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Watch: Phantogram – “Black Out Days”

By Ray Finlayson; December 19, 2013 at 1:02 PM 

Voices
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Watch: ceo – “WHOREHOUSE”

By Ray Finlayson; December 19, 2013 at 12:50 PM 

WONDERLAND
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Watch: Eureka Birds – “Fastest”

By Ray Finlayson; December 13, 2013 at 5:02 AM 

Eureka Birds - Strangers
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Watch: MTNS – “Salvage”

By Ray Finlayson; December 12, 2013 at 6:27 PM 

Salvage
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Watch: The Darcys – “Itchy Blood”

By Ray Finlayson; December 11, 2013 at 8:16 AM 

Warring
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Video Premiere: Gloom Balloon – “She Was The One That Got Away”

By Joshua Pickard; December 3, 2013 at 7:20 AM 

Gloom Balloon

After an extensive  13-month tour, Ames, IA pop band The Poison Control Center were ready for some time off.  It was during this period of musical hibernation that The Poison Control Center founder Patrick Tape Fleming found himself slipping into a deep depression with no creative outlet for his musical ideas — but then he began painting.  His first piece was titled “Gloom Balloon” and so the seeds were sown for what would become his musical and artistic salvation.  But even before that, his depression has gotten so bad and so thorough that his mental state had left him on the verge of suicide.  It was then that he heard of the death of his musical hero Olivia Tremor Control’s Bill Doss.

And so Fleming decided to live and honor Doss through his own music as Gloom Balloon, which he does on his latest collection of songs called You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Disaster/Fix The Sunshine Pts. 1-7 (An Ode To Bill Doss) (out now on Maximum Ames Records).  Bringing producer/musician Christopher Ford (aka Christopher The Conquered) and string arranger H.D. Harmsen on board for the album, Fleming creates songs that resonant with a classical tint while also employing a more modern electronic approach — acoustic guitars sit side-saddle with hip hop beats and sax runs meld together with fractured spoken word narratives.

For the video to album cut “She Was The One That Got Away,” Fleming and Ford created an abstract black and white clip where two women stand in a field, one holding a gun to her own head, while the other slowly removes her clothes.  We eventually get a glimpse of a man running toward them from the distance.  The odd visuals pair up nicely with the song’s saxophone trills and curiously rapped verses while leading us willingly into the catchy pop chorus.  It’s hard not to try to lend the video some deeper meaning, but its purposefully obtuse approach to the medium keeps us at bay, with only our best guess concerning the thought behind the clip — it’s a Rorschach test for music lovers and our own interpretation of the intent heightens our level of emotional connectivity to the song.  It’s a fascinating juxtaposition of anticipation and offbeat experimentation, and Gloom Balloon wouldn’t have it any other way.

Beats Per Minute is pleased to premiere  the video for “She Was The One That Got Away,” taken from Gloom Balloon’s debut 7″ single/album.

Watch: Royksopp – “Running To The Sea”

By Ray Finlayson; November 28, 2013 at 5:20 AM 

Something In My Heart
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Watch: Parade Of Lights – “We’re The Kids”

By Ray Finlayson; November 28, 2013 at 4:32 AM 

We're The Kids
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Watch: Womb – “Baby Don’t Love Me”

By Ray Finlayson; November 27, 2013 at 1:35 PM 

Womb
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Behind the Scenes: Juliette Commagere – “Big Star”

By Joshua Pickard; November 26, 2013 at 9:54 AM 

Juliette_Commagere_(4)

Los Angeles singer-songwriter Juliette Commagere creates gossamer synth-pop that recalls the ephemeral pop aesthetics of artists like Cocteau Twins and Kate Bush.  It billows out on soft ambient tendrils, barely kept aloft by Commagere’s fragile voice and a stolid pop determination.  No stranger to the spotlight (she has opened for The Foo Fighters, Bat for Lashes, and Air), her music feels informed of a larger musical arena — a pop world where genres and labels are as meaningless as the people who try to enforce them.  On her latest album, Human, she ventures into dusky night atmospheres, where reverbed vocals and electronic flourishes interlock with persistent synthetics rhythms.

For the video to her recent single, “Big Star,” Commagere took a rather hands-on approach to its execution.  She made costumes, designed layouts, and knew exactly how she wanted it to look.  But there is a lot of back-story to this video and the details are as fascinating as the video itself.  But let’s here it in her own words.  Read Commagere’s description below of what it took to make the video for “Big Star” a reality.


HOW I MADE THE VIDEO FOR “BIG STAR”

by Juliette Commagere

The only good thing (and I mean the only good thing) about having zero dollars is that it forces you to be creative. Yes it can limit you, but it can also force you to involve your entire family — which I did. I like to think of the Commageres as a sort of Royal Tenenbaums type of family with a Mexican twist. And a messier house. Or maybe we’re like the Bluths. No no — we’re the Tenenbaums. We’re all musicians and all very creative and all a bit on the nutty side. Everyone always has a lot of “projects” going on that they are very upset about. And we are very close. Maybe too close. My sister is the extremely beautiful singer Carla Commagere and my brother is singer-songwriter Robert Francis. My dad owns a classical record label and is an amazing pianist but he went to film school for cinematography. My mom provides the Mexican twist. So naturally I asked my dad to shoot it. My sister and her pro-surfer husband are the parents of Hana and Lyric. Since my sister and I are just extensions of each other, those kids are my whole entire god damn world. I swear I had postpartum depression after they were born but it wasn’t the jump out the window kind that people talk about. It was a sickness in the pit of my stomach for weeks because my love for them terrified me.

Hana, who had just turned eight, loves to dance and takes the cutest hip-hop classes you’ve ever seen. I’d been wanting to do a video with her for some time now to capture that fresh-from-the-womb face. And since “Big Star” is based on the children’s book “Morgan and Yew” that used to make me cry as a child, I thought this the perfect opportunity. I spent weeks making the costumes. For one I created a white and light blue feather top and blue iridescent genie pants — it looks like delicious cake. For the other I wanted her to look like a little futuristic rockstar and I used neon fringe and silver ribbon and beaded trims that I glued onto a nude bodysuit I made. Then I went down to my family’s house that my Grandparents built over 50 years ago on the Laguna Beach sand. First we shot inside the house using candles to create rainbows with special filters. My mom, my dad, Hana, and I, all jammed together in a small hot room with my brother and sister periodically interrupting and yelling about dinner reservations and me yelling back that I was trying to get something done and no one had any respect for my art. And that’s sort of how that usually goes. Then we went up into the hills where a bunch of Japanese tourists watched as Hana danced in front of the sunset. Finally we descended onto the beach. Those are the places of my childhood–amidst the chaparral of the southern California hills and on beaches. I wanted the video to show innocence and juxtapose light and dark, blah blah blah. I kept picturing The Never Ending Story in my mind with those super close ups of that little girl queen. I saw it when I was five and I guess I had the stomach flu ’cause I kept throwing up into my popcorn so that movie kinda grosses me out but I still find it morbidly fascinating.

Finally, I got my dear friend Max Goldblatt to edit it. I knew he would pull it all together in a way that would make it beautiful. You could give him garbage and he would make it beautiful. He really saved the day. The End.

Juliette Commagere’s latest album, Human, is out now.

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