Katana da Don scares up a good time in this week's Top 5 MN music videos

Katana da Don

Katana da Don YouTube

At last, Halloween.

It’s finally here. The greatest of American traditions is upon us, and as a bonus treat, it’s also a Local Frames day. The only thing better than a plastic jack o'lantern full of king-size candy bars is a blog post full of Halloweeny videos for your seasonal consumption.

A big, fang-toothed shoutout to the musicians and directors who heard my call for Halloween videos and obliged me (and the readers) with some macabre visions. Next week, we’ll go back to normal, no-theme, no-gore Local Frames, but for the last time this year, let’s indulge in some costumed buffoonery.

Katana da Don -- “Hell If I Know” (PREMIERE)

Mazel tov to music video creator Paul von Stoetzel of Killing Joke Films, who loves Halloween so much that today is actually his wedding day. He’s down in New Orleans with his to-be wife getting hitched, but von Stoetzel’s longtime friend and collaborator Katana da Don is right here in Local Frames helping us celebrate the nuptials and Halloween with her new video for “Hell if I Know.”

The project is a joint wedding present from von Stoetzel and his betrothed to Katana and her wife, and vice versa. Everything from the writing and production of the song to the video itself came from the love and mutual friendship these four people share. And because there’s nothing scarier than immortal monogamy, the video contains a terrifying twist before all the warm and fuzzies settle in. 

Spooky Ghost -- “Let’s Spend Some Time Together”

Though “Let’s Spend Some Time Together” isn’t explicitly Halloween-themed, how can you say no to a band named Spooky Ghost on All Hallows Eve? The jaunty pop-rock band just released their blithe new single, complete with a video put together by band members Jesse Pedersen and Max Ostenso. Though there’s one roving scene of a graveyard, the only thing hair-raising about “Let’s Spend Some Time Together” is how catchy it is.

With a soothing, vintage feel, “Let’s Spend Some Time Together” summons instant nostalgia. In the song, Pedersen imagines a perfect day with a new flame, complete with a trip to the 7th St Entry. Love in Minneapolis – it’s an idyllic muse.

DENNIS -- “Party”

DENNIS singer Katie Bolin spent nine months working on the animated video for her band’s single, “Party,” illustrating roughly 1,600 frames in PhotoShop. Now you’re invited to partake in a story of, as Bolin puts it, “overcoming evil to get to the core of what every being wants in their heart of hearts: to hang with friends and enjoy the vastness of our curious universe without evil people being huge bummers and ruining everything.”

Evil people have been even huger bummers than usual in 2017, and carefree music like DENNIS’s is more necessary than ever. Without the neon absurdity of songs like “Party,” we’d all be constant victims to the shittiness of the current political climate. “Party” comes from DENNIS’s upcoming album Alien Fantasy, which Bolin claims is “99.9% finished.”

The Curiously Strong Peppermints -- “Duck, Duck, Gray Duck”

Throwback psych band the Curiously Strong Peppermints released their latest album Joyous today -- the culmination of another rambling, impressionistic creation cycle for the ever-evolving collective. Leading the album is “Duck, Duck, Gray Duck,” an obvious homage to the band’s home state that comes to life in technicolor hand-cut images thanks to Australian musician and filmmaker Gary W. Granger.

“Duck, Duck, Gray Duck” showcases the straightforward lyricism of Joyous. Lead Peppermint Jesse Miller uses this direct approach to discuss, as he puts it, “the nature of love and life, death and depression.” Miller and his cohort of freak-folk devotees bring the message home in their typical happy melange of vintage organs and flutes, but hearing Miller warble the chorus of “Into the wastelands, and here I stay,” creates a dissonance that lingers long after Granger’s images fade from the screen.


Christopher Michael Jensen -- Fifth Element Open Mic Promo Video

Local rapper Christopher Michael Jensen has a special Halloween treat this week. His latest is not your typical music video -- in fact, there’s really no music in it at all. CMJ worked with Common Culture to put together this hilarious horror parody for the monthly open mic he hosts at Fifth Element.

In the video, CMJ is stalked by a persistent, nefarious microphone that accosts him while he’s researching Chris Benoit in the comfort of his home. Spooky and hella cheesy, it’s a reminder that, no matter how far along you are in your rap career, the threat of the open mic is always imminent. Fifth Element’s open mic is first Thursday of every month, which means you can check it out (or even participate) on November 2 in Uptown.

Dream of seeing your video appear in Local Frames? Email writer Jerard Fagerberg at [email protected]