Music is inherently political.
Some folks like to use music as an escape from political tensions, but ultimately people are political, and their leanings bleed into their art. People who crave distance between art and politics are asking for an essential human element to be removed.
We live in a politically charged world. As we’re faced with Trump’s “national emergency,” the onus is on the public, more than ever, to engage politically in every action, and that extends to the music we listen to.
Vicky Emerson – “The Reckoning”
Vicky Emerson’s fourth album, Steady Heart, was inspired in part by the rising #MeToo movement. The whole record is unflagging and ferocious, but its most triumphant moment comes on the country revenge song “The Reckoning.” In the newly released video for the song, Emerson stands with fellow singer-songwriters Annie Fitzgerald, Jillian Rae, and Sarah Morris to defy the men who’ve dared stand in their way in the past. Their resilience is then brought to life by choreographers Heather Corndorf and Katie Cannon and their united front of 12 female dancers. Jeremy Krzmarzick directs.
Porky’s Groove Machine – “Double Dip” (PREMIERE)
Yeah, OK, you’re not supposed to dip an already-bitten chip into the queso, but sometimes you’re having so much fun you just forget all the rules. Fun-loving funk band Porky’s Groove Machine want to let you know that their parties are safe spaces for such behavior. Their new video for “Double Dip” turns the party faux pas into a veritable dance craze. “Double Dip” is the opening track off Hello, My Name Is, the new record from Porky’s, due out March 22.
Charlie McCarron – “Language Breakdown”
Relationships feel like magic when they start. But when they end, it feels like torture. In the video for Minnesota composer Charlie McCarron’s new song “Language Breakdown,” director Vanessa M.H. Powers exhibits this sad but universal trajectory through a two-person dance performed by Kara Grangaard and Anthony Tallarico. As McCarron anguishes over his own romantic fallout, the two dancer/actors play out an achingly familiar story of two lovers who simply cannot recapture the bliss of their first meeting. Major kudos to Anne Elizabeth Brown for choreographing such a compelling performance.
Telamones – “Fitz”
Who needs a budget when you have a meaty riff and a minivan? When prog rockers Telamones and director Christian Spraungel filmed the video for new single “Fitz,” they didn’t have a camera rental budget or a special effects designer. But they had a snarling song and enough Adobe knowhow to make something that’d do the trick. “Fitz” proves that all you need are some Halloween lights and a diffraction effect, and you can make any garage-born rock band look like a headlining act.
Breanne Marie & the Front Porch Sinners – “Salt in the Snow”
Like all good Minnesota conversations, we eventually work our way around to the weather. This time, it's Breanne Marie & the Front Porch Sinners broaching the subject to say that even the most pure-looking scenes can carry a streak of darkness. “Salt in the Snow” was recorded in Nashville, but Marie and director Kevin Jacobsen took to Ely’s Peak and Clyde Iron in Duluth to film the wintry video. You can really feel the betrayal as Marie tours the barren landscape singing about the man who done her wrong. See her live on February 22 at the Republic Stage at MSP Airport.
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