Tag: Lucius

New Video: The Trippy Psychedelia Meets New Age Visuals for Jonathan Wilson’s Lush New Single “Over The Midnight”

Jonathan Wilson is a Los Angeles, CA-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer, who has collaborated with the likes of Father John Misty, Lucius, Karen Elson and Conor Oberst, contributed guitar and vocals as a member of the backing and touring bands for Roger Waters’ Grammy nominated Is This The Life We Really Want?, and throughout that same period, the highly sought after Wilson has released two albums which have garnered comparisons to the Laurel Canyon troubadours of the 1960s and 1970s — in particular Crosby, Stills and Nash, Neil Young, Dennis Wilson, Tom Petty and others; however, Wilson’s third and forthcoming album, Rare Birds, which is slated for a March 2, 2018 release through renowned indie label Bella Union Records is reportedly one of the singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer’s most ambitious and downright “maximalist” works to date featuring contributions from collaborators Father John Misty and Lucius, as well as Lana Del Rey and New Age musician Laraaji.

While much of the album’s material thematically and lyrically find Wilson meditating on a failed relationship and its aftermath, he has insisted in press notes that it’s not meant to specifically be a concept album. “It’s meant more as a healing affair, a rejuvenation, a reconciliation, for others, and for me. I wanted to balance personal narrative with the need I feel for calming, healing music. I think we need journeys in sound, psychedelic gossamer-winged music, to incite hope, positivity, longing, reckless abandon and regret. It’s all in there.” And interestingly enough, the album’s first single “Over The Midnight” finds Wilson pairing British, early 80s synth pop with layered instrumentation that may bring to mind Peter Gabriel 3, Security and So-era Peter Gabriel, Kate Bush and Tears for Fears but while nodding at the lush psych pop of contemporaries like Tame Impala — but with a swooning romanticism; after all, the song is about a sacred and profoundly safe space where lovers could exist while escaping a world on the verge of collapse.

Directed by Andrea Nakhla and featuring animation by Clara Luzian, the recently released video for “Over The Midnight” draws from New Age concepts of consciousness and awareness of one’s connectedness to the larger universe around them and to others.

 

New Video: JOVM Mainstays Pavo Pavo Return with Hazy and Dreamy Visuals for “No Mind”

If you’ve been frequenting this site over the past 12-18 months or so, you’ve likely come across a handful of posts featuring the Brooklyn-based experimental pop/psych pop act  Pavo Pavo. Deriving their name from the name of southern constellation Pavo, which is Latin for peacock, the members of the band Eliza Bagg (violin, synths, vocals), Oliver Hill (guitar, synths and vocals). Nolan Green (guitar, vocals), Austin Vaughn (drums) and Ian Romer (bass) can trace its origins to when the members of the quintet were studying at Yale University. And since their formation, individual members of the band  have collaborated with the likes of a number of renowned and accomplished bands including Here We Go Magic, John Zorn, Dave Longstreth, Porches, Olga Bell, Lucius, Roomful of Teeth and San Fermin among others. Now, as you may recall their “Ran Ran Run”/”Annie Hall” 7 inch was praised by a number of media outlets and blogs, including Stereogum, who praised their sound as being “weightless pop music that sounds like it was beamed down from a glimmering utopian future.” Although, I’d mention that while clearly nodding at 60s psych pop and 80s New Age, just underneath the glimmering surface, there’s a subtle hint at unease, anxiety, rot and dysfunction. 
The band’s full-length debut Young Narrator in the Breakers was released last year through Bella Union Records and according to the members of Pavo Pavo, the material thematically describes both the magic and panic of adult life, with the understanding that much like getting caught in a vicious breaker while swimming at the beach, you have to stop fighting and ride it out until you can get to shore safely. And unsurprisingly, the album was met with critical applause with Pitchfork describing the album as “a lovelorn alien reaching out from the farthest reaches of the galaxy” and The Guardian describing the album to “Brian Wilson running amok in the BBC radiophonic workshop.” 

“No Mind,” Young Narrator in the Breakers’ latest single is a deceptively straightforward track. Although it hews very close to hazy 60s psych pop, the song is a swooningly wistful and lovelorn song that seems much more bittersweet than their previous releases while retaining their incredibly crafted sound centered on Bagg’s and Hill’s gorgeous boy/girl harmonizing, soaring, vintage analog synths and sharp hooks. “No Mind” may arguably be the most human of their tracks, as there’s a real ache over 

Directed by the band’s longtime friend Jon Appel, the video started as a concept devised by the band’s Eliza Bagg. Bagg’s concept began as a take on the prototypical performance-based music video; but featuring an abstract narrative and dance choreography. Reportedly, she pictured a bleak, digital space with her own character being a sort of rebellious siren of truth, dancing and singing songs of real connection while the rest of her band grew increasingly complacent and robotic within the video’s highly artificial and colorful confines. Appel guided Bagg and her bandmates through the process of adapting and bringing her ideas to life — and as a result, the video builds off the characters of the other videos off Young Narrator, an amalgamation with Bagg returning to the sunshine on a white cloud chrysalis. And while being a hazy, almost lysergic-tinged dream, the video possesses a tender and surreal beauty. 

