Local Frames is a weekly column spotlighting the best new music videos featuring musicians and directors with Minnesota ties.
A premiere of the new Web of Sunsets video gets things going this week. We've also got new clips from Leisure Birds, Mayda, Some Pulp, Moving Parts, Maple & Beech, and a lovely Simian Ghost video directed by Dan Huiting. We're also featuring live performances from American Cream, Alpha Consumer, and Sonny Knight & the Lakers. Enjoy!
Web of Sunsets - "Wildflowers"
A flurry of activity from the Web of Sunsets camp includes the beguiling psych-folk trio just releasing an awesomely named limited-edition cassette, Gin Tapes, which features four brand new songs from the group. The band has also announced plans for a U.S. tour, which kicks off with a show tomorrow night at Eagles Club with Chambermaids and Mr. Hide. In addition to all of that, Web of Sunsets has allowed us to premiere their brand new video for "Wildflowers," the haunting lead-off track on their recent full-length, Room of Monsters. The video was directed by Andrew Stewart, whose serene outdoor images perfectly encapsulates the mood and spirit of the song.
Leisure Birds - "Waveforms"
Leisure Birds have just put out their moody, textured new album, Tetrahedron, which is seeing a joint release between the local label, Totally Gross National Product, and onetime Minneapolis cassette-only label, Moon Glyph (which is now based in Oakland, CA). They both have a synth-drenched gem on their hands, as Jake Luck and his talented band have crafted a hypnotic, mercurial masterpiece. The first single from that record, "Waveforms," gets the video treatment here from Matt Bardins/visionquest.tv, who gives the mesmerizing number an equally esoteric clip that provides spellbinding visuals while the song carries you away. Catch Leisure Birds Tetrahedron release show at Icehouse on June 25.
Some Pulp - "Take A Ride"
This short blistering blast from Some Pulp absolutely rocks, and the grainy, black & white video only adds to the untamed energy of the track. The clip was directed by Chris Jopp, who captures the raw live spirit of the garage-rock band. "Take A Ride" is the centerpiece of the group's new, self-titled release, which is one of the best local albums put out this year. You can next catch Some Pulp at the Nomad on July 10 and be blown away like I was the first time that I witnessed their raucous live show. That show also features Clementine and Chalk.
American Cream - "Shadow's Skin/Rücksturz (Agitation Free cover)(Live at Heliotrope X)"
STNNNG's Nathan Nelson's improvisational side project, American Cream, recently rocked Heliotrope X with a rousing, wildly experimental set. This clip finds the band exploring their way through a wild, expansive take on Nathan standout, "Shadow's Skin," before flowing smoothly into a cover of Agitation Free's "Rücksturz," which starts as a spare, haunting piece before blossoming into a rousing instrumental jam at the midway point. It's a bold, adventurous performance that perfectly expresses the boundless nature of not only American Cream, but Heliotrope as well.
Alpha Consumer - "Brain Doctor (Live on Radio K)"
My admiration for Alpha Consumer is well documented. But if there are any of you who have yet to be convinced and converted by the band's estimable talents, just check out this rousing clip of the trio tearing the cover off of "Brain Doctor," one of the standout tracks on their new album, Meat. The group of longtime friends look like they are having the time of their lives each and every time that they play, but remain so locked in to the vibrant rhythm and pulse of the track that it can't help but pull you in. After hitting the road for some shows out east, Alpha Consumer return home for what is sure to be a wild bill at the Cedar on July 12, as they play with Liam Finn and Fury Things.
Maple & Beech - "Flashes & Floaters"
I have to admit, I hadn't heard of Maple & Beech before being sent their first video for "Flashes & Floaters." But I'm sure glad I came across this clip as well as the band, as their subtle but stirring groove really hit the right nerve on this rainy stretch of days we're caught up in. The group is comprised of Tyler Tholl and Pete James Johnson, and they just released a new EP, also called Flashes & Floaters, which they recorded at EchoBoys here in Minneapolis. It's a gorgeous collection of evocative, textured songs that I'm sure to be revisiting quite often as the summer goes on. The striking video itself was directed/shot/edited by Alex Johnson, who got the entire poignant clip all in one take.
Simian Ghost - "Never Really Knew"
While Simian Ghost is a Swedish band, this sprightly video for their new track, "Never Really Knew" was directed by local luminary Dan Huiting. He traveled all the way to Iceland to shoot this stark but ebullient clip, which captures the beautiful isolation of the Icelandic landscape, along with some gorgeous time-lapse footage of the countryside. The clip not only serves as a splendid visual accompaniment to Simian Ghost's bliss-pop jam, but could also double as an enticing promotion from the Icelandic travel bureau (minus the surprising last 10 seconds of the clip, mind you), since anyone who watches this will want to travel to Iceland themselves and dance alongside these striking landmarks.
Mayda - "Verite"
Local chanteuse Mayda has returned from her worldly travels and released a dynamic new album, Busy Signals Pt. 1. And the vibrant closing track to the new collection, "Verite," is given an artistic video treatment by Lauren Hughes, who filmed and edited the clip. The pulsating number finds Mayda trying to hide from the spotlight, while clips from her younger days are projected on screens behind her. The emotionally-drenched number builds in impact as the beat picks up, with all eyes and ears locked on to Mayda, who reveals a small part of herself to us in this short clip that suggests big things are on their way with Busy Signals Pt. 2.
Moving Parts - "Indigo Children (Acoustic)"
Moving Parts switch things up just a bit on this acoustic take on their new song, "Indigo Children." The spare but sweet track removes the upbeat beach rock of their other material in favor of a sprightly acoustic guitar riff and Adam Paulus' tender vocals. It's a nice little ditty for the summertime, and gives Moving Parts fans a glimpse into a different side of the band as well as a taste of what their forthcoming record might sound like.
Sonny Knight & the Lakers - "Day Tripper (Live at First Avenue)"
Sonny Knight and his fabulous Lakers have rocked enough stages in town so that by now everybody should know their name. Their on fire record release show at First Avenue had everyone getting down to their infectious rhythms and irresistible energy, and this clip of the band covering the Beatles' classic, "Day Tripper," (which was the band's contribution to the Minnesota Beatle Project, Vol. 5)gives everyone who missed out on the show an idea of just how much fun the show was. The video was directed by Erik Nelson, who perfectly captures the effervescent energy of Knight and the boundless talents of the Lakers, who all were in fine form on this memorable evening.
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