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.
Allan Kingdom's smooth new jam "Evergreens" kicks off this week's edition. We've also got new clips from False Teeth, the Level Heads, a duet between Haley Bonar and Choo Choo Bob, and a viral hit from Molly Kate Kestner. We're also featuring live performance videos from Chris Koza and Rogue Valley, Batteryboy, Black-Eyed Snakes, Sonny Knight & the Lakers, and an engaging MN Original profile on Kevin Bowe. Enjoy!
Allan Kingdom - "Evergreens"
Allan Kingdom has been on quite a roll as of late, and for good reason. The breakout MC continues getting in front of more people, including his opening set at Heiruspecs release show. This new video for "Evergreens" keeps that hot streak going, thanks to Kingdom's fresh verses and the track's inventive beats. The video was directed by Ben Hughes (and co-directed by Kingdom himself), and finds the MC going about his daily business in the city, surrounded by friends and some familiar sights around town. You can catch Allan Kingdom at Soundset on May 25, where he has a chance to win over an even bigger audience of hip-hop fans.
Haley Bonar - "Build Somethings (On the Choo Choo Bob Show)"
This collaborative performance between Haley Bonar and Choo Choo Bob is absolutely adorable. Bonar dropped by the children's TV show to encourage kids and adults alike to create something, no matter what that is. Ahead of Bonar's highly anticipated release show for her upcoming album, Last War, at the Varsity Theater on May 16, she joined Bob (and his sweet Lego guitar) for this little ditty that actually proves to be quite insightful and encouraging.
False Teeth - "Space Prom"
False Teeth are set to release their debut EP, Grapefruit, later on this month, and have just released a celebratory new video for one of the tracks from that collection, "Space Prom." The innovative group is comprised of Bobby Phisher and Matt Sandstedt (of I, Colossus), and based on the wild sounds (and sights) featured on this track, the band seemed to have hit on an adventurous sonic direction that will surely be featured at many parties and outdoor festivals this summer. The video was directed by Botzy (and co-directed by Colton Otte), who capture the jubilant images of a high school dance while the song provides the perfect rousing soundtrack. You can catch False Teeth at 612Brew's festival during Art-A-Whirl, as well as their EP release show at the Rabbit Hole on May 23.
Molly Kate Kestner - "His Daughter"
This simple, self-shot video by Austin, MN singer/songwriter Molly Kate Kestner has become a viral sensation, with well over one million YouTube views in just over a week. The plaintive, emotionally-drenched track has clearly hit home for music fans all over the world, even prompting the Huffington Post to take notice. Kestner is a high school senior with a golden voice and a creative heart that she isn't afraid to lay bare within her songs. The song is steeped in sentiment and quite dramatic, but it will still resonate with you long after you finish listening. Kestner seems to be on her way to making a name for herself within the music industry, if that is indeed the path she chooses to take.
Sonny Knight and the Lakers - "Juicy Lucy (Live on the Current"
This week's City Pages cover star, Sonny Knight, and his talented band of Lakers recently stopped by the Current studios for a dynamic live session, one which spawned this emphatic take on "Juicy Lucy." The group is set to play their record release show at First Avenue this Saturday, and for those of you who haven't been won over by their funky, R&B throwback sound, take a look at this in studio session and you'll see why fans from the Twin Cities straight down to SXSW have all been getting down to Knight and his crew. Get up and dance, indeed!
Black-Eyed Snakes - Live on Radio K
Before the Homegrown music festival took over Duluth, a bunch of bands from that area came down to the Twin Cities to takeover some local stages and studios around town. That contingent included Black-Eyed Snakes, who stopped into the Radio K studios for this blistering live session. Alan Sparhawk and his crew played two blues-rock jams during their riveting session, which built from spartan arrangements to a full-fledged tidal wave of noise that shows just how potent these guys are. Homegrown is still going on through the weekend, and for those of you who haven't been up there, it's a festive celebration of all that is good about music as well as the charming city of Duluth.
Kevin Bowe - MN Original Profile
MN Original continues to do a brilliant job profiling deserving musicians and artists throughout Minnesota. This time, they turn their attention to local singer/songwriter/producer/jack-of-all-trades Kevin Bowe, and this revealing feature not only sheds light on Bowe's venerable music history in the Twin Cities, but also shows him educating a new generation of music lovers by sharing what he knows about the industry with young students. The clip captures Bowe producing a session by Communist Daughter, as Kevin injects his years of experience into the sound and direction of one of the best bands on the current music scene. This feature is a brief but perceptive look at the colorful history of the local music scene, and Bowe's role not only in its illustrious past, but also how he is helping take the scene forward in the future.
Batteryboy - "Me Again"
Batteryboy recently helped lead the wonderful musical weekend at the Southern Theater, where a slew of talented local bands convened for three nights of stirring, intimate performances that not only helped invigorate the performers and audience alike, but also helped breath new creative life into the theater itself. This clip of Batteryboy performing a new, unreleased song called "Me Again," captures some of the magic of those nights, while also highlighting the evocative sounds of the band. Batteryboy opened up for Holly Golightly last night at the Entry, and will now take a bit of a hiatus from the live scene. But for the time being, enjoy this poignant live performance of "Me Again," and be sure to check the band out when they make their return to a local stage sometime soon.
Chris Koza & Rogue Valley - Live at McNally Smith
Not only does McNally Smith educate and inform aspiring students about the finer points of music, but they also play host to some wonderful live performances. This clip of Chris Koza and Rogue Valley captures the band playing McNally Smith's Sound Bite concert series. And the intimate performance finds the group playing their current hit from The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, "The Wolves and the Ravens," and a few other gems for the lucky students gathered at McNally. Koza is in the process of finishing up a solo record which should be released sometime soon, but until then enjoy this stirring live performance by Rogue Valley and be sure to catch some live performances at McNally if you can.
The Level Heads - "Reinvent"
The Level Heads are a unique group that fuses hip-hop with live rock 'n' roll, which blends fluidly within their spirited anthems. The band, which started out as a collaboration between local musician Mike Lipset and Oakland's Logan U'u and has blossomed into a live quintet, is set to release their debut album, Reinvent, this Saturday night at Icehouse. The Level Heads will be joined by I.B.E. & Benzilla for their big night, which -- along with this boisterous video for the album's title track directed by Jake Handegard of Morningside Films -- should help introduce their new sonic direction to a wider local audience.
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