Tag Archives: music video

Sia & Maddie Ziegler team up again for new single “The Greatest”

Sia, Aussie vocalist whose wigs never go out of style, is back with a brand new single and she’s enlisted dancer Maddie Ziegler to star in another one of her wild music videos.

The new song is titled “The Greatest” and the music video opens with a hashtag stating “We Are Your Children.” It’s not made clear if this is the name of Sia’s next album, or if it merely refers to the many youthful sprites featured in the video. In typical Sia fashion, she is not present in the clip; Ziegler shines by dominating the zany choreography. The song, as expected, is another Sia smash that’ll have your grooving along in no time. The music and the choreography sync like magic–Sia and Ziegler are truly an artistic match made in heaven.

Sia’s latest, “The Greatest,” can be purchased on iTunes, streamed on Spotify, the works. Note that the single includes a verse from Kendrick Lamar, while the music video leaves that out.

Following the one-two punch that was 2014’s 1000 Forms of Fear and this year’s This Is Acting, I cannot wait to see what Sia has coming soon. With one of the industry’s most utterly unique voices and undeniably catchy sounds, Sia’s next moves are hotly anticipated. I’m still high off This Is Acting, and now this! READ MORE Sia & Maddie Ziegler team up again for new single “The Greatest”

Kanye West & Bon Iver reunite on eclectic track from Francis and the Lights

Francis and the Lights just released my pick for song of the summer. Never heard of ’em? Neither had I, until last night, when Kanye West tweeted out a link to the music video embedded above, claiming it, “My favorite song this year.” The track, titled “Friends,” is intrinsically pop, with a calm buildup that climaxes into a groovy medley with kaleidoscopic sounds and wavy echoes. The minimalist music video, expertly directed by Jake Schreier in a single shot, is the perfect compliment to the song. Francis Farewell Starlite–the musician behind the Lights–and his erratic dance moves are prominently featured here. Kanye makes an appearance as does Justin Vernon of Bon Iver. The video culminates in cool synchronized dance choreography that effortlessly draws you into the fun they’re having. The combined power of Kanye, Justin, and Francis’ electronic coos is nothing short of hypnotizing! If you are a fan of Vernon’s ethereal touch on West’s Twisted Fantasy tracks “Monster” and “Lost in the World,” then Francis’ “Friends” will surely soothe the soul.

If you’re like me and feel compelled to explore Francis and the Lights’ discography, let me help you with that. From 2007-2013, Francis released four EPs and they’re all available on iTunes. In addition, he scored the sci-fi drama Robot & Frank, which happens to be directed by the music video’s helmer Schreier. Francis recently posted a new song called “Thank You” on SoundCloud, and he’s currently on tour with Bon Iver. And if “Friends” sounds like something you’ve heard before, you’re not alone; Francis sampled the song in a track he produced for Chance the Rapper, “Summer Friends.”

Now excuse me as I plug in my headphones and get lifted by this summer surprise, on repeat indefinitely. Stream it on Spotify and download it on iTunes. READ MORE Kanye West & Bon Iver reunite on eclectic track from Francis and the Lights

Zero gravity stars in OK Go’s latest music video marvel

OK Go – Upside Down & Inside Out

Hello, Dear Ones. Please enjoy our new video for "Upside Down & Inside Out". A million thanks to S7 Airlines. #GravitysJustAHabit

Posted by OK Go on Thursday, February 11, 2016

Ready? Set? OK Go is back with its latest gold-star achievement in music video making. The band is still promoting Hungry Ghosts, its fourth studio album released in 2014, with a very special music video for the album’s opening track “Upside Down & Inside Out.” The seemingly innocuous line “Gravity’s just a habit” played a major role in influencing the band’s decision to shoot its next music video in zero gravity, the first of its kind.

