Unlike most weeks when tabloid headlines rule the music sphere, there was an incursion of new material spilled across the past few days. So rather than waste your time with an introductory anecdote, let’s just get right to the tunes…
As we mentioned in a previous playlist, this UK singer-songwriter blessed us with one of the year’s best albums in her debut LP, Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit. This week Barnett helped justify this sentiment with a transcendent performance of “Depreston” in a La Blogotheque Take Away Show filmed in a Paris alley.
Like Courtney Barnett, Mikal Cronin is making his second Playboy Playlist appearance this week. After sharing his JASH video collaboration for MCIII track “Turn Around” a few weeks back, Cronin teamed with Funny Or Die to release his “Say” music video. Keeping with his ongoing classic video-parody theme, “Say,” directed by Jonah Ray, takes a shot at Paul Simon’s iconic and absurd “You Can Call Me Al.”
Since providing a track for the Grand Theft Auto V soundtrack and a remix EP in 2013, the last new material we heard out of electronic indie artist Neon Indian came via his 2011 LP Era Extraña. This week, however, the Texas artist finally surfaced with “Annie,” a fresh poppy single that is presumed to be a piece of his third studio album. And it would appear as though our time apart has allowed Neon Indian to evolve musically as “Annie” departs from the chillwave tones and instead erupts with tropical electro-pop effervescence.
Anyone who grew up a fan of Saddle Creek Records is familiar with their roster’s constantly intersecting lineups. Unlike other artists who fleetingly team up and label it as “collaborations” and others who “feature” their friends on singles, the Saddle Creek family has always seemed to instead say, “F&ck it, let’s just start a new band.” One of the more prominent of these side-acts is a group led by Cursive frontman Tim Kasher, called The Good Life. Earlier this week, they released a single off their forthcoming fifth studio LP – yeah, that’s a sh#t load of albums for a so-called “side-project” – entitled Everybody’s Coming Down. Listen to “Everybody” and ascend into its glorious, 90s rock-banger goodness.
Everybody’s Coming Down is due out August 14th via Saddle Creek.
Tame Impala elevated our mouth-foaming anticipation for their forthcoming LP Currents with a “live” music video for the album’s stoner-smooth single “’Cause I’m a Man.” Unlike most live performance videos, however, Tame Impala’s is starring puppets, and we all know there’s nothing better than puppets.
To complement their latest LP, Brill Bruisers, The New Pornographers released a “Champions of Red Wine” visual narrative directed by Cudmore + Leblanc. Filmed in Cuba the video was described by Cudmore as a portrait of a “rambling, drunk loner in a foreign environment – somebody who can’t really connect to anything except for on a very superficial level.”
Brill Bruisers is out now via Matador.
The Lawrence brothers grabbed the music world by the balls in 2013 with their Grammy-nominated, debut LP Settle, an album that not only introduced us to the duo’s smooth brand of dance music, but also helped a singer by the name of Sam Smith break into superstardom. This week the siblings premiered a first taste from their sophomore LP entitled “Holding On.” It’s a hearty-pulsed track featuring the sultry singing of jazz artist Gregory Porter.
Brad Oberhofer may be the most effortlessly eccentric musician I’ve personally encountered. He’s certainly the only guy who’s ever preached the need for a national holiday commemorating grandmas throughout an interview. But while some artists will employ some form of idiosyncratic persona as a gimmick, Oberhofer’s childlike quirk was noticeably omniscient throughout his infectious debut Time Capsules II. Now, three years later, we’ll be given access once again to Oberhofer’s playfully chaotic surf pop with the impending release of Chronovision, which was described justly in its press release as “signature amped psych-pop with orchestral flourish, New Wave flare, and grungy fuzz, but multiplied with his intensity that only time and life’s gut checks can enhance.” Listen to “Memory Remains” and keep an eye out for Chronovision, which drops August 21st (via Glassnote).
San Diego’s Crocodiles went retro VHS-chic for their “Hard” music video, which features a collection of throwback punks acting hard as f&ck – head shaves, spit shakes, et al. The song is featured on Boys, their fifth studio album, which was released earlier this month.
Australian electronic artist Flume (Harley Streten) premiered “Some Minds,” his collab track with Miike Snow’s Andrew Wyatt as well as its video on Thursday, and in less than 24 hours it’s chalked nearly half a million views – for a non-tabloid musician, that’s a sh*t-ton. The video, directed by Clemens Habicht and described by Flume as their love letter to Sydney, takes us on a spectral tour of the Sydney Opera House and features the choreography of Australian Ballet member Callum Linnane. Guiding you through the iconic structure is Flume’s foreboding rhythm and Wyatt’s alarm-triggered howl. It’s remarkable.