Punk fashion seems to be a cultural fixation at the moment, and we're using the first release from Savages' forthcoming album as a warm-up for The Metropolitan Museum of Art's highly anticipated exhibit, Chaos to Couture, which will examine punk's impact on high fashion when it debuts at The Costume Institute in May. Interestingly enough, Silence Yourself will come out on the same day that the exhibit opens--and while the British post-punk outfit might be newer to the game than the legendary rabble-rousers sure to be featured, Savages nonetheless handle their empowering, over-the-top propulsion with maniacally seasoned skill. When the song's leading melody isn't snarling in your face, it somehow manages to be both sinister and warm, unassuming and uplifting. And, like the genre's best music, it finds catharsis in dissidence with an unrelentingly rally cry, which in this song takes form in the vocalist's repeated assertion that "she will." It's a simple enough credo, but judging by the conviction behind Jehnny Beth's delivery, you'd be remiss not to do the same.
The Joy Formidable - "Little Blimp"
There is a scene in Martin Scorsese's Mean Streets that regularly blows the minds of film students and cinematographers alike: From the perspective of a chest camera mounted below his chin, Harvey Keitel moves through a bar while The Chips' "Rubber Biscuit" plays loudly. In the course of just over a minute, the world circles woozily behind Keitel's head until he passes out, inebriated, on the floor. The Joy Formidable's new video for "Little Blimp" is sort of like this scene, without all the metaphors for life's vicissitudes. A camera is mounted on the neck of singer Ritzy Bryan's guitar, and its fisheye perspective lends the performance a carnivalesque intimacy that pivots as she plays. It's a slightly dizzying effect, but when the song explodes at about a minute in, it's easy to remember why we loved this alt-y jam in the first place: galloping percussion, explosive riffs, and the vocalist's poppy darkness.
Generationals - "Put a Light On"
"Put a Light On" should be liquefied, bottled, and sold at your nearest pharmacy. In the first 10 seconds alone, you'll instantly find that this is a cure-all melody for all musical afflictions. Case in point: Why is the triangle, which plays in the background of this Generationals track, a sound I suddenly cannot bear to live without? Play the video and drink down the medicine, too.
It's been a while since we've last heard from Future Bible Heroes--Stephin Merritt's despondent-dance-music project with Christopher Ewen--but the band is back with Partygoing, its third album, out June 8. Magnetic Fields' Claudia Gonson provides her signature frank wistfulness in the vocals for this track off the album, a sad pop digital wonderland.