Deck-Brained: MGMT's Your Life Is a Lie

Not to send you into an existential tailspin this early in the week, but, um, MGMT is releasing a new album (September 17) and this track, Your Life Is a Lie, is the first single and video. It's both humorous and devastating at the same, like a kite run through the emptiness of space. 

The director, Tom Kuntz, also made those hilarious Old Spice commercials with Isaiah Mustafa hopping from scene to manly scene in no more than a bath towel. Which is in no way meant to detract from the seriousness of the song's apparent message, that of the futility of one's own will. Who knew the Grammy-nominated duo who once cheerily advised kids to "control yourself, take only what you need" could be so cruelly pessimistic — if truthful?

Aug 05, 2013 21:17:00

Deck-Brained: Daphne Guinness

It sounds a little like Yoko Ono impersonating Nico doing vocal exercises in the shower (just picture that for a moment). But maybe that's exactly the sound Daphne Guinness was going for in her new single, Fatal Flaw, the first from an album she's been diligently tweeting about for months. Directed by Nick Knight — who obviously has the chops for an effects-heavy project, having created Lady Gaga's Born This Way and Bjork's Pagan Poetry — the video works overtime to portray a free-thinking artiste at her most electric, psychedelic, profund. You can't hold down the soul of a POET.

Jun 15, 2013 15:46:00

Deck-Brained

A moody cross between Florence Welch and The XX (and maybe early Portishead), London Grammar doesn't yet have a full album to their name. But the trio of college friends — fronted my the very camera-ready Hannah Reid — are staking out a soulful, doleful territory that many bands try to, but few can, inhabit. This heartbreak of a new single, Wasting My Young Years (out June 16, pre-order here), finds an angsty vein and taps it hard, accompanied by a deceptively uncomplicated video in which people and things seem to collide and crash in slow motion...

Here's the same track, remixed by Kids of the Apocalypse...

Jun 08, 2013 15:06:00

Deck-Brained: David Lynch

Not just an auteur and nightclub impresario, David Lynch makes another pass at musical genius with his new album, The Big Dream (released July 15 in Europe and the next day in the US). Seemingly more lush and wistful, and with more echo-y reverb than his 2011 solo debut Crazy Clown Time, the new album sees a return to songwriting for the cult director and Silencio mastermind. Lynch penned 11 of the 12 tracks (the 12th is Lynch's take on the Bob Dylan folk classic “The Ballad of Hollis Brown”), even if he's not altogether clear how to describe the creative process. "Most of the songs start out as a type of blues jam," he says, "and then we go sideways from there. What comes out is a hybrid, modernized form of low-down blues." Or is that perfectly clear?

One single has been pre-released, this moody, throaty ballad sung by the Swedish whispercore chanteuse Lykke Li called "I'm Waiting Here"...

Jun 03, 2013 21:25:00

Deck-Brained: Lana Del Rey

At the risk of Great Gatsby fatigue, the video for Lana Del Rey's musical contribution, Young & Beautiful, was just released. (Oh, did you forget the film also opens in US theaters today?) Directed by fashion filmmaker Chris Sweeney, the deceptively dramatic video demonstrates her ascendant tragic-heroine goddessness and descendant pouty-teenness—a cross between Marianne Faithfull, Marina Abramovic, and Liv Tyler. And if it wasn't clear before that the songstress was warbling to a full orchestra in silhouette, Fantasia-style, there's no mistaking it now. Although, it seems like those diamond paperweights dangling from her ears could have sparkled a little more were it not for that fuzzy, end-of-Camelot Polaroid look...

May 10, 2013 21:28:00
Andre 3000 and Beyoncé for The Great Gatsby

Deck-Brained: The Great Gatsby

The soundtrack for Baz Luhrmann's highly stylized, pre-Depression epic The Great Gatsby is being pre-released in dribs and drabs, first as 30-second snippets, then as full versions. Ranging from jazzy to haunting, so far we've been treated to The XX, Florence + The Machine, Lana Del Rey, will.i.am, Bryan Ferry, and Jack White.

Then today, East Village Radio debuted Andre 3000 and Beyoncé's cover of the late Amy Winehouse's Back to Black. While tagged with the radio station's name throughout—which pretty much ruins it—the moody duet makes one thing clear: Baz Luhrmann would really like the film to win an Oscar for Best Song—or Best Score, perhaps? The jury is still out as to whether the update "brings nothing" to the original, as Winehouse's father has said. At least he and the estate are being paid handsomely for the privilege: "I can't tell you how much it is, but it's a lot of money."

Andre 3000 and Beyoncé — Back to Black

The XX — Together

Florence + The Machine — Over the Love

Lana Del Rey — Young and Beautiful (Den Heath Remix)

Sia — Kill and Run

Apr 27, 2013 12:03:00

Deck-Brained

After seven agonizing years, The Knife is finally back with a new album, Shaking the Habitual. The Swedish siblings—Karin Dreijer Andersson, aka Fever Ray, and her brother, Olof Dreijer—have once again brought together their unorthodox trademarks: tribal percussion, early techno rhythms, atonal vocals, and lyrical social commentary. That's what happens when you build an album from a zither and a bedspring...

Apr 06, 2013 23:23:00

Deck-Brained

We don't even know where to begin describing the video for Midnight Juggernauts' latest track, Ballad of the War Machine, so we won't—except to say it's a little like Borat meets Queen. Instead we'll show you the video, then quote the band...

“We actually leaked different versions of this video out there over the last couple of weeks, but the videos were untitled and with no association to Midnight Juggernauts. For some reason we liked the idea of being an anonymous soviet art-pop band from decades ago, so we shot a video with this premise on the streets of Russia. Then we made it look like the clip was presented within an old Russian music program from 30 years ago.

Then some Russian friends spread them around various sites/blogs/discussion boards. We’ve been watching the response to the secret video on these sites over the last few weeks. Which has been interesting and amusing.

Most non-Russians think that it must be some bizarre soviet-pop band rediscovered from behind the iron curtain. Some people thought it was Space. Someone else pondered it’s comment using religious iconography within a communist context. someone said it was meaningless eye candy and not as good as I am the Walrus. Russians generally thought it’s too weird that they’d be singing in English so must be some foreign band touring at the time. Some kid on a gaming site said we dance like drunk morons.

Has been fun releasing it this way. I guess we’ve always been into Russia plus we’d been watching lots of Tarkovsky films while making the album.”

Mar 23, 2013 17:26:00

Deck-Brained

Kitsuné's newest signee, Pyramid, is a mere 22 years old, and a college student—clearly of the more industrious kind. On the French record label's latest compilation, consisting of 14 French-only tracks, Pyramid's voiceless contribution Wolf howls, grinds and soars with cum-laude confidence. The third in a series, Kitsuné Parisien 3 will be available for download beginning February 14. That would be Valentine's Day, for those who into that sort of thing...

Jan 26, 2013 14:00:00

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