I’ve shot countless videos of musicians — be it in-studio performances, live concerts, or Tiny Desk Concerts. But one of the most fun things I’ve played a part in is NPR Music’s Field Recordings series. I was there from the get-go when my brilliant, wildly talented colleague and pal Mito Habe-Evans and I took two bands (David Wax Museum and Mountain Man) into the crumbling ruins of Fort Adams at the Newport Festival to play the first two videos that eventually became this series. And I got to take part here and there over the years since.
So it was a ton of fun to be brought back into the fold and work alongside the video team — Mito, Adam Wolffbrandt and Josh Rogasin — to shoot this video of Mac DeMarco. At his house that sits on the bay across from JFK airport in Far Rockaway, Queens. In his rowboat.
Wrote a little thing on Shaun Fleming’s new music video under his moniker Diane Coffee: “Everyday” from the upcoming Everybody’s A Good Dog. It’s a record that sounds a lot like the Technicolor record collection-pillaging rock of Foxygen, the band Fleming is best known for — and this fun video sorta nods at that with the glam rock moves.
There isn’t a more gorgeously unsettling score this year than Mica Levi’s hair-raising soundtrack to Jonathan Glazer’s 2014 film, Under The Skin. Based on the Michel Faber novel of the same name, the film follows an alien in the guise of Scarlett Johansson — a cipher and seductive predator who travels Scotland enticing men into a darkened building-turned-inky black void.
One would think that after years of constant touring, a hiatus between albums would be a welcome respite to decompress from music — or at least allow time to catch up on a little TV. For Yukon Blonde frontman Jeffrey Innes, it meant getting back to work, writing songs intended for a new collaborative project. But when his friends ended up being busy on the road, the Vancouver songwriter instead recorded the songs himself under a new moniker, High Ends.
Electric Youth first won over scores of fans with “A Real Hero” — a collaboration with French musician David Grellier (a.k.a. College) — which was prominently featured twice in Nicolas Winding Refn’s Ryan Gosling-starring 2011 film Drive.
Some bands have a few songs so immediately fun they can change the air in the room. Nude Beach must have at least 20 of ‘em — each built to win over anyone in the crowd, no matter their tastes. Looking for scruffy punk bangers or spirit-lifting jangling melodies? Hoping for a few triumphantly ripping glam rock solos? What about some good old Heartland AM radio pop or souped-up muscle car rockers made for open-window drives? On its sprawling and satisfying 18-song double album, 77, the Brooklyn trio’s members — singer and guitarist Chuck Betz, bassist Jimmy Shelton, and drummer Ryan Naideau — have got you more than covered.
Peter Morén — the singer and guitarist of Peter Bjorn & John fame — says that with his last two solo releases he found a new freedom in writing and singing entirely in his native Swedish for the first time. Morén’s songs on 2010’s I spåren av tåren and 2012’s Pyramiden, explored new influences like soul, New Wave, and even Brazilian rhythms, while retaining many of PB&J’s core calling cards — namely, the infectious pop hooks and his familiar Lennon-esque voice. But lyrically, he was able to tackle more Swedish-leaning politics and cultural references that he couldn’t do as easily in English.