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.

This week begins with a lovely, underwater-themed video from Dessa. We're also featuring new clips from Billy Idol's show at the Turf Club, an in-studio session from the Blind Shake, a Lowertown Line performance from the 4ontheFloor, and a thoughtful glimpse into how nature inspires the music of S.Carey. We've also got new music videos the Velveteens, Hollow Boys, Young 'Lou, Joey Joey Michaels, and a live performance clip from LOTT. Enjoy!

Dessa - "Sound the Bells"

In addition to releasing the brand new Doomtree album, All Hands, earlier this week (including a just-announced full-crew hometown show at First Ave on February 25), Dessa also recently shared a gorgeous video for "Sound the Bells," the closing track on her highly acclaimed 2013 solo album, Parts of Speech. The cinematic clip was directed by Minneapolis music video director, Daniel Cummings, who shot the video in the warm climate of the Yucatan Peninsula. The stunning underwater shots (including glimpses of Crist Ballas' striking statue of Dessa herself) were all captured by Alex Ruiz, who provides another layer to the song's theme of isolation by showing us the remarkable submerged statues of Jason de Caires Taylor.

Billy Idol - "White Wedding (Live at the Turf Club)"

I made my thoughts quite clear about Billy Idol's fun but ultimately shortlived show at the Turf Club last week. The Current shared this professionally shot/sounding clip of Idol and guitarist Steve Stevens emphatically kicking off their set with the moody anthem, "White Wedding." The show was part of the public radio station's 10-day long celebration of their 10th anniversary, and the Current's Digital Producer Brett Baldwin filmed the set along with Nate Ryan (who also edited the clip) and Nathaniel Schmidt, with Zach Rose expertly capturing the audio.

The Blind Shake - BTR Live Studio Session

The Blind Shake are set to make a return to the local stage at the Turf Club on February 19 with Swami John Reis (from Drive Like Jehu, Rocket From The Crypt, and Hot Snakes fame). But while the blistering local trio were on the road in support of their recent record, Breakfast of Failures, they dropped by Breakthru Radio's Saltlands Studio in Brooklyn for a live session, which featured a run through of "Pollen," as well as an engaging interview session. It will be interesting to hear how their sound and style meshes with Reis's on their surf-rock themed new collaboration, Modern Surf Classics.

Hollow Boys - "Someday"

Minneapolis trio Hollow Boys thankfully show no signs of slowing down in 2015, as they just announced plans to release a brand new EP, Violent Ascension, that is set for release in February on D.C.'s Blight. Records. The first single and video lifted from that new collection is for the textured gloom pop majesty of "Someday," which was given a stark but striking animation treatment by MIchelle Brost that really brings the slow-burning track to visual life. The new EP comes on the heels of Hollow Boys' stellar 2014 full-length, Believe In Nothing. Violent Ascension is available on a limited-edition High-bias chrome cassette, of which only 100 were made.

S. Carey - How Nature Inspires Music
This brilliant video -- filmed, directed and edited by locals Dan Huiting and Lauren Josephine -- gives voice and visuals to the inspiration that S. Carey routinely draws from nature, and how he processes his adventures within the natural world through his music. The clip is filled with gorgeous, tranquil views of the Wisconsin wilderness that Midwesterners will be very familiar with, augmented by Carey's spare, poignant songs, some of which will be featured on his forthcoming EP, Supermoon. In the leisurely video (which made me want to go fly fishing straight away) the talented Eau Claire musician also reveals his deep creative connection to John Muir, whom he named his last album, Range of Light, in honor of.


The 4onthefloor - The Lowertown Line at Icehouse

The recent run of the Lowertown Line performances are just beginning to be broadcast on tpt, and the first episode to air was this performance from the 4onthefloor at Icehouse. This intimate set really got the crowd into it, as the band clearly relished their chance to rock a small room while having the cameras focused squarely on them. The sound and images are all top-notch, capturing the beloved local bar band having an absolute blast. Interspersed with the live clips is an engaging interview with the band while they were having brunch, where they share advice for aspiring musicians everywhere, before showing everyone just how it's done on stage at Icehouse.

The Velveteens - "Sun's Up"

Back in December, the Velveteens released their catchy new record, Sun's Up, which caught the attention of most local music fans. And now, the group has offered up a video for the title track, which was directed by their friend (and bassist Jillian Schroeder's bandmate) Gordon Byrd from Teenage Moods. He captures the group biking around the city while playing outdoors amongst the flowers, frogs, and butterflies, on a day far nicer than we've seen this winter. So, get lost in this song about saying goodbye and starting over, while dreaming of warmer days at the lake.

LOTT - "Parking on the Grass (Live at the Entry)"

White Boyfriend certainly stacked the bill for their recent record release show at the Entry. In addition to their stellar headlining set, they wisely tapped Fort Wilson Riot, Yoni Yum, and LOTT to open their big night. It's rare to hear the Entry so quiet, but Leah Ottman silenced the crowd with her lovely, looped-violin sounds and crystalline voice. UnderCurrentMPLS was on hand to capture some of the magic of her performance, as this beguiling version of "Parking on the Grass" highlights LOTT's prodigious skills as a songwriter as well as a performer. Her humorous between-song banter kept things light while also injecting ever more of her personality into the set.

Joey Joey Michaels - "Girlfriend of the Mind"

Joey Joey Michaels is the musical moniker of Leo Vondracek, the keyboardist in Suzie and bassist in Rupert Angeleyes (and onetime member of Hot Freaks). This theatrical video -- directed by Melodious Owl's Joe Berns -- for Michaels' playful new single, "Girlfriend on the Mind" features plenty of local landmarks, including the Lake Street Kmart and nearby White Castle. Those slightly drab surroundings are injected with colorful life due to Aubree Justine Miller's hand-made costumes and the buoyant acting of Leo's pals, Hunter and Becca. The track itself was produced by Frankie Teardrop, whose label, No Problem Records, is planning on releasing a cassingle for the song within the next few weeks as part of their new Singles Club series. You can catch Joey Joey Michaels live at the Kitty Cat Klub on Thursday, February 5.

Young 'Lou - "Come Alive"

Young 'Lou is an 18-year-old hip-hop artist who is just starting to make a name for himself within the local music community. He's also one hell of an athlete (Lou's real name is Maolu Woiwor), having won his third MN High School State Wrestling Championships this past March. But his love of music is where his current passion lies, and "Come Alive" is the first glimpse we get of the burgeoning MC's skills on the mic. The track is lifted off of Lou's album, Conscious Conversations, a record filled with insightful rhymes from a young kid who is clearly trying to find his place in the world while also making a positive impact with his music. The production on this beat-heavy track -- handled by Spooky Black cohort Greaf -- is top drawer, and augments Lou's straightforward rhymes and catchy hook, while the video was stylishly done by the Morningside Films crew, who give Lou's new fans a visual representation of the talented MC behind this fresh new jam.


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