Tag Archives: Dead Oceans

New Phoebe Bridgers video: Kyoto

Video: Phoebe Bridgers -- “Kyoto”

Phoebe Bridgers - Kyoto (Official Video)

Directed by Nina Ljeti. From Punisher, out June 19 on Dead Oceans.

It’s got to be so hard being a musician right now with no way to tour to make any money. How do you even promote an upcoming release if you can’t assemble a crew and make a video?

Well, as we’re seeing, artists are getting creative and doing it themselves, working from home like the rest of us.

In Phoebe Bridgers’ new video, she gallivants around Japan without leaving the comfort of her jammies. Dead Oceans says the original plan was to shoot the video on location, but who needs that hassle when you’ve got a green screen and some old Godzilla footage? Plus, you know, the whole global pandemic situation…

The only evidence of potential social distancing violations is a little hiccup with the person holding the fan who accidentally gets into the shot. They’re fired!

Day off in Kyoto, got bored at the temple
Looked around at the 7-11.
The band took the speed train, went to the arcade
I wanted to go but I didn’t.

Bridgers says, “This song is about impostor syndrome. About being in Japan for the first time, somewhere I’ve always wanted to go, and playing my music to people who want to hear it, feeling like I’m living someone else’s life. I dissociate when bad things happen to me, but also when good things happen. It can feel like I’m performing what I think I’m supposed to be like. I wrote this one as a ballad first, but at that point I was so sick of recording slow songs, it turned into this.”

We love your ballads, Phoebe Bridgers, but this is good too!

Phoebe Bridgers: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Continue reading New Phoebe Bridgers video: Kyoto

New Phoebe Bridgers video: Garden Song

Video: Phoebe Bridgers -- “Garden Song”

Phoebe Bridgers - Garden Song (Official Video)

Directed by Jackson Bridgers. Single out now on Dead Oceans.

Phoebe Bridgers is the best. I’m a sucker for sad sack dad rock, and Bridgers isn’t exactly that, but she ticks all the boxes that make me love Elliott Smith, Wilco, and Phosphorescent so much. Her 2017 album, Stranger in the Alps, has been in heavy rotation on CarPlay in my Subaru since she released the video for “Killer” and I realized how amazing she was.

Since then she’s released collaborations with boygenius (with Lucy Dacus and Julien Baker) and Better Oblivion Community Center (with Conor Oberst) and sang a song with the guy from the National (which I meant to share but never got to it…it’s pretty good!). She also produced an album by Christian Lee Hutson and the two songs that have been released from that so far are both amazing.

So yeah, I’ve been excited to hear new solo material and “Garden Song” is a tasty appetizer.

And when I grow up I’m gonna look up
From my phone and see my life

Can’t wait to hear more!

Also: DO BONGS.

Phoebe Bridgers: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Continue reading New Phoebe Bridgers video: Garden Song

New Phosphorescent video: C’est La Vie No. 2

Video: Phosphorescent -- “C’est La Vie No. 2”

Phosphorescent - C'est La Vie No. 2 (Official Video)

Directed by Jordan Halland. From C’est La Vie, out now on Dead Oceans.

I wrote all night
Like the fire of my words could burn a hole up to heaven
I don’t write all night burning holes up to heaven no more

As you get older you mellow out. Life has a way of tamping down the passion of youth. When you’re young it’s easy to feel destined to make a huge impact on the world. But grownups tend to eventually figure out that it’s hard enough to get out of bed in the morning. So it goes.

Matthew Houck gets this. “C’est La Vie No. 2” is a song that explores this loss of faith. It’s heartbreaking but it’s also liberating. When you accept the fact that God is never going to answer you, you don’t feel compelled to stand out all night in empty fields waiting to hear his voice. You just live. And that’s all there is.

That’s life.

Phosphorescent: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Alex Lahey video: Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself

Video: Alex Lahey -- “Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself”

Alex Lahey - Don't Be so Hard on Yourself

Directed by Callum Preston. From The Best Of Luck Club, out May 17 on Dead Oceans.

Australian Alex Lahey writes smart pop songs and makes funny videos. And in the first single from her new album, she’s got an important message for all the overachievers out there.

You haven’t had a day off in weeks
Your voice is shaking when you speak
It might not be my place to help
But don’t be so hard on yourself

Self-care, people. When things get stressful it’s more important than ever to find a way to take it easy. Even if that includes whipping out a ripping sax solo!

Alex Lahey: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Better Oblivion Community Center video: Dylan Thomas

Video: Better Oblivion Community Center -- “Dylan Thomas”

Better Oblivion Community Center - Dylan Thomas

Directed by Michelle Zauner. From Better Oblivion Community Center, out now on Dead Oceans.

This is so good! And when’s the last time Conor Oberst has looked this happy? Phoebe Bridgers clearly brings out the best in him.

This whole album is great. Which shouldn’t surprise anybody. Their collaboration on Bridgers’ “Would You Rather” from 2017’s Stranger In The Alps was awesome. At the time we called it “a self-contained short story” in the guise of “a simple, pretty, acoustic duet.”

This new one’s more rockin’ and it suits them both. Their voices blend remarkably well. It’s funny that Oberst is as good of a harmonizer as he is, considering the fact that he doesn’t have what anybody would consider a traditionally “strong” voice. But hey, that’s rock and roll. One half science, the other half soul.

* * *

In other news, Bridgers was a named source in a recent high-profile article about a notoriously creepy douchebag who promised young women help with their music careers only to perv out on them and then get emotionally abusive after they got away. Bridgers wrote a great song about her ordeal (“I hate you for what you did… I faked it every time but that’s alright… Why do you sing with an English accent?”).