Dan Molad is a Los Angeles, CA-based singer/songwriter, multi-intsrumentalist and producer, who’s best known as the long-time drummer and producer for blogosphere darling act Lucius and for his production work with San Fermin, Luke Temple, JD McPherson, Here We Go MagicPavo Pavo and others. And with his solo recording project, CHIMNEY Molad not only steps out from behind the dials and the drum kit as a singer/songwriter of his own right, but with his self-recorded, self-produced, self-titled full-length debut effort, Molad will further cement his growing reputation for crafting material that possesses dreamy yet hauntingly gorgeous melodies with subtly dark and unsettling undertones as you would have heard on his full-length debut’s first single “Walk Don’t Run,” a single that’s mainly about searching for a muse and endlessly chasing after some ultimate pay-off that you may never actually see, the song also is serves as a reminder that sometimes it’s necessary to stop, smell the roses and not take yourself too seriously.

Unsurprisingly, “Walk Don’t Run” much like the rest of the album’s material draws from sobering, personal experiences — Molad’s relocation from New York to Los Angeles, relationship strife and the death of his dear friend, Parks And Recreation writer Harris Wittels; however, considering that the bulk of the material deals with profound, life changing experiences, Molad at points reveals a playful and witty sense of humor, as you’ll hear on his latest single “Copicat,” a track inspired by the discovery of an old, unused Copicat brand tape echo machine in a friend’s studio. Initially written as a playful and nonsensical track, the song is both an ode to the art of recording that nods at 60s bubblegum pop, surfer rock and psych rock and an extension of the album’s overall theme — being vulnerable. As Molad explains “When you open up the vinyl packaging, you undress me and pull out my insides (the LP).” And while being playful, the song expresses a sincere sense of wonder and awe and reveals some of Molad’s most ambitious and adventurous songwriting to date.

 

 

 

Live Footage: Pavo Pavo and Friends Pay Tribute to Manhattan Inn with a cover of George Harrison’s “Wah Wah”

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site over the past year or so, you’ve come across a handful of posts featuring the Brooklyn-based experimental/psych pop act Pavo Pavo. Deriving their name from the name of the southern constellation Pavo — Latin for peacock —the members of the band Eliza Bagg (violin, synths, vocals), Oliver Hill (guitar, synths and vocals). Nolan Green (guitar, vocals), Austin Vaughn (drums) and Ian Romer (bass) can trace its origins to when the members of the quintet were studying while at Yale University, and since then individual members have collaborated with the likes of Here We Go Magic, John Zorn, Dave Longstreth, Porches, Olga Bell, Lucius, Roomful of Teeth and San Fermin among others. Adding to a growing profile, their “Ran Ran Run”/”Annie Hall” 7 inch was praised by a number of media outlets and blogs, including Stereogum as being “weightless pop music that sounds like it was beamed down from a glimmering utopian future.” And while nodding at 60s psych pop and 80s New Age, just underneath the glimmering surface there’s a hint at unease, anxiety, rot and dysfunction.

Released during the last few months of 2016, the band’s highly-anticipated full-length debut Young Narrator in the Breakers was released to critical praise across the blogosphere for material that thematically speaking — according to the members of the band — described both magic and panic of adult life. Conveying the understanding that much like getting caught in a vicious breaker, the swimmer has to stop swimming and fighting against the tide; that on a certain level, they have to go along and ride it out while sonically speaking album singles like “Ruby (Let’s Buy The Bike),” “Ran Ran Run” and “Annie Hall,” real a band that specializes in dreamy, minimalist and escapist synth-based pop that manages to be simultaneously retro-futuristic and utopian; but just under the surface, there’s a sense of anxiety and rot.

Interestingly, when the members of Pavo Pavo — which also includes members of the Swimmers art collective — heard that the renowned Greenpoint, Brooklyn venue Manhattan Inn was closing, they all decide that they should call up a bunch of musician friends and film a video at the last minute to commemorate and celebrate the space, as the space had a special connection for the band and for countless numbers of musicians across Brooklyn. As the band said to the folks at Brooklyn Vegan “Manhattan Inn was a rare place, a place where bands felt free to step out of their routine of Playing-The-Set-In-Rock-Clubs.” The members of the band went on to describe seeing some incredible, once in a lifetime/only in New York live music; but more important, that the venue was where they played their first New York area live show, where they met their manager, where they played an impromptu night of Bowie covers, upon learning of his death — and where they collaborated with a ton of musicians across Brooklyn. They go on to explain that All Things Must Pass is one of their favorite albums and that “Wah Wah” seems to suit the collective, experimental and joyous atmosphere of Manhattan Inn.