The video was shot inside an airplane provided by Russia’s S7 Airlines that flies parabolic maneuvers to provide brief periods of weightlessness. This is where zero g comes into play. And in typical OK Go fashion, the band remained hellbent on shooting the video in one continuous shot. In this particular case, however, that simply wasn’t possible but frontman Damian Kulash and company used movie magic (read: a little bit of fancy editing) to string together the moments of non-weightlessness. It’s explained in an informative post at the band’s site:

The longest period of weightlessness that it is possible to achieve in these circumstances is about 27 seconds, and after each period of weightlessness, it takes about five minutes for the plane to recover and prepare for then next round. Because we wanted the video to be a single, uninterrupted routine, we shot continuously over the course of 8 consecutive weightless periods, which took about 45 minutes, total. We paused our actions, and the music, during the non-weightless periods, and then cut out these sections and smoothed over each transition with a morph.

From the floating laptops to the exploding pinatas, exploding briefcases full of bouncy balls, and exploding balloons filled with paint, there’s a breathtaking level of color and vibrancy to be had here. The expertly time choreography by the band and the wonderfully acrobatic airline stewardesses adds to the jaw-dropping nature of the mesmerizing clip.

Taking advantage of zero gravity is the latest accomplishment in a string of groundbreaking efforts concocted by alt-rock group. Click here to browse OK Go’s other music video marvels featuring perfect coordination of motorized scooters and drones and a Rube Goldbergian contraption for the ages.

Update (2/12): Boy have I got a fun behind-the-scenes video for you. Stereogum‘s released a special inside look at the making of the grand finale sequence of OK Go’s music video. Nicknamed “The Thunderdome,” said balloon splatting sequence took eight attempts to get right, and this clip goes through the band’s motions of eventually getting it right. Witnessing the many failed attempts is just as entertaining as watching the music video itself! God bless the poor soul who had to clean and reset the plane cabin after each take. Press pray after the break. READ MORE Zero gravity stars in OK Go’s latest music video marvel

Coldplay films colorful music videos to match new album ‘A Head Full of Dreams’

Coldplay is back with its seventh and possibly final album for awhile, that is, according to frontman Chris Martin. If this is it for the foreseeable future, they sure are going out with a bang. The record, A Head Full of Dreams, is a solid effort from the alt-rock/pop British band. It has its quiet moments (“Everglow” and “Kaleidoscope”) as well as those anthemic tunes fans have become accustomed to over the years (“A Head Full of Dreams,” “Hymn for the Weekend” and “Adventure of a Lifetime”). All in all, it’s a decidedly uplifting and inspiring take, especially coming off last year’s mildly melancholic Ghost Stories.

Shortly after releasing the album into the wild just last month, Martin and co. started to drop eclectic music videos for the singles. They started with a mesmerizing music video for “Adventure of a Lifetime” which features CGI versions of the band members dancing around as apes. They teamed up with director Mat Whitecross and actor/motion capture expert Andy Serkis (Lord of the RingsPlanet of the Apes) to magically animate themselves using the latest tech in 3D motion capture. It took six months to make!

The second music video to release was the one for “Birds.” The band travelled to Salvation Mountain to record the trippy, kaleidoscopic clip directed by Marcus Haney.

Following lead single “Adventure of a Lifetime” is the official second single off the album, “Hymn for the Weekend.” Coldplay shot the video for it on location in Mumbai, India with director Ben Mor. Beyoncè, whose vocals are featured on the track, plays a beautiful movie star and Bollywood actress Sonam Kapoor makes a cameo as the band runs around the streets of Mumbai exploding with color and radiance.

“Hymn for the Weekend” is embedded above. You’ll find music videos for “Birds” and “Adventure of a Lifetime” after the break. There’s also a fun behind-the-scenes look at Coldplay making the CGI video with Whitecross and Serkis.

