Tag Archives: music video

MaXXXimum – “Destroy the Dancefloor” [VIDEO]

Meet Max Kline, a London-based electro producer who goes by the stage name MaXXXimum. Recently, he released a new track entitled “Destroy the Dancefloor” which I have taken a serious liking to. It has even supplanted The Shrugs‘ nearly two week hold of my cell phone’s ringtone. I once read, of MaXXXimum’s basslines, that the “XXX” in his name was appropriate because his basslines were so dirty.

Klein has been garnering local attention and has been featured on BBC’s “Introducing…,” which strives to support unsigned, undiscovered, and under the radar artists. You can hear a portion of that segment here. For you viewing pleasure, Klein has also created a video, a video mashup of sorts, for “Destroy the Dancefloor.” Set to the backdrop of the vampiric thriller The Lost Boys, Kline creates an audial thriller of his own, which you can download here free of charge.

Kyle C. Stilley | Marketing Strategist | @stillz | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC | kyle@musicwithoutlabels.com

 

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Other Lives – “For 12” [VIDEO]

other livesOther Lives take the spacey vibe of their latest hit “For 12”, off their 2nd album Tamer Animals, to Mars in this incredible video journey through outerspace. The Oklahoma-based band’s added strings really build a perfect ambient setting to the enhanced digital effects of a spaceranger exploring the terrain to the forward sounds of western alternative bliss. The group consists of 5 members who play the said instruments as follows:

Jesse Tabish (piano, guitar, lead vocals)
Josh Onstott (bass, organ, Backing vocals)
Jenny Hsu (cello, piano, Backing Vocals)
Colby Owens (drums)
Jonathon Mooney (piano,violin, guitar)

You can catch these guys on tour now pumpin’ the release of their new album through TBD Records. Currently on the east coast, the group has a show in Asheville, NC where they will then be making there way out west by the end of the summer. Tamer Animals is set to release in the UK in Late August of this year.

Free download: “for 12”

Arsonist & Dot The One – “Let My Tape Rock” [Music Video]

This is the newest from Philly rapper Arsonist feat. Dot The One and Jimmy Konway. The Biggie sample on this beat is dope. Off of Arsonist’s new mixtape Human Torch Swagger hosted by Dj R to the Izza, this is “Let My Tape Rock”:

Dot The One has really been gettin busy lately, readying up for his new mixtape Above. Ground. Level., to be released on July 6th. This will be the must-have underground hip hop mixtape of the year, if you want my opinion. Here’s a little preview of what you can expect on A.G.L.:

Download the full song here

Here’s a sick freestyle a cappella from Dot The One too. This mixtape is looking promising.

Stay tuned for more on Dot. I’ve been sayin it for a while, but really, it’s just a matter of time with this dude. Crazy talent.

– Dante Cullari CEO Beat-Play, LLC

Shapes – “I’m OK” [VIDEO]

Shapes, an NYC-outfit, self -describes as “Gutter-glam, A true melding of pop and punk, sans penis and fart jokes. Brutally honest and ugly lyrics set to undeniably poppy music. Songs of love and death. This music is the sound of yearning. An earnest, sober (sometimes… but not too often), & mournful acceptance that life will never be what you want it to, tempered by an undying youthful exuberance and acceptance of nothing. It is the sound of going down drinking and swinging. SHAPES, will forever go, anything, but gentle(!), into that good night.”

I enjoyed hearing Shapes for the first time, partially because it was refreshing to hear something different, but mainly because it’s just a pretty awesome song. The video invokes nausea because of the camera perspective, but if you close your eyes (or minimized the browser) that feeling will be alleviated. You can check out their facebook page or follow them @shapesband for more information.

Kyle C. Stilley | Marketing Strategist | @stillz | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC | kyle@musicwithoutlabels.com

Rebel Ramon – “They Can’t Stop Me” [VIDEO]

From an early age, Brandon Ramon was attracted to sports and Hip-hop music. He can recall listening to songs like “It Takes Two” by Rob Base and Rakim’s “Microphone Fiend.”

While his passion for hip-hop grew through childhood, his calling was not manifested until post-adolescence.

Brought up in the city of Richmond, Virginia, Brandon used events from his tumultuous upbringing, to fuel his music, even adopting the alias of the “Voice of Struggle.”

