dance

Soulful electronic from C.O.W. 牛 ft. Alxndr London: “Glitch”

C.O.W. 牛 always brings something a bit unexpected to the table, whether it’s sonic or visual. The German-Chinese electronic duo has an incredible way of merging beats with bizarrely rich visuals of gaudy indulgences. Characters in their videos are often decked out with over-the-top jewelry, moving in slow motion to whatever juicy track C.O.W. 牛 created. The most recent release, “Glitch”, was a major collaboration with both acclaimed electronic musician, Alxndr London, and dancer, Amie Georgsson Jammeh. Alxndr London just released his latest EP, 2023, and it’s already receiving a lot of attention. Clash says 2023 “merges murky electronics with future soul to create something incredible, and truly other-worldly.”

In my opinion (may be biased as I am a dancer myself), Swedish/German dancer, Amie, makes the video. Her movements are not inspired by the music, they make the music. Each jolt, pop and glitch comes from her body. Her freedom of movement mixes flawlessly with the wild beats; smooth and melancholic, sharp and natural. Amie had this to say about what dance means to her:

“Dance is something so essential to all living creatures, and I never really thought about why I do it. It just happens. Because why not. Why not express yourself through dance and movements. It’s just another language really. Another voice. And it opens up so many possibilities. Possibilities to express, explore and discover new things. It’s a great way to test the limits in all aspects of life.”

 

You can follow C.O.W. 牛 on Facebook, their official website and all those other ways we do social media.

Poignant music video from Unknown Mortal Orchestra: “First World Problem”

On the tail of the release of Uknown Mortal Orchestra’s newest album, Multi-Love in 2015, they’ve released a “stand-alone” single titled, “First World Problem.” The video depicts what appears to be a disputing couple who find themselves stretched between home and a barren land. They communicate through dance: violent, beautiful and raw.

The dancers are Kiani del Valle and Derek Schiesel, with Kiani del Valle as director along with James Lees. About the video del Valle says:

“With First World Problem, I aimed to create a dialogue between both art forms. I wanted the video to be the response to Ruban’s lyrics and musical melodies rather than showing literally what the song is saying. There are always two sides to one story and the video piece is her side of the story. I am a heavy fan of silent films and how unspoken language could add a second layer to the one we speak. The directorial collaboration with James Lees came really organically as we have been planning for a while to do something together. James is really good at storytelling and has a great eye, while I am more abstract and conceptual. Producer Jason Baum was the key element of magic, making everything happen gracefully.”

 

Catch the band touring this summer:

Wed. July 27 – Cambridge, MA @ The Sinclair
Thu. July 28 – Providence, RI @ Fete Ballroom
Sat. July 30th – New York, NY @ Central Park Summerstage
Sat. Aug. 13 – Eau Claire, WI @ Eaux Claires Festival
Wed. Aug. 17 – Paredes De Coura, Portugal @ Paredes de Coura
August 18-21 – Wales, United Kingdom @ Green Man Festival
Fri. August 19 – Hamburg, Germany @ Dockville
Fri. Aug. 26 – Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre
Sun. Aug. 28 – Portland, OR @ MusicFest NW (Project Pabst)
Tue. Aug. 30 – Petaluma, CA @ Lagunitas Brewing Company
Thu. Sept. 1 – Santa Monica, CA @ Santa Monica Pier
Fri. Sept. 2 – Berkeley, CA @ The Greek Theatre – UC Berkeley w/ Tame Impala
Sat. Sept 3 – Berkeley, CA @ The Greek Theatre – UC Berkeley w/ Tame Impala

 

Lovely video for The Tallest Man on Earth’s track, “Darkness of the Dream”

Little did I know Kristian Matsson of The Tallest Man on Earth knew what a tour jeté or a sissone were, let alone contemporary dance. To my surprise and delight, he can execute these ballet steps and adds a contemporary twist. He shares this secret talent of his in the music video for the track, “Darkness of the Dream”, off his most recent release, Dark Bird is Home. Matsson and two other female contemporary dancers push, pull, tangle and fly in what looks like a studio or ballroom while we catch glimpses of a wooded forest, and Matsson wandering through a dry and desolate almost Martian-like landscape. Beyond loving the incorporation of dance with this video, I also enjoy the fact that it leaves you wondering when he is dreaming. Is he dreaming while he’s dancing? Is he dreaming while walking alone through the desert? Does it matter?

The video was directed by Jakob Wallin and cinematography by Jesper Guldbrand.

Interview: New York’s funk, rap, dance, disco sensation, Outasight.

If you haven’t had the chance to dig into New York native, Outasight’s (Richard Andrew) most recent full length, Big Trouble, you should take a moment to introduce yourself before we go on. I think this music video will summarize the music and the man behind the music:

I emailed Outasight some questions inquiring about some of his favorite musicians, what’s unique about his newest release and what we can expect from him in the future. Check it out!

MFL: What kind of music were you exposed to as a child and did it influence your music today?

Richard Andrew (Outasight): From the time I could form memories, music was there. Records, CD’s, MTV, I was always surround by pop culture and music.  Everything from Prince, Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder to hip hop like A Tribe Called Quest, and classic rock like The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, I grew up believing music was a part of daily life, like eating food and drinking water.  

outasight

MFL: Along those lines, can you name five specific songs are albums (old or new!) that have shaped or inspired your style?

RA: Mos Def – Umi Says

ATCQ – Jazz

War- Galaxy

Stevie Wonder- Too High

D’angelo – Voodoo

 

 MFL: When and how did music become an integral part of your life?

RA: From the womb to the tomb my friend.  But I think I knew it was the life for me from the time I started singing my own songs when I was just a little kid.  Next thing I know I was sneaking into clubs and bars from age 13 in New York City to hear bands, djs, and eventually get on the microphone.  Feels like this life chose me and not the other way round.

MFL: Where did you grow up and if you didn’t grow up in New York, how did you end up there?

RA: I grew up in New York. Yonkers to be exact.  I’ve lived in Los Angeles for the past year and that’s what inspired my new album, Big Trouble.

 MFL: What’s your overall goal with your music? What do you want it to do to your fans? I know I literally can’t sit still while I listen to it.

RA: My goal this album was to make something funky, something that represented my 1st year of living in Los Angeles.  There’s a certain vibe and feel that comes with the lifestyle and I wanted the music to reflect that.  I just wanted to write great songs that I loved first, too, so I spent a bit more time on it then usual, but I think it was worth it.

outasight

MFL: What’s different about Big Trouble compared to your previously released music? I hear more funk in in Big Trouble than in your other EPs and full length.

RA: I think you nailed it.  I brought in the horns. I brought in the funk.  The process felt very natural to me, so I just kind of rolled with it.  

MFL: What songs on Big Trouble get you moving the most and where is your favorite place to dance? Pick one (or more if you can’t decide):

  1.    In the shower
  2.    In your car
  3.    On stage
  4.    Alone at your house
  5.  Out on the town with your friends

RA: “The Boogie!”  I mean it’s a dance in itself!   And always on stage!!!!

outasight

MFL: Can we expect a tour from you before the end of 2015 or are we going to have to wait until 2016?

RA: Since I released this album towards the end of the year, most likely the big tour will be in 2016, but I am on the road now doing fly in dates and festivals.  So catch me if you can.

MFL: With that, if you could pick any musician from the present to tour with, who would it be?

RA: James Brown.