Tag Archives: Videos

New Matt Berninger video: Serpentine Prison

Video: Matt Berninger -- “Serpentine Prison”

Matt Berninger - Serpentine Prison (Official Video)

Directed by Tom Berninger and Chris Sgroi. From Serpentine Prison, due October 2 on Book/Concord.

There’s nothing to pull you out of your quarantine funk like hearing an unexpected reference to Big Star in the opening verse of a new song.

I see the starlight through the clouds
Why won’t anybody listen to me?
Don’t make me say it again out loud
Big Star are doing “Don’t Worry Baby”

I had to look that up. Turns out a snippet was originally released on 2008’s Thank You Friends: The Ardent Records Story, but the full recording was finally released a couple years ago on Omnivore’s Complete Third (which I guess I finally ought to pick up now).

“Serpentine Prison” doesn’t sound anything like Big Star, or even solo Alex Chilton. But it was produced by Booker T. Jones, so it’s got at least a little of that Memphis soul.

Berninger says, “The title is from a twisting sewer pipe that drains into the ocean near LAX. There’s a cage on the pipe to keep people from climbing out to sea. I worked on the song with Sean O’Brien and Harrison Whitford and recorded it about six months later with Booker T. Jones producing. It feels like an epilogue so I named the record after it and put it last.”

Some of the lyrics are kind of dumb (“I’ve been picking my kid up from school / Smelling like girl scout cookies and drool”) and there are a lot of forced rhymes, but overall the cumulative effect sets a claustrophobic mood that reflects the lockdown vibe pretty accurately.

Matt Berninger: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

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New Winnetka Bowling League video: Kangaroo

Video: Winnetka Bowling League -- “Kangaroo”

Winnetka Bowling League - Kangaroo (Official Video)

Directed (from home) by Zack Sekuler. Single out now on RCA.

It shows what a dork I am that I know of Winnetka Bowling League as former Regrettes bassist Sage Chavis’ new band, not Hilary Duff’s husband’s band. I didn’t even recognize Duff in her cameo in this video until after I read that it was her. I was just happy to see Chavis working the bass again.

Sage was the Michael Anthony secret weapon in the Regrettes, her backing vocals and muscular bass giving the band an extra somethin-somethin that’s been missing since she’s been gone. Her charisma shines through in the “Kangaroo” video although she doesn’t play on the recording since she “just started playing bass with us and we’ve only had one rehearsal,” Matthew Koma told Percolator. “So this is sort of the first time we’re playing as a band.”

Koma has written songs for Carly Rae Jepsen, Kelly Clarkson, and Shania Twain so the guy is no slouch even if his lyrics are self-deprecating.

I’ve got a bathtub the shape of a swimming pool
A drum set and a Tele that stays in tune
A wife who’s got a better job
She backs me and my indie rock
I’m kidding ‘bout the indie part, I ain’t that cool
But I’m so happy.

That’s a good attitude. Be happy! Refreshing.

Koma says, “‘Kangaroo’ is a song about being okay with yourself. There’s a freedom that comes with no longer allowing the fear of how people see you influence how you see yourself. Also, there’s a descending bridge section that rips off ‘Born To Run’ and lands into some self-indulgent section I wrote after seeing an ELO concert.”

Good for him. It’s probably relatively easy to be okay with yourself when you’re married to a movie star and you own the publishing on a bunch of hits. Still, the sentiment is good. We’re all right where we’re supposed to be.

Winnetka Bowling League: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Regrettes video: What Am I Gonna Do Today

Video: The Regrettes -- “What Am I Gonna Do Today”

The Regrettes "What Am I Gonna Do Today" (Official Music Video)

Shot by the Regrettes. Edited by Claire Marie Vogel. Single out now on Warner.

The Regrettes are back with a new single to help you make it through another day at home. On Instagram, the band describes it as “a song we recorded ourselves remotely in quarantine and we hope it brings you as much joy as making it did for us.”

both of us are always waitin
for a time with nothin in our way
both of us anticipatin
for a day that can turn into tomorrow
without sayin goodbye.

