inspiration & weekend

Playlist 10.07.16 : Five Songs for the Weekend

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Playlist 10.07.16 : Five Songs for the Weekend
Playlist 10.07.16 : Five Songs for the Weekend
Playlist 10.07.16 : Five Songs for the Weekend

Blood Orange – Augustine

Dev Hynes directed and edited the clip, which captures the singer/songwriter playing instruments in an empty apartment and an assortment of dancers showcasing their moves on rooftops. Hynes also appears in front of the flag of Sierra Leone, which is painted on a wall. The album borrows its name from Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone where Hynes’ father was born.

Though the LP was originally slated to arrive July 1st, Hynes announced its early release Monday night on Twitter. “SURPRISE!” he wrote. “My new album Freetown Sound is OUT NOW across all formats.” He also added a note about his collaborators: “feat Ava Raiin, EmpressOf, Debbie Harry, Bea1991, Starchild, Ian Isiah, Nelly Furtado, Ta-Nehisi C, Kelsey Lu, Carly Rae Jepsen, Zuri Marley.”

Read the rest of this article at RollingStone

Iggy Pop – Sunday

Iggy Pop and Josh Homme capture the grittiness of their respective home regions on “Sunday,” the rollicking third single from Pop’s Post Pop Depression

Andreas Neumann directed the video that’s shot in a muggy landscape of tropical Miami — where Pop now resides — and the harsh sprawl of Joshua Tree, where Homme was born and where Post Pop was recorded at Rancho De La Luna studio. The video peppers in early footage of band rehearsals as well as their first public performance at the Teragram Ballroom in Los Angeles in the video.

Pop released Post Pop Depression in March via Loma Vista. Along with Homme, his backing band includes Dead Weather and Queens of the Stone Age guitarist Dean Fertita, and Arctic Monkeys drummer Matt Helders.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, Pop spoke about the origins of “Sunday,” which began as a musing on “the isolation of the new economy,” until Homme offered a suggestion. “Josh said, ‘We’re writing about Iggy Pop, the working man’s musician. When he gets to Sunday, he’s black, blue and tired.’ He’d say something I could gnaw on. Then I had to figure out how to make it fit me.”

Read the rest of this article at RollingStone

Francis and the Lights – Friends ft. Bon Iver and Kanye West

Theatrical New York falsetto howler Francis Farewell Starlite, who records as Francis And The Lights, has built up some serious respect among his peers over the past few years, and he must’ve called in every favor imaginable to make his glimmering new track “Friends.” The song has vocals from both Bon Iver, who sounds a whole lot like Francis, and from a non-rapping Kanye West. And the song has writing and production assists from Rostam Bantmanglij, Ariel Rechtshaid, Benny Blanco, and Cashmere Cat. Regular Francis collaborator Jake Schreier directed the video, which is made to look like one continuous camera shot. It stars Francis, Justin Vernon, and Kanye West, all on a blank soundstage, and it has Francis and Vernon doing some beautifully weird choreographed dancing.

Read the rest of this article at Stereogum

Aphex Twin – CIRKLON3 [ Колхозная mix ]

It’s been 17 years since Aphex Twin has released a music video and about a year since he’s released new music. He’s emerged from his cave with a “CIRKLON3 [ Колхозная mix ],” complete with a music video from an Irish 12-year-old named Ryan Wyer, who’s been crafting wonderfully weird and homemade Aphex Twin music videos for two years.

“CIRKLON3 [ Колхозная mix ]” is classic Aphex, a snarky and beautiful electronic meditation built from vintage sounds. It’s buoyant, bubbly, and fluid, with repetitions that recall arcade games, side-scrolling, and all the fun of being young somehow. It isn’t always apparent when listening to Aphex Twin, but deep inside the postmodern ennui and irony of his music, there is an eternally youthful feeling, or at least one that is naughty and childish.

Wyer’s video depicts grainy images of preteens in Aphex Twin T-shirts dancing in different locales, and Richard D. James’ famous smug grin replacing their own faces. It’s unsettling and hilarious. Wyer’s videos speak to a whimsical avant-garde art-making that only children are capable of, and this quality elevates the song in such a powerful way. It’s cool, to say the least, that in a song that is already so young in sound, Aphex Twin embraces another generation, handing them the camera to tell the story.

Read the rest of this article at Pitchfork

Clams Casino – Ghost in a Kiss ft. Samuel T. Herring

Producer Clams Casino is steadily gearing up for the release of his new album 32 Levels, and today brings a new song and video, “Ghost in a Kiss,” a collaboration with throaty Future Islands frontman Samuel T. Herring. The track is characteristically moody, with a piano-driven introduction and a gloss of synthetic woodwinds. The cinematic visual is directed by Grant Singer (who’s also helmed videos for the Weeknd and Sky Ferreira, among others) and star Herring as a lonely pencil-pusher split between his reality and his memories.

