Wednesday 27 November 2013

Video Vacuum - Angel Olsen, Tropical Strength, Gentlemen, The Entrance Band

Final week of work for the year; Australia wins the first Ashes Test - it's a pretty good place to be for me right now. I still have a mountain of work to get through though, and hence the procrastination. So - let's have at the vids!

Angel Olsen is a beguiling chanteuse. Firstly due to her musical endeavours up til now have involved skeletal, atmospheric, cavernous folk, all shadows, smoke and mirrors. Secondly because the first cut from her upcoming album is the complete opposite of that. 'Forgiven/Forgotten' is two minutes of chugging rock, Olsen's vocals strong and bold, the video a frenetic edit of car window views. It's not a total backflip - the 'Sweet Dreams' single from earlier this year was a haunting number with a more prevalent guitar, but Olsen is more operatic there - it feels particular and staged. It's light years away. It's bizarre, because I love Olsen's old stuff (especially her album on Bathetic Records, Half Way Home) - and yet I love this track. Guess I just love Angel Olsen. The new album Burn Your Fire For No Witness will be out early next year on Jagjaguwar and Dead Oceans - can't wait.

Here's some Aussie dudes making a lysergic number with birds chirping in the background, a mega-slowed down video of a guy falling into a wake pool by the sea and ink dispelling into water. It reminds me a bit of Snowman at their lightest at the beginning, then becomes spun out wasteland of nude swimming and barbecues. Tropical Strength is their name (you know, after the insect repellent?) and 'Wake In Fright' is the song's name (you know, like the gritty outback existential nightmare novel written by Kenneth Cook, or the film directed by a young Bruce Beresford?). It's all weird - and fucking amazing. I really need to see this band, stat.

London band Gentlemen aren't usually my kind of band. 'Late Nacht' is an OK song too, don't get me wrong. But it's this film clip that gets me listening to the song over and over. The screaming and feverish drumming? Then the slip into a hypercoloured set of landscapes? It's pretty genius in my opinion. Bashing skin as catharsis. True that.

Spider from Paz Lenchantin on Vimeo.

Now I'm probably being blasphemous here, but I knew very little about Los Angeles' The Entrance Band before I saw this clip for 'Spider' - and I still know very little. All I know is that this song is a pretty good slice spaced-out and decadent garage pop, and the film clip - all arthouse surrealist noir, arachnid nightmares, Bunuel masturbation - is even better. I'm keen to check out their new album Face The Sun, if that's any consolation.


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