This week's Local Frames is the first piece I ever wrote in my new house in Central Minneapolis. It's got me thinking a lot about home.
Home is a transferable thing. Any place can feel like home provided the environs are welcoming enough — that the people accept you in a way that's warm enough to be considered home. I'm two years into my tenure as a Minnesotan, and it feels so good that I bought a goddamn house here. Lots of places feel like home, but this is the one that made it worth a mortgage.
Part of why I feel so comfortable is because folks reach out to me constantly to help them succeed in what's their hometown. Each week, I hear from different bands, rappers, producers, directors, and promoters from all over the state looking to get a spot on this list and some much-deserved props, and it's the least I can do for my neighbors.
Christopher Michael Jensen — "A Life"
Christopher Michael Jensen set forth an incredibly ambitious goal for his last album, 2014's CM Cool J. As a congratulations to the contemplative Minneapolis rhymer, we feature the final entry in that journey, "A Life," which deals with the philosophical question of how to properly live your life while maintaining true to yourself. Clearly, CMJ is a testament to seeing out your vision to the end.
The video itself is nothing fancy — EJ Films captures Jensen on the type of reflective stroll through downtown you might take if you were weighing the pros and cons of quitting your job and opening an art gallery — but it appeals to any 9-5er with a dream. If you're impressed with Jensen's work so far, go see him tonight at Honey as part of his ongoing April residency.
Colder in Moscow — "Better Off"
Richard Roser and Eric Carlson's collective project Colder in Moscow has been on hiatus since 2013, but this new music video marks the pair's return to their 2007 form. It was inspired by Carlson bringing a new tape machine to Roser's place, and the resultant beauty begged to be set to high-contrast black and white.
Roser's vocals sound as warm as the medium could possibly allow, and the dual acoustics strumming along in the background add a pleasurable hypnosis. According to Roser, Colder in Moscow's comeback is in full focus, and the pair hope to have an album out this summer. You might also recognize Carlson from Big Lake, Val Son, and Fair Oaks.
Rich Garvey — "I'm Taking All That"
Cherry Sky's Abhinav and Extensive Knowledge's Teddy Grimes cooked up a dizzying vision for Rich Garvey's "I'm Talking All That." The blurry-boxed visuals wind and rewind, syncing to the foreboding trap beat created by Travis Gorman. With ghastly oohs creeping over tense hi-hats, the production warns all listeners that Garvey is comin'.
The Liberian transplant has certainly made a name for himself of late, collabing with Metasota, Mike the Martyr, Psymun, and even Christopher Michael Jensen in introducing himself to the Twin Cities hip-hop scene. The hotshot MC/producer opens for Count Bass D at the entry on May 9.
Fox & Coyote — "Gotchu"
Fox & Coyote cellist Katherine Cano had never been to Duluth before, so the Minneapolis chamber-folk quintet hopped in a beat-up old sedan and made a music video of their trip to the North Coast. Shot by Maxwell Collyard, the warm scenes show a group of friends helping each other discover the wonders within reach, a theme that blends whimsically with the blissful homecoming of "Gotchu."
Fox & Coyote haven't been seen much since their 2015 EP Boardinghouse — on which "Gotchu" is featured — so hopes are high that this video is a harbinger of recordings to come. They are, however, very active live, and they'll be doing their careful, glorious thing at the Fine Line on April 22 and Arcadia Cafe on April 30.
SickDaPunchLiner and Rocky Diamonds — "Pull Up"
Rocky Diamonds is a rapper who I initially didn't have a good relationship with. We got into words over Twitter, but gradually we both realized that we're here for the same reason, so we're good now, and Local Frames is glad to feature his collaboration with Local Frames repeat SickDaPunchliner.
"Pull Up" comes at us courtesy of Minnesota Cold TV, and man, is it cold as fuck. For most of the song, Sick postures next to an assault rifle, assassination ready, daring all comers to doubt his realness. However, it's Rocky's detached, almost Fabolous-like guest that steals the show, adding a steely, unsettling calm to what is already a very menacing team-up.
Dream of seeing your video appear in Local Frames? Email writer Jerard Fagerberg at [email protected].