Top 10 must-see Minnesota music videos this week
Local Frames is a weekly column spotlighting the best new music videos featuring musicians and directors with Minnesota ties.
Let's begin with an ethereal new video from Is/Is, which was directed by City Pages Art Director, Emily Utne. This week also brings new clips from Black Diet, Battlerat, Portage, Garland Jeffreys, and live performance vids from Phantom Tails and Wild!!Wing. We're also highlighting a couple of videos from Adam J. Dunn's new season of Lights and a Backdrop featuring Beasthead and Ashley DuBose, and an enlightening MN Original profile on Red House Records. Enjoy!
Is/Is - "Gleam"
Is/Is return with another beguiling video drawn from their hazy self-titled album. The clip for "Gleam" was directed by City Pages Art Director, Emily Utne, who perfectly captures the ethereal charm of the track with an equally dreamlike, kaleidoscopic video. The whole clip has a shimmering, illusory appeal to it that certainly compliments the song, while the ghostly images of Sarah Rose, Sarah Nienaber, and Ronnie Lee float in and out of focus amidst the shoegazey swells of the intoxicating number.
Black Diet - "Unbroke"
Black Diet recently took top honors at the Are You Local? showcase and got the opportunity to share their music with new fans down at SXSW. The group just released a brand-new video for "Unbroke," which was directed and edited by David Tullis. The track was featured on the recent Piñata Records Hit Parade sampler, and has been a highlight of Black Diet's stellar live shows. The group has also just announced that their full-length debut album, Find Your Tambourine, will be released on April 19, a grand occasion that they will be celebrate with a special Record Store Day performance at Hymie's.
Phantom Tails - "Oven of Romance"
Phantom Tails recently took part in a memorable basement show, Midnight Mass at Monastery, and this riveting performance of "Oven of Romance" was shot during their set by Angelo Boiyd. This pulsating clip captures the edgy charms of the band, while also giving people a small glimpse into the magic of the night as well as the austere setting. The electro-clash quartet is in the process of finishing up their new album, Phantom Tails Rides Battalion, and if this dynamic track is any indication, the record should certainly be a great one.
Red House Records - MN Original Profile
Red House Records has become a St. Paul independent musical institution, releasing acoustic-based folk, blues, roots, Americana, and instrumental albums for over 30 years. This engaging, informative profile by MN Original shines a well-deserved spotlight on the label as well as their roster of talented artists. The video captures an intimate recording session with Red House Records artist, John Gorka, a live clip of the Pines, as well as insights from label owner, Beth Friend, and president Eric Peltoniemi. They share a bit of the gradual, storied history of the label, as well as the driving inspiration behind the albums they release and the distinguished artists on their roster.
Battlerat - "The Slowest Song"
Not only did Battlerat's Celeste Heule write and perform most of "The Slowest Song," but she directed and filmed the video for the track as well. The endearing song is the first offering from Battlerat's forthcoming album, which Heule is celebrating with an album release show at the 331 Club on April 19. "The Slowest Song" was also just featured on the recent Ecstattic Studio compilation, Towards A Better Future (Through An Uncertain Past), which brought together a bunch of great tracks recorded at Ali Jaafar's attic studio. Joining Battlerat at the release show will be Hyperslob, Cabo, and Mississippi Hot Club.
Ashley DuBose - "Lose A Good Thing (LAAB Session)"
In addition to his growing litany of music videos, director Adam J. Dunn has just released Season 7 of his Lights and a Backdrop video series, which strikingly presents the various performers against a stark backdrop, letting their personality and their music be the focus of the clip. One of the best videos from the new season is for the former contestant on The Voice, Ashley DuBose. Here, removed from all of the hype and hoopla of the reality TV singing competition, DuBose's talents still shine through, as her voice soars on the Somethin' More standout, "Lose A Good Thing." Dunn is able to perfectly capture her effervescent charms as well as her musical talents in this vibrant, refined clip.
Beasthead - "Louder (LAAB Session)"
Another standout of Dunn's new LAAB season is this mesmerizing performance by Minneapolis quartet Beasthead. "Louder" is the closing track on the band's inventive EP, Tallest Trees, which was released this past September. Beasthead's sound fuses a modern electronic pulse with textured guitars, hypnotic beats, and distorted vocals which comes together in a fresh sound that boldly stands apart from much of what is happening in the current Twin Cities music scene. Dunn artfully captures a spirited performance from the band, one which will surely raise their local profile and garner them some new fans in the process.
Wild!!Wing - Live at Icehouse
Inventive Minneapolis quartet, Wild!!Wing recently played a raucous show at Icehouse this past weekend, and thankfully the fine folks at UnderCurrentMPLS were there to capture some of the spirited fun. The group is comprised of music scene vets Josh Journey-Heinz, Chris Smalley, Aby Wolf, and Matthew Kazama, and they mesh their collective talents in a lively, imaginative way -- skills which are on full display in this energetic live clip.
Portage - "Columns"
Portage originally hails from the northern shores of Minnesota, but the now Minneapolis-based quartet went all the way to Albuquerque, New Mexico to shoot their new video for "Columns." The clip was directed by guitarist/vocalist Trent Waterman, and the serene images perfectly suits the tranquil, unencumbered nature of the song itself. The evocative, Americana-drenched number closes out Portage's recent full-length, Landings, which is well worth checking out if you haven't yet. You can catch the band live at a special Duluth Homegrown Twin Cities Invasion show at the Turf Club on April 18, where they will be playing with Southwire, the Black-Eyed Snakes, and Low Forms.
Garland Jeffreys - "Collide the Generations"
Minneapolis director Doug Webb recently put together this imaginative music video for Garland Jeffreys' "Collide the Generations." The song and video were released to coincide with the Collide the Generations website, which is dedicated to fostering the sharing of music across generations. The clip itself was made using hundreds of photographs, many of them provided by fan submissions, which all come together to form an original, striking piece of work that elegantly compliments both the song and the mission of the entire meaningful project.
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