Life through the lens: Rare Americans delve into the lives of drug addicts, gamblers and cartoon dogs

Rock

Rare Americans is one of those bands that read the rule book cover-to-cover and then set it alight. They’ve repeatedly proved their pioneering mentality with both their innovative pop punk sound and their high-production music videos. (Of course, it does help that frontman James Priestner owns small production company where the band are based in Vancouver.) Since the band dropped their first music video over a month ago for ‘Cats Dogs & Rats’, they’ve dropped a new one each week. With their self-titled album release looming (Aug 10), we’ve decided to do a run down of their incredible visuals.

CATS, DOGS & RATS

Is about choices, decisions, and the company we keep. How seemingly small choices can become life altering, and how groups of authority influence us all.”

‘Cats, Dogs & Rats’ ticks all the boxes of a pop-punk anthem without regurgitating the tried and tested formula. The pioneers playfully disregard the genre’s tropes, opting for acoustic guitar and horns as their weapons of choice and incorporating a love of hip-hop.

The colourful video was created by Brooklyn-based animator Harry Tietelman (Killer Mike of Run The Jewels).

MOSS PARK

“Is the story of Toronto’s infamous Moss Park, and the people who inhabit it. Drugs, booze, addiction, and people just trying to stay alive.”

Plagued by issues of drug overdoses, homelessness, and crime, Moss Park has made headlines recently due to unprecedented attempts to tackle the Opioid crisis. Rare Americans’ timely cut seems to be from the perspective of a rough sleeper with a drug addiction, who can’t remember ‘if I was just fucked up or abused’. The lyrics read like a harrowing documentation into life in Moss Park, especially with front man James Priestner’s surly delivery. His typical hip-hop influenced phrasing and half-spoken vocals are backed by an upbeat, unaffected jaunt which possibly mimics the attitudes of residents that have become desensitized to the emergency over the years. The bleakness of the crisis is emphasised with the video’s black and white hue and candid shots of the park’s inhabitants.

BALMORAL HOTEL

“Is a song about a drug addicted woman who can’t kick her habit, knowing that every use could bring the end. She ends up living at Vancouver’s infamous Balmoral Hotel, pulling tricks and taking hits.”

Indie Crush contributor Callum Oliver said:

The track is complemented by the hazy soft-focus of its video, mirroring the lyrical references to drinking and drugging until you’re “numb in the face”. This is heightened by the video’s drab monochrome giving way to an eerie swaying blue that slips in and out of slow motion during the intoxication sequences. Although it all ends, with dispiriting inevitability, with footage of the band playing in a bar, this traditionalism is at least cushioned by the narrative caveat of the performance being filtered through the unreliable perspective of the video’s protagonist.

PAY ME BACK

“Is the story of a professional athlete turned conman who lost all his money from lavish spending. He ended up conning his own adoptive mother out of her house, after she raised and nurtured him from a young age. Not gonna tell you who though, see if you can figure it out!”

As far as Rare Americans’ songs and videos go, ‘Pay Me Back’ takes the biscuit for the most on-the-nose approach. The chorus chant of “you fucking idiot, you fucking gambler…pay me back/pay me back,” is mimed by a cast of misfit characters around a blackjack table, waggling their fingers in the face of the antagonist. After the hard hitting narrative of ‘Balmoral Hotel’, this is the boys at their most outrageous and entertaining.

I VS I

“This is a song about living between your own ears, feeling lost, and finding the courage and self-belief to stand up for yourself.”

Arguably, the video for ‘I vs I’ is the most generic. At the centre of the narrative is the typical down-and-out teenage and the familiar skate park setting, both of which make the basis for countless pop punk videos. But, ride it out till the end and you’ll be surprised by a dramatic cliff hanger, which left us wondering if there’s a final chapter to this video series. Even when the band touch on stereotypes and well-worn ideas, they never fail to put a twist on the traditional.

Rare Americans’ self-titled album is due out August 10.

Follow Rare Americans:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-919911504       

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzCTW3k3_ItdqxdVaeXn2IA

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RareAmericansFP

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/rareamericans/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rareamericans/          

Website:  www.rareamericans.com   

Advertisements

Fergus McKay and Nothing Concrete Squeeze onto Double Decker Bus in New Video!