The end result was 24 musicians, including members of Lucius, Delicate Steve, San Fermin, Alpenglow, Uni Ika Ai, Wilder Maker, Antibalas, Underground System and others performing a straightforward yet gorgeous cover of George Harrison’s “Wah Wah,” off his critically and commercially successful All Things Must Pass.

New Video: Jessica Martins’ Slow-Burning David Lynch-Inspired Tribute to David Bowie

Today is a very sad day for music fans across the world — and especially for devout David Bowie fans like myself, as today is the anniversary of Bowie’s death. And interestingly enough, along with the countless tributes to commemorate the occasion, renowned multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Jessica Martins, best known as a member of Via Audio, Modest Midas and LAND ART and who has collaborated with Spoon’s Jim Eno and Lucius’ Dan Molde released a sultry, silky smooth yet atmospheric, David Lynch meets classic pop standard cover of David Bowie’s “Man Who Sold The World,” the features the backing vocals, mournful saxophone line of producer Matthew Silberman, credited as DeSoto, who is as equally acclaimed, as he has worked with Bilal, Miguel and System of a Down’s Daron Malakian among others. Drummer and percussionist Tommy Rose, who has worked with Crash Kings, Robert Schwartzman and Rooney, Brian Bell, Trevor Hall and Jon Bryant contributes percussion.

Directed and edited by Jessica Martins, the recently released music video owes a visual debt to David Lynch and film noir while being a gorgeous and moody tribute to someone, who has influenced so many musically and personally.

New Video: New JOVM Mainstays Pavo Pavo Release a Surreal and Old-Timey Video for “Ruby (Let’s Buy the Bike)”

Now, as you may recall the band’s highly-anticipated full-length debut, Young Narrator in the Breakers was released last month through Bella Union Records and thematically, the material according to the members of the band describes both the magic and panic of adult life — with the understanding that much like a getting caught in a vicious breaker, you have to stop fighting and ride it out until you can get to shore safely. Interestingly, the album’s latest single “Ruby (Let’s Buy The Bike)” consists of gorgeous falsetto boy/girl harmonies, a strummed and slightly ragged guitar-led melody, off-kilter percussion and soaring synths. And the result is a gorgeous and trippy acceptance of time’s passing and a swooning love song to a beautiful motorcycle named Ruby. Part of the song involves the hopes and plans the narrator has for the bike; some of which picturing himself riding around on the badass bike, potentially getting into a gruesome accident and dying — but saying “man, for the bike, it was fucking worth it.”

The video was shot, directed, produced and edited by the members of the band and as the band’s Oliver Hill explains in press notes about the video “Pavo Pavo’s Oliver Hill talks about the video, saying “There’s a great Kenneth Anger documentary about a biker gang called Scorpio Rising that peers into all the death-obsessed symbology in these gangs, and the whole bizarre environment piqued my interest. For the video we went up to Pleasantville, NY, which is both me and Ian [Romer]’s hometown, and tried to make something that captured that special type of suburban-high-school boredom where groups of friends rove around and try to find little adventures – a sort of reimagined biker gang. We directed it ourselves and shot it on Super 8, which has such a beautiful and cool character – so in a way the whole enterprise was a bit like a group of high school friends, making something on a spare Saturday.”

Live Footage: Joseph Performs “White Flag” on Later . . . with Jools Holland

Writing and recording material comprised of elements of old-school county, singer/songwriter pop and contemporary pop, the Closners have received both national and international attention for crafting soaring and anthemic hooks and for gorgeous three part harmonies reminiscent of Crosby, Stills and Nash, The Mamas and the Papas, Pearl and the Beard, Lucius, and others. Now, if you had been frequenting this site earlier this year, you may recall that I wrote about “White Flag,” the first single off the trio’s full-length debut I’m Alone, No You’re Not. The recorded version paired the Closner’s gorgeous three-part harmonies around a slick and ambient production consisting of swirling electronics, handclap-led percussion, folk and country-like guitar chords, and a cathartic, anthemic hook which gave the song’s positive message — that giving up on your dreams and desires should never, ever be an option — a rousing, larger-than-life, urgency.

Earlier this month the Closners were on Later . . . with Jools Holland where they performed an acoustic version of “White Flag” in which they accompany their gorgeous vocals with guitar. Without the slick production, there’s a greater focus on the song’s lyrics, the Closner’s gorgeous harmonies — and while stripped down, the song still packs an enormous emotional punch.

