony and infusing a punk ethos and getting the opportunity to record a major label album like Yank Crime at not have a radio hit in the conventional sense. At least in my humble opinion this is one of the bands that defines the energy of Southern California and I am thankful for their existence and can’t imagine part of musical landscape without them. Think about it for a little while and then leave a comment if you want.
Anyway, there were always two sides of the fence and resentment from fans that these guys didn’t get as much fame as lets say Husker Du or The Replacements who came before as the attention Rocket from the Crypt got but in their brief Hey Day they were prolific and continue in the formats of Obits, The Night Marchers and of course Hot Snakes where they continue on building their indie rock empire and chapters in history. I like them all and in partcular enjoy the guitar interplay between Jon and Rick and they happy they get to rock for a living. It’s a rare thing to see and hear. These two are the few who mastered the art of re-invention in exploratory and irritating noise guitar. We say it’s a nusance because they do it so well. Needless to say the grinding in this video has tons of energy and maybe would be a fun show to see at some dive bar since the stage they are playing on is huge but either wayt when Rick Froberg thanks the audience “for watching their retarded music.” That is basically a nice summary of their formula and something for new bands to take notice of. This could be your 1960’s.
The annoying hum you can feel underneath the music is driven by the organ piping in some crazy bass undertones from the GIGANTIC PIPES behind the band. Not sure if you can notice it because the regular bass and drums are not feeding back but for the most part this sounds great and its a compilation of all the people who shot the band from various angles. Some in focus and some not. Eventually the hum calms down and the sound engineer gets it under control. So almost like you are there. Youtuber Fabio Cunha took the time to edit and sync the audio so kudos to that guy. The last song in their set just kills what guitared indie rock is all about.
VIDEO OF THE DAY: Youtuber Tasha R claims she made this Superchunk video of their song “FOH” for her son because “he loves legos!” The band’s drummer Jon Wurster says on the facebook they don’t know her. Now we don’t know if her next one will be Kraftwerk backed by Erector sets but time will tell where this goes. It’s really fun stop gap motion 9-fiver storyline and you know how “projects” go when you are doing them for your kid(s). Your more into than they are but this turned out great. Never under estimate the power of the brick.
” God, I remember when the Brick Haus would only book Zeppelin cover bands and Star Wars characters.”