Blues, Folk, singer songwriter

Definitely a case of standing room only onboard this bus as Fergus McKay and his band, Nothing Concrete, perform their latest single, Old Black Crow, in the vehicle which has been reappropriated as a theatre. With an all-female tap-dancing brass section and a rip-roaring tale of derring-do as witnessed by a by-standing crow, this is close to uncategorisable and all the better for it.

Soundcloud: http://www.soundcloud.com/fergus-mckay

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3TpvO9BbsFcP0MOJAO0Cwg

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/nothingconcrete1      

Twitter: @bandolinofergus

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/fergusmckay/   

Website: http://www.nothing-concrete.com       

Heronimus Fin prescribe their seventies-influenced rock with ‘The Pharmacist’

Rock

Seventies-influenced alt rockers, Heronimus Fin, have released a brand new video for ‘The Pharmacist’. The track is taken from the forthcoming concept album of the same name, which follows the tragic life of an individual addicted to prescription drugs.

Having released a handful of albums, the five-piece have honed their sound to a tee on this fifth effort. Still with regular flashes of their typically English eccentricities and patchouli-psych, their sound is now fleshed out with monolithic Sabbath-esque riffs: part psych; part prog; part cosmic rock.

The band have regularly featured highly in Record Collector Magazine’s list of the 500 Most Collectible Artists (outstripping everyone from Roger Waters to The White Stripes), it will come as no surprise that Heronimus Fin have once again pulled out all the stops with the physical release of their album. Rock on the Radar recently interviewed the band about the upcoming physical releases and neat gimmicks in store.

Watch the video for ‘The Pharmacist’ here:

 

Follow Heronimus Fin:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/heronimus-fin

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/17i4o4xxfwL5wXnXBEJmKw

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjX1cFmLWgb-E6DRM0o3X3w

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HeronimusFin/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HeronimusFin

Website: http://www.gardenrecords.co.uk/heronimus-fin

 

The Statue Thieves – “12-Page Letter”, Live

Blues, live, Psychedelic, Rock

The Statue Thieves album, Laniakea is now out, but for further evidence of the slinky blues-psych prowess, check out the live in the studio footage below. 12-Page Letter appears on the album, a serpentine crawl through the murky undergrowth.

https://www.thestatuethieves.com/laniakea

 

Saint Mars shine a light on children isolated through bullying with ‘Ocean Blues’ video

Rock

Saint Mars have unveiled a brand new video for Ocean Blues [Acoustic Version].

The visual sees guest vocalist Tryzdin Grubbs performing alone on a stage in front of pastel-striped boards that read ‘Love’. The makeshift backdrop, along with the polished wooden stage, mimics the setting of a talent show that has long since finished.

Tryzdin’s seismic vocal performance narrates the plot of a young boy isolated in his home and school life, haunted by shadows. Eventually, the grey-hued surroundings are swapped for lush forest greenery when the boy appears as an adult to meet the person who promising to bring peace to his demons.

Saint Mars are gearing up for the release of ‘Celesteville’, due out later this year. The concept of the album is centered on the true story of one 13 year-old boy’s tragic experience as a result of sustained bullying. The band enlisted the vocals of viral sensation Tryzdin to give authenticity to the tracks sung by the protagonist, little realising that Tryzdin himself has suffered significantly as a result of bullying.

Follow Saint Mars:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/saint_mars

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJDziNXZFtNpmd_BIZ1z_EA

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SAINT.MARS.OFFICIAL/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcDarcange?edit=true

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/saint.mars/

Website: https://www.saintmars.net

Satellite Ravens have gone bananas on new video ‘AfterThoughts’

Psychedelic

If you thought Satellite Ravens‘ music was intoxicating, wait until you see the trippy video for ‘AfterThoughts’. The single, lifted from debut record ‘The Equinox‘, has been paired with kaleidoscopic visuals of humans, landscapes, animals and mostly, bananas.

