Category Archives: video

Blacklodge + em.g – Unknown

Did you ever play around with the iTunes Visualizer? Back in the day, before we all gave up managing messy libraries of MP3s in favor of all-you-can-eat streaming, Apple’s flagship desktop music app contained a cool feature to generate trippy video controlled by the audio. I much preferred watching that to angry pundits or reality shows. Modular synth devotee Blacklodge (not so secretly DCDIT’s Alex Tebeleff) and vocal collaborator em.g (Margaret Gilmore) expand on that tradition with the new music video for “Unknown”, the long finish of their recent EP Will You Be Reduced from Blight Records. Baltimore based electro-acoustic composer Rob Neubauer delivers some remarkable abstract visuals that deserve viewing on a large screen TV. Blacklodge + em.g open for Kelly Lee Owens at Union Stage this Sunday night.

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The Sea Life – NY Models

Jon Weiss’s jangly indie rock band The Sea Life has been the anchor of his label Babe City Records for many years. We last heard from them as a trio with the cathartic music video for “Red Eyes” from last year’s self-titled album. Now, just as you were asking yourself “Hey, I wonder what’s up with The Sea Life?”, they’re back with a new lineup and new songs this Friday night at American University, providing the hometown support for Video Age from New Orleans and Montreal’s Anemone. Recently Babe City quietly released this music video for “NY Models”, a catchy tune about life’s transitions from their 2013 EP Transitions. The VHS-quality retro style gives us the feeling of looking back on good old times from years past.

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Don’t Stay Home This Weekend 3/16

DC, here are the best #DCmusic reasons to not stay home this weekend, in chronological order:

Friday 3/16:
This one’s easy, people. Des Demonas leads the Black Cat showcase of DC bands that didn’t make the trek to SXSW in search of stardom. Go see Quattracenta, Cool People, Passing Phases say “FXCK SXSW” and remember, “The South Will Never Rise Again.”

Saturday 3/17:
Slash Run offers two excellent vocal-drive indie rock bands Saturday night. Bleach Bones and ROM are both hidden DC gems that might just satisfy you even more than the Run’s buzzworthy burgers.

Sunday 3/18:
The Washington Women In Jazz Festival always features a strong lineup of the wide variety in the DC jazz scene. The 2018 season wraps up Sunday night at Rhizome with Sarah Hughes‘ Coy Fish improvisational ensemble. The show celebrates Hughes’s debut album and also features her original prose and visual art.


Shy Glizzy – Keep It Goin’

You may know him as Shy Glizzy, you may know him as El Jefe, but either way the head of the Glizzy Gang just dropped a new music video for his army of fans. “Keep It Goin'” comes from Quiet Storm, Glizzy’s late 2017 album and a reference to the smooth & sultry R&B radio genre pioneered right here at DC’s WHUR in the late 70s. Both this song and the music video feature Glizzy’s trademark mix of buttery smooth production and street-level thug life, as armed and hooded thieves attempt to break into his plush mansion.


Bad Moves – Cool Generator

If the world worked the way it should, Bad Moves would be crushing FM radio with their approachable pop-punk songs. The supergroup featuring the Max Levine Ensemble’s David “Spoonboy” Combs, Katie Park of Hemlines, Daoud Tyler-Ameen of Art Sorority for Girls and Emma Cleveland of Bad Moves are back with “Cool Generator”, the lead single from their upcoming full length album on Don Giovanni Records. The band has a lot to say about the lyrical content of this song:

We’ve often introduced this song as being about how the art and fashion produced by marginalized people, people of color and queer people specifically, are the source material most often appropriated by the mainstream entertainment industry. And yet, those communities themselves are the most likely to be at risk — of poverty, police violence, mental illness, et cetera.

The New York Times Popcast did a great interview recently on the subject of rap stars being targeted by the criminal justice system, which gets at some of the same ideas that originally inspired us. Kenneth J. Montgomery, a criminal laywer, talks about the entertainment narrative of the “young black dangerous guy,” and he says, “Everybody benefits off of that, except the people that generate it.” Basically, there are cultural producers who are happy to profit off of a criminalized version of black identity for its entertainment value, while doing nothing to protect those cultural generators from a system that disproportionately targets them.

