For their new video, “All Your Light (Times Like These)”, Portland’s Portugal. The Man. passed the reigns over to filmmakers Justin Kramer and Lee Hardcastle. The pair created a clever claymation treatment which depicts an epic struggle for survival in a dangerous world of colorful caves and plastic cups. When singer/songwriter John Gourley begins the song with the lyrics, “I’m just a shadow of a bigger man,” the sculpted creatures represent far more than what is really just molded clay. The song is off of this year’s release, In the Mountain. In the Cloud.
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With a new tour about to begin David Bazan fans can get a little taste of the man in action with bassist Andy Fitts and drummer Alex Westcoat via a new Daytrotter session (Bazan’s third) and an appearance on the venerable Austin City Limits. The Daytrotter session finds the band running through three tracks—“Eating Paper”, “Level With Yourself” and “Virginia” with an intensity that bodes well for the group’s upcoming performances.
With this year’s Strange Negotiations continuing to garner the onetime Pedro The Lion man critical acclaim, the road seems the perfect place for Bazan to connect with fans, which he will be doing straight through the middle of December, starting in Spokane, Washington and ending in Eugene, Oregon. Although those bookends might make it seem as though Bazan isn’t really traveling all that far, the tour winds through the middle of the country, to the south and southwest before he brings it all back home.
Guitarist extraordinaire Keb Mo has made a bit of a shift in his career of late, taking up residence in Nashville and becoming celebrated on the Americana circuit. It’s truly a good home for him and offers up a wealth of new musical possibilities to the Compton born musician, steeped in the traditions of the Delta Blues. His recent performance at the Americana Music Festival brought the house down and was a breath of fresh air, breathing some blues grooves into the Americana mix. What Mo is up to at the moment is putting out a brand new Christmas record as a digital EP. We Call It Christmas is available now on iTunes and we’re pleased to present the online premiere of the title tune “We Call It Christmas” today to get you in the early holiday spirit.
Remember that Spike Jonze-helmed video for Wax’s California with the guy on fire? It’s like that, but with zombies. And the music’s as slow as the pan too. And prettier.
With a new album dropping in November, Minneapolis rap stalwarts Doomtree have unleashed the single “The Grand Experiment”. This first taste of the upcoming long player No Kings follows relatively hot on the heels of the group’s Wugazi release and sets the tone for what will surely be an autumn filled with Doomtree activity. All of it is a celebration of sorts of the group’s first decade as a collective.
If the message behind the new release is a bit confusing-a call for both rebellion and respect(?) while “[obeying] no kings” and “seeking no thrones”, then at the very least the music is straightforward and filled with standard Doomtree touches. Other titles from No Kings include “Punch-Out”, “Little Mercy”, and what may or may not be an ode to the fashion industry, “Bolt Cutter”.
Best of all, this was all meant to be played loud.
// Notes from the Road
"Saul Williams played a free, powerful Summerstage show ahead of his appearance at Afropunk this weekend.READ the article