Tag Archive | Music

Video Clip of The Week: Neko Case, “Last Lion of Albion”


At a time when the reigning administration has zero regard for the environment: dismantling the EPA, selling off our public lands, aggressively polluting the water and air through the abolishing of regulations meant to protect the health of all citizens, and expediting the extinction of endangered species, this week’s anthemic Video Clip, “Last Lion of Albion” from Neko Case, is a call to action, in case you aren’t paying attention.

Brough to life visually in an animated clip by artist Laura Plansker, “Last Lion of Albion” is a requiem for the magnificent landscapes and creatures that have been erased from our planet by the effects of humans. Case explains, “I’m very honored and excited to debut this video by one of my very favorite artists. I’ve loved her work forever; she‘s so skilled at using handmade figures and props to create surreal worlds. Her work perfectly balances humor and darkness in a way that breaks my heart. Laura has a way of making something so artificial [feel] so very alive. The turning of the lion’s head to look at the sky, or its own reflection, makes me cry my eyes out. There is so much straight ahead compassion in Laura’s work, there’s no need to manipulate emotion of the viewer, it is the perfect balance. I’m so happy to share it here with you!“

“Last Lion of Albion” can be found on Case’s recently released album, Hell-On, which includes contributions from some three dozen guest performers, including k.d. Lang, Laura Veirs, Beth Ditto, and Robert Forster on backing vocals, Joey Burns of Calexico and Doug Gillard of Guided by Voices on guitars, and Barbara Gruska and Matt Chamberlain on drums. Enjoy!

Neko Case Hell On Cover

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Video Clip The Week: Jon Spencer, “Do The Trash Can”


My favorite memory involving Jon Spencer (he of the eponymous Blues Explosion) goes back to the time that I was assigned to write a cover story about him for a now long-defunct Rock magazine, whose editors would not allow writers to use the word “that” in any articles. Just being serious. For the interview, I arranged to meet Spencer at a Starbucks in the neighborhood where we both live, assuming it would not be impossible to settle in at an empty table and just chat over the reasonable din of people getting coffee and taking up space. When no tables were free at Starbucks, we attempted to find another nearby restaurant or bar to duck into, but there were no viable options, for some mysterious reason. I then suggested that perhaps we could just go to his apartment that he shares with wife Cristina Martinez, but Spencer said no way in Hell was that going to happen. Lovely. We ended up doing the interview while sitting on a bench in Union Square Park. Whatever. He was a decent interview, and now I have been able to share this fun story with you, so it all worked out.

This brings us to our featured video clip, with Spencer flying solo for “Do The Trash Can” – which was described to me as being “a Molotov cocktail of sound,” so I am just going to go with that.  If you are already a fan of the kind of take-no-prisoners,  eardrum-excoriating noise rock that Spencer is, dare I say it, the absolute best at churning out, then you will go crazy over “Do The Trash Can.” It’s a Jon Spencer song, what can I say? If you have no previous exposure to this true garage rock legend, consider this a test drive. Your mileage may vary.

Visually, “Do The Trash Can” is a bit of a softer sell, because this video ranks as a Work of Art.  “Do The Trash Can” rates up there in the top five or so “most fun to just look at” video clips I’ve featured in five years of running this column. With Spencer dressed up as a vendor of the kind of fast food that you might find at, say, Coney Island, the video focuses on artfully directed images of him interacting with hamburgers, hot dogs, soda, french fries, and pop corn, while also introducing The Trash Can as some kind of minimal dance, and of course playing guitar. This is all presented against the most highly-saturated palette of primary colors that I can recall seeing in a video since DEVO’s “Whip It,” which everyone agrees was ahead of its time. I’m hungry and I want to go to an art gallery, just thinking about it.

As an aside, it has also never dawned on me how much Spencer’s guitar playing sounds to have been influenced by that of the late, great George Harrison. For a point of aural reference, revisit the breakdown in The Beatles’ “Tax Man” and tell me I’m not on to something. “Do The Trash Can” can be found on Spencer’s first ever (no kidding) solo album, Spencer Sings The Hits!, which is out on November 9, 2018 via In The Red Records! Enjoy!

Spencer Sings The Hits

Video Clip of The Week: Wallows, “1980s Horror Film”


Halloween falls on a Wednesday this year, which just feels wrong. But you know what is just so right — your Video Clip of the Week: Special Halloween Edition! You’ll never believe what I found for you, because this clip for “1980’s Horror Film” from Southern California-based rock trio Wallows is just too perfect! Not only is the song a spot-on homage to classic ’80s MTV, when keyboard-driven New Wave bands ruled, but the visuals also provide an era-appropriate flashback. The fun video for “1980’s Horror Film” finds Wallows‘ lead singer Braeden Lemasters donning a Robert Smith fright wig as he recalls an elaborately romantic seduction scene waylaid by a girl who would much rather watch a horror movie than make out with him. Check it out now to relive all of your bittersweet memories of a summer romance that never was, because “1980’s Horror Film” (available via Atlantic Records on the band’s Spring EP) is just scary great! Enjoy!

Video Clip of The Week: The Cutthroat Brothers, “Kill 4 U”

We’ve only got one more full weekend before Halloween hits, so I think it’s high time to rev-up all you music maniacs with some appropriately menacing tunes! Let’s get dangerous! This week’s clip comes to us from Tacoma-based garage punk duo The Cutthroat Brothers, who are referred to as the Sweeney Todd of Punk for good reason: they have real life day gigs as Barbers! You’ll see the pair in action in this visually engaging clip, as they rock out in blood-soaked smocks right in their shop! This ain’t your average love song.

