On October 4, Daniel Martin Moore will release ninth album Never Look Away (SofaBurn). In the past, the Kentucky singer/songwriter has collaborated with the like of Jim James, Ben Sollee, Joan Shelley and others. On Never Look Away, Moore’s main partner in crime is producer/multi-instrumentalist Seth Kauffman (Floating Action), with whom basic tracks were recorded in North Carolina before Moore took them back home with him to flesh them out and finish them with a little help from his friends.
This collaborative spirit is definitely apparent on side-one closer “Lay A Wreath,” whose video we’re proud to premiere today on magnetmagazine.com. Says Moore, “This song and video are a broad-ranging collaboration between many artists I admire. Seth co-produced and played drums and bass. Scott Moore and Charlie Patton played the strings that soar and soar. And musician/artist Jeremy Ylvisaker—and his children, Max and Jonny—made this memory-like video. I hope y’all enjoy what we’ve done.”
We hope y’all do, too. Check out “Lay A Wreath” now, and if you find yourself in the Bluegrass State next month, check out Moore on one of his handful of dates there.
If you told Tulipomania’s Cheryl Gelover and Tom Murray they would have to choose between making music and making animated videos, they would have a bit of a Sophie’s choice situation on their hands. Fortunately, they don’t have to choose, so both of their artistic offspring will continue to not only survive but thrive. The latest from the Philly-based dynamic duo is the animated clip for “(This Gilded Age) So What Are You Looking At?”
Like previous Tulipomania videos we’ve featured, “(This Gilded Age) So What Are You Looking At?” was painstakingly crafted by Gelover and Murray. The twosome bombards the viewer with animated paint and collage ripped and reconfigured from print and film. Utilizing thousands of sheets of paper, Gelover and Murray created the animation frame by frame. There’s no CGI here, kids.
“For us, there can be the strangest contrast between the laborious process of assembling, shooting, then editing individual collages to achieve the blasted, image-overdrive effect we’re after,” says Murray. “We think the result is one of only a few sane responses to media saturation, and it feels cathartic.”
“(This Gilded Age) So What Are You Looking At?” will have its festival premiere tomorrow at the Brooklyn Academy Of Music as part of the 16th Animation Block Party, the largest animation fest on the East Coast. After that, it will screen at European festivals as well, including the StopTrik International Film Festival. But first, it’s premiering today at magnetmagazine.com. Check it out now.
Ask Chris Knight why it took him seven years to come back to making music, and he’ll tell you he never left. “I’ve been touring more than ever over the last seven years,” says Knight from somewhere on the road, his Kentucky drawl as lumpy and thick as paving tarmac.
Knight isn’t one to waste words. It’s what makes interviews with him somewhat one-sided and gives his 25-year catalog that rugged aura of plainspoken authenticity. His ninth album, Almost Daylight (Drifter’s Church Productions), is due out October 11. Recorded by longtime collaborator Ray Kennedy (Steve Earle), it’s Knight at his most pointed and personal. Tracks like “I’m William Callahan,” “Trouble Up Ahead” and “Flesh And Blood” examine life’s virtues and vices with an easy elegance that most often recalls John Prine—who actually joins Knight on final track “Mexican Home.”
When things occasionally turn more issue-oriented, Knight adds an exclamation point to the sort of universal gripes we should all have an opinion about. Which brings us to “The Damn Truth” and MAGNET’s premiere of its companion video. “We finished that song the night before we recorded it,” says Knight. “I was just listening to all the bullshit on the TV … Everybody’s got an opinion. The truth is the truth, and you’ve got to know it when you see it. Maybe we’ll find out what it really is at some point.”
As straightforward as the song itself, the video for “The Damn Truth” delivers its message with some measure of power—mostly from the small screen of a tiny old black-and-white TV. “I made three or four full-blown videos back when I was 20 years younger,” says Knight. “It was a little easier then. We didn’t have a lot of time for this one. We just took a bunch of footage, and [Nathaniel Maddux] put it together. A lot of it was shot at my house, out around the woods.”
Knight and his wife have been living on the same 115 acres in rural Kentucky for more than 20 years, raising their three kids there. “It keeps growing trees and kids and weeds and birddogs and horses,” he says. “I always have plenty to do when I get home, just tryin’ to keep the woods beat back from my house. But that’s the way I like it. Everything is right where I want it to be.”
September 6 is gonna be a big day for Mommyheads heads. Not only is the art-pop outfit celebrating the 25th anniversary of the stellar Bingham’s Hole with a remixed/remastered reissue, the Adam Elk-led quartet is releasing 10th album Future You. Where the band’s melodic ’70s tendencies were perhaps a little unhip back in 1994 for the self-ordained indie cognescenti, the music-loving world has probably caught up to the Mommyheads and their now-hipster-approved influences a quarter-century later.
One of Future You‘s standouts is second track “Mutual Enemy,” and the video for the song follows the stylistically similar clip for LP opener “Woke Up A Scientist.” Both were directed by Elk and edited by Mitch Friedman. Though “Mutual Enemy” takes a serious look at the current geo-political climate, its video does it in a very entertaining way.
“What better way to tackle it than a video using the stop-motion technique utilizing animated toys?” asks Elk. “There are 60 separate scenes, each taking about three-to-four hours to shoot. That’s 150-200 hours of filming. That said, this video was was a true labor of love to make. Spoiler alert: We give Robert Mueller a chance to tell us how he really feels at 2:16.”
Somehow it all feels a lot fake than what’s passing for news these days. We’re proud to premiere “Mutual Enemy” today on magnetmagazine.com. Check it out now. And if you find yourself in Sweden, Denmark or Norway later this month or the beginning of September, check the Mommyheads out live.
On July 26, Ummagma will release Compass (Leonard Skully), the third album from the Canada/Ukraine husband-and-wife duo and first in seven years. Now based in Ontario, Alexander Kretov and Shauna McLarnon met in Moscow in 2003 and began a romantic and musical partnership. The dozen-track Compass follows two 2017 EPs, LCD (with Cocteau Twin Robin Guthrie and Curve’s Dean Garcia) and Winter Tale (with A.R. Kane). One of the new LP’s standouts is lead single “High Day.”
Says McLarnon of the track, “It’s one of those ‘accidental songs’ that were created under odd circumstances. We were going through a tense time, living between two cities and seeing each other only when commuting ‘home’ with our daughter for the weekend. Something happened to cause us to fight; I don’t even remember what exactly and we were not talking to each other, but ended up having a guest come over—another musician. We took turns entertaining him because we didn’t want to be in the same room as each other. I hadn’t been singing anything for a few months at this point, and my husband found me singing with this guest upon returning. He took out the hand-held recorder and captured this improvisation. Later, upon playback, we knew that a song needed to be born, and we at least had an idea of the chords and stylings needed.”
So not only did McLarnon and Kretov get a song out of their quarrel, they also were able to use it to move past the argument itself. “It was a song of apology and awakening,” says McLarnon. “Not to say ‘I’m sorry for what I did or said,’ but to admit how stupid it was that we could both let something so small stand in the way of something so huge—that being us, our music and our family. This song helped us move past this to restore equilibrium in our relationship—and got me singing and writing again. This was our ‘High Day,’ and now it’s your ‘High Day,’ too.”
We’re proud to premiere the Kretov-directed video for “High Day” today on magnetmagazine.com. Check it out now.