We’ve already heard Clams’ solo track “Blast”; “A Breath Away,” featuring Kelela; “All Nite,” featuring Vince Staples; and “Witness,” featuring Lil B. There’s no weak track in the bunch, and with the addition of “Ghost in a Kiss,” it seems safe to say that 32 Levels is looking solid. The LP is out next Friday, July 15.

Read the rest of this article at Spin

News

Considering Creativity and Addiction in The Life and Times of DJ AM

Of late, there’s been no shortage of documentaries about brilliant, troubled musicians whose lives (and deaths) seem to follow an uncomfortably familiar path. Asif Kapadia’s Oscar-winning 2015 movie Amy pieced together a heart-rending account of Amy Winehouse’s rise and fall from a remarkable trove of personal footage provided by the singer’s friends and family. That same year, Brett Morgen’s Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck traced the Nirvana frontman’s path from a cherubic toddler to a stringy-haired, strung-out icon of angst. By juxtaposing musicians’ unhappy childhoods and self-destructive tendencies with their fierce musical genius, both films seem dubious about whether exceptional creativity and personal contentment can co-exist.

As I Am: The Life and Times of DJ AM ticks many of the same boxes as Amy and Montage of Heck (childhood trauma, addiction, tremendous musical dexterity), but somehow has a better grasp of its subject’s humanity than so many movies that have come before. Perhaps that’s because there’s less mythology to filter out: In 2009, the year he was found dead in his New York City apartment after overdosing on crack cocaine and prescription drugs, Adam Goldstein (a.k.a. DJ AM) was one of the most famous DJs in the world, but he wasn’t quite a household name in the manner of Winehouse or Cobain. So what resonates the most throughout the documentary is the way it captures Goldstein as simply a beautiful soul. DJ AM, As I Am argues, was someone whose sobriety actually coincided with his success, whose influence still pervades contemporary music, and whose untimely death was all the more shocking for not seeming inevitable.

Read the rest of the story at The Atlantic

Jay Z and Beyoncé: Activism Gone Vocal

In 2012, the singer, actor and civil rights leader Harry Belafonte indicted, among others, Jay Z and Beyoncé as being part of a generation of black artists who have “turned their back on social responsibility.” It was a rare public upbraiding for a couple who had so effectively shifted American pop culture, but whose work for social change was primarily rooted in what they accomplished on record, not off.

Four years later, the social landscape has shifted: Politics have moved from the implicit to the explicit, and culture is following in tow, helped in no small part by Jay Z and Beyoncé, who are increasingly using their outsize platform as a tool of social agitation. In the wake of the police killings ofPhilando Castile and Alton Sterling this week — but before news broke of the shooting deaths of five police officers in Dallas — both released bold statements, weaving together their activism and their art.

Beyoncé posted a staunch statement of frustration on her website. “These robberies of lives make us feel helpless and hopeless,” she wrote, “but we have to believe that we are fighting for the rights of the next generation, for the next young men and women who believe in good.” At her concert in Glasgow on Thursday night, she sang her rousing political anthem “Freedom” a cappella in front of a screen bearing the names of police brutality victims.

Late Thursday night, on his streaming service, Tidal, Jay Z released “Spiritual,” a song motivated by anger — and exhaustion — about police brutality, in which he repeats the refrain “Just a boy from the ’hood that/Got my hands in the air/In despair, don’t shoot.”

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Coming to Terms With Loving Billy Joel

On November 10, 1998, my world changed.

The Simpsons had long been my favorite TV show, but the premiere of “D’oh-in’ in the Wind” that night opened my eyes on another level. We learned the backstory of Homer’s mother after she left Abe Simpson, about the hippie colony she lived on and the two granola dudes she lived with, Seth and Munchie, voiced by Martin Mull and George Carlin.

As a somewhat unorthodox 11-year-old, not only was The Simpsons‘ style of anti-authoritarian humor familiar to me, but George Carlin’s was, too. So when Homer recommended that Seth and Munchie join him for an old-fashioned “freak out”, in which they would drive around and shake up the squares, I watched with eyes wide. Seth and Munchie picked the patchouli-scented standard, “Incense and Peppermints.” Homer shut it off. “Here’s something from my personal collection that’s guaranteed to blow some minds,” he insisted, before blasting Billy Joel’s“Uptown Girl.”

 

Munchie’s eye-roll taught me everything I hadn’t considered. Not only was Billy Joel uncool, but George Carlin, the undisputed comedic king of New York style and personality, knew it too. Was Joel’s “New York State of Mind” a farce? A migrating methane-cloud from Hicksville, Long Island, mastered for stereo? My world shattered.

I say “my world” because, like that old story of the Pavlov’s bell and the salivating dog, my affections for the music of Billy Joel were classically conditioned from a very young age. Joel’s River of Dreams came out in ’93 and I, at age 6, clung to its bastardization of Paul Simon’s world music appropriations.

Read the rest of the story at Observer

P.S. previous PLAYLISTS & more by P.F.M. // Top photos: @mademoisellevuitton, @freyaeverafter_, @abbymatses