The Franz go to Los Angeles, Ryan Adams goes to London and Fever Ray to the underworld. All and more in this week's Small Screen Stories.
I know I mention it on air a lot, but let me tell you again: I simply cannot wait for the new Franz Ferdinand album to come out. I wasn't really super into them the last time 'round, but there's something about the mysterious, slinky sounds of "Ulysses" that make me crazy. In that good way. And speaking of crazy, that's exactly what Alex Kapranos' head is full of in his newest video. I'm glad that Franz are taking a departure from their relatively good spirited art-student image and taking the plunge to the dark side. Strung-out, paranoid but still rocking his white leather boots, Alex takes a walk on the wild side of Los Angeles. And someone ends up in a dryer. And lamps are used as drumkits. Oh, to be Scottish and on vacation!
You're never, you're never, you're never going home!
There's so many of these blogs now that do "sessions" with musicians that are passing through town. I think it started with the French Blogotheque, who did their take-away shows and filmed Grizzly Bear crooning on a street in Paris (among other places). In London, the Black Cab Sessions rule them all - here, musicians and bands get crammed into a moving vehicle and asked to perform a few jams. Funnily, Ryan Adams is the first one to request the driver go in a straight line. Good for him, bad for us - it's so much more fun when they're falling all over the place while trying to strum the chords! Next time you're waiting at a light, have a look at who's in the car next to you - it might just surprise you!
Anyway, enjoy this, since the bespectacled troubadour just announced that he's quitting music. Can we take him seriously? Probably not. But we might not get to see things like this for a while:
I'm rarely impressed by animated videos - usually I'd rather see the artist than some computer-generated figure on my screen. But in the case of Beirut's new video for "La Llorona" ("the crier"), I really love the artwork. It's made to look like watercolors come to life, it's not trying to be crazy CGI graphics. It's old-school and simple and very charming. We travel to a little South American town, or maybe not, maybe we are in Europe, or the Middle East - all I know is, there's donkeys and cobblestone streets and it reminds me of the illustrations in kid's books. Let our tour guide, the little black dog, take you on his journey:
In this oldie but goody, Feist shows us what moving sidewalks in airports were really made for. It's not walking! Shot on location in London by Patrick Daughters - now you guess: Heathrow, Stansted or Gatwick?
Fever Ray is the new project by Karen Dreijer, half of the Knife. The Swedish hermit continues to frighten with her newest creative incarnation - not just musically! This video for "If I had a heart" is just insane - so many references, so much imagery. In a late night boat ride (down river Styx?), children are being transported deep into an underworld. Perhaps because their family has been killed in their mansion? What do the triangle signs on the house mean? Why are there dead people in an empty swimming pool? Is this a cult? Oh, I love it -Endless entertainment, albeit terrifying. Imagine if Andreas Nilsson directed a feature and Karen Dreijer wrote it - I wouldn't be able to stop watching.