PREMIERE

Reighnbeau - Slight EP

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Gerard Marcus

REIGHNBEAU is a New Mexico based musical project headed by artist Bryce Hample. His latest EP ‘Slight’ shifts and morphs like sand in a desert, flowing through dream pop, folk, glitch, and synth soundscapes. Colleen Johnson, Madeline Johnston, and Bryce Hample’s vocals fill six surreal tracks that explore love, loss, and the hypnotic nature of rhythm.

VIDEO PREMIERE

GREAT TIME - Lazy Lilly

Abigail Clyne

Every generation has their own conventions to push past or upend. Anywhere you look today, millennials are blamed for the death of some established norm. Whether it’s cable tv, brick and mortar stores, or the sacred bonds of marriage, it’s all young people’s fault. Great Time’s new video for the song “Lazy Lilly” (the title itself perhaps a tongue in cheek nod to the “lazy millennial,” who knows!) explores how relationships have changed from one generation to the next.

The video follows an older man going about his day in his cozy home somewhere in the Northeastern US. Unlike the singer’s past relationship, “Oh, we fell apart making our hard decisions,” this man is alone because death has separated him and his wife. Having the choice to break up or get divorced is a necessity of modern living, but it can also turn what used to be simple fact, that you stay with who you’re with, an overwhelming chain of what if’s. With the line “Is love ours to fall apart?” the song seems to be asking if all modern relationships are doomed to fail without the societal pressure to make them work. 

The band makes a brief appearance in the video, seated on the windowsills as if they’re a part of the house, and by extension showing how much each generation is shaped by those that come before. The warm and cozy feel captures the comfort one hopes to attain in old age, while simultaneously creating a mood of melancholy and loss. Jill Ryan’s brooding vocals combine beautifully with the sparse yet buoyant instrumentation to create a wistful dreamlike reality. The closing line “Oh, we fall apart, our love won’t make it last...” ends the song on a downer. Maybe us millennials just don’t have what it takes to make our relationships work? Or maybe we’re just still young. 

PREMIERE

David Vassalotti - The Light

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By Jordan Feinstein

David Vassalotti’s “The Light” is a song about the very specific moment when someone has messed up and is terrified that it will end their relationship. But instead of anger at his partner, David experiences relief that everything is out in the open now, and he can now exist with and see them honestly.

“The Light” is filled with beautiful lyrics and sounds, both taking a quasi-psychedelic approach to its themes. “There’s no beast left to fear behind the door… it’s good to see you here // it’s good to be with you here // why did it take so long to turn a light on?” Describing this unknown as a feared beast behind a door is a beautiful and fantastical metaphor. They entered the room, turned the light on, and instead of a monster, they’ve only found themselves together in a new, well-lit room. This warmth and comfort is paralleled in the aural landscape of the song: a warm bath of guitar, drums, and gentle singing. A repeated “boom” sounds throughout the track, perhaps meant to be the revelation in the relationship. But it’s non-threatening, mixed softly under the calming guitars and drums–an explosion that wasn’t. The song ends with a psychedelic journey of sounds as they “go out the back door,” awash with potential and optimism for what comes next

“The Light” is a beautiful take on a moment that could have been terrifying, but instead turned mesmerizing and exciting. It’s a complex and mature conclusion from a songwriter comfortable exploring themselves honestly, and more than capable of translating it into a gorgeous song. It’s no easy feat, and makes me nothing but excited to hear what David Vassalotti does next.

“The Light” is from David Vassalotti’s new album Guitar Dream out on 1/25/19 and up for pre-order here.

VIDEO PREMIERE

Trees Take Ease - Birds Like Leaves

Gerard Marcus

The music of Brooklyn-based musician Trees Take Ease holds a special place in my heart. It perfectly captures the emotional space where my oldest memories reside, dancing in and out of fantasy. With its earnest sensibilities and lo-fi feel, his 2017 record ‘Magnetic North’ is easily one of my favorites from last year. He’s had two releases since then, but I’m happy to see him return to Magnetic North to create a beautiful video for its track “Birds Like Leaves.”

Directed by Kathleen Elizabeth Dalton and Stephen Becker (Trees Take Ease), the power in the “Birds Like Leaves” video is its ability to draw attention to its fringes. Scraps of paper trapped by the wind, hands without bodies, shadows dancing and connecting on the ground—the entire video hints at the presence of more while focusing on the less. Is there a grace in how the wind carries the paper? Do those shadows connect us more completely than we do in the flesh? The video, like the music of Trees Take Ease, asks us to pay attention to that middle ground between reality and fantasy, the etherial and the concrete. A world where contemplation on the big and small can hopefully lead to deeper knowledge.

VIDEO PREMIERE

Obvious Creature - Hiding (Video by: Lobo Incognito)

Gerard Marcus

Through all the histories I’ve read in my short time here on earth, I've learned that hiding has been a crucial elements of human survival. Hiding from danger, hiding from the truth, hiding who one really is–it’s a skillset one develops in order to protect or withhold one's personal world from outside influences. As important as hiding has been in the past, it's interesting to think about the modern-day climate of shared information where everything you do is recorded. Nowadays, where can you truly hide? Artist Lobo Incognito takes on this question his video for Obvious Creature’s track “Hiding.”

The video is a mixed collage of found-footage and hand-shot imagery exploring the idea of where we go when we hide. Some of the imagery seems almost voyeuristically intimate, while at other times it is distant and cold. It's the balance of these contrasting elements that Incognito nails beautifully in this video, perfectly capturing the tension of hiding in a modern world where nothing is really secret. Images distort, repeat, and cut to the point where they only fly past as reference. Color change to impossible hues. And digitally-constructed images bend around the analog. Nothing seems stable, and it feels like at any moment all the secrets held within the video will be revealed–but it never happens. Incognito is able to hold it all together with a strong sense of style and aesthetic, teasing at a digital realm where all secrets lie. The video's warped digital style, paired with the chill jazz stylings of the Obvious Creature’s track, creates a dueling experience that breezes through subliminal messages and shows us the reality that today, we all hide in plain sight.