Guitarist /Vocalists Jason Cutthroat and Drummer Donny Paycheck (of Garage Punk legends Zeke)  formed the band in February of this year and by March they had already recorded their debut album with long time Paycheck/ Zeke collaborator, and producer legend Jack Endino (Nirvana, Mudhoney, The Sonics, Soundgarden). Endino’s Midas Touch finely hones the band’s buzzsaw guitar attack and four-on-the-floor rhythms into a classic rock rumble that just refuses to date. “Kill 4 U” will save your rock and roll soul with its reckless riffing and a hard-hitting hooks sharp enough to draw blood. Happy Halloween, bitches! The Cutthroat Brothers‘ self-titled, 8-song debut is available now on CD and as a digital download via Digital Warfare Records. Enjoy!

Cutthroat Brothers

Video Clip of The Week: Monster Magnet, “When the Hammer Comes Down”

If there is one band that can always be relied on to deliver the goods when you just want to Rock Out, that band is Monster Magnet. This week’s featured clip is a performance-based lyric video for the group’s current single, “When the Hammer Comes Down,” and it does not disappoint in its delivery of the relentless heavy metal Sturm und Drang that defines iconic front man Dave Wyndorf and his head-banging bandmates.

Visually, this clip reminds me of classic Black Sabbath, with its film negative imaging and minimal, but signature, visual effects. Though not an overtly political song, I’m pretty sure that Wyndorf is opposes the current Administration, which makes me love him even more. Point being that the basic titular theme, and the song’s refrain, “The Universe will do you right/ when the Hammer Comes Down,” can certainly be embraced by the Resistance movement going surging in this country. It could not come at a better time.

The video release of “When the Hammer Comes Down” coincides with the kick off of Monster Magnet’s North American Fall Tour, dates for which are below, in support of their most recent album release, Mindfucker. Enjoy, bitches!

10/8: Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theater
10/9: Vancouver, BC @ Commodore Ballroom
10/10: Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
10/12: San Francisco, CA @ Thee Parkside
10/13: Sacramento, CA @ Aftershock Festival*
10/15: Santa Ana, CA @ The Observatory
10/16: San Diego, CA @ Brick By Brick
10/17: Phoenix, AZ @ Rebel Lounge
10/19: San Antonio, TX @ Paper Tiger
10/20: Dallas, TX @ Canton Hall
10/21: Houston, TX @ White Oak (Upstairs)
10/23: Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade
10/24: Nashville, TN @ Basement East
10/26: Baltimore, MD @ Baltimore Soundstage
10/27: New York, NY @ Gramercy Theater
10/28: Boston, MA @ The Sinclair

Monster Magnet 2018

Video Clip of The Week: Moby Rich, “Yoko Ono”


I feel no shame in confessing that the highlight of my day — and I do mean every single day — is the moment I slip into my bed after being swept away by too much TV and snuggle in the darkness with my pillows and comforter until I achieve full comfort, and drift off into a marvelously dream-filled sleep. Because sleeping is my jam. I once had a dream where my bed became a car, and I took to the streets for the day’s adventures with no one seeming to even notice that my vehicle was, in fact, a bed. Unlike those stress-dreams where you are either naked or sitting on a toilet in public, it was awesome.

It is surely no surprise then that the video for “Yoko Ono,” from a brand new LA-based musical duo called Moby Rich (because those are their names) sold me at around the 50 second mark, as Moby (and) Rich take the John-and-Yoko-Bed-In theme to a delightful extreme. I predict you will also sit totally rapt as the duo – still clad in color-coordinating blue pajamas — cruise in their tiwn beds out onto the streets of downtown LA while singing about their dream of finding an ideal other — a “Yoko Ono Muse” if you will — who completes them. Can you even imagine how much fucking fun this video was to film? I can’t even.

Aurally, “Yoko Ono” is a stone groove: a wistful love song floating in on a trip-hop beat that’s just the perfect mix of electronica and blue-eyed soul that would turn Daryl Hall green with envy. I fucking love it, and I think you will as well. “Yoko Ono” the single is out now on TaP Records, and it will eventual show up on the duo’s forthcoming debut EP. Enjoy!

Moby Rich Duo

Video Clip of The Week: Gorillaz, “Tranz”


Hello and welcome to the rockin’ start of a brand new week! You know, I usually like to use this space for showcasing an indie or lesser-known band that doesn’t have major label backing behind it; but in the sprit of the weekend-morning cartoons of my long lost youth, an animated clip always gets preferential treatment. This week let’s all turn on to “Tranz” from Gorillaz, who are also making their debut on The’Gig. Marking the band’s first ever live performance video — and only live performance since 2010’s highly memorable MTV EMA performance — this visually eye-popping clip sees Gorillaz’ charismatic front man2D command the stage against a backdrop of mind-altering visuals. Joining him are bandmates Noodle and Russel Hobbs, with Gangreen Gang’s Ace on bass standing in for the temporarily incarcerated Murdoc Niccals. “Tranz” can be found on the band’s latest album, The Now Now, which is out. . . now. Tour dates starting in October are below. Enjoy!

Gorillaz Tour Dates