There’s something that just authentic about listening to Rebel Ramon. His music depicts the hardships of living in the inner-city while also presenting positive messages throughout. Recently, I randomly stumbled upon his latest video, “They Can’t Stop Me,” which presumably will also be featured on Rebel Ramon’s “Brainstorm EP” that is set to launch at the end of June. I’m looking forward to hearing more from this young hip-hop artist.

You can follow his tweets @RebelRamon.

Kyle C. Stilley | Marketing Strategist | @stillz | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC | kyle@musicwithoutlabels.com

The Wonder Years – “Melrose Diner” [VIDEO]

Narrative: Backyard wrestler The Lone Wolf must defeat the The Evil Kraag to get his title and his girl back.

Performance: The band plays in the ring.  Singer Dan ‘Soupy’ Campbell performs from the audience and in closeup.

Song: Top shelf pop-punk from one of the best bands in the scene.  If you haven’t heard The Upsides, buy it here immediately.  No one’s more relatable, honest or hardworking and the songs are instant classics.

Why You Should Watch It:   The band is amazing and the effort is noteworthy – it’s a great example of applying a record’s themes (never giving up, victory through persistence) to a video concept and having some fun with it.  The video’s just a little too scattered to be a classic.

“Melrose Diner” seems to want to make up for its lack of flash by overloading it with content. The video starts as a wrestling promo, then briefly takes on the feel of a movie trailer before going into the song and Lone Wolf’s battles.  The action is frantic, but moves so fast it’s hard to follow until the final fight.  The video’s flat, unlit look is spiced up with filters throughout, and it works with the back to basics energy of the song but isn’t a highlight.  So why the recommendation?  It’s a perfect example of what friends can do with some perseverance and camaraderie – just like the album itself.  Everyone involved is clearly having the time of their lives, and that goes a long way.

Also, you’ll want to know these guys before they blow up.  They’re readying a new release, “Suburbia, I’ve Given You All And Now I’m Nothing,” that’s shaping to be as much or more of a touchstone than “The Upsides.”  Check out one of the new tracks below:

“Local Man Ruins Everything”

Honest, hooky punk, an album named after a Ginsburg poem, and a Simpson’s reference as a track name?  Sold.

Chris Cullari | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles |@Chris_Cullari | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

Hollerado – “Americanarama” [VIDEO]

Number two: this time, a video from our neighbors to the north.

Narrative: Oh, my God!  Are they all trapped in boxes?

Performance: Jittery, jerky, all in one ridiculous take.

Song: Awesome.  Buy and bump the album here, or from your online retailer of choice.  “Juliette” is one of my favorite tracks from last year.

Canada, you’ve made up for Simple Plan.

Why You Should Watch It: OK Go aren’t the only band experimenting with awesome viral videos.  While it’s easy to shoot your friends being stupid on a Handicam, slap your song under it, and call it “viral,” you gotta give people something they’ve never seen before if you want your virus to actually infect anyone.  It’s gotta be something people watch and immediately watch again to figure out how it was done, then pass along out of amazement.  While the concept here isn’t as pure as a lot of OK Go’s work, you gotta figure Hollerado’s resources were a little more limited.  The strongest moments definitely come towards the end as perspective is played with, but the video starts strong and never really lets up.  The only real fault with the video is that it suffers from what any video with a “one take” concept suffers from: very little energy.  For as spastic and complex as all the movement within the frame is, it just a “motion picture” in the most literal sense of the phrase (something Kanye recently experimented with as well, though he had some stupid name for it).  Still, this is a case of pure substance over style, proving you don’t need a lot of money to make something awesome, just a lot of practice.

**Last minute update** Click the picture at the top of the article to visit the band’s website and see their NEW video for “Got to Lose.”  It’s another choreographed wonder – slicker and sexier, too!

Chris Cullari | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles |@Chris_Cullari | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

Goot – “Pretty Eyes” [VIDEO]

Music videos are in a weird place right now.  No one really airs them, and as artists make less and less money, the bells and whistles of slick promotional materials become harder to justify.  Can’t knock it; that’s how it should be.  A musician’s music should always come first, but as a guy who loves the artform and enjoys making them, it’s kind of sad.  Artists still want nice videos, they just don’t want them to cost anything either, leaving us film/video/moving picture makers constantly challenged to turn out eye-catching work for free or with minimal resources.   The bright side is that the people who are left doing it are as passionate as the musicians.  We’re a slightly disturbed bunch, ready to put our rent on the line to do what we love.

