Every time the Foo Fighters do something crazy, it’s impossible to imagine them topping it. Yet here we are, once again blown away by Dave Grohl and co. because they just teamed up with members of Queen and Led Zeppelin for a cover of “Under Pressure”. I mean, really. Come on.
Meanwhile, the rest of the music world is doing as excellent of an effort as possible to keep up. Annie Clark of St. Vincent revisited her homeland of Texas in a gorgeous video feature, Blur created a music video from fan content, Battles got aesthetically pleasing in their eerie video for “The Yabba”, Julia Holter upped the whimsical in her “Sea Calls Me Home” video, and CMJ Music Marathon announced it’s initial lineup at last. And to think Prince said this was a bad time for music.
Saturday, September 5 would have been Freddie Mercury’s 69th birthday. In a bit of a celebration, the Foo Fighters covered “Under Pressure”, the Queen cut that infamously featured David Bowie on vocals, with a twist. Out came Queen’s Roger Taylor and Led Zeppelin‘s John Paul Jones to join them for the performance. Combined with the heartfelt shouts of the crowd singing along, it raises goosebumps in a matter of seconds. This isn’t a supergroup. It’s a superdupergroup. [Rolling Stone]
Annie Clark aka St. Vincent returned to her hometown of Marfa, Texas this year for a short documentary with Nowness. Directed by Alan Del Rio Ortiz, the 4-minute video sees Clark perform life, drive through the desert, watch dancers (and dance herself), eat a coffee popscicle, and talk about the kinetic energy and fear of life. Most notably, she also performs “The Star Spangled Banner” at a local baseball game in the doc; it’s stunning. Check it out above and note that she cites human nature as being infinitely strange and infinitely fascinating — much like her music. [Stereogum]
Blur are still soaring on the suger high of this year’s The Magic Whip LP. The English act have taken the neon colors of the album artwork and exploded it in conjunction with fan footage, police marches, and shots of the band playing live for their “I Broadcast” music video. When the footage get stacked like blocks, keep your eyes centered at the middle. The nonsensical madness will reward you with plenty of nostalgic nods, including the milk cartoons from “Coffee and TV”. Ah, the memories, old and new. [Rolling Stone]
Battles are quick to up the creativity. In their new music video for “The Yabba”, the experimental trio play to creepy environments over and over again, from a circling cult of people donning black clothing or a younger generation of flutists and basketball players who look dead in the eyes. As is the case with many experimental tracks, the video helps translate the imagined colors and vibrancy of the song. Props to director Roger Guàrdia for the meticulous work. [Pitchfork]
In two weeks, singer-songwriter Julia Holter will release Have You in My Wilderness, one of this fall’s most exciting albums. To get you even more excited, she’s shared a video for “Sea Calls Me Home”. Claire Marie Vogel directs the clip to emphasize some of California’s clifftops, beaches, and beauties in a way that perfectly emulates Holter’s music. Looks like “sea” is just another word for “heaven”. [DIY Magazine]
CMJ Music Marathon is a bit like New York City’s response to SXSW. The festival which take place October 13-17 sees hundreds of bands swarm the big apple to perform in venues night and day. Today, the festival unveiled their initial lineup: Panda Bear, Neon Indian, Ex Hex, Tobias Jesso Jr., Kamasi Washington, Perfect Pussy, Titus Andronicus, the Men, Mercury Rev, Protomartyr, Frankie Cosmos, the Joy Formidable, Potty Mouth, Car Seat Headrest, Destruction Unit, Shannon and the Clams, DRINKS, Kero Kero Bonito, and others. See the full list here.
While you’re off scouring that list of CMJ bands, don’t forget to come back here on Friday. We will have a new Music Dispatch full of music news worth sharing!