True-to-form, the video is as weird, wonderful and psychedelic as Satellite Ravens’ music. The track is a collage of late noughties indie-psych, book ended by psychedelic cacophonies. Think Empire of the Sun, MGMT, and Passion Pit if they were less mainstream and more experimental.

Satellite Ravens recently told Indie Crush about LA life, the voyage into adulthood, and bass.

Follow Satellite Ravens:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/satellite_ravens

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/4DWM8jTdcf2wyyWt3a7SzV

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuJAay056LCLnCks9ua9Duw?view_as=subscriber

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/satellite.ravens/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/satelliteravens

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/satellite.ravens/

Website: https://satelliteravens.com/

Hope Lovina demonstrates her natural prowess on-screen and in the booth with ‘Wifey’

Pop

At just sixteen-years-old, Hope Lovina is bidding to be bashment’s next star. Born and raised in Manchester, the teen discovered her singing and songwriting abilities at just six years old. During the last ten years, she’s had honed her songwriting craft and fine-tuned her voice, while culminating a clutch of tracks from numerous recording sessions. It wasn’t long until Hope inked a deal with teen initiative label Indie Muscle, who have released her first offering ‘Wifey’.

Taking notes from the aforementioned bashment artists, and borrowing from R&B divas such as the late Aliyah, Hope Lovina has emerged with a sound that’s familiar yet fresh. The song arrives with a video, directed by J Benjamin, and shot in Camden Market. The clip shows Hope flanked by dancers, demonstrating her ease in front of the camera, as well as in the vocal booth.

 

 

 

 

Watch Discrete’s new video for ‘C.G.C.’

rap

So Sharp Productions and Director WhoIsGFX presents Discrete‘s new video for C.G.C. The singer, rapper, and producer hails from the Bay Area of Northern California, where he grew up skateboarding and penning tongue-twisting rhymes. The triple threat takes inspiration from the likes of Mac Dre, Keyshia Cole, E-40 and G-Eazy, but his prolific output has seen his lyrical style likened to Drake and Kanye West.

‘C.G.C.’ is the latest track to be lifted from recent album ‘Let Me Remind You’ which dropped back in January. Watch the video below:

 

Read more about Discrete on Urban Radar.

Follow Discrete:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/alwaysdiscrete/tracks

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/embed/qFrxd_VzDLo

Twitter: @alwaysdiscrete  

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/always_discrete/

Website: https://sosharpproductions.com/artists

 

The Statue Thieves Release Symbolism-Loaded Video to “Jacob’s Well”

Blues, Rock

Fortunately, as well as nods to life, death and all points in-between, blues/psych rock band, The Statue Thieves, have managed to make a mini-masterpiece which requires no thinking caps whatsoever to enjoy, should taking the easy route feel more enticing. Apparently the video was a one-shot piece which plays in reverse. That’s quite enough to get your head around for starters. Check it out below.

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/thestatuethieves

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/5wHg2AqewiKhluNdAFamMV

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thestatuethieves/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/statuethieves

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thestatuethieves/

Website: http://www.thestatuethieves.com/

 

See The Statue Thieves Live:

19th June – The Victoria, London (album launch show)

21st June – The Railway Hotel, Southend

23rd June – Bar Loco, Newcastle

24th June – The Cannon, Milton Keynes

Californian-born Hitha shares uplifting video for 'Standing Up With Pride'

Pop prospect Hitha shares uplifting video for ‘Standing Up with Pride’

Pop, singer songwriter

Hailing from California has it’s advantages. For 13-year-old Hitha, it means that sun-kissed positivity is inherent to her music.

Recent release ‘Standing Up with Pride’ is case and point. Like many teenagers, Hitha has found the demands on her time overwhelming. From homework to peer pressure, sometimes it just seems like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel.

This is a single which addresses this and gives listeners of all ages a message of hope – that by focusing on what you want to achieve in life, you can use a positive mentality to overcome any hurdle. With a video which cleverly uses black and white imagery transforming into a world of colour when Hitha realises her potential.

Read what Hitha has to say about the track over on The Pop Playlister.

Watch the full video for ‘Standing Up With Pride’ here.

Follow Hitha:

Website: https://www.hitha.me/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HithaMusic

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hitha_music/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ByHitha