Nebraska’s music scene sports a healthy community of hard-working, entrepreneurial artists, but it’s not always a given that such artists will have a medium to successfully promote their work. Read on for a handful of recent music videos and track releases worth checking out around the local music scene.
To start this roundup, we’ll give a nod to No Thanks’ “Flying Columns,” the second single from the Omaha post-punk band’s debut full-length album, “The Trial,” which is due out Jan. 26. The song burns with drummer Gabe Cohen’s static drum rhythm in the vein of early-80s The Cure and guitarist Michael Huber’s fiery guitar leads. But, as with most No Thanks tracks, the real focus is on frontman Brendan Leahy’s impassioned sociopolitical lyrics — this time bashing capitalist America’s greed with lyrics like, “What keeps you poor? Because a rich man has more than he needs.” Listen below, and catch the band at OutrSpaces in Omaha on Jan. 26 for its album release show.
Omaha ex-pat and Frankie Cosmos collaborator Anna McClellan dropped “Heart of Hearts,” the lead single to her upcoming LP “Yes Or No” in November, and on Jan. 17, she followed it with “Flailing Orbits.” It’s as close to a legitimate ballad as McClellan has ever come, as the track is builds off a modest piano progression accented by tasteful slide guitar leads. In the song’s sub-two-minute runtime, McClellan fits in references to astrology and black holes as she recounts being head-over-heels in love, but able to move on from the heartbreak. “Yes Or No” comes out on Feb. 23 via Bay Area-based Father/Daughter Records.
In hip-hop news, the ever-prolific Lincoln emcee Sleep Sinatra released a track on Soundcloud titled “B.I.E.,” which sees Sinatra tackling topics from drug abuse to breaking free of social constraints over a jazzy instrumental courtesy of producer TCOR. Sinatra’s flows are a crash course in wordplay and assonance, with the lyrics, “If you conscious, they call you B.I.E., that you ready to D.I.E. like B.I.G.” on the hook. The song comes on the heels of Sleep’s inclusion on media company Mass Appeal’s list of the best underground mixtapes of 2017 for his August-released tape “(Adrian)”. Listen below.
Omaha/Lincoln singer-songwriter collective Jacob James Wilton has had quite the month so far, releasing its six-track EP “Distant.” on Jan. 12, which we reviewed here. Since then, the band, fronted by ex-Super Ghost frontman Jake Newbold, has continued to strike while the iron is hot, releasing a pair of homemade music videos for the “Distant.” tracks “Waiting” and “Ville De L’Amour.” On the surface, both are compilations of random footage from a video camera, but both are meticulously crafted so each shot matches with the songs’ instrumental shifts. Listen to “Distant.” here.
Finally, Omaha hip-hop duo BXTH dropped the music video for its 2017-released single “#FLASHDRIVE.” It’s a trippy video, following emcee Scky Rei and producer INFNTLP as they tromp through the Old Market, winding up at a Cubby’s convenience store, roaming the aisles as psychedelic visual effects skew and twist the foods lining the shelves and frozen sections. Aesthetically, it’s a fitting match with the track’s cloud rap instrumental and Scky Rei’s laid-back delivery. Watch below.
If any tracks or videos slipped through the cracks here, feel free to send us an email at email@example.com, and we’ll try to give a shoutout in the next column.