Monday, May 25, 2009

Two Weeks wtih Grizzly Bear

I have difficulty with the Black Cab sessions. The thing I love about live music videos recorded of bands in suburban locations is that the band is forced to interact with the spaces they find themselves in, whether unusual or banal. This always creates unique, layered and unpredictable videos that often tell you a lot more about a band or soloist that you will see in a live show. Forced to interact with an unsuspecting audience, in situations that they have no control over, performers often reveal much more of themselves. This is why I help out with Shoot The Player - I love seeing what happens when musicians are let lose, free to roam and perform and take chances they typically can't take when in a concert-setting. Recently for STP we filmed Ben Lee in a park in Rushcutters Bay, and his spontaneity and the response he received from those around at the time was remarkable and made fantastic viewing. The same goes for a shoot we did with Lightspeed Champion, who on a whim decided to film an awfully awkward cover of The Strokes' Heart In A Cage in a sex shop on Oxford Street in Sydney last year.

My issue with Black Cab is that the performers don't have to take themselves out of their comfort zones. They perform in an enclosed space much like a stage, removed from their audience. The format does nothing to humanise them, and they seem as untouchable as they do when on stage.

Black Cab Sessions have just released a video of Grizzly Bear performing All We Ask. You can watch it here

Also just released is the monumentally talented Patrick Daughters' video for Two Weeks.

I feel like you learn much more about the band watching Daughters' video, than you do the Black Cab Session clip.

Two Weeks

Daughterss first video was in 2003 for Maps by Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Since, he's been invited into the Directors Bureau and is now responsible for some of the most innovative and/or adorable clips I've recently seen, including the totally trippy video of Liar's Plaster Casts of Everything and Feist's gorgeously entertaining 1, 2, 3, 4 (which had him nominated for a Grammy.)

For Two Weeks, he seems to have really captured their playfulness and vibrancy, and want not to be taken too seriously. The whimsical pop melody, somewhat surreal lyrics and pretty harmonies are so suited to his approach - the boy's expressions are hilarious, and as their heads start to glow and sparks start to fly, I can imagine the five of them all sitting around a table full of beers laughing as they sketch out the idea of playing possessed puppets.

They might have never happened. But at least the clip made me imagine it did. Not like the Black Cab video, which I had to play through three times because I kept losing interest and getting distracted.

My fave blog boys have an interview with Ed Droste online now - head to And tell them I say hello.

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