One more thing. This summer Coldplay’s going on tour! Tickets go on sale Friday, Feb. 5 at 10am local time. Check out the full list of nation-wide stops below the fold. Oh, and don’t forget they’ll be jamming out during Super Bowl 50’s halftime show next Sunday! READ MORE Coldplay films colorful music videos to match new album ‘A Head Full of Dreams’

Ylvis, makers of “What does the fox say,” returns to take on a cappella

The Norwegian brothers who answered the longing question, “What does the fox say?” and attempted to explain “Stonehenge” are back with a new trancing music video that takes on the a cappella craze that’s still storming the nation (see: Pitch Perfect and its sequel, The Sing-OffPentatonix). In it, Vegard and Bård Ylvisåker are members of an a capella group whose apparent sole mission is to stave off bullies by making pit stops along their tour route at schools where children need a helping hand, er, voice. This latest viral parody by Ylvis includes the tried-and-true ingredients they’ve used before: it’s very silly while simultaneously wanting to be somewhat serious as it makes fun of a cappella tropes and takes down bullies in the most non-violent manner possible. Oh, and no surprise here–the song happens to be extremely catchy so I’ll save you a step in finding the tune for keeps. Catch a funny behind-the-scenes look after the break.

Boodelooap! READ MORE Ylvis, makers of “What does the fox say,” returns to take on a cappella

This year in music, as told by DJ Earworm’s mega-mashup “United State of Pop 2015”

I don’t know how he does it, but year after year DJ Earworm manages to fuse the biggest songs both musically and visually in something I’ve endearingly labeled a mega-mashup. This go-around, he’s challenged himself to take on Billboard’s top 50 tracks (that’s up from the typical 25 he deals with) and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that he utterly nails it. Ed Sheeran, Fetty Wap, Justin Bieber, Meghan Trainor, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, and The Weeknd dominate with the most songs used here, but be sure to check out the full list of songs used after the break to see if there’s any you didn’t catch. Want the song for keeps? Head over to DJ Earworm’s SoundCloud page to download a free copy. READ MORE This year in music, as told by DJ Earworm’s mega-mashup “United State of Pop 2015”

Disclosure & Sam Smith drop new collab “Omen”

Disclosure and Sam Smith are back with their second major collaboration. The followup to “Latch” is “Omen” and it features the rising crooner on top of moody Lawrence brothers beat. “Omen” is the second single off Disclosure’s imminent sophomore effort, Caracal. The steamy music video, featuring Smith in a Mexico City club, is the second of a four-part series directed by Ryan Hope. Last month, when Disclosure dropped “Holding On,” part one of the series, they laid out Caracal‘s initial rollout via Twitter:

“We wanted to create something very different with our music videos this time around…something unique that would connect all the songs from the album and the videos in a special way. This is the first of a series of four amazing videos directed by Ryan Hope that come together to create a short film… ‘CARACAL.’ As each music video comes out… The plot unfolds. Hope you enjoy!”

If you’re interested in following the trials and tribulations of Mariela, a rebel caught up in a heavily surveilled dystopian future, watch the video for “Holding On” first (featuring vocals from Gregory Porter) and then mash play on “Omen.” The synth-pop house duo will likely release the final two installments prior to Caracal‘s launch on September 25. Preorder Caracal today, and stream “Omen” on Spotify.

What do you think of the new Disclosure x Sam Smith collab? Think it’ll take over the radio waves like “Latch” did last year? When Disclosure released that Settle single in 2012, it took about two years for it to explode onto scene in the US. At the time, Smith hadn’t even released his solo debut In the Lonely Hour. Now, Disclosure is more of household name here in the States, and Smith has piled on the accolades since his first album dropped. In summation, “Omen” is destined to reach the top of the charts.

