Headphones: Cut Copy Brings The Music Festival To You


This week was overwhelming with great music releases. We got new records from The Killers, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, METZ, and more. But the prestigious title of Album of the Week belongs to Cut Copy for their most ambitious and funky album to date. Arcade Fire delivered the most beautiful and timely cover of John Lennon's "Mind Games," and Dude York lets loose a brain-melter of a music video. 

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Album of the Week: Cut Copy- "Haiku from Zero": Cut Copy have been reliably releasing intensely catchy dance music for years now. They have a the ability to craft an infectious synth-groove into a song that is bigger than the room it's contained in. It's the kind of music you'd want to hear at a music festival, with the sun shining down on your skin, Corona in hand. 

After a five year gap between their last release, "Free Your Mind," Cut Copy are back with music that sounds even more destined for the Coachella stage than anything they've ever released. The songs are filled with instruments, synthesizors, tropical house beats, and incredible harmonies. It's Cut Copy at their most fun.

The album starts out with a stunning opener called "Standing in the Middle of the Field" that begins this tropical adventure. The song has clapping percussion instruments laden across this track, and the song just builds from there. It's easy to close your eyes and envision a rainforest, teeming with life. It also sounds like a tropical beach somewhere, toucans squawking and mangoes plummeting to the sand. 

Lead single "Airborne" is an infectious funk track with a shimmering guitar strumming, and synths bouncing around all over the this thing, and an unstoppable drum line keeping the groove. The song is so catchy and the pace of it sounds like something out of an action movie. 

Cut Copy are kings of creating sleek and shimmering sonic soundscapes that can take up the space of the universe. Their songs have so much power in them that they could power you through a workout, or lead you to dance all night. Haiku From Zero is their most adventurous work to date. They not only swing for the fences with new sounds and instrumentation, but the vibe is totally new. It's a new era for Cut Copy, a turning of a page to a new chapter, and this chapter will feature a lot of dancing.

Single of the Week: Arcade Fire- "Mind Games" (John Lennon cover): Arcade Fire is one of those bands that is kind of bigger than life. Their music is able to feel so sonically massive, and the emotion the songs evoke is awe-inspiring. Now more than ever, it seems we need music that makes us feel something. Their cover of John Lennon's "Mind Games" sounds like a song that is desperately needed today. 

John Lennon was one of those iconic voices for peace and justice, and is an artist gone far too soon. In this song, he sings the iconic lyrics "Make love, not war." But his voice still rings so potently and affectionately today. When Arcade Fire covered this song at the end of their Lollapalooza set, right before they closed with "Wake Up," I saw plenty of people crying in the audience. It was a special sight to see. Music affecting people in a powerful way. It's kind of the reason why we listen to music. 

Music Videos of the Week

Dude York- "Black Jack": Dude York, the superb Seattle punk trio dropped the incredibly trippy video for a fan favorite song "Black Jack." The video shows lead singer Peter Richard's emotionless face projected with galaxies, fireworks, lions chasing gazelles, and more. The song is a churning alternative rock track seeping with screeching guitars and fantastic melodies. Watch this video sometime after a night of partying and you'll probably freak out, in a good way.

Mai Lan- "Pas d'Amour": French culture is always onto something creative and ahead of the curve. It's like everything they do in France is so stylized and original, yet soaked in classic art. In this video, the incredibly talented and severely underrated Mai Lan sounds as delicate as a cherry blossum over a skittering and dub-heavy dramatic beat. The video is even more crafty, showing Mai Lan bicycling under water, and doing so in the coolest way possible. It's a bit of a mind-bender, and the French singing makes the whole thing feel so out of this world.