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July 25, 2014

We Are Shining: Hot Love

Going Rogue on the Streets of London With Model-of-the-Moment Adwoa Aboah

Freckled beauty Adwoa Aboah loses herself to the beat-scattered, gospel blues of We Are Shining in their video for new single "Hot Love," directed by Simon Cahn. The London-based outfit made up of Morgan Zarate and Acyde, garnered attention with an early release on Young Turks (as The Shining), while their recent collaboration with breakout singer-songwriter Eliza Doolittle, “Killing,” made waves with a flinch-inducing viral video capturing a dancer seemingly unaware of throwing knives narrowly missing her head. "There's a lot of experimental Afro, Latin and European music from the late 1960s to 1980s," Zarate and Acyde say of their current playlists. "In terms of production it's about putting yourself in another world and getting the music to sound like that place." Following a cosmic mix tape, Devileyes, today's ecstatic video by the Parisian filmmaker comes ahead of the duo's debut album out later this year on Marathon Artists. Its free-spirited protagonist Aboah, who has fronted campaigns for H&M and Henry Holland and is the daughter of Camilla Lowther and Charles Aboah, makes the ultimate muse. "I wanted her to be almost like Juliette Binoche in Lovers on the Bridge, which isn’t an easy thing to pull off," says Cahn.

"Hot Love" is released on Marathon Artists on September 8.

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Soko: Love Letter

Aaron Rose Animates Late Artist Niki De Saint Phalle’s Drawings on Desire For MOCAtv

The beguiling illustrations of Niki De Saint Phalle come alive to the sound of French starlet Soko’s “Love Letter,” a song directly inspired by the late Franco-American artist’s 1988 book, My Love, Where Shall We Make Love? “When the idea first came up to do a film based on Niki’s artwork, Soko was the first person I thought of, as there is something very tough and tender in everything she does,” says artist, curator and filmmaker Aaron Rose, who made the short based on the drawings found in Saint Phalle’s accordion-folding book that muses on the quirks and intricacies behind human devotion. “The way Soko took the feeling of the text in the book and completely transformed it into her own just blew me away.” The video forms part of a collaborative series of art-inspired lyric videos created by Rose and MOCAtv: he has so far worked with LA-based musician Sam Spiegel, hip-hop pioneer Fab Five Freddy and Brazilian-American songwriter Kool Kojak on a lyric video based on the graffiti of Jean-Michel Basquiat, and on a film based the work of conceptualist Sol Lewitt with Tim Armstrong from US punk group Rancid. “The whole idea is to package an artist’s writings in a pop format,” says the filmmaker, whose 2008 documentary Beautiful Losers looked at the art movement that he helped to spearhead along with Harmony Korine and Shepard Fairey. “Sometimes their words are only heard in lectures or read in the pages of academic catalogues; I thought it would be fun to reframe them and turn people on to writings that they would never have read before.”

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Baby Alpaca: Sea of Dreams

The Brooklyn Band Conjures a Blissful Psychedelic Fantasy

An abstracted landscape of volcanic clouds forms the backdrop to Baby Alpaca’s video for Turbotