Posts filed under ‘St. Vincent’
If you were lucky enough to catch Annie Clark (aka St. Vincent) during her recent “Love This Giant” tour last year with David Byrne, this new track, “Digital Witness”, may have a familiar ring. Yes, some of the big brassy sound (paired off with funky arcade disco sound) may remind you of their collaborative work — but that’s not the only thing. At the beginning of the show I attended, the first thing the audience heard from the pair was an announcement made by Byrne before the two appeared on stage. Bryne spoke into a backstage microphone, playfully, but seriously, telling the crowd that it was fine to take photos and video of the performance, but that at some point they may want to watch the show with “their own eyes”.
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This past year I was able to see Annie Clark on her “Love This Giant” tour with David Byrne. As fun and infectious as that experience was, there’s always a drawback to collaboration. Each artist’s skills and talents must meld, bend, blend and co-exist with the other. And in this case, St. Vincent’s guitar melts and shred-fests gave way to buckets of brass. I’m sure it was good for her to learn some stagecraft from a master, and pick up some creativity tips — but this new track, “Birth In Reverse”, announces in a bold fashion, why I’m glad to have St. Vincent back in all her unhinged, roughed-up, scuzzed-up guitar-gilded glory. This song plays like something from Marnie Stern, with little bursts or mini explosions of ingenuity, style, flash and full on force. Not sure if there’s a rationale behind this particular song being the first single release for the upcoming February 24th record. At first glance, I thought maybe the title was a significant hint at a return to an old sound. But it could simply be a cool way of announcing that the singular Annie is back. I’m also a big fan of the new cover, Annie sitting atop a pink throne like an Egyptian fro-Pharaoh, as if the photo were clipped off some Sun Ra record. – David D. Robbins Jr.
Former Talking Heads leader David Byrne combined last year with musician Jherek Bischoff on the latter’s song “Eyes”, a track off his album “Composed”. The album featured a number of other artists pairing off with Bischoff, including Zak Pennington of Parenthetical Girls, Caetano Veloso (also a Byrne musical interest), Craig Wedren of Shudder To Think, and many more. Now Byrne and Bischoff have a new video for “Eyes”, a song with wildly billowing orchestral strings that feels like a song that would fit right on Byrne’s own 1989 release, “Rei Momo”. Bischoff’s song has a strong Byrne vibe to it. It’s symphonic magic like an old Hollywood soundtrack, swaying with island breeziness, and showcasing Byrne’s playful love for biological obsession, like he did with his Red Hot + Rio cover of Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Aguas de Março” in 1996. (That biological listing of parts is also something his current touring mate Annie Clark of St. Vincent did too in her song “Marrow”). Byrne sings: “Eyes, a nose, a mouth / To make a face … / I’m fascinated how your eyes go north and south / Beyond the temperate zone / In the cool night air …” The video was directed by Georgia and Jordan Kinley. Note: I recently watched Byrne and St. Vincent perform in Des Moines, Iowa, and you can view some photos of the show in my twitter feed. You can also visit Byrne’s official site, which is really his journal, and read about a 30-mile bike ride he took in Iowa this month during his tour stop. – David D. Robbins Jr.
The duo of former Talking Heads singer David Byrne and Annie Clark of St. Vincent have released a new black-and-white video for the song, “Who”, from off their collaborative record “Love this Giant”. If there’s one thing I like better than St. Vincent, it’s Byrne doing a dance-shimmy down a rural road to a funky, jazzed-out track: “Who’ll be my valentine? / Who’ll lift this head of yours? / Who’ll share this tax-cab / Who wants to climb aboard?” Note: Image is a screen capture from the video. – David D. Robbins Jr.
You can stream the newest song by the collaborative duo of David Byrne and St. Vincent, “Weekend In the Dust”, at the official website for their upcoming record, “Love This Giant”. This follows a previously released stream for the jazzy-electronic album opener, “Who”. It’s also available for download once you pre-order the record, officially due out September. You can pre-order three different packages: digital only or digital and vinyl or digital and CD. – David D. Robbins Jr.
St. Vincent’s Annie Clark has a new video out for “Cheerleader”, a song off her 2011 record “Strange Mercy”, named one of Their Bated Breath’s Top 15 Albums of the year. “Strange Mercy” is just one stage in the continuing evolution of St. Vincent. At its most visionary moments, it’s luxuriating, flaunting, extravagant, lush, strange, and passionate. Watch the video above, featuring a gigantic Ron Mueck-ized Annie Clark, existing as artwork and mannequin. For those of you that read my feature piece on St. Vincent, this video is another example of the artist’s obsession with anatomical listing, as parts of her fall to the floor and break into pieces. The song itself is also about breaking out of a prescribed mode. Read a full-length review of “Strange Mercy” here, a Top 10 list of best live moments for St. Vincent, and any other posts from TBB about the band here. St. Vincent has also provided a Google link to stream “Strange Mercy” and download a free copy of “Cheerleader” here. Video directed by Hiro Murai. -- David D. Robbins Jr.
Today you can watch a live stream of St. Vincent’s concert at Webster Hall in New York City via the website MTV Hive. It’s part of its NYC Series and begins at 9 p.m. U.S. ET. St. Vincent will perform songs from her newest LP, “Strange Mercy”, along with songs from her previous records. Read an archived Their Bated Breath review of Strange Mercy here, my selections for the best five live St. Vincent videos online, and a feature-length essay called “A Savage Beauty”, written last year, about the career of Annie Clark. – David D. Robbins Jr.