Warpaint: New Song
When Jenny Lee Lindberg made her solo debut last year as jennylee, and with Theresa Wayman in a side project called BOSS, we thought it was silently signaling an end to Warpaint. That said, the LA-based rock band has finally announced a follow-up to their second LP from two years ago. Heads Up releases 23 September 2016 off of Rough Trade—the band mysteriously describes it as “funky”—and you can catch a taste of it with the beautifully textured and urgently paced “New Song.”
Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith: When I Try, I’m Full
Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith’s go-to instrument, besides her voice, is the analog Buchla Music Easel (first designed in 1973). Hear some of the infinite permutations she coaxes out of the volatile synthesizer in “When I Try, I’m Full,” a stirring electronic music track also musing on the subject matter of endless possibilities. The accompanying hand-drawn animation reflects the journey of a gradually evolving cellular organism. Be sure to check out her transformative remix of The Invisible’s “Love Me Again” (featuring Anna Calvi); the groovy downtempo jam becomes putty in Smith’s hands, as she conjures up a chorus of murmuring spirits.
London-based psych quartet Cairobi’s woozy song “Lupo” has received an equally fun music video treatment. Artist and illustrator Sebaldo provides surreal animation—lots of two-headed and four-eyed creatures abound—to illustrate the song’s themes of “change,” “transformation,” “becoming something else”—all of which reminds us of more carefree, younger times where our world made sense in colored markers.
Motion Graphics: Anyware
With a lush electronic landscape and an appropriately matched digitally-animated video, “Anyware” by Motion Graphics rides upon electro-pop elements with jazz-like tendencies. The debut solo project of Joe Williams, Motion Graphics’ tracks were all made with custom randomized software instruments. The album was produced between NY, LA, and Baltimore over the course of two years, and Williams attention to detail at every juncture is ever-present. As for the video, created by CULTURESPORT, it’s just as relevant to the band name as it is the track it supports.
Ben Ross: Wool
Lyrically powerful, at times vocally haunting, and altogether beautiful, “Wool” by LA-based singer/songwriter Ben Ross further affirms the emerging artist’s talents. Nothing more than voice (sometimes layered) and piano, the track gently envelops listeners, rising and falling along the emotional spectrum. It’s a love song, yes, but an uncommon one—and worth a listen. At present, you can also download it for free.
ListenUp is a Cool Hunting series published every Sunday that rounds up the music we tweeted throughout the week, also found in Listen. Hear the year so far via Cool Hunting Spotify.