Rooster Roundabout: This week’s music highlights
I can still recall hearing Red House Painters for the first time while watching Excess Baggage, starring Alicia Silverstone and Benicio del Toro. I remember hearing their tune “All Mixed Up,” its mellifluous notes revolving around what was probably a forgettable scene—because I don't remember what was happening on screen. And now the band is gearing up to release a box set, featuring the band's first four records (including Down Colorful Hill and Ocean Beach). That'll get released by 4AD on April 21, so mark them calendars. And just for fun, have a listen to the aforementioned ditty below.
Antony Hegarty, mostly known for her work in Antony & The Johnsons, is gearing up to release a new LP under the guise ANOHNI. The record features production from Antony, as well as Hudson Mohawke and Oneohtrix Point Never, and there's no release date as of yet. The album will be titled HOPELESSNESS, and on a Facebook announcement, the singer-songwriter said, “It's an electronic record with some sharp teeth.” Guess we'll have to wait and hear what that sounds like.
After their little faux pas—you know, releasing their album for free in its entirety via iTunes—U2 is trying to pick up the pieces and move on ... by releasing a video for album track “Every Breaking Wave,” which comes off their latest (but definitely not greatest) record Songs of Innocence. Then again, I am biased because I don't care for the band as a whole. Sue me. Regardless, have a looksie at the music video below (you know, if you really want to).
Talk about the past and present converging. One of Patti Smith's greatest songs (“Land”) was recently used in the film Catch Me Daddy, a new thriller by filmmaker Daniel Wolfe. In the scene, actress Sameena Jabeen Ahmed dances to what I consider to be one of the greatest songs in rock 'n' roll. But that's just me. Another thing to note is that musician FKA Twigs choreographed the dance sequence. You might look at the video and think the dancing isn't very special, but anyone doing the mashed potato and the alligator is okay in my book. And according to NME, the director said this scene is “the heart of the film.” So there you have it. Head to NME to view the scene and to read more about the film and FKA Twigs' involvement.
I didn't know much about Warpaint before I reviewed last year's self-titled record. And it was that introduction into their dark, atmospheric oeuvre that has prompted me to maintain some form of interest in the group. That said, they've just released a new song (titled “No Way Out”). The tune doesn't seem to be attached to any formal release; however, Consequence of Sound points out that the YouTube description states this is the first of “a series of new songs being released this year.” So that's something to look forward to. Now skip on down below to hit the play button. 'Cause why not?
Brandon Flowers, mostly known to large sums of people as the dude who fronts The Killers, has announced on his website that he's coming out with a second solo record (The Desired Effect) on May 18. That follows 2010's Flamingo. Not much has been written about it thus far, other than it being produced by Ariel Rechtshaid. So if ya wanna know more, keep reading the bloggity blogs.
My introduction to the work of blues legend Bessie Smith was seeing a video of her rendition of “St. Louis Blues” from 1929—which was apparently her only film appearance—during an African-American lit class that forever changed my view of literature: partly because it introduced me to Toni Morrison. Now HBO is gearing up to air a biopic about the famed singer on May 16, and that'll star Queen Latifah in the titular role. The film also stars Mo'Nique as blues singer Ma Rainey. Let's just say this should be good. Keep an eye out for that, and view the incomparable Smith below.
Move over “Let it Go” because I think Rihanna's gunning for your position with her new track “Towards the Sun,” which is the lead single from the new feature film by Dreamworks, Home. I should say, first and foremost, that I have a severe dislike for Rihanna. Granted, you might ask, “Why write about her new song?” Because I believe that in music journalism, every artist deserves a chance to have their new tunes put out there for mass consumption ... even if they're not groundbreaking. So head to Stereogum to hear that new Rihanna track, while I sit in the corner, hoping and praying she'll return to her “SOS” and “Pon de Replay” days.
Like most people, my only introduction to The Darkness was their track “I Believe in a Thing Called Love.” Other than that, they never really held my attention, but their headbanging throwback tunes have still managed to capture a loyal fan base. So I'm sure there are a large number of folks who are excited at the prospect of a new record by the group. And to get said fans pumped, they’ve come out with a video for the new ditty “Barbarian,” which comes off their forthcoming release Last of Our Kind. That hits stores and online markets on June 1. So keep an eye out for that, and have a looksie at the video below.