Preview ‘Déjà Vu’, Giorgio Moroder’s star-studded first album in 30 years

Giorgio Moroder. Does that ring name a bell? If you happened to listen to Daft Punk’s masterpiece release Random Access Memories (2013), then it should. Track number three on the electronic duo’s latest album is titled “Giorgio by Moroder” and it’s an ode to the Italian music producer, songwriter, and DJ. Moroder’s enchanting accent consumes the first half of the track as the highly influential synth-pop-disco-electronica artist describes the early days of his career which peaked in the 1970s and bled into the ’80s. “In the beginning, I wanted to do an album with the sounds of the 50s, the sounds of the 60s, of the 70s, and then have a sound of the future.” And so he began to experiment with the synthesizer, which he describes in Daft Punk’s song as “the sound of the future.” He ends the monologue with this: “Once you want to free your mind about a concept of harmony and music being correct, you can do whatever you want. So nobody told me what to do and there was no preconception of what to do.”

Flashforward to 2015, and Giorgio Moroder is putting the final touches on his first studio album in 30 years. “Daft Punk are the reason why I am here,” he told Rolling Stone. Following the success of RAM, Moroder was inspired to DJ parties again at the ripe age of 74. “I noticed that the audiences were so young, like 18 to 40,” he says. “I felt so young. I mean, I’m 74, but I still felt like part of this young generation. Some of those guys knew my songs and were not even born when they came out. It’s nice to hear a 20-year-old guy or girl sing along with the lyrics.” This would inspire a new track called “74 is the New 24” featured on Moroder’s upcoming record Déjà Vu.

The video embedded above includes snippets of every song included on Déjà Vu, out June 12. Moroder managed to snag big talent for his long-anticipated release. Sia, Kelis, Foxes, Marlene, Charli XCX, Matthew Koma, Mikky Ekko, Kylie Minogue, and Britney Spears have all lent their vocal talents and the overall vibe here is electric. Mash play to preview the album, and head over to Moroder’s YouTube channel to hear the previously released singles in full.

The Weeknd continues his takeover and drops moody new single ‘The Hills,’ music video inside

Abel Tesfaye has come a long way since his free mixtape days. The underground artist, who first exploded onto the scene under stage name The Weeknd with freebies House of BalloonsThursday, and Echoes of Silence in 2011, is no longer a musical phantom. After repackaging the three tapes into the polished Trilogy release, Tesfaye dropped his debut studio album Kiss Land in 2013. “You will continue to get what you fell in love with, and I will continue to give you what you ask for,” he told his fans in a note that released alongside TrilogyKiss Land did not disappoint as it maintained the same stripped down, intimate essence that captivated fans in the beginning.

What came next for the now 25 year-old Canadian crooner? Standalone track “Often” came out of nowhere last summer tinged with Tesfaye’s signature sensuality. And then his sound went mainstream when pop star Ariana Grande invited him to guest on her hit track “Love Me Harder;” The Weeknd co-wrote the ubiquitous track. Now riding the mainstream waves, he appropriately stuck his stylistic R&B brand on the theatrical adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey by releasing the movie soundtrack’s single “Earned It.” That track helped said soundtrack reach the number three spot on the Billboard Hot 100.

Today, Tesfaye isn’t resting on his laurels. In fact, he’s currently in the studio readying his second studio album. The long-awaited followup to Kiss Land doesn’t have a name or release date confirmed yet, but if you’re one to trust Wikipedia, it’s titled Chapter III and it’s set for release later this year. What’s solid is the lead single off said record: The Weeknd dropped “The Hills” on Wednesday, a characteristically moody track that he debuted live this spring at Coachella and SXSW.

The track, which originally went by the name “Mood Music,” is now available to purchase on iTunes and comes accompanied by an enthralling music video. In it, Tesfaye emerges from a bad car wreck, bloodied and disoriented. “I only love it when you touch me, not feel me / When I’m f*cked up, that’s the real me.” Those lyrics continue to peel back layers in order to shed light on his inner demons. The visuals mesmerize, too; after the car explodes into a fireball, Tesfaye stumbles upon an eerie mansion where he ends up in a creepy cliffhanger leaving fans salivating for more. Watch it all go down after the break.

