Heartbreaking Bravery

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Tag: Alexis Taylor

Doe – Last Ditch (Music Video)

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It’s been a solid week for music videos, a fact evidenced by strong clips from Alexis Taylor, DaughterPleistoceneFrankie Cosmos, The Medicine Hat, Teenage FanclubThe Channels, Okkervil River, Lisa Prank, Clipping., Busman’s HolidayThe Holy Circle, Daniel Woolhouse, Health&BeautyLuke Roberts, Opposite Sex, VATS, Slingshot DakotaAtoms and Void, Psychic Ills, Nice As FuckHead Wound City, Ziemba, Ryley Walker, and Jaala. Rounding things out with yet another highlight were site favorites Doe, thanks to their mesmerizing clip for Some Things Last Longer Than You highlight “Last Ditch”.

Some Things Last Longer Than You, Doe’s forthcoming full-length debut, will confidently stand as one of the year’s most solid records several months down the line. It’s a forceful beast that’s teeming with grit, determination, and conviction. Every song on the record feels like the band’s intent on throwing a knockout punch at any turn. These qualities, while characteristic of the entire record, hold especially true for “Last Ditch”.

A towering anthem of pent-up frustration, the prospect of a visual narrative to accompany the song left a lot of potential doors open. What the band opts for continues their subversive streak and demonstrates their understanding of just how effective that trait can be in the right hands. Instead of playing  into the song’s emphatic anger, the trio scales things way back in favor of a slice-of-life presentation that balances “Last Ditch” out beautifully.

Using overlays to the point of near exclusivity, “Last Ditch” gets to create an immersive world that makes peace with the mundane routines that comprise the majority of life. It’s deceptively simple and remarkably beautiful in its tacit tribute to uncompromising realism. The faded, low-saturation visual presentation also tinges the clip with a longing and nostalgia that suit “Last Ditch” to a quiet perfection. In all, “Last Ditch” is just another winsome notch in what should prove to be a monumental year for Doe, who will deserve every last good thing that comes their way.

Watch “Last Ditch” below and pre-order Some Things Last Longer Than You from Old Flame here (if you’re in the US) and from Specialist Subject here (if you’re in the UK).

Alexis Taylor – I’m Ready (Stream)

AlexisTaylor

Editor’s Note: There’s been a month-long gap in coverage, thanks to near-incessant travel and other extenuating circumstances. The following run of posts that contain this note will be posts that should have appeared sometime within the past several weeks. Use these posts as an opportunity to catch up to the present release cycle or to simply discover some new music. Either way, enjoy.

Hot Chip‘s excellent The Warning can rightfully be regarded as a classic record of a certain age and, at some point, it may even be viewed as definitive. A large part of its success can be directly attributed to principal songwriter Alexis Taylor, who maintained a strong grasp on a project that’s ideas frequently came across as boundless. The warmth that Hot Chip exuded was often slightly undercut by his penchant for the bittersweet but that still doesn’t make the reveal of  the devastating “I’m Ready” any less jarring.

Taylor’s newest project, and the first under his own name, is a solo piano venture that trims out any excess in favor of an intimacy that’s startlingly direct. Taylor opens the track with a wistful line that registers as more of a question than a statement, wavering in a relative uncertainty: “Don’t you know I’m ready?” As the song progresses, Taylor builds up a heartbreaking case for self-worth as an air of ambiguity increasingly deflates any projected confidence.

No track in 2016 has stopped me cold and stolen my breath faster than “I’m Ready”, which somehow manages to incorporate silence as an effective instrument (even when it draws to an unceremonious close, the noises of everyday life seem like an integral part of Taylor’s statement). There’s beauty to be found in all of the cracks and bruises that life administers in varying portions and “I’m Ready” combines them all into something heartrending and poignant. Simply put, “I’m Ready” is unforgettable.

Listen to “I’m Ready” below and pre-order Piano here.