Video: Neil Young + Promise Of The Real – “Almost Always”
Directed by Daryl Hannah. From The Visitor, out now on Reprise.
I love it when Neil goes pretty and acoustic. But he’s still got some bite in his lyrics:
I’m living with a gameshow host
Who has to brag and has to boast
About tearing down the things that I hold dear
I also appreciate the fact that Neil is not ashamed to admit how easily distracted he is:
Can I take a minute to do what’s right
Before that starts me thinking,
Distracting me again?
Think he’ll ever release his Archives Vol. 2?
Neil Young: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Video: Laura Veirs – “Everybody Needs You”
Directed by Lance Bangs. Animation by Marissa Paternoster. From The Lookout, out April 13 on Raven Marching Band.
You might know Laura Veirs from the case/lang/veirs project she did with Neko Case and k.d. lang in 2016. She’s got a new solo album, The Lookout, coming out this spring.
“The Lookout is about the need to pay attention to the fleeting beauty of life and to not be complacent; it’s about the importance of looking out for each other,” says Veirs. “I’m addressing what’s happening around me with the chaos of post-election America and a personal reckoning with the realities of midlife: I have friends who’ve died; I struggle with how to balance life as an artist with parenting young children.”
Reckoning with the realities of midlife. I can certainly dig that.
Laura Veirs: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Video: of Montreal – “Paranoiac Intervals/Body Dysmorphia”
From White Is Relic/Irrealis Mood, out March 9 on Polyvinyl.
Good old Kevin Barnes, prancing around in his grandma’s clothes, singing to his love: “You’re the only one who’s worthy of my concentration.”
Barnes said it’s “a song about panic, fear, insecurity, misanthropy, self-loathing, vanity, lustfulness, arrogance and um…loving compassion. It is an anthem for the post-Obama era, an age where spurious hope has been replaced with a hatewave of pharmaceutically diminished internet neo-realism.”
Which, of course, is a perfect subject for a disco song. Why not?
of Montreal: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Video: H.C. McEntire – “Quartz in the Valley”
From Lionheart, out now on Merge.
This is a cool country song from the frontwoman of Mount Moriah on her first solo album.
McEntire talked to The Grey Estates about the origin of the song:
“Quartz in the Valley” was the first song Kathleen Hanna and I worked on together. […] She said, “Listen to Wanda Jackson. Get inspired.” When Kathleen and I began collaborating, I was personally in a dark place, a lost place, and this song was how I started digging out. I don’t want to give too much away, to define the narrative exclusively; but I will say it began in a very raw, scrupulous way.
One day, I got out of bed at dawn, pulled on my overalls, and walked down to the river. I dug white quartz from the river banks, wheeled them up the hill, barrow after barrow, in a fever. The earth was giving me quartz for free, and I just had to find them. They had been waiting for me, all those years, to pry them out and set them free.
Fellow North Carolinian Alexis Bravos directed the video and said, “The video for ‘Quartz in the Valley’ is an intensely personal view into Heather’s world. I wanted to express the magical feeling of being there, watching her perform in her space which features Lou, the wonder dog.”
Can you feel it in your bones?
H.C. McEntire: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Video: Graham Coxon – “Falling”
Single out now on Parlophone.
I thought that if you had an acoustic guitar / then it meant that you were a Protest Singer
Oh, I can smile about it now / but at the time it was terrible
–The Smiths, “Shakespeare’s Sister”
We know that Blur front man Damon Albarn keeps himself busy with any number of projects, from Gorillaz to The Good, The Bad and the Queen and lots of other jams that get asses out of seats and into the aisles. But what about “the other guy from Blur,” as Jake refers to Graham Coxon? Well, it seems he’s a lot like me. He sits around in the woods playing acoustic guitar.
Sure, the song and the video are a bit depressing, but I am a sad bastard with a penchant for Brit Pop and this is really pretty. Scratch the surface and you find that it is indeed a protest song, but not how you might think.
According to the press release, “Falling was written by talented unknown songwriter and dedicated father Luke Daniel, who after a long fight with chronic pain tragically ended his own life last year.” Coxon rerecorded the song and has released it as a double A-side with Daniel’s original version. A portion of the proceeds go to The Campaign Against Living Miserably, which is a fantastic name for a good cause few like to talk about: preventing male suicide.
Graham Coxon: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Video: St. Vincent: NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert
Via NPR Music. MASSEDUCTION is out now on Loma Vista.
This is so good. I really like MASSEDUCTION but I’d love to hear her do the entire album like this. Although she’s known for shredding her electric guitar, the latest St. Vincent album subverts those expectations to a certain extent by burying her guitars under programmed beats.