Well, the wait is over! All the days are turning into tomorrow lately without a lot of difference from one to the next. But that’s alright. Listen how good a band can sound, recording themselves at home. Pretty soon we’re all going to realize that there’s no point in ever leaving the house again!

The Regrettes: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Exbats video: Ghost in the Record Store

Video: The Exbats -- “Ghost in the Record Store”

The Exbats - Ghost in the Record Store

Song for Record Store Day, April 18, 2020 released on invisible vinyl, limited edition of zero, for sale nowhere.

Are you missing shopping for inessential things like vinyl? Sad that Record Store Day has been postponed (or whatever it is they’re doing with it)? Well, just remember that some shops are haunted!

At night you might hear a quiet song
You sense his moves but the lights aren’t on
It’s just that friend and he’s still right there
Filling orders in his underwear!

Too bad you won’t be able to pick this one up on invisible vinyl. I’d line up over night for the chance to score one of these babies in its limited edition of zero! Rock and roll!

The Exbats: bandcamp, insta, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Run The Jewels video: Ooh LA LA

Video: Run The Jewels -- “Ooh LA LA” (ft. Greg Nice & DJ Premier)

Run The Jewels "Ooh LA LA" feat. Greg Nice & DJ Premier (Official Music Video)

Directed by Brian & Vanessa Beletic. From RTJ4. Single out now.

There’s nothing like a Run the Jewels song to make you feel better about the world and give you hope for the future! So glad these guys are back right when we need them most.

And it looks they got this video made in just the nick of time!

We shot this video only a few weeks before the pandemic hit with no clue as to what the future held. The fact that we got the chance to do it is damn near miraculous in hindsight.

In conceptualizing the video with our friends Brian and Vanessa Beletic we imagined the world on the day that the age old struggle of class was finally over. A day that humanity, empathy and community were victorious over the forces that would separate us based on arbitrary systems created by man.

This video is a fantasy of waking up on a day that there is no monetary system, no dividing line, no false construct to tell our fellow man that they are less or more than anyone else. Not that people are without but that the whole meaning of money has vanished. That we have somehow solved our self created caste system and can now start fresh with love, hope and celebration. It’s a dream of humanity’s V-DAY… and the party we know would pop off.

Love, RTJ

All hail Run the Jewels, the pride of this great republic!

Run The Jewels: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Courtney Marie Andrews video: Burlap String

Video: Courtney Marie Andrews -- “Burlap String”

Courtney Marie Andrews - "Burlap String" (Official Video)

Directed by V Haddad. From Old Flowers, due June 5 on Fat Possum.

Courtney Marie Andrews has an amazing voice. I discovered her strictly on the strength of her 2018 album cover, which is still one of my all-time faves. That’s an admittedly goofy reason to check out a record, but in this case it totally worked out. May Your Kindness Remain is as great as its artwork.

Andrews has a new album coming out in June, and this one is all about heartbreak.

Some days are good, some are bad
Some days I want what we had
Some days I talk myself into a lie.

The video is a tribute to a community of musicians in Bisbee, Arizona, where Andrews would visit as a teenager, including a couple named Derrick and Amy Ross who performed as Nowhere Man And A Whiskey Girl. Andrews says they “became my DIY musician mentors, being fifteen years older than me, and showing me it was possible to pay rent off of playing music. I adored them, and we did lots of shows together throughout my early twenties.” Tragically, they both died in 2013. “Losing them was a devastating blow. They were a large part of the Arizonan community. I still go back to Bisbee often, as it’s where my heart belongs in many ways.”

Andrews shot her new video on Young Blood Hill, a place “littered with catholic influenced memorials, shrines and crosses,” including the memorial of her friends. “By the end of the video, I am placing flowers on Derrick and Amy’s memorial, as a way of reckoning with their loss and each loss we grieve throughout our lifetime. Though this song was written for one of the great loves of my own lifetime, I wish to place flowers on heartbreak’s memorial as well.”

