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 we start out featuring the new video from Pony Bwoy, the ethereal, electro-pop duo from Minneapolis, who just released their first clip from their self-titled debut. We've also got hot new videos from SIFU HOTMAN, Sombear, Aldine, Still Pacific, and the White Whales. We're also featuring wonderful in-studio live sessions from the National, Kitten Forever, and Caroline Smith, as well as a sweet making-of video for the Blind Boys of Alabama's new album, I'll Find A Way, which was directed by the talented local filmmaker Dan Huiting. Enjoy!
Pony Bwoy - "Ævum (time crawls)"
Pony Bwoy's first video lifted from their self-titled debut on Totally Gross National Product certainly plays on the "time crawls" aspect of the song title, as black ooze slowly drips over the heads of band members Jeremy Nutzman and Hunter Morley, who also both directed the video as well. The album itself is a fresh artistic statement from the emerging young band, who bring a moody, R&B edginess to the Minneapolis music scene. Pony Bwoy are in the process of putting together a band for their live debut, and if their album is any indication, their shows should be enthralling as well.
SIFU HOTMAN - "Limb From Limb"
SIFU HOTMAN are back with "Limb From Limb," their second video lifted from their bristling new self-titled collection. And, just like in their first clip, the crew are performing the track live at Bellows Studio in St. Paul, with Guante and Dem Atlas delivering potent rhymes (even taking a shot at Justin Bieber) over Rube's booming beats. The group are set to perform their three-song suite in its entirety at the Fifth Element parking lot sale on August 24th at 4 p.m.
Kitten Forever - "Dirt Nap/Rat Queen (Live on Radio K)"
The blistering trio Kitten Forever dropped by the Radio K studios to rattle the walls with their piercing riot grrrl sound. The trio just released an excellent new full-length, Pressure, and are set to celebrate with an all-ages show at Hymie's Vintage Records this Friday, along with Hollow Boys. It should be a raucous affair for sure, all in the intimate confines of one of Minneapolis's best record shops. Until then, turn up this tempestuous Radio K session and rock your cares away.
The White Whales - "Babe the Blue Ox"
Minneapolis quintet the White Whales just released a lovely new video for "Babe The Blue Ox," one of the standout tracks to their brand new full length, Lakestate, which they just released at the beginning of August. The group has built a dedicated following here in the Twin Cities that grows with each wonderful live performance they put on, including their stellar record release show at the Entry. The video, which features old-school animations and illustrations combined with stark nature scenes, only adds to the track's slow-burning quality and buoyant charm.
The National - "Pink Rabbits (Live on the Current)"
On the afternoon before their recent headlining show at Roy Wilkins, the National dropped by the Current's UBS Forum theater for a special intimate show for some lucky fans, which I was fortunate enough to attend. The group played a series of six songs from their new record, Trouble Will Find Me, as well as taking the time to provide some revealing answers to some penetrating interview questions from Mary Lucia. This artfully restrained version of "Pink Rabbits" is taken from that wonderful session, and finds the band gradually getting lost in the wistful sentiments of the piano-laden, brass-enhanced song.
Blind Boys of Alabama - The Making of I'll Find A Way
The legendary Blind Boys of Alabama went to Justin Vernon's April Base studio to record their new record, I'll Find A Way, and thankfully director Dan Huiting was on hand to capture some of the magic of the sessions. The album, which was produced by Vernon, features contributions from Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs, Patty Griffin, Sam Amidon, Shara Worden, Casey Dienel, as well as Vernon himself. I'll Find A Way is due out on October 1, but to tide fans over, take a look at this behind-the-scenes glimpse into the recording sessions captured artfully by Huiting.
Sombear - "Incredibly Still"
We recently featured Sombear's stirring in-studio performance of "Incredibly Still" from the Current, where Now, Now drummer Bradley Hale debuted the live incarnation of his new electro-pop side project, assisted by Chris Walla. The official video for the intoxicating track has just been released, providing a stylish accompaniment to the song. Sombear has some high-profile live dates set up in support of Dessa throughout the month of September (which sadly doesn't include a local date as of yet). Hale will also be quite busy with his Now, Now crew throughout the fall, as they have a large U.S. tour planned as well.
Aldine - "From A Small Town"
The St. Paul modern folk quartet Aldine have just released a lovely new video for "From A Small Town," which was made by the students of IFP Minnesota's Summer Music Video Youth Camp, with support from Northern Outpost Media. The simple but sentimental video captures the endless possibilities of a summer day and the first blush of a young crush.
Still Pacific - "Speeding To My Death"
The catchy hooks of Still Pacific's "Speeding To My Death" gradually give way to a churning urgency that is perfectly complimented by Rohitash Rao's compelling, striking video treatment. The live clips, which feature figurines standing in for the band themselves, are wonderful, while the rest of the video encompasses love found through tough therapy. While the song itself is quite spirited -- drawn from Still Pacific's excellent recent EP, Cage Heart Hammer -- the clip is simply one of the best music videos to emerge out of the Twin Cities music scene in a while.
Caroline Smith - "Buy Me Something/Child of Moving On/The One Thing (Live on Kare 11)"
As part of their ongoing Music Mondays series, Kare 11 continues to invite great local bands by their studios to showcase their music on air and online. It was just Caroline Smith's turn to win over a bunch of new fans, and she fit right into the TV station's bucolic backyard setting with her overalls, as well as her backing vocalists Lizzo and Hannah von der Hoff and bassist Jesse Schuster. Smith has a record release show for Half About Being A Woman coming up at First Avenue on September 27, and a Kickstarter campaign to help her fund the new album, and the extra attention brought to her music from this Kare 11 performance should ensure that both endeavors are a rousing success.
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