This ongoing column will highlight videos for/by/with/from independent bands and directors making the most of what they have to kick your eyes and ears out yo’ head and earn a spot on your Twitter feed.

Narrative: Alex Goot meets a wide-eyed faerie and squires her through an episode of Dawson’s Creek.

Performance: Goot backlit at a piano.  It’s revealed he’s playing to the faerie at the end.  Meh.

Song: Cheez-Whiz pop.  For crackers, etc.  As far as talented youngins go though, Goot is one of the best.  He almost makes “Fireflies” bearable.  Almost.

He also plays all his own instruments and produces all his own tracks:

Kid’s been in the game since MySpace was popular (learn more about that here) and has not slowed down.  When the industry comes knocking, he’s going to make an amazing songwriter and producer if nothing else.

Why You Should Watch It: Because holy crap we live in a day and age where a camera available at Best Buy can be pointed at just about anything and make it look like   It’s a little miracle called the Rebel t2i, and along with its older brothers the 7D and 5D, you’ll be seeing its name in this column pretty often so click here and learn a little about the camera line changing micro-budget videomaking.  Granted, director Kurt Schneider has a solid eye and knows how to use locations, available light and attractive people to his advantage.  Images like the ones at 1:03, 1:18, and 3:23 don’t happen by accident.  They’re not beautiful in the “we spent thirty minutes composing this frame” way, but they feel honest.  They pluck at a nostalgic place in our brains, give us the feeling we’ve been there, like a handheld Norman Rockwell. The budgetary limitations are obvious – not everything is lit well, and there are occasionally double and triple shadows that look cheap – but for the most part, it’s a cute doc-style video that features some prettier than average pictures and will play well to its target audience.

Chris Cullari | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles |@Chris_Cullari | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

Act As If [VIDEO]

“Los Angeles will not miss the two of us/No way.”

With that line, on a track halfway through their debut album “There’s a Light,” indie-pop band Act As If lets it be known they’re ready to move on.

Coming from a lesser group, I’d be inclined to roll my eyes.  Bands clog the bars and clubs in this city, praying to the gods of fame and fortune while playing music that probably won’t get them home never mind a bigger stage.

Of course, songwriter/vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Peter Verdell isn’t even singing about getting big.  In keeping with the rest of the album’s ten tracks he’s singing about something much more personal, but after listening to the whole record, it’s almost impossible for those words not to take on a different meaning: this band is gonna blow up.

The secret?  Surprise, surprise – it’s the songs.  This is a record that follows in the rather large footsteps of Death Cab and Jimmy Eat World.  It’s a record that name drops Sleater-Kinney and “Siamese Dream.”  It aims high and Verdell brings his A game.

The tracks are big, they breathe, they swell and fill rooms.   The hooks are there, but they’re clever – not the nursery rhyme chants that so many pop-inclined musicians fall back on.  It’d be exciting enough to hear this kind of music on the second or third album of an established group, but it’s something special for a debut that was entirely self-produced and recorded by Verdell himself (with the exception of bass provided by bandmate Derrick Wong).  The drums are crisp, the guitars sparkle like diamonds, and the vocals run smooth over those shiny rocks.

Best of all, each song carves its own identity.  There’s a longing that haunts the record and ties it together sonically and emotionally, but the tracks never blur. The group even sticks the landing with “Hit the Ground,” which sports a hook that comes in second only to the album’s opener “There’s a Light,” (which was one of my favorite tracks of 2010 and should be listened to – loudly – right here.)

“Los Angeles will not get the best of us.”

Maybe not, but it’ll be a damn shame to see you go.

Below, the video for “Old Souls” offers up a sparkle of hope as a sea of yellow paint in a world of old tragedies:

Chris Cullari | Beat Play Ambassador Los Angeles | @ChriswithMWL| Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

Dot – “The World is Not Enough” [Music Video Premier]

Dot completely killed this track, not to mention this NYC based video is dope a fck! This is a classic right here.

Look out for more from Dot on the way soon. His new mixtape A.G.L. (Above Ground Level), featuring this track, is set out to release in April. They don’t call him the one for nothing. Stay updated on everything Dot’s doin here on fb.

Posted by: Dante Cullari CEO Beat-Play