Courtney Marie Andrews: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Continue reading New Courtney Marie Andrews video: Burlap String

New Warlocks video: Dear Son

Video: The Warlocks -- “Dear Son”

The Warlocks - "Dear Son" (Official Music Video)

Directed by Vicente Cordero. From The Chain, out now on Cleopatra.

It’s been 17 years since Bobby Hecksher’s psychedelic Warlocks first blew our mind with The Phoenix Album. I still rank “Shake the Dope Out” and “The Dope Feels Good” as two of the best songs of that whole turn of the century “garage” rock scene. Seeing them at the first Chicago-based Lollapalooza in the middle of the day was a highlight of the whole weekend. And Johnny Loftus’ review of a 2002 Double Door show is one of my favorite things we’ve ever published.

And now the Warlocks are back with a brand new concept album about “two star-crossed lovers who commit a bank heist together.”

Hecksher recently talked to the Big Takeover: “In the video, we see them commit the crime and get caught. The Warlocks are playing to the fictional movie as if scoring it or writing music to it as it’s happening. Our male lead Rocky (played by Tygh Runyan) influences our female lead Diamond (played by Leslie Gladney) by fear to do the crime and her lawyers plead this. She’s loosely a Patty Hearst-type character and gets off. Rocky gets a public defender and the book is thrown at him.”

Right on. Bonnie and Clyde it up!

The Warlocks: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

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 Hallelujah the Hills video: People Keep Dying (And No One Can Stop It)

Video: Hallelujah the Hills -- “People Keep Dying (And No One Can Stop It)”

People Keep Dying (And No One Can Stop It) [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

From I’m You, out now on Discrete Pageantry.

I wish the songs I love would stop being so goddamn appropriate to our current situation but so it goes. Welcome to 2020. Pour yourself a stiff one.

Many years ago for our honeymoon my wife and I went to Italy and visited the Capuchin Crypt in Rome. It contains the artfully arranged bones of 3,700 dead monks. The idea, apparently, is to remind us of our mortality. My favorite section contains a clock made out of arm bones with an inscription that translates to: What you are now, we once were; what we are now, you soon shall be.

Yep. Might sound glib but it’s true. Give or take 50 or 60 years, which is just a meaningless blip in the universe, our time will come. Can you take this fact and artfully arrange it? Hallelujah the Hills does.

Ryan Walsh says, “It’s a heavy song from a heavy album, and people have been asking about or pointing to this particular song frequently as things are getting worse and worse with COVID-19 in the U.S.A. The truth is, this song is about the baseline human condition that we’re all gonna die. Sadly in this current situation, we actually could’ve stopped some of these deaths if we had an inkling of competent leadership in the country. But this song was always about confronting that terrifying aspect of life as a way of realizing how special every single day is. It’s really hard to do right now, so, personally, focusing on creative things, like making video art with your friends, is a decent way to try to stay sane.”

Staying sane is key. Don’t freak out.

We’re all gonna die. Sic semper erat, et sic semper erit.

Hallelujah the Hills: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Christian Lee Hutson video: Talk

Video: Christian Lee Hutson -- “Talk”

Christian Lee Hutson - "Talk"

Directed by Han-Su Kim. From Beginners, due May 29 on Anti-.

As a global pandemic threatens to kill off an entire generation of old people, what better timing for Christian Lee Hutson to release some literal dad rock?

I’m pretty busy
So please forgive me
If I forget to
Not forgive you

I see a lot of my friends struggling to deal with their parents as they get old and weird and their souls are corrupted by talk radio and Fox News. Our folks left us with a lot of their baggage and it hardly seems fair for them to keep piling it on, decade after decade.

I will no longer grieve you
when I have to see you
it’s no use denying
you belong to the dying
And I couldn’t care less
Life’s just a real slow death
Yep, that’s what I was taught

But ultimately Hutson admits, “Okay, so I care a lot.” They’re old. They’ll be dead soon enough. Cut them some slack and try to make the best of the time you have with them. Right?

It won’t be long before our kids think of us that way, if they don’t already. Hopefully they’ll be kind to us and overlook our inevitable, impending kookiness. It’s as tough to be a good parent as it is to be a good kid.

Christian Lee Hutson: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.