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Showing posts from June, 2019

Why Not - "Ready 4 the World" | Music Video

Earlier this year, Minneapolis trio Why Not released their fantastic new EP, the fittingly-titled EP. The band has seen fit to release a video for EP's lead single "Ready 4 the World. The paint-filled video was directed by Johnny Nguyen.

Watch the band paint the globe, perform in coveralls, get covered in soil, and freak out and break a guitar. Stream "Ready 4 the World" and the rest of EP below. The band is playing a show tomorrow with Juniper Douglas and the Clean Tramps.

EP by Why Not

LMR | Dom Winterbauer, Lunch Duchess, & Miles Island

Dom Winterbauer - Crash (self-released)

Sometimes it feels like the Minneapolis scene consists of ten people playing in two dozen bands with different lineups. At least that's the feeling I get from Dom Winterbauer's second solo record. The Minneapolis polymath released two albums this year under their own name, in addition to playing bass in Miloe and The Argument (who just released their own full-length). Both solo albums have stretched into Real Estate-esque dreaminess.

Crash condenses the Winterbauer's sonic styling into a more focused release (debut Blue Fish was almost twice as long). Each moment luxuriates it its cloudy textures and looseness. Slowly is the fastest way to find direction. There's hardly any differentiation from song to song, creating a consistent river of wistful and hazy pop. With only a few exceptions, Winterbauer played every instrument, wrote every song, sings (almost) every vocal, and recorded/mastered the entire album.  Live bandmates, inclu…

Double Grave - "Ego Death Forever" | Album Review

Changing the name of a band is always a bit of a leap of faith. Depending on fan base and name recognition, there is a very distinct possibility of losing everything the band has built, and yet, Ego Death decided to step away from their moniker and forge ahead as the moodier Double Grave. The name change and subsequent album came with a cleansing of their back catalog, and after some time away from their old material, the band decided to release what they describe as an "awkward gap in their identity" with a new compilation EP, Ego Death Forever.

As someone who only recently learned about the band, Ego Death Forever serves as a look into their roots as sunnier, pop grunge trio. Their 2017 album New Year's Daydream is a slower, more dissonant step forward that shows off Jeremy Warden's progression as a songwriter. The pop hooks are still there, but Double Grave moved from its former sunny disposition to a sonic landscape that better represents a classic Minnesota winte…

Dreams We've Had - "Benny Boy" | New Music

The Twin Cities' foremost dream-pop project returns with their first single of 2019, "Benny Boy."

For a little while, Dreams We've Had has been playing with the idea of going stadium-sized, of bridging the gap between the synthetic, gauzy nostalgia of Dear Friend and the colossal open-hearted pop of mid-period of M83 (especially on latest single "Perfectly Out of Place"). It all finally connects on "Benny Boy."

With a self-referential title, Bennett Blumberg takes the riff from "Myth" and melds it to the transcendent synth & drums of "Wait." The anthemic chorus - "Please / please don't leave / Please / Come back to me" - is minimal in its word choice but loaded with more emotion than a John Green novel. Musically, it plays out like a stereotypical summer "night to remember:" a pensive build, a heart welling up, an ascension into a sky-piercing denouement, a sudden drop-off, a hazy comedown, then finall…

LMR | niiice. & Gully Boys

(cover art by Bethünni Schreiner)
This is truly an iconic day in Minneapolis music history. Two of the best punk bands known to man - niiice. and Gully Boys - have just released a split.

Both tracks are relatively low-key, compared to the mind-melting shredding on the bands' latestrecords. However, the pair of trios go out of their comfort zones on their respective song.

On "Caffeine," niiice. brings their classic boozy-depressive focus to another ode of exhaustion. Roddie Gadeberg reaches into his falsetto at one point and really expands his voice into new non-screaming realms (there's some screamed double-track vocals, of course). For most of the first two minutes, Gadeberg locks in with the bass and drums. The riffs are a solid as a stalactite, but after about two-thirds of the song the stalactite falls.

A subdued harmony of trumpets comes in for a catchy brass interlude (what's a punk song without some...brass?). However, it isn't until the last minute of the…

AMY HZL - "Yr Nectar" | New Music

Duluth based singer-songwriter AMY HZL first came across my radar back in February when I ran saw her video submission to NPR's Tiny Desk Contest. I was drawn to the authenticity in her raw, bedroom pop stylings with jangly guitar and a drum machine. She had released a dance-y single titled "bad 4 me" the year prior, but I was hoping for some more from the singer.

