Minneapolis-based band Polica might have the personality of a solo artist, but they’re surprisingly made up of five band members. Their debut Give You the Ghost was the type of record that grew in quiet notoriety, mixing twee sparseness with pop melodies to create an undanceable dance record. However, their newest album, United Crushers, proves the band is no longer playing it safe, showcasing a more confident sound — and even a confident message. Their single “Wedding” is a testament to that, strongly critiquing police brutality with a music video that strongly satirizes our love affair with the righteousness of law enforcement. The rest of the album continues in that realm, being a bolder, better version of the Polica we’re used to. And hopefully they keep it up.
United Crushers is currently out now.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Thursday, March 24th, 2016||No Comments »|
I’ve been a fan of German pianist and composer Volker Bertelmann, aka Hauschka, since his 2010 album, Foreign Landscapes, and later the album he did with violinist Hilary Hahn, Silfra. But Hauschka has been on the scene way before I discovered him, composing soundtracks and working with notable musicians like Barbara Morgenstern and Nobukazu Takemura (whom I both love). This melodramatic track from last year’s Abandoned City is one of my favorites. I didn’t even realize there was a music video for it until I stumbled across it on Vimeo’s Staff Picks page. Directed by Eric Epstein, the video interprets Hauschka’s song literally, going on a sprawling tour of abandoned, desolate cities full of sadness, questions, and mystery. Sure it’s a little morose, but you can’t deny its beauty.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Wednesday, March 16th, 2016||No Comments »|
When TV on the Radio’s Tunde Adebimpe, Faith No More’s Mike Patton and Anticon rapper/producer Doseone team up with animator Sarina Nihei, it’s guaranteed to be an enjoyable experience. Can you say “quadruple sandwich of perfection”?
This video for “Mr Mistake” is the first single off Nevermen’s self-titled debut. Animated by Nihei, who is best known for her amazing Small People With Hats short film, carries over her unique vision to match the whimsicality of Nevermen’s eclectic sound. The video shows a young girl walking through the woods as they morph and change around her, commenting on obvious themes about life, change, and rebirth. For more from Nevermen you can buy their album on iTunes. Don’t forget to check out the Boards of Canada remix, too!
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Tuesday, February 16th, 2016||No Comments »|
Director David Lynch has two albums under his belt, which might come as a surprise for those who don’t follow his career. Music has always been an important component of his films, and so it was natural when he started translating the languid, smokey sound of his films into studio albums. His 2013 sophomore album The Big Dream features this captivating lead single featuring musician Lykke Li. The song calls back to the lofty sound of Twin Peaks, whose soundtrack he produced with singer Julee Cruise, while also harnessing a bluesy soul that’s made even more compelling with Lykke Li’s whisper-soft voice. As for the video? Typical Lynch: a winding road to nowhere. Hop in.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Friday, November 6th, 2015||No Comments »|
Empress Of, real name Lorely Rodriguez, is no stranger to (The) Absolute. We’ve been quietly following her career since she dropped her debut EP in 2013 and have been keeping a close watch on her ever since.
In 2015, she finally releases her debut album, Me, a sprawling album with as much off-kilter jams as they are legit bops. “Standard,” one of the singles from the album, is a track that definitely leans more toward the latter. Because the song challenges the perceptions of body image, director Zaiba Jabbar decided to do some role reversal by casting a body builder to play opposite Lorely. In the video, he dangles her upside down while she eerily sings directly to the camera. It’s simple but powerful, and gets the point of across.
Out of all the singles she released this year, this is by far the strongest and shows her growth from “Brooklyn laptop artist” to a legit musical force a la Grimes or FKA Twigs. Aww, they grow up so fast.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Tuesday, October 13th, 2015||No Comments »|
Sure videos of people dancing in a white room are not the most original thing in the world — hell, there’s even a whole Tumblr for it — but there’s something endearing about the dancing in Society‘s video for their single “Protocol.” The song is a dramatic opus that demands that you take it seriously. So it’s interesting their video does the complete opposite and focuses entirely on a scrappy young lad doing unpretentious dance moves in an empty room.
“We actually cast a bunch of really great teenagers to be in the video,” director Laura Coulson told Stereogum. “Luke’s take was so fun and really excited us. He embodied the spirit of the song so well we ended up using his take for the whole video, as none of us could take our eyes off him.”
“Protocol” it the first proper single off the London duo’s upcoming debut album. So if you’re a fan of dancing, that ’90s big band/trip-hop sound, and of course, white rooms, you should keep them on your radar.
|Recommended by The Absolute Staff||Friday, September 25th, 2015||No Comments »|
Everybody knows that Sia is basically the coolest woman to ever grace the face of this planet. Whether she has Kristen Wiig dancing on stage with her at the Grammys or whether she is walking down a red carpet with a blonde wig that’s too thick to even show her face, this lady really can do no wrong, including in this vintage studio video of her belting out “The Girl You Lost to Cocaine.”
While it’s great to see Sia getting more and more recognition on the daily, there’s something completely refreshing about this nearly decade old video of her doing what she does best behind the scenes in the studio. Recorded in 2007, I actually prefer this version of the song to the official one. Maybe it’s the fact that you get to watch her jam out, maybe it’s the fact that it’s one take, or maybe it’s the fact that there’s something extra raw about this recording of the Sia classic… but whatever it is, it makes my day. Every. Single. Time. I. Watch. It.
|Recommended by Chelsey Grasso||Thursday, September 3rd, 2015||No Comments »|