Roger Waters shares video for poignant new song “The Last Refugee”

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Roger Waters shares video for poignant new song “The Last Refugee”.

First solo LP in over two decades, Is This the Life We Really Want?, lands next month.

On June 2nd, Roger Waters will triumphantly return with his first solo album in 25 years, Is This the Life We Really Want?.

The Pink Floyd frontman’s offering, today’s “The Last Refugee”, follows suit quality-wise.

Waters’ voice is tender here, and backed by a similarly gentle mix of piano and minimal percussion. Its corresponding music video, helmed by Waters and past collaborator director Sean Evans, takes the emotional level up a notch by reminding us of the humanity of the Syrian refugee crisis — something that’s too often forgotten and obscured when politics and bureaucracy come into play.

.CoS

MUSE share action-packed video for new single “Dig Down”

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MUSE share action-packed video for new single “Dig Down”.

The English band’s first release in nearly two years.

Muse return today with their first new release since 2015’s Drones. Titled “Dig Down”, the track is a stuttering, mostly sparse number with hints of glam rock flare. The single was co-produced by Mike Elizondo and Muse and mixed by Spike Stent.

Accompanying the track is an action-packed video directed by Lance Drake (Twin Shadow, Miike Snow). Aptly, it stars someone who knows quite a bit about persevering through tragedy: Lauren Wasser, a former model and athlete who lost her leg to toxic shock syndrome.

CoS

THIS IS OUR MUSIC: The Clash – “Spanish Bombs” – live Capitol Theatre – Passaic, NJ, 3/8/1980

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THIS IS OUR MUSIC: The Clash – “Spanish Bombs” – live Capitol Theatre – Passaic, NJ, 3/8/1980.

A good number of Strummer’s songs insist upon a deeper listen and oftentimes require a trip to the library. For example, “Spanish Bombs”. The singer penned the track after hearing about terrorist attacks aimed at Spain’s more touristy hotels, which reminded him of the IRA bombings in the UK. Just like a sly historian, Strummer weaved in references to the Spanish Civil War in the ’30s (“Or can I hear the echos from the days of ’39”) and poet and anti-fascist martyr Federico Garcia Lorca (“Federico Lorca is dead and gone”). He also condemns his fellow British countrymen for flying into the beautiful country, unaware of the domestic strife boiling around them. It’s all heavy stuff, but it doesn’t feel heavy, thanks to Mick Jones’ driving arrangements that take us from smoke-filled skies to sunny dances by the shore. One of many juxtapositions that would make up The Clash’s trademark sound.

The Only Lyric That Matters: “Back home the buses went up in flashes/ The Irish tomb was drenched in blood/ Spanish bombs shatter the hotels/ My senorita’s rose was nipped in the bud”

.CoS

UNDER THE RADAR: Beach House – “Chariot”

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UNDER THE RADAR: Beach House – “Chariot”.

Beach House has shared the track “Chariot” off their upcoming album B-Sides and Rarities, a collection of 14 tracks that never made it onto any of their 6 previous albums.

“Chariot” comes from the Depression Cherry and Thank Your Lucky Stars era; both albums were released in 2015 only months apart. In a press release, they explain, “When we announced that we were releasing a B-sides and rarities album, someone on Twitter asked, ‘B-sides record? Why would Beach House put out a B-sides record? Their A-sides are like B-sides.’ This random person has a point. Our goal has never been to make music that is explicitly commercial. Over the years, as we have worked on our 6 LPs, it wasn’t the ‘best’ or most catchy songs that made the records, just the ones that fit together to make a cohesive work. Accordingly, our B-sides are not songs that we didn’t like as much, just ones that didn’t have a place on the records we were making.” 

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UNDER THE RADAR: ‘THE UNDERSIDE OF POWER’: NEW VIDEO FROM ALGIERS.

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UNDER THE RADAR: ‘THE UNDERSIDE OF POWER’: NEW VIDEO FROM ALGIERS.

Algiers have had a hell of a couple of years. In 2015, they dropped a fiercely original debut album that found an uncharted sweet spot between industrial rhythm and noise, post-punk guitar skreeeee, and the smoldering intensity of Southern black gospel.

Wide acclaim, a few videos, and heavy touring followed, and the band’s core trio of singer/guitarist Franklin Fisher, bassist/synthesist Ryan Mahan, and guitarist Lee Tesche was augmented by touring (and now permanent) drummer Matt Tong, formerly of Bloc Party. In between all their rock labors, they wrote a second album, The Underside of Power, and WOW.

Though the new album isn’t due until June 23rd, the band released the first video from The Underside of Power —and it’s the album’s title track.

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TWO ALBUMS, FOUR SINGLES: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CULT ELECTRONIC SYNTH BAND YAZOO

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TWO ALBUMS, FOUR SINGLES: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CULT ELECTRONIC SYNTH BAND YAZOO.

Yazoo/Yaz consisted of Alison “Alf” Moyet on vocals and Vince Clarke on synthesizer. The band formed in late 1981 after Clarke replied to an advert Moyet posted in Melody Maker looking for a “rootsy blues band.” Clarke had been the founder and chief songwriter at Depeche Mode. He quit that band because he was “fed up.” What with isn’t clear. What’s probable is that Clarke wanted to spend more time in the studio and develop his own unique electronic sound. For whatever reason, Clarke left Depeche Mode after writing most of the band’s first album and their first three hits “Dreaming of Me,” “New Life,” and “I Just Can’t Get Enough.”

t’s a good PR story that Moyet and Clarke didn’t know each other until that fateful ad in Melody Maker, but the truth was they had known of knew each other for quite some time. They both lived in Basildon and had both attended the same weekend music school as kids. Clarke had heard Moyet sing. He was more than impressed. Moyet has an incredible voice. And he was the keyboard wizard who wanted to do something different.

Clarke had the song “Only You.” He had offered it Depeche Mode as a farewell present but his ex-bandmates thought it wasn’t quite right as it sounded like something they’d already heard. They were wrong but it didn’t hamper their meteoric career. Moyet didn’t really like synthpop. Clarke was undeterred. He played her the track. Moyet sang the lyrics. Yazoo was formed.

According to Clarke, when they played “Only You” to Daniel Miller, the head of Mute Records, he seemed disinterested. But when the publishing company gave it a listen, they knew they had a hit. Yazoo was signed. Now a B-side was required. The only track Clarke and Moyet had was “Don’t Go” which was too good a song to fill out a B-side. They quickly recorded “Situation,” which was the first club hit by which Yaz/Yazoo became known in America.

The documentary on Yazoo : 2 Albums, 4 Singles and That was It tells you everything you need to know about Moyet and Clarke and their fast but highly successful and influential career.

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