Heartbreaking Bravery

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Big Air – Barking Dogs (Music Video Premiere)

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While the lion’s share of attention for new music video releases will (deservedly) go to Kendrick Lamar’s earth-stopping video for “Alright“, videos worth your attention are still creeping in around the corners. “Alright” will be written about and praised on nearly every major musical platform, which is both a blessing and a curse. It’s artistry is undeniable but it can also make it hard for other worthy new releases to gain even a shred of attention.

One of those new clips that deserves a brighter spotlight comes courtesy of site favorites Big Air, who graciously allowed this site to premiere “Cemetery With A View” back when this place was still in fledgling mode. Now, the recently-relocated band is allowing another premiere, this time for their “Barking Dogs” music video. One of many highlights from the band’s exhilarating debut EP, Buds, the track itself is a succinct demonstration of what Big Air do best: craft hook-heavy basement pop that clothes itself in basement punk trappings.

The video separates itself from other similar clips with one crucial distinction: it was never intended to be the official music video. Created by a group of kids as a part of a summer film camp project, it conveys the group’s passion and enthusiasm for the project with a startling effortlessness. A DIY ethos permeates every facet of the clip, including its central narrative: a group of kids quite literally forming their own band, right down to their duct-taped cardboard instruments. The performances are all committed and the whole thing, understandably, carries a very youthful energy. Escapism is rarely this joyous.

Watch “Barking Dogs” below and keep an eye on this site for more updates on the band and their forthcoming releases.

Vacation – Like Snow (Stream, Live Video)

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Now that the music videos are (very nearly) brought completely up to date, it’s time to turn the attention towards the single streams. Unsurprisingly, considering the length and breadth typically contained in the medium, this has been the most difficult format to corral into upkeep. This week’s already seen the release of YAWN’s characteristically hazy, pysch-tinged “Day Trip“, Air Waves’ compellingly insistent mid-tempo number “Milky Way“, Dirty Ghosts’ delightfully skittish “Cataracts“, and Jesse Payne’s rustic-leaning folk dirge “Ravens“.

While all of those had other platforms for introduction, today’s feature came courtesy of Don Giovanni’s quiet, generous upload of Vacation‘s forthcoming Non-Person to their soundcloud. Having recently seen (and been subsequently blown away by) the band, it’s not surprising that one of the best new songs of their live set would so easily translate into one of the best songs of the year. I have no idea whether or not Vacation intends on releasing “Like Snow” as a single or if they’re planning on relegating it to the confines of the record but it’ll likely flourish either way.

A few lineup changes in (several of which due to the success some of the members had found with their other band, Tweens) and the band’s evolved from a trio to a quartet; they’ve never sounded sharper. Emphasizing the basement pop bent that’s always been at the root of their sound (check the excellent “Party Over” for proof), they’ve managed to refine just about every angle of their attack.

As furious as ever, they’ve found a new nuance with their current iteration; one that sees Jerri Queen stepping out from behind the kit to take over on guitar/vocal duty. Queen proves to be more than capable, producing some of the band’s best work to date. “Like Snow” feels perfectly representative as it careens forward with a white-knuckle intensity after a clean, gentle open.

The now-two guitar attack seems intent on burning everything that surrounds the song while the intro- “I’m always waiting for the day/like snow, I melt away”- gets used as the song’s refrain and injects a heavy dose of dynamics into the proceedings, ensuring a drastic tempo change that lends itself to the vibrancy of both modes. Everything the band tries on “Like Snow” works to perfection and pushes a lot of doors for future prospects wide open in the process. Don’t make the mistake of letting this one pass by unnoticed.

Listen to “Like Snow” below and pre-order Non-Person from Don Giovanni here. Beneath the embed, watch a live clip of the band ripping through the song in Milwaukee, WI.

Gurr – I Don’t Like You (Music Video)

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I’ve been living in Brooklyn for about three weeks now and had to devote most of yesterday to catching the site’s coverage up on the new music that came out in the post-move interim. This post, focusing exclusively on music videos to have surfaced this week, will be the first of three to run today. From that point forward, even with the implications of other obligations, I’ll be doing my best to keep this place as active and up-to-date as possible. So, now that a bunch of likely needless exposition is officially out of the way, let’s get to the clips.

Only two clips have caught my eye so far over the past two days and both kept leapfrogging each other for the distinction of this piece’s focus. While Lithuania‘s music video for “Hardcore Friends” had a lot of things going for it- including, but not limited to, an assist on vocals from Hop Along‘s Frances Quinlan and Field Mouse‘s Rachel Browne- it seemed more appropriate to give the spotlight to Gurr, an extremely promising emerging act who recently released one of 2015’s more exciting EP’s, Furry Dream.

A no-budget affair, the trio gave an insightful run-down of their machinations to The Le Sigh, who premiered the clip earlier today. The collage effect that they utilized suits the band’s more shambolic tendencies and helps the project come off as feeling surprisingly complete. A marriage of contemporary live footage and classic found footage neatly underscores the contrast found in the bright melodies and borderline cruel lyrical narrative. The whole thing’s a delight to take in and winds up as a surprisingly thought-provoking project. Pay close attention and you just might learn something.

Watch “I Don’t Like You” below and order Furry Dream here.