25 June 2011

[video] Y△CHT - "Utopia and Dystopia (The Earth Is On Fire)

I had the pleasure of spending a little time with YCHT back in April when they played on Tulane's campus. They are truly unique and interesting people. Sometimes you encounter someone, and you just get this overwhelming, instinctual feeling that they are actually from the future. This is how I felt with Y△CHT. In addition to their insightful electro-pop, the Oregon band also freely shares their philosophy on life.

Watch the video below for a glimpse into their world. It's a short film/double music video directed by Rene Daalder for the tracks "Utopia" and "Dystopia (The Earth Is On Fire)" from their new album Shangri-La, freshly out from James Murphy's DFA Records.

24 June 2011

[video] Explosions in the Sky - "Last Known Surroundings"

Austin, TX ambient post-rock favorites Explosions In The Sky have been around for 12 years, and today, they released their first EVER music video. It's for the track "Last Known Surroundings" from their excellent new album Take Care, Take Care, Take Care.

In their own words: it was made by some close friends of ours, mr. david hobizal and ms. sissy emmons and Ptarmak (which is the name of the company they work for). it took them months and months of solid work and we couldn't be more pleased with their finished product. we intend to get a few more videos made by some other friends and film makers over the next few months, but we hope that you enjoy this 1st outing as much as we do.

The visuals are truly stunning. Enjoy it below:

Visual Art: James Barsness at Arthur Roger Gallery

     This post-modern body of work utilizes traditional elements of Christianity, Buddhism and folklore to face contemporary issues of obscenity, feminism, cultural trends and consumerism.  "My art partly has to do with my crackpot ideas about life and living," says Barsness in an interview with Hard Press Editions. "I'm interested in how groups of people interact in a continuous environment like a town. It's primarily about the suppression of our natural interests for the good of the whole. I think it's that moment of suppression that initiates much of our creative energy."  
   The statement certainly rings true for this exhibit.  The imagery and themes are wildly creative, playful, and whimsical.  In his artist statement, Barsness says that his complex compositions are influenced by Breughel, Bosch, R.J. Crumb, Tibetan sacred painting and the artistic traditions of Thailand, India and Ireland.
    These eight paintings featured at Arthur Roger Gallery
last month have the similar formal components of highly stylized figure treatment and nature motif. Barsness uses intricate dot patterns and lines to create elaborate geometric forms that are not necessarily visible until the viewer gets close. These patterns and the wide color palette compose grotesque, animalistic figures that explore human behavior and desires in terms of contemporary values of pop culture and consumerism. The strongest part of this exhibit is Barsness’ captivating style; the ornate details absorb and captivate.
-Article by Emily Yonker
-Photos from Arthurrogergallery.com on 6/24/11

23 June 2011

Kreayshawn collab in Murdered in Memphis tape

art by ela orleans and carl clandestine

I did a post back in February about Kreayshawn and her underground hit "Bumpin, Bumpin". Now it seems everyone has heard at least something from the Bays baddest bitches of the WhiteGirlMob. With overnight fame(seriously) resulting from her recently acquired deal with Columbia, you could say things are looking rather shiny and glossy for her, just like her swagged out nails. Natassia has definitely had a lot of activity on her platter, what with sparse shows through LA/SF and working on new material. Included in that is her contribution to Murdered in Memphis presented by Nattymari, a tribute to gritty original Memphis songs of the 90's. She is joined by mob sister V-Na$ty, as well as an array of other artists such as OG Nery, Young Hawaii Slim, Jay Ugh, Gata, and Alexander Spit. Old school loops and scratchy sounding goodness is making this look rather promising, in terms of a tribute tape. Side B is exclusive to the tape and is all material warped by Nattymari. It's going to be co released by the ultra rad Clan Destine records and Мишка , with a scheduled release date/shipping somewhere around late July. The clear cassettes are limited to just 100 copies and wont last long I'm sure. Pre-order one from here and check out a few tracks below.

21 June 2011

[new] washed out - amor fati

the second single for one of this years most anticipated albums was made public today. you can always tell that a specific topic is making it's way into the mainstream when it becomes the satirical target of a southpark episode. it must've been fate for chillwave to make it this far and earnest greene knows that - amor fati can be translated from latin as the love of fate. enjoy.

20 June 2011

[gig review] Beirut @ Republic


Last Friday, June 10, 2011, Beirut graced New Orleans with a smashing performance at Republic. Avid fans packed into every nook and cranny that space within the venue could offer. Waves of excitement rippled throughout the crowd as they waited in anticipation for Beirut to take the stage. The diversity of the crowd alone demonstrated the group's widespread popularity—indeed, the audience consisted of a relatively even balance of young and middle aged individuals, all of whom were equally excited for the show.

Beirut, a world class act, draws a wide range of musical influences into a powerful blend of Balkan and Eastern European folk music with Indie rock. Beirut's front man, Zach Condon, formulated the group's distinct musical style at the age of seventeen. While visiting his cousin in Europe, he began to develop a keen interest in various Balkan musicians such as guitarist and band leader Goran Bregovic and trumpeter Boban Markovic. During Condon's musical exploration at this age, he wrote the song which was later to become Beirut's new single, “East Harlem.” This song is one of many to appear on their new album The Rip Tide, which is to be released on August 30, 2011.

In some respects, the release of “East Harlem” can be viewed as a rejuvenation of Beirut as well as a new stage in Condon's career. The supporting band sports a new line up with Perrin Cloutier on accordion and cello, Nick Petree on drums and percussion, Paul Collins on electric and upright bass, Kelly Pratt on trumpet, french horn, and glockenspiel, and Ben Lanz on trombone and tuba.

The night before the show, Paul Collins gave a DJ set at The Saint. I had the chance to speak with him briefly and he expressed excitement over the next night's show. “It's a really good set—we've been working really hard on it. I hope you'll enjoy it,” he said. His words held true in every respect.

Beirut began their set with the song “The Concubine” from March of the Zapotec/Holland EP sparking an exultant response from the crowd. After the initial excitement the crowd's banter lulled to a hush, allowing the musicians to flood the silence with the rich sound of their instruments. Almost immediately, the music invoked a profound sense of happiness and elation throughout the audience. They followed the opening song with “Elephant Gun,” and the crowd’s initial awe gave way to a contagious urge to dance.

On almost every song, the crowd would begin to clap along with the band until heavy percussion signaled the climax of the song. The energy of the audience fueled the group to play louder and more intensely. During the group's performance of “Nantes,” from their album The Flying Cup Club, parts of the crowd broke out into a mosh pit.

The muggy New Orleans summer weather—accompanied in full force with the heat generated by the crowd—drenched the band members in sweat. At one point in the show, Zach Condon commented, “this is definitely the hottest show we've ever played!” Despite the swelter and unbearable crowding, individuals were polite and friendly. We were simply grateful to share the experience with one another.

Beirut ended their set with “Elephant Gun,” placing a particular emphasis on the material in their upcoming album. After finishing the song, they were immediately egged back on stage by the enthusiastic cheers of the crowd. Their encore, however, was not limited to a measly one or two songs. The audience called Beirut back to the stage four times! By the end of the show, the energy of the performers and the crowd had escalated into a mutually ecstatic frenzy.

- Article written by Euan Wallace
- All photographs by Joshua Brasted

For more pictures from the show,
check out Joshua's Flickr.