These are the best music videos of April 2015: Tanya Tagaq released a video to rival her incredible live show, Absolutely Free calibrated our minds, and Kendrick Lamar got the whole world talking. Relive it all below.
Tanya Tagaq's epoch-defining performance of "Uja" and "Umingmak" at the Polaris Prize was so transcendent it made us bend the rules and put it on our Best Music Videos of 2014 list. Now she has an actual music video for the song, courtesy of Manitoba's Procter Bros.
Toronto three-piece Absolutely Free debut a sufficiently psychedelic LeBlanc + Cudmore-directed vision for their hypnotic, krauty composition (the same song they adapted to Norman McLaren's Synchromy for our cameras). The clip begins with the message "video calibration." This is our Chekhov's gun; a sly little flick at what's to come.
The Director X vision for "King Kunta" is an on-the-nose throwback to those West Coast party videos Snoop, Dre, and 2Pac used deliver pretty regularly in the '90s — the kind of thing Kendrick would have grown up watching (story is: youngster Kendrick was actually onset for the original "California Love" video).
Hull, Quebec's Scattered Clouds hawk a brand of post-rock that's cinematic and sinister and primed with explosive tension — like the Velvets doing Ennio Marricone; more minimal and, somehow, terrifying than Godspeed!. Utterly transfixing.
Meg Remy is based out of Toronto now, where she lives with her husband Slim Twig, but her art is still very preoccupied with poking holes in Americana. "Damn That Valley," her first song and video for mega-indie 4AD, brings her to war... or more specifically to the women left behind.
Jamie xx's new video "Gosh" is literally out of this world. Directed by Swedish digital artist Erik Wernquist, the video depicts real high-resolution landscapes of Mars and Earth from the perspective of an auteurist satellite courtesy to NASA and other sources.
JOOJ is the collaborative work of Sook-Yin Lee and Adam Litovitz. The pair along with director Brandon Cronenberg, crafted "Shoulders and Whispers" after their mutual fondnesses for film noir, German Expressionism, and classic horror movies.
The self-directed clip is very Tyler, full of bright colours and live action cartoon antics (googly eyes, misdemeanor-level explosives, go karts, etc), but dramatizes what could be a real scenario for a maturing young shit-disturber: a six-years-apart love affair. Not as creepy when you're in your later twenties, but not so perfect now.
"Taxidermized Bear Claw" is an icky, but hypnotic clip to pair with an equally scuzzy, equally entrancing morsel of two-part math rock. Behold this awesome set of chompers as it disposes of condiments and spaghetti and paint and charcoal and a toy car with ease. It's fucking grosss — that's the point. Anybody got a wet-nap?
"They call 'em fingers, but I've never seen them fing." For "Half," atmospheric two-piece ANAMAI kill time literally staring at their hands.