Craig Finn has cut a swath through beer-soaked halls–playing on six-inch risers often never higher than six feet–for the last twenty odd years of his career with the band, The Hold Steady.
Course he’s had his solo work too. Equally impressive to be sure. And no, his music isn’t quite as dour as his photo. At least, not all of it. Shit, there’s a lot to unpack in his lyrics…
I’m not the only lazy music fan who’s been likening his rambling story-telling song lyrics to a modern Raymond Carver weened on Springsteen and Black Flag with a guitar. He’s consistent and reliable and undoubtedly an incredible amount of thought and care in each turn of phrase as evidenced by the narrative film with collaborator, Kris Merc on his latest contribution, “God In Chicago.”
Okay, well, see, it’s a story about a guy and a girl and drug deal/road trip.
But with Finn, it’s always more.
He’s a master of subtext, and his subtext is all in the gut.
Boston’s Ed Balloon is creating future jams for the present. With a solid foundation in R&B, Balloon’s inclinations run the gamut of genres, from the eclectic Indie rock of Of Montreal to Janis Joplin, Maxwell and Jill Scott. His approach to song making–and the results–occupy that excellent middle ground, straddling classifications.
Check out “Graduate,” a standout track from his EP, No Smoking.
The seven member Minneapolis MN collective comprised of rappers P.O.S, Dessa, Cecil Otter, Sims and Mike Mictlan, and producers Lazerbeak and Paper Tiger are known as Doomtree. Mi compañero McG hipped me to their impressive KEXP performance and ever since I’ve been in the rabbit hole mining flows, beats and melodies. Their 2015 album, All Hands is a high water mark in the groups decade of activity. I know, I know, I’m late to the party, but I’m glad I’m here and am having an excellent time.
This head bobbing first track “Final Boss” from All Hands is an epic, Konami code ode to the last battle — the one that demands something more than sufficient — where the “you” as the character in the song draws the strength necessary to throw the winning punch. The production by Lazerbeak and Paper Tiger is moody and progressive, gradually building through the verses and choruses. On “Final Boss,” as well as other songs on All Hands, there are nods to gaming soundtracks like the work of Yamashita (Classic Konami composer), and hard-hitting drum and bass cuts with sirens and squalls channeling Bombsquad’s Hank Shocklee.
The video is beautifully shot. Director/Editor Maria Juranic knows how to use tension, humor and subtlety to emphasize the darker moments in the video.
Director/Editor: Maria Juranic
Video Producer: Aaron Richey
Director of Photography: Andre Durand
AC: Brian Suerth
Art Director: Scott Nordhausen
Gaffer: David Underhill
Grip: Brad Lokkesmoe
Grip: Matt Kane
Sound: Owen Brafford
Make Up/FX/Wardrobe: Kristen Leigh
Craft Services: Marina Delneri
Post FX: Matthew Sattler
Do you like smoking DMT and listening to Shuggie Otis’ seminal soul record, Inspiration Information? Then ho-lee-sheet, the new Tame Impala single, “Cause I’m a Man,” is perfect for a sweaty executive trip. Their forthcoming album, Currents is going to be your funky new jam from now until the end of the year. That is guaranteed!
Dear Internets, please take this video and run it through #deepdream and inceptionize the shit out of this hallucinogenic romp through a milky SIMS nightmare city. Let’s see how far we can take this thing without spending money on a bag of mushrooms