Glasgow’s Popup are a new addition to Conor Oberst’s Team Love Records. Sounding like the result of a drunken bathroom hookup between Arab Strap and the Pixies, Popup have made the best song about Siamese Twins in love you’re likely to hear this week. Not to overstate things. But, as LeVar Burton might say, don’t take our word for it. Check out their brand spankin’ new video for “Love Triangle”.
Synecdoche, New York was PopMatters’ #3 film of 2008. Erik Hinton called it “brilliant and insane film at its best.” Chris Barsanti piled on the praise in an October “Screener” column: “Charlie Kaufman comes closer to creating a kind of cinematic magic realism than any American director has done in living memory. And it’s only his first film.” So, needless to say, we’re looking forward to the DVD release on March 10th.
I’ve lately been digging the drone-infused mesmerisms of Tinariwen, a collective whose members are drawn from the Tuareg people. The music, if you’re not already familiar with it, has a hallucinatory power, linked like second cousins to certain kinds of American blues, but still very strange and transporting.
The Tuaregs are a nomadic people, who lately have been drawn into conflicts all over North Africa. The members of Tinariwen, for instance, met when conscripted into Khaddafi’s army in Libya.
Terakaft takes two of its members from Tinariwen, guitarist Kedou ag Ossad and bass and guitar player Liya Ag Ablil, and adds two others Rhissa Ag Ogham and Sanou Ag Ahmed, both from Libya. They have a new-ish album out on World Village called Akh Issudar…and this wonderful video, shot at the Festival in the Desert in 2007.
Elizabeth Willis is a classically trained violinist and pianist who began playing at the age of four. Yet, she left that behind to focus on pop music composition. Given her classical background, it’s not surprising that Willis sought vocal instruction when she realized she’d need to sing her songs. Lead single “One” from her self-titled album drew praise from Ludacris after he discovered the tune on his WeMix.com web site. “One” is a beautifully constructed song with rich strings, moody piano and a rather melancholoy atmosphere. Willis credits Russian music as a major influence and one can hear those minor chord shadings and Slavic moodiness being a prime driver of “One”.
Marissa Nadler’s “River of Dirt” is a haunting, melancholy tune from her upcoming Kemado release Little Hells (March 3). The video for the song was directed by Joana Linda and evokes the feelings of loneliness and homesickness in the lyrics via scenes of wide open spaces and pensive expressions.