Name: Adam Bernard Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome. See my complete profile
This week’s NYC Scene Report features the blistering punk rock of Vomitface, the ethereal shoegaze of The Dig, the emcee skills of Bad Habbits, and a conceptual project from Baba Israel that involves NYC’s cultural history.
* Jersey City/Brooklyn punk rockers Vomitface have released a video for their latest single, “Luckiest Man Alive,” and the filming of it required the band to go a bit out of their element.
Vomitface’s Jared Micah explains, “When filming began, all we knew is that we would be in this terrifying space, running from (director) Alex (Smith), who would be chasing us with a camera, and, we would soon learn, maniacally screaming at us for motivation. We still can't decide if it was more frightening, or disgusting, down there.”
The shoot may have been equal parts both, as Micah adds, “After a long night of shooting/running, we were all exhausted, and it was so dusty we were blowing gray crap out of our noses for days.”
“Luckiest Man Alive” is off of Vomitface’s recently released EP, Another Bad Year, and you can check out the creepy video right here.
* Speaking of unique music videos, NYC ethereal rock quartet The Dig’s latest, which is for their single “Made My Bed,” is a clip set in a bar that features quite a bit of crossdressing, and tackles the notions of narcissism and self-identity.
The Dig have actually known each other for quite a while, as the band’s singers, Emile Moseri and David Baldwin, started making music together when they were eleven years old. This likely made putting together an outside the box idea, such as this video, a bit easier, but the execution of it no less impressive.
“Made My Bed” is off of The Dig’s recently released EP, You & I, which follows up their two full length albums, all of which feature the band’s 80s shoegaze inspired sound. Check it out.
* Hip-hop artist Bad Habbits (AKA Jeff Baron) is a Cleveland transplant currently living in New Jersey, and his latest is all about “Brooklyn Nights.”
While his work has covered a wide breadth of subject matter over the years, including everything from corporate corruption, and media manipulation, to Eastern philosophy, on “Brooklyn Nights” he looks to have a little fun on the mic, bringing some classic hip-hop braggadocio that has nothing to do with what he owns, and everything to do with his skills as an emcee.
“Brooklyn Nights,” which also features DJ Emmo Ogun, is off of Bad Habbits’ upcoming full length album, We Are All Gods, and you can puff your chest out to the song right here.
* This week in “stuff that would be cool to help fund,” we have Baba Israel’s new project, The Spinning Wheel. The Spinning Wheel is something Israel has been developing with a team of artists over the past three years, and is based on the life, and legacy of his father, Steve Ben Israel, who was a New York jazz musician, poet, stand-up comic, political activist, and core member of The Living Theatre.
According to Israel, the goal of the project is to create “a multimedia performance, and series of events, which remix past and present, preserving and animating the collectivist, activist impulses of New York counterculture.”
“We want to honor my pops as someone who touched many people's lives across generations, cultures, and communities,” Israel explains, “we want to document the avant-garde, and countercultural, art movements that are being marginalized in a gentrifying New York. Steve loved nothing more than to connect with a new generation of artists and audiences. He loved to learn and to share his experience, his humor, and insight, whether on stage, on the streets, on a subway, or in a taxi. That spirit of generosity, and of intergenerational relationship, will inform our project.”
Check out Israel’s video further explaining the project, and if you dig it, consider donating at The Spinning Wheel’s Kickstarter page.
For more of the best of NYC’s indie music scene, come back next Wednesday, and check out the archives for previous columns.
B-Listers are a select group of artists that were featured in my Artist Of The Week series that ran every Monday from April of '06 to April of '11. All of these artists have two things in common; extreme talent, and a flight path far too under the radar for my liking. They took on the title of B-Listers as they embraced being featured by me, Adam B. Check out the AOTW Archives for all the interviews.