It’s always nice when a musician can find an artist to collaborate with, creating a music video that can visually represent what a song is trying to say. That’s the case with the partnership of Darren Hayman and Daryl Waller, musician and artist, who’ve worked together on the music video for a song called “Henrietta Maria”.
Wild Nothing is an astonishing band. Created and recorded solely by Jack Tatum in 2010 (though he now tours with a full line-up of musicians), the debut album, Gemini, riveted the indie music scene with its infectious dream pop sound. Gaining notoriety via the internet, the band’s second album, Nocturne, released last year, only extended the band’s adulation and even included the added bonus of a music video starring actress Michelle Williams.
Brooklyn duo Thomas Mullarney and Jacob Gossett, also known musically as Beacon, are still relatively new but their sound is spot-on right now. More and more I’m hearing electronic get more of an R&B influence, I’m thinking Rhye in particular, and this new track from Beacon is in a very similar vein. The track is called “Drive” and it comes off their first full length album The Ways We Separate, which is being released next Tuesday.
If there’s one word repeatedly used to describe Montreal band No Joy, it’s shoegaze. They’re often compared to 1990′s bands like Lush, Curve, and My Bloody Valentine, but I often wonder if that’s because they feature female vocals. No Joy is actually comprised of two females—Jasamine White-Gluz and Laura Lloyd—along with Garland Hastings who now plays on drums, and though, yes, the shoegaze inspiration is evident, there’s something entirely new going on here.
Wait to Pleasure, out this week, is the band’s first foray into the studio following rapid word-of-mouth praise from SXSW masses as well as from Best Coast frontwoman Bethany Cosentino who hailed them as “the best band ever.” But beyond all that, you need only listen to No Joy’s music to feel the magic. Loud and swarming with shredding guitars and angelic banshee vocals pulsating underneath, this is music that enchants as much as it transfixes. It’s like something out of a dark, lethargic fairy dream directed by David Lynch. And just when you think it’s taking you somewhere dark and deep, it picks back up again swirling you through atmospheric, sunshine-filled canyons. I could go on and on with adjective-laden verbosity, but I suggest you listen to them instead.
Say what you will about the two, but few have revived interest in Jamaican music as Diplo and Switch’s zombie-killing creation, Major Lazer. Guns Don’t Kill People… Lazers Do was a stunning record, a perfect follow up from the iconic mixtapes Diplo put out in the years prior. To some extent, the hype for their new album Free the Universe is not just necessary, but proper. The record mashes dancehall, dub, trap and thatratchetmusic all at once, perfect for dance floors from Silver Lake to Brooklyn to Kingston.
Yet the song to watch might be this one. “Get Free” displays the beauty of dub reggae so perfectly. Equal parts Augustus Pablo and classic R&B, there’s something beautiful here. Amber Coffman asks “What will I do without my dreams?” as the beat bubbles back and forth like water on a choppy stream. A synthy horn pops in, dancing on the reggae rhythm. The chorus rings out on so many levels: “Look at me, I just can’t believe what they’ve done to me: We could never get free, I just want to be…” Are they talking about the government? The style of music? The oppression in Jamaica? Or just that subconscious desire to live? No matter. We all want to get free, don’t we?