Videos

Heartbreak, the second album from Unloved, has finally dropped and it’s a stunner. Like their debut, Guilty of Love (released three years ago!), Heartbreak is another satisfying serving of 60s girl-group sounds, with hints of vintage foreign soundtracks, murky lounge music, and mellow hip-hop. All of these elements work together to propel songwriter Jade Vincent’s songs about “love” (of course) straight into to your heart via your brain. Vincent, whose voice flows out in a seductively languid style demanding to be heard, together with producer/composer Keefus Ciancia, and DJ and producer/composer David Holmes have created what is already on my shortlist of Best Albums of 2019.

Actor and comedian Jason Mantzoukas (you may recognize him from his hilarious, high-energy stint as Derek on “The Good Place”) goes shopping at Amoeba Music in Los Angeles and shows you what’s in his bag, including some amazing virtual products. I was amazed by the range and depth of his music suggestions, and I’m looking forward to checking out some of his more obscure (at least to me) recommendations. Bonus points for calling-out both Destroyer and My Bloody Valentine!

Deerhunter has an album track record that’s tough to beat. From “Cryptograms,” their 2007 debut, to the already three-years-old, “Fading Frontier” there’s not a misstep in the bunch. The Atlanta-based band has always challenged the conventions of what makes a great pop-rock record (or art-rock record), so I was excited to see and hear them introduce the first single from their latest record, ‘Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared’ out January 18, 2019 on 4AD. On first listen, I thought Deerhunter had gone mainstream, but repeated plays reveal the dark and beautiful textures under the surface. Lurvely!

Whenever Dan Bejar’s band Destroyer releases a new album I feel like a giddy little kid at Christmas. Sadly, their new record, “Ken” won’t be out until October 20th, but they have put out a couple of singles that I’ll be playing non-stop until then. The beginning of the single “Tinseltown Swimming in Blood” could easily be the opening riff of a new New Order song which isn’t too surprising given Bejar’s published penchant for the post-punk pop group. Even the cascading drum fills that close the song remind me of the tribal drumming of New Order drummer, Stephen Morris. Check out the video and let me know what you think. On a more somber note, Sky’s Grey catches Bejar in a mellower downbeat mood. Looking forward to this release!

We’ve seen !!! quite a few times now and are always blown-away how great they sound live. Capturing that energy on their albums has been somewhat elusive, barring a few especially slamming songs (Steady as the Sidewalk Cracks for one). Since their label gave them some money for a video, they went like Bill O’Reilly and decided to “Do it live!” with very nice results. Play loudly.

Just stumbled across this video of Thee Oh Sees playing live on KEXP. We saw them on this tour at the Doug Fir and it was amazing. I had a perma-grin plastered to my face watching drummers, Dan Rincon and Ryan Moutinho play in almost perfect synchronicity. The sound was like a water canon pummeling you non-stop in the chest. Apparently, Moutinho left the band, so this video has only Rincon on the skins though he plays so fast he might as well be two people.

Fuse, Fuse Music TV, or Fusic TV as I like to call it, has a quick 4+ minute overview of the Portland music scene. Yes, they only talk to some of the bigger names in town like The Thermals, Menomena, and Colin Meloy of the Decemberists, but it’s not as cringe-worthy as the first episode of Portlandia. Are you an indie band in need of a town? C’mon down (or up) … I guess we can make room for one or two more.

As the host says, “Welcome to Portland Oregon, where people come to enjoy the great outdoors and the sound of nature. SCREW THAT, LET’S ROCK!” Thanks to Portland Mercury’s Blogtown for the heads-up.

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