The Buttertones return with Jazzhound on April 10 via Innovative Leisure. The L.A. quartet kicks off a month-and-a-half North American tour the next day in Bernieton—sorry, Burlington—Vermont. (See dates below.) The 10-song LP’s first single is the album-ending title track, proving this band likes to save the best for last. A reverb-soaked post-punk gem, “Jazzhound” is dark but full of energy and will appeal to fans of Joy Division and Interpol.
The Buttertones have a cool new video for the song, directed by Laura-Lynn Petrick (Weyes Blood, Districts, Day Wave). Says Petrick of the clip, “‘Jazzhound’ is a corrupt dream of all things showbiz. It’s busy, automotive and bizarre. Like a lazy Lynchian-esque nightmare. It puts you in a trance.”
We’re proud to premiere the video today on magnetmagazine.com. Check it out now, get your trance on, and read a bonus Q&A below..
Q&A With The Buttertones
Both in sound and now through this visual, it’s clear you have a knack for blending retro themes and putting modern twists among them. Which aspects of the past do you resonate with, and are inspired by and what current sounds and visuals have inspired you?
It’s probably safe to say that our music wouldn’t exist had it not been for the counter culture of the mid-20th century. Whether it’s the pioneers of rock ‘n’ roll or the jazz legends of the age, we’re drawn to an outsider mentality. Artists who rejected popular formulas and refused to compromise their artistic intentions. This track specifically was an experiment in style. Heavily influenced by the proto-punk drum machine sounds of the ’70s and early ’80s.
Going off of that, the visual is a subversive take on old Hollywood and show business. What elements of that time period did you want to defy? What aspects of the current entertainment industry do you work to subvert through your art?
Perhaps this music video wasn’t aimed at defying show business, but rather an opportunity to bask in the spotlight and embrace the absurdity of what Hollywood stands for. We’re not interested in an experience that leaves the viewer in their comfort zone. It was important to highlight the tension in the music with dark and unnerving lyrical scenes while simultaneously introducing borderline ostentatious dance sequences.
How did the collaboration with Laura-Lynn Petrick come about? How was working with one another? What new ideas did she bring into the visual that you hadn’t thought of?
Laura-Lynn became a clear first pick when it was time to relegate album singles and videos. Her work with artists like Weyes Blood, Tops and Allah Las speaks for itself. The exclusive use of the 16mm camera provided, quite literally, a new lens for which to peer into our imaginations. The quality of work oozes nostalgia and helps to momentarily snap the viewer out of the digital maelstrom. She works fast and commits herself to the shots.
What part of “Jazzhound” inspired you to name the album after it?
It was obvious to us from the moment the song “Jazzhound” was conceived that it would be the title of the album. The cadence and temperament of the music provided a pillar for us as musicians to reflect upon and gave us a new perspective on what a Buttertones’ song is capable of being.
4/11 – Higher Ground, Burlington, VT
4/12 – Kung Fu Necktie, Philadelphia
4/13 – Sonia, Boston
4/16 – Vinyl Center Stage, Atlanta
4/17 – Mercy Lounge, Nashville
4/19 – Grog Shop, Cleveland
4/20 – Music Hall Of Williamsburg, Brooklyn
4/22 – Velvet Underground, Toronto
4/23 – Pike Room, Pontiac, MI
04/24 – X-Ray Arcade, Milwaukee
04/25 – Subterranean, Chicago
04/26 – The Whiskey Junction, Minneapolis
04/27 – Slowdown, Omaha
04/29 – Kilby Court, Salt Lake City
5/2 – Columbia City Theatre, Seattle
5/3 – Hawthorne Theatre, Portland
5/5 – Holy Diver, Sacramento
5/6 – Slim’s, San Francisco
5/8 – The Catalyst, Santa Cruz, CA
5/9 – Observatory North Park, San Diego
5/10 – Bunkhouse, Las Vegas
5/12 – Longbrow Palace, El Paso, TX
5/13 – Meow Wolf, Sante Fe
5/15 – Stubb’s, Austin
5/17 – Paper Tiger, San Antonio
5/18 – Dada, Dallas
5/21 – Larimer Lounge, Denver
5/27 – Crescent Ballroom, Phoenix
5/28 – The Fonda, Los Angeles
5/29 – Observatory, Santa Ana, CA
5/30 – Alex’s Bar, Long Beach, CA