If you’ve been frequenting this site over the past year or so, you’ve come across a handful of posts featuring the Brooklyn-based experimental/psych pop act Pavo Pavo. Deriving their name from the name of the southern constellation Pavo — Latin for peacock —the members of the band Eliza Bagg (violin, synths, vocals), Oliver Hill (guitar, synths and vocals). Nolan Green (guitar, vocals), Austin Vaughn (drums) and Ian Romer (bass) can trace its origins to when the members of the quintet were studying while at Yale University, and since then individual members have collaborated with the likes of Here We Go MagicJohn Zorn, Dave LongstrethPorchesOlga BellLuciusRoomful of Teeth and San Fermin among others.  Adding to a growing profile, their “Ran Ran Run”/”Annie Hall” 7 inch was praised by a number of media outlets and blogs, including  Stereogum as being “weightless pop music that sounds like it was beamed down from a glimmering utopian future.” And while nodding at 60s psych pop and 80s New Age, just underneath the glimmering surface there’s a hint at unease, anxiety, rot and dysfunction.

Now, as you may recall the band’s highly-anticipated full-length debut, Young Narrator in the Breakers is slated for a November 11, 2016 release through Bella Union Records and thematically, the material according to the members of the band describes both the magic and panic of adult life — with the understanding that much like a getting caught in a vicious breaker, you have to stop fighting and ride it out until you can get to shore safely. Interestingly, the album’s latest single “Ruby (Let’s Buy The Bike)” consists of gorgeous falsetto boy/girl harmonies, a strummed and slightly ragged guitar-led melody, off-kilter percussion and soaring synths, and the result is a gorgeous and trippy acceptance of time’s passing and a swooning love song to a beautiful motorcycle named Ruby that the song’s narrator stumbled on to at a bike show. Part of the song involves the hopes and plans the narrator has for the bike; some of which picturing himself riding around on the badass bike, potentially getting into a gruesome accident and dying — but saying “man, for the bike, it was fucking worth it.”

 

New Video: The Gorgeous and Surreal Visuals and Sounds of Pavo Pavo’s “Ran Ran Run”

If you have been frequenting this site, you may have come across a couple of posts about the band when they released their “Ran Ran Run”/”Annie Hall” 7 inch, an effort that was also praised by the folks at Stereogum as “weightless pop music that sounds like it was beamed down from a glimmering utopian future,” while nodding at the psych pop sounds of the mid 60s; but just underneath the gleaming surface, there’s a bit of unease, anxiety and rot. In my mind, the song strikes me as a feverish yet whimsical dream of simmering synths and ethereal harmonies that skip about the song’s instrumentation like a pebble being tossed across a placid lake.

The band’s long-awaited full-length debut Young Narrator in the Breakers is slated for a November 11, 2016 through Bella Union Records and to celebrate the album’s upcoming release, the band released a gorgeous and artful music video for the album’s first single “Ran Ran Run.” Directed by artist collective SWIMMERS, the video features the bandmembers in a series of surreally staged scenarios that emphasize the song’s ethereal and surreal nature. As the band’s Eliza Bagg explains of the song and the video, “‘Ran Ran Run’ is a song about the joys and sorrows of growing up, the awareness of impermanence and change — ‘time is a hole in my waterbed!’ In the video we pass through some kind of portal into a completely manufactured reality — a space that is intense but also playful, full of stark contrasts and extremes (of color, texture, mood). We’re somewhere between children and adults, literally dressing up, playing, play-acting, trying on the guises of who we might be. Actually a theme throughout this record is that the whole prospect of becoming an adult involves a little bit of fantasy — reaching for a possible world or possible self, and aiming for magic, for something over the top, fantastical.”

New Video: The Gorgeously Cinematic and Symbolic Video for Joseph’s “White Flag”

Now, as you may remember “White Flag” is the first single off the trio’s forthcoming full-length debut I’m Alone, No You’re Not, which is slated for an August 26, 2016 release. And as you’ll hear the song pairs an ambient and gently undulating production consisting of swirling and ambient electronics, handclap-led percussion and folky guitar chords, a rousingly cathartic and anthemic hook and the Closner Sisters’ gorgeous vocals in a song that sonically reminds me of Pearl and the Beard and Lucius, complete with the same earnest urgency. While lyrically, the song possesses a powerfully positive message — that despite what everyone around you may tell you about your dreams and desires that you should never give up if it’s what you desperately feel that it’s what you must be doing.

The recently released music video for the song is a gorgeously cinematic video that features the Closner sisters in what appears to be the Oregon woods, building a bonfire to set a white flag on fire — and as a result the video manages to be both literal and symbolic.