This weekend, I was thumbing through records at Hymie’s with a friend when we both simultaneously pulled out our phones. We tried Shazaming, but no results came up for the song we were hearing. We tried Googling the lyrics, but we were still perplexed. We simply had to know what song it was that’d perked us both up at the same time.
The clerk was nice enough to point us towards the Taxpayers’ 2007 LP Big Delusion Factory – a Replacements-style duster cut right here in Minneapolis. We each bought a copy. Now the two of us are irrevocably linked through that record and that moment on “Fuck America” where we both felt a mutual resonance.
Botzy — “Gwen Stefani”
You didn’t live in the 1990s if you didn’t have a crush on No Doubt frontwoman Gwen Stefani. You don’t need time-travel-grade weed to remind you that Gavin Rossdale’s former better half is one of history’s most appealing women, but nostalgia strains don’t hurt either. Ask Minneapolis rapper Botzy, whose new single “Gwen Stefani” praises the sultry music icon after a mean bag prompts a trip back to the ‘90s.
The song premiered Friday via Mass Appeal, announcing Botzy’s return from a few silent months. Directed by Adam & Ben Toht, the video is classic Botzy. Following the ludicrous storyline outlined above, the zooted-out Botzy envisions a Stefani cosplayer, who he immediately ensnares with his sophomoric charm. Unfortunately, none of it was real – something he’ll have to come to terms with once he awakens from his weed coma.
Deeply Rooted Tribe — “Good Time”
Speaking of nostalgia, we always associate the past with good times. Sure, it’s a deliberate editing of our memories, but it’s also a productive way to keep moving forward. Throwback-style single “Good Time” from Southside Minneapolis rap group Deeply Rooted Tribe recalls the soulful, jazz-influenced production of the late-1980s, trying to recapture the carefree moments of that era.
The video itself, which is directed by the Tribe, is set firmly in the present. It takes place over the course of a boozy house party, with emcees Raw Toon, Reel Smoovv, and FreshVs Sellers taking down big jugs of wine while they spit their verses. The take-home message? The good time is timeless.
Love Sequence — “Cigarette”
We usually see director Nate P work with grimy rap lords V.I.C.E. Boys, but the talented music video maven is branching out into indie pop with upstart band Love Sequence for their new video “Cigarette.” Filmed entirely at the Walker Art Center and its newly renovated Sculpture Garden, the video is much cleaner than Nate P’s typical digital corruption and over-colored portraiture, which is fitting given Love Sequence’s toweringly optimistic sheen.
The song comes from the band’s 2016 EP Look at Me, a delightfully unburdened collection of danceable short-takes. Judging by the video, wherein the jocular four-piece smash pies in their faces and suck down ice cream, Love Sequence are a guilt-free reminder that the music scene doesn’t have to take itself so seriously to have a good time.
The Chinchees — “Your Life Is a Waiting Room”
The lower-fi the video, the more entertaining it typically is. Something about DIY graphics and amateur set design really unlocks the zany shit in bands. For the Chincees, it’s mostly zany shit all the time, but with Gordon Byrd’s touch behind the camera and in the editing booth, they’ve unlocked a new level. “Your Life Is a Waiting Room” couldn’t be less rational, and holy smokes does that make it a blast.
The fuzz rockers travel through the expanses of space and static, styling themselves as a trio of garage scientists tracking down a spherical lifeform. None of the who or why is explained, but those are unnecessary details when all you care about is having an irreverent shindig that spans the dimensions.
Valet — “An Open Letter to Animals on Permaculture Farms: One Bad Day”
And we end, as we do with many editions of Local Frames, on a serious note. Dyed-in-the-wool pop band Valet re-emerged two years ago at Art-A-Whirl, and they’re using their restored profile to bring some visibility to the ills of factory farming. It’s an issue that hits home with Minnesotans, and Valet’s new video for “An Open Letter to Animals on Permaculture Farms: One Bad Day” shows why.
The video is a silly imagining of the lives of farmed animals, analogizing their experiences to the tortures of the workaday world. We see the main character, a duck, toil through his day, yearning for the freedom of the natural duck life. Though the Land Dweller Studios-directed short is comical, Valet warn that the message in the lyrics is anything but a joke.
“There is nothing funny about factory farmed animal operations,” says Robin Kyle of Valet, whose own ducks star in the shoot. “There is another way to raise livestock in which their natures are respected. Permaculture or regenerative farming repairs degraded land and at the same time raise healthy animals that in turn give us health when we eat them.”
Dream of seeing your video appear in Local Frames? Email writer Jerard Fagerberg at [email protected]