Others, unfortunately, stopped making music altogether.

Better Oblivion Community Center: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Strand of Oaks video: Weird Ways

Video: Strand of Oaks -- “Weird Ways”

Strand of Oaks - Weird Ways

From Eraserland, out March 22 on Dead Oceans.

I’ve spent a fair amount of time in recording studios over the years. Some professional, some home studios and some just comprised of a 4-track and some SM57 microphones. I’ve spent even more time in rehearsal studios, all of which makes me an amateur but enthusiastic gearhead. I love seeing what gear other bands use and how they mic their kits or where they position their amps in a live room. I’ve spent way too much of my life tracking down studio footage and snap shots of The Beatles recording. It’s kinda my thing.

So the new video from Strand of Oaks is totally my thing. Here we see the band working up the melodic, guitar-crashing sound machine of their latest single in what looks like every recording studio in Portland, Oregon. It made me feel creative and also a little homesick, which is why I listen to music in the first place.

Strand of Oaks: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Phoebe Bridgers video: Killer

Video: Phoebe Bridgers -- “Killer”

Phoebe Bridgers - Killer

Directed by Gus Black. From Stranger In The Alps, out now on Dead Oceans.

We kicked off this year with a Phoebe Bridgers video and now we’re pretty much closing it out with one. And what’s a better topic for the day after Christmas than creating an Advance Health Care Directive for your loved ones to carry out when you’re too ill to make decisions for yourself?

But when I’m sick and tired
When my mind is barely there
When a machine keeps me alive
And I’m losing all my hair
I hope you kiss my rotten head
And pull the plug
Know that I’ve burned every playlist
And given all my love

Right on.

This song was originally recorded acoustically in 2015 with Ryan Adams and released as a 7″ on his Pax Am label.

Bridgers told the Telegraph that she and Adams “ended up hanging out all night and recording a song together called Killer. Then, a couple of weeks later, he was suddenly trying to hook up with me. I was super-down and had just broken up with my high-school boyfriend. We slept together on his 40th birthday and I’d just turned 20.” She wrote “Motion Sickness” in response (“I hate you for what you did… I faked it every time… why do you sing with an English accent… you were in a band when I was born”). Ouch.

The version of “Killer” on Stranger In The Alps is piano-based and features harmonies from John Doe of X.

And Ryan Adams is a creep.

Phoebe Bridgers: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Audio: Phoebe Bridgers -- “Killer” (2015 version)

From the single (Pax Am, 2015).

Video: Phoebe Bridgers -- “Motion Sickness”

Phoebe Bridgers - Motion Sickness (Official Video)

Directed by Justin Mitchell. From Stranger In The Alps, out now on Dead Oceans.

New Mitski video: Washing Machine Heart

Video: Mitski -- “Washing Machine Heart”

Mitski - Washing Machine Heart

Directed by Zia Anger. From Be The Cowboy, out now on Dead Oceans.

Mitski gets down with a statue, a silent film star, and her own bad self in the video for “Washing Machine Heart.”

Toss your dirty shoes in my washing machine heart
Baby, bang it up inside

I don’t know how much laundry experience you have, but washing machines don’t tend to bang stuff around that much. Even heavy stuff like shoes just kind of get plastered to the side in the spin cycle. It’s the dryer, of course, that really makes a racket when you put shoes in it. But “my dryer heart” sounds terrible and could be confusing. So, you know, poetic license.

Mitski: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Mitski video: Nobody

Video: Mitski -- “Nobody”

Mitski - Nobody (Official Video)

Directed by Christopher Good. From Be The Cowboy, out August 17 on Dead Oceans.

I really loved Mitski’s song “Your Best American Girl” with its epic rock and roll crescendo and its sad lyrics (“You’re an all-American boy / I guess I couldn’t help trying to be your best American girl”). I love the video, too, and its message that if you can’t be with the one you love then the next best thing is to bang the shit out of your guitar.

In “Nobody” she trades her Les Paul for a disco Strat, but she’s still lonely.

And I don’t want your pity
I just want somebody near me
Guess I’m a coward
I just want to feel alright

This video is cool. It reminds me of some of the artwork of Yoko Ono, especially the bit with the magnifying glass and the tiny writing. In Yoko’s piece, the message was affirmative.

That’s the piece that made John Lennon fall in love with Yoko. He later admitted, “It’s a great relief when you get up the ladder and you look through the spyglass and it doesn’t say ‘no’ or ‘fuck you’ or something. It said ‘yes’.”

But in Mitski’s video, the message is: “Nobody nobody nobody nobody nobody nobody nobody.” Which, of course, is way darker.

Mitski: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Continue reading New Mitski video: Nobody

New Alex Lahey video: I Love You Like a Brother

Video: Alex Lahey -- “I Love You Like a Brother”

Alex Lahey - I Love You Like a Brother (Official Video)

From I Love You Like A Brother, out now on Dead Oceans.

I’m an only child so I don’t totally get the whole sibling thing. But it looks like Melbourne’s Alex Lahey gets along really well her little brother.

You don’t like sports and I don’t like dresses
Luckily for us, our parents got the message
Always say “No” to combat my yeses
You know me better than I give you credit

The video combines old footage of them as kids with current scenes of them hanging out and goofing off together like, I suppose, only siblings do.

This is just the second Alex Lahey song I’ve heard (after “Every Day’s The Weekend”), but based on these two songs I think I’m going to have to check out the album. She’s obviously awesome.

Alex Lahey: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.