It’s Friday, which means we basically can’t wait to get into bed and sleep all weekend, and also that in the meantime we’re rounding up the best songs we’ve heard this week. The past several days were curious, largely devoid of big-name releases, etc., but there’s still notable new work from These New Puritans, The-Dream, Sharon Jones, and Eric Burdon (with help from Jenny Lewis.) Elsewhere, there’s pleasantly spaced-out electronic music from Airbird/Napolian and Stellar Om Source, an unreleased Arthur Russell track, wacky Ethiopian dubstep, and more! All this goodness is streaming now, and it all awaits you after the jump. … Read More
These New Puritans
“Mutual Core” starts out peacefully enough — as does its new music video, which finds Bjӧrk up to her waist in sand, and soon accompanied by a few friendly tectonic plates that resemble coral reefs. But a natural disaster is brewing as the reef pieces give way to volcanic rocks. Suddenly, explosions are happening everywhere — which is exactly what’s going on, both lyrically and sonically, in the song. Directed by Andrew Thomas Huang, the video is a precise yet still poetic evocation of the track.
Happily, the “Mutual Core” clip isn’t even the only exciting new thing Bjӧrk has thrust into the universe today. The Guardian has an exclusive stream of bastards, an album of Biophilia remixes that’s out next week and features collaborations with the likes of Death Grips, Matthew Herbert, and These New Puritans. We haven’t gotten a chance to dig deep into bastards yet, but so far we’re especially enjoying Omar Souleyman’s expansive remixes. … Read More
Ah, the golden age of music videos: when the “M” in MTV was still a dominant force and people like Axl Rose nonchalantly swam with dolphins in thematically insane three-part epics. Of course, there are still some awesome music videos being released, from lo-fi budget-minded productions to those with a glossy, high profile sheen (Hello, “Telephone”). This batch of the best music videos of the past week falls somewhere in between, from the fuzzy camera work documenting a clearly insane Jamie Lidell and the modern dance routines of These New Puritans to the ambitious Wu-Massacre project. Trust us on this: it’s a good week for music videos when Raekwon the Chef is being framed for murder. After the jump, watch Flavorpill’s other choices for best videos of the week, and let us know which ones we left out. … Read More
The British wing of last decade’s post-punk revival can be whittled down into two camps. On one side, you have the Bloc Parties and Maximo Parks: Indie pop-rockers who cleverly disguise themselves with Gang of Four’s pointy guitar sounds and Joy Division beats, but without the challenging diversity of the original post-punk era. These New Puritans fall into that other, much smaller, camp: They answer their ancestors’ call to innovate and refuse to be lumped in with the revival set. On Hidden, the band transcends the “post” tag by throwing out the Mark E. Smith-isms that dominated their 2008 debut, Beat Pyramid, and embracing everything from booming dancehall beats, Japanese Taiko drums and movie sound effects to Steve Reich minimalism, Benjamin Britten operas, English Renaissance composers, and even a children’s choir.
Put it all together and you have something that can only be described as Peter and the Wolf at the apocalypse. It’s also one of the year’s finest (and strangest) releases. With eyebrows raised in awe, we asked band mastermind Jack Barnett to dissect for us the numerous elements and influences that combined to create Hidden. … Read More