Category Archives: Music Features

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MusicFestNW & Bumbershoot Festival 2014: Comparing & Contrasting Two Long-Running Pacific NW Festivals

Within a few weeks of one another, the Pacific Northwest finds itself graced annually with two significant events adhering to very different festival models: MusicFestNW and Bumbershoot Festival. Running since 1995 in Portland and 1971 in Seattle, respectively, both festivals have been known for catering to a wide and varied acts across a host of...
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Bear In Heaven – Time Between Music Video (Interview w/ Jon Philpot & Director Nick Bentgen)

For the “Time Between” music video, Bear In Heaven enlisted the help of director Nick Bentgen, who spent long nights hanging out with strangers and visiting the homes of acquaintances in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens, to collect what must have been hours of observational footage. He then wove together an abstract piece of visual poetry,...
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Brian Reitzell Retrospective Feature: From Film Soundtracks to Auto Music

Kraftwerk's 1974 album, Autobahn, was inspired by the feeling of traveling freely along the open German motorways it was named after. Forty years later, a different driving journey serves as a guiding force behind Brian Reitzell's debut album, Auto Music: Reitzell's commute to and from work in Los Angeles. Its motorik kinship with other Krautrock...
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Austra – Habitat Music Video (w/ Katie Stelmanis Interview)

Directed by Matt Lambert, Austra’s music video for “Habitat” weaves together three tales of human connection into one beautifully-lit cinematic narrative. Set in motel rooms that have been transformed into flowery love chambers, “Habitat” is a departure from Lambert’s more sexually-charged works, but maintains a strong focus on casting and persona; with a deliberate eye,...Read...
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Woman’s Hour – Conversations LP Music Videos & Visual Branding

"My collaboration with [Oliver] Chanarin began with a love of didactic images: images that explain things; how to resuscitate a dying man, or put a chain on your chihuahua, or fall over without hurting yourself. These are images made with a certain purpose, but they can be very beautiful too. Accidentally beautiful, which is what...
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Jeffertitti’s Nile – No One Music Video (w/ Jeff Ramuno & Johnny Maroney Interview)

"A lot of the symbolism is all centered around the ideas of unity and transcendence, death and rebirth, and the infinity of everything. When I first heard the song, I kept seeing this movement of traveling through multidimensional space and transforming landscapes, and the chorus was definitely always moments of opening and clarity." - Johnny...
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Blues Music: Marketing Nostalgia Using “Race Records” in the 1920s & 1930s

Folklorists like to romanticize blues music as being a pure expression of culture, but recorded blues music was carefully marketed to its intended audience from its very beginning. As early as the 1920s, music aimed at African-Americans was labeled as "race music", and the best way to advertise it was in the pages of African-American...
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