As far as synthesizing that complicated social dynamic into the lyrics of a power-pop party jam, we did our best. It’s a song about how certain people take the markers of culture and benefit from them without being put at risk, and how, when we consume a commoditized version of culture uncritically, we ignore the social precarity of the people who generate it in the first place.

Watch the VHS-grade music video courtesy of the multi-talented Combs and make plans to catch their post-SXSW tour kickoff show at Union Stage on April 18th.


Flasher – Skim Milk

To get you caught up, Flasher is a post-punk supertrio featuring Taylor Mulitz of Priests, Daniel Saperstein of Bless and Emma Baker of Big Hush. Their debut EP and teaser 7″ on Sister Polygon Records got them lots of attention and tour gigs with Protomartyr and The Breeders last year. Their current tour with Ought takes them to SXSW, so now’s the time to tease their upcoming release on Domino Recording Company. “Skim Milk” is the album’s debut single, providing an urgent anthem for rebellion against nebulous future obligations with the refrain “No Future, No Fate”.


The CrossRhodes – Praying Prayers

Freddie Gray. Korryn Gaines. Sandra Bland. Eric Garner. The now-familiar names continue ricocheting throughout “Praying Prayers”, the new music video from The CrossRhodes from their 2017 album Footprints on the Moon. The powerhouse duo of Wes Felton and Raheem Devaughn remind us that “When the video was shot, 667 people were reportedly murdered by police officers since January 2016” in the intro to the Xaivia Inniss video providing a taste of dangerous life on the streets. With so many huge problems besetting Americans of all races, creeds and orientations, we crave art to show us what’s important and the consequences of inaction, even if solutions remain elusive. Check out their recent appearance at Bob Boilen’s Tiny Desk for a delicious mix of concert, spiritual service and motivational rally.

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BRNDA – House Show

BRNDA, the self-professed “Serious Band from Washington DC”, is back doing what they do best: releasing cassette tapes, touring far and wide, and promoting house shows. Bandmembers Leah Gage and Dave Lesser run the prominent DC house venues Bathtub Republic and 453 Florda, respectively, so naturally their new single “House Show” takes us through the glories of playing them, with misbehaving equipment, very friendly hosts and cool cool nights. If you were making a music video for this, would you include pics and video of some of the many many shows hosted by these distinguished individuals? Wouldn’t that make more sense than, well, potato chips? That’s exactly why Dave and Leah and Christian and Alex are in BRNDA, and the rest of us are sadly not. Pre-order BRNDA’s third release thanks for playing now before it drops on cassette March 30th courtesy Nashville’s Banana Tapes label, and wish them luck as their tour hits SXSW 2018.


Piramid Scheme – Regular Guy

After a string of releases under her own name, singer Lisa Said decided to rebrand. Adding guitarist Darren Day to her collaboration with drummer Andrew Toy led to the cheeky band name Piramid Scheme, whose double meaning relates to Said’s heritage as Egyptian-American. The band’s first single is an update of Said’s 2017 solo track “Regular Guy”, with a big classic rock style and sultry vocals reminiscent of Patti Smith. They recorded their debut EP Get Rich Quick Too at Arlington’s beloved studio Inner Ear with Don Zientara last December, soon to be released by Tall Short Records on April 27th. Director Scott Crawford of the DC punk documentary Salad Dazed and photographer Jim Saah captured the band’s recording session in this music video. College Park’s Milkboy Arthouse hosts the band’s next live gig on Tuesday March 20th along with Short Lives, Bad Robot Jones and Nashville’s Twen.

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David Goodfriend & Willie Barry – Hank Dietle’s Tavern Tribute

Hank Dietle’s Tavern was off the beaten path of the DC music scene. The vintage 1950s dive bar on Rockville Pike boasted the first liquor license in Montgomery County and a loyal following amongst fans of rockabilly, roots rock and cheap beer. Nothing good lasts forever, but a fire gutting the beloved establishment isn’t how such a landmark deserves to go out. Songwriters David Goodfriend of Goin’ Goin’ Gone and Willie Barry of The Rock-A-Sonics gave Hank’s a spirited musical send off while standing in the smoldering ruins of the bar, while Chip Py recorded and interspersed his photos taken over the years. Volunteer demolition and rebuilding are underway now, so throw a few bucks towards the official GoFundMe campaign and help restore a local legend.

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