Local Frames is a weekly column spotlighting the best new music videos featuring musicians and directors with Minnesota ties.
This week, we start things off with a lovely live Current in-studio performance from the Suburbs, who are back with their first new studio record in 27 years. We're also featuring a Radio K in-studio from Hunting Club, a KFAI session from New Primitives, and a MN Original solo performance from Grant Hart, as well as a promotional video in advance of the upcoming Station to Station show at St. Paul's Union Station (featuring sets from Patti Smith, Eleanor Friedberger, No Age, and others).
We are also placing a well-deserved focus on Adam J. Dunn's just released third season of his Lights and a Backdrop series, with new videos from Dessa, Actual Wolf, Haphduzn and Dimitry Killstorm, See More Perspective, and Unknown Prophets. Enjoy!
The Suburbs - "Turn The Radio On (Live on the Current)"
Highly revered Twin Cities new wave legends the Suburbs are back with their first new studio album in 27 years, Si Sauvage, and the band celebrated the release with a recent in-studio performance at the Current. This vibrant, horn-laden run through of "Turn the Radio On," finds Chan Poling in fine form on both vocals and his sprightly piano strains, with the rest of the group providing an energetic accompaniment that gives the wistful song some added spirit. The band are set to play Manhattan's Mercury Lounge at the end of the month before returning back to Minnesota for a couple of shows at the Paramount Theater in St. Cloud on October 25-26.
Hunting Club - "Double Vision (Live on Radio K)"
Minneapolis quartet Hunting Club just released their long-awaited new record, Mosaic, and recently dropped by the Radio K studios for a captivating session. This ethereal version of "Double Vision" (a Hunting Club original not a Foreigner cover) finds the band generating a penetrating, insistent rhythm with Eric Pasi's vocals floating above the beat. This performance also sees the debut of Radio K's smoke machine, which adds a moody element to the striking performance.
Grant Hart - "Awake Arise (MN Original Session)"
Former Hüsker Dü drummer/co-songwriter Grant Hart released one of his finest solo works earlier this year with the double-LP, The Argument. The adventurous album draws inspiration from John Milton's Paradise Lost, with Hart's songwriting and playing both invigorated throughout the sprawling, intrepid work. He recently dropped by tpt's Studio A for this haunting, deeply affecting performance of "Awake Arise," one of the many standouts found on his new album. Hart's stirring performance should hopefully cause any doubters out there to give this record a chance, because it will take you somewhere special.
Station To Station - Minneapolis/St. Paul Minute
To promote the upcoming Station To Station performance at St. Paul's Union Depot (as well as the endless artistic charms of the Twin Cities), the folks behind STS asked Walker Art Center Director Olga Viso to talk briefly about why the art and music scenes are thriving right now in Minnesota. To celebrate this resurgence, the Union Depot is hosting the Station To Station happening on September 12, with plenty of diverse, compelling artwork on display both inside and outside of the venue, with musical performances from Patti Smith, Eleanor Friedberger, No Age, White Mystery, and more. It should be a distinctive, wonderful confluence of music and art, all set in the regal surroundings of the renovated Union Depot.
New Primitives - "Rogue Moon"
The soulful, bluesy sounds of New Primitives recently filled the airwaves (and quite literally, the studio) of KFAI, as the reggae veterans dropped in for a vibrant, lively session. This expansive take on "Rogue Moon" is a good example of what can be found on the band's new album, American Nomad, but the group is always best experienced live, as proved with this clip from their KFAI session. If you're down with the sound of New Primitives, you can catch the band every Thursday at Nye's.
In addition to directing a growing plethora of memorable music videos for a diverse selection of Twin Cities bands and artists, Adam J. Dunn has also created a striking, original concept for a minimalistic video series -- Lights and a Backdrop. The concept is simple -- just put some lights on a band and film them performing in front of a plain backdrop -- but the results are highly effective, removing much of the glitz and polish that plagues many modern day music videos, while turning the focus back on the performers and their songs where it should be.
Following two highly successful seasons of LAAB (as well as a series of clips shot on-location in Seattle), Dunn is back with Season 3 of Lights and a Backdrop, which features these five enthralling videos we're showcasing today (from Dessa, Actual Wolf, Haphduzn & Dimitry Killstorm, See More Perspective, and Unknown Prophets), as well as a bunch of others from the likes of Mike Dreams, Ecid, Kaleem, Dwell & the Space Ship, Open Mike Eagle, and others. It's another wonderful collection of artists who truly make the most of their moment in front of the camera, with Dunn capturing the boundless spirit of their songs all set in stark surroundings that allows the music and the performance to fully shine through.
Dessa - "The Lamb (LAAB Session)"
Actual Wolf - "The Lucky One (LAAB Session)"
Haphduzn & Dimitry Killstorm - "No Big (LAAB Session)"
See More Perspective - "Nod Your Head (LAAB Session)"
Unknown Prophets - "Wrong Route (LAAB Session)"