And this Tiny Desk Concert goes in the opposite direction entirely. No pre-recorded beats, no electric instruments at all. Just Annie Clark and an acoustic guitar. She’s awesome. And that Elvis snarl? 100% badass.
Set List: “New York,” “Los Ageless,” and “Slow Disco.”
St. Vincent: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Audio: Drake – “God’s Plan”
From Scary Hours, out now on Young Money/Cash Money/Republic Records.
Drake knocks out Camila Cabello after only one week at the top of the chart. “God’s Plan” had 82.4 million U.S. streams and 127,000 downloads sold in the week ending Jan. 25, as well as 24 million in all-format airplay audience in the week ending Jan. 28.
I know I’m not the intended audience for mainstream pop hip hop, but this sounds so boring and repetitive to me. Maybe they’re trying to sound hypnotic but it ends up coming across as narcoleptic. Is everybody on ludes these days? (Oh…right, I guess we are.)
But at least there’s one funny part of this song:
She say, “Do you love me?” I tell her, “Only partly.
I only love my bed and my mama. I’m sorry.”
I think Drake’s been listening to Morrissey!
“God’s Plan” is only the 29th song to debut at #1 in the Hot 100’s 59-year history. The first song to do it was Michael Jackson’s “You Are Not Alone” in 1995 and the previous one was DJ Khaled’s “I’m The One” last year.
Drake: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Photo via Instagram.
Continue reading Number One Records: God’s Plan
Video: The Regrettes – “Soft Shock” (Yeah Yeah Yeahs cover)
My favorite band covers a song from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ third album.
I think they’re buying time while they’re working on their follow up to Feel Your Feelings, Fool. They played one new song (“Red Light”) in September at Riot Fest and shortly thereafter posted a video snippet of themselves working on it in the studio. It sounds great. More of that, please!
The Regrettes: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Continue reading New Regrettes video: Soft Shock
Video: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – “It’s A Beautiful World”
From Who Built The Moon? out now on Sour Mash/UMG.
In what’s sure to send his little brother off the rails, Noel Gallagher’s latest video features Charlotte Marionneau, his notorious scissors player, reading a book. Her book is not miked so I don’t think her page flipping is part of the performance, but her mere presence is guaranteed to drive Liam nuts.
Then again, it could be a sign that Noel is re-evaluating his attitude toward books. Of course, there’s no need to intellectualize it, right? As Noel has said:
“She’s French and she’s eccentric to say the least. I said to her, can you play the tambourine? She said, [adopts French accent] ‘I cannot play the tambourine.’ I said, ‘Oh right. Shaker?’ ‘Non. I can play the scissors.’ She brought them in and I was looking at my bass player going, if that’s not the greatest thing you’ve ever seen then tell me what is. A French bird in a cape playing the scissors? It doesn’t get any better than that does it?”
So now we’ve got a French bird in a chair reading a book.
And the song? It’s not as much of a banger as “Holy Mountain” but at least nobody’s going to say this one sounds like Ricky Martin.
Noel Gallagher: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Continue reading New Noel Gallagher video: It’s A Beautiful World
Video: Juliana Hatfield – “A Little More Love”
From Juliana Hatfield Sings Olivia Newton-John, out April 13 on American Laundromat.
I was in elementary school when Grease came out and I had the soundtrack on vinyl and I’d play it on my parents’ hi-fi, the kind where you could stack records and the next one would drop down and start playing once the first one was done. I never did this with the Grease soundtrack because even at that age I realized the Sha Na Na stuff wasn’t worth my time. I was all about John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.
I hated Rizzo for being so mean to Sandy. I hated her. Hated! In fact, I hated her so much that I took a permanent red marker and obliterated Stockard Channing’s face in all the photos in the gatefold of the album. Not only that, I took a pair of scissors and scratched the shit out of the grooves of “Look at Me, I’m Sandra Dee” so the song could never be played. Looking back, that reaction seems a little extreme. Were my parents worried? If so, they never said anything.
Apparently, they also weren’t worried about their seven-year-old boy listening (repeatedly) to a song with lyrics such as “you know I ain’t braggin’ / it’s a real pussy wagon” and “you know I ain’t shittin’ / I’ll be gettin’ lots of tit in Greased Lightning.” The 70s, man. It was a different time.
I wonder if Juliana Hatfield felt the same way about Rizzo. She’s about my age and she just recorded a whole album of Olivia Newton-John covers, due April 13 on American Laundromat Records. If “A Little More Love” is any indication, I can’t wait to hear the rest of it.
Juliana Hatfield: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.
Continue reading New Juliana Hatfield video: A Little More Love