What do you think of The Weeknd’s latest effort? Though his lyrics on “The Hills” resonate with themes that have come before, do you find his ever-improving sound straying too far from his original works? Plug in your ‘phones, take a listen, and sound off in the comments below. READ MORE The Weeknd continues his takeover and drops moody new single ‘The Hills,’ music video inside

Discover new music: Lauriel beats to her own drum in ritualistic “Rival”

It’s about time we discovered new music together. Today’s featured artist is Lauriel, a 22-year-old singer-songwriter who just dropped her very first music video. The highly stylized clip for poppy “Rival” features Lauriel donning all kinds of fantastical pieces of wardrobe that you might find inside Lady Gaga’s closet. As soon as one Lauriel claims power amongst her tribal inner circle, another comes into play and takes over by violently taking out her predecessor. But what does it all mean? I spoke directly with the source:

Lauriel likens “Rival” to “Fight Club as a Greek tragedy.” Interestingly, she explains that her influences “are not necessarily musical and were more colors, and historical time periods, art, literature, and my own experiences.” The song is very personal for the young artist. “It’s about doubt and battling the voice in your head that tells you you can’t do something, or you’re not good enough. The bridge was a big moment for me because it’s me talking directly to that internal nay sayer–‘I’m in control here, I’ll survive and persevere without doubt but you can’t carry on unless I give you power to.’ That’s what the whole song is about, that power struggle. I think the video reflects that.”

With that said, Lauriel hopes viewers will watch the playful yet harrowing visuals and interpret it for themselves. “I wasn’t thinking about messages, I figured people would take what they want to from it,” she adds. “Some people will see it very literally, some will want it to open conversation about suicide, some people will see it as rebirth, throwing out the past and old selves that you don’t want to be anymore. I think it’s all accurate in a way, with art there’s generally no right answer. It’s just meant to make you feel and think.”

Whatever you make of it, there’s no denying its gripping vulnerability as Lauriel falls in and out of dramatized versions of herself. Concerning her musical talents, she says she grew up listening to British bands like Queen, The Beatles, and Sex Pistols, as well as old soul bluesy jazz types like Billie Holiday, Otis Redding, Etta James, and Aretha Franklin. She looked to these artists for inspiration when making the soulful, dramatic “Rival.”

Want to hear more from Lauriel? Visit her SoundCloud page to browse a mixtape that’s currently in early stages. Perhaps with positive feedback she’ll be further inspired to release more music that’s as raw and dynamic as what we’ve got here. In the meantime, Lauriel pursues a writing career in film and TV; do you think “Rival” could be a promising seed for a future feature? Sound off in the comments below!

North West stars in Kanye’s “Only One” music video

It’s fitting just how personal the music video is for Kanye West’s “Only One.” When the Paul McCartney-assisted track dropped earlier this month, West spoke out about how the “stream-of-consciousness riff” came to him; the lyrics are a spiritual message from ‘Ye’s late mother Donda West to his daughter North West (Nori for short). The rapper enlisted film directer Spike Jonze (HerWhere the Wild Things Are) to helm the music video, and it plays very much like a father-daughter home video; it’s adorable and it’s touching. Watch it here.

This year in music, as told by DJ Earworm’s mega-mashup “United State of Pop 2014”

DJ Earworm is back to celebrate the most popular music to come out of 2014. Per usual, he magically mashes together the top 25 songs of the year–as determined by Billboard’s weekly Hot 100 charts–with visual eye candy to-boot. The 4-minute music video mash includes Ariana Grande, Hozier, Iggy Azalea, John Legend, Maroon 5, Meghan Trainor, Sam Smith, Taylor Swift, and many more. Jump after the break to discover every song the DJ managed to string together for his latest tribute. When you’re done watching, click over to SoundCloud to download the track for free. READ MORE This year in music, as told by DJ Earworm’s mega-mashup “United State of Pop 2014”