Thankfully, Heavy Meadow Records announced earlier this month that they had partnered with the artist to put out her debut self-titled EP. Along with the announcement, AMY HZL put out the gloomy new song "Yr Nectar," a track tells a bittersweet love story.  "Drawn to that which is so sweet / I'm like a honey bee" she sings, but "Yr Nectar" takes a turn toward not feeling as "sweet" or as pure, and the singer pleads, "Please, please honey / tell me that I taste like you do." The track evokes The Cure with its ability to switch between a love song and a song of…

Juniper Douglas - "Gah, My Eyes!" Video

Juniper Douglas is back from tour! Hooray! They shot a video for their song "Gah, My Eyes!," from their 2018 debut Error to Introspection. Sick! It's an extremely weird yet extremely fitting visualization for the song. The band definitely kidnaps a guy with banana weapons and has a weird cult-ish celebration in the woods (there's blue fire!). They also burn the remnant of a past age - a fax machine. The 00s-era Radiohead vibes of the song are matched with a 90s-era Radiohead-esque video, and it's a match made in indie heaven.

The video is released to coincide with Juniper Douglas' upcoming show on June 30th. Along with Why Not, the Toms are going to help celebrate the release of the Clean Tramps' brand new EP. Check out more information on the show below.

Keep for Cheap - "Day Without You" Video

Clearly, the members of Keep for Cheap were lying when they said they couldn't remember what it's like to be carefree. In the brand new video for their single "Day Without You," they are extremely carefree. They dance around, run, and generally look like they're having a great time. It's delightful and wholesome. There's a couple shots of the band playing live, which I guess is a reminder that you should get to the gig?

The video also features, ranked from best to least best:
A purple cowboy hatFun, subtle lil animations, done by Anna HeckmannBreakfast Club-esque dancingKentucky Fried ChickenThe video was shot by Emma Larson, Anna Heckmann, and the band's own Autumn Vagle, who also edited the whole thing. Watch it below.

Marah in the Mainsail to become Coyote Kid

The above photo was taken from Marah in the Mainsail Kickstarter page.
The last year has been a huge one for Marah in the Mainsail. They decided to make the leap to go full-time, and they signed with booking company Green Room Music Service.

With the launch of the Kickstarter for their next album, Marah in the Mainsail announced yet another massive change. The band has decided to leave their name behind and continue as Coyote Kid.

"We feel that now is the time to make a change that we have wanted to make for years," frontman Austin Durry said in a video. Durry went onto say, "We've finished that chapter of art and are living in a new era of music, and with that, we think it deserves a new identity as well."

The new name comes from the protagonist of their upcoming record The Skeleton Man which starts where their 2017 album Bone Crown leaves off. The band says name change won't affect their sound or line up, and The Skeleton Man will be just as "sparse and …

Internet Dating - "Stall" | Music Video

Deano Erickson's solo project Internet Dating is now the newest act to join the Brace Cove Records roster.  Along with the announcement, Erickson put out the title track for his upcoming EP called Stall. Erickson shares vocal duties on this single with Formerly Bodies' vocalist Hannah Weir, and the pair are underscored by handclaps, off-kilter piano riffs, and subtle xylophone. Internet Dating's twinkly, acoustic pop vibes make it a bit of a deviation for Brace Cove's sound, but Erickson's introspective lyrics and emo sensibilities make the project feel at home among the label's more aggressive acts. 

According to The AlternativeStall is due out Friday, June 28. Watch the music video for the title track below.

Local Music Round-Up | Anna Carey

Singer/songwriter Anna Marie Carey finds an eternal melody on her new single "Parking Lots." It is a hushed ballad surrounded by a swirling haze of electronics. Carey lets her words surge with gravity and orbit the all-too-familiar chords. Reverence drapes itself over the notes as they deal out absolution as freely as the wind. There is nothing overt, musically or lyrically. Even the broadest truths are made small in the hands of Carey. She cultivates life with songs such as these. Listen below on Spotify, or wherever you stream your music.

Twin Lakes - "The Sun Always Rises" | Music Video

Back in January, I got a chance to talk with Twin Lakes before a gig at Caydence Coffee and Records. The band mentioned they were going in a bit of a different direction on the new material during the conversation, and I was interested to hear what that meant for the band. Over the weekend, Twin Lakes finally gave us an answer with their gritty new song "The Sun Always Rises."

The new single welcomes the addition of electric guitars and a straight-ahead folk-rock sound. "The Sun Always Rises" feels at home as a natural companion to 2018 Twin Lakes debut EP Stag. The band's trademark rhythmic guitar riffs have been delegated to the song's bridge where it builds to an anthemic climax, and unlike Stag where whole songs were based around these riffs, it anchors the song and teases the listener.

Along with the song, the band has released their first music video, shot by Nathan Nelson of Treedome Productions. It depicts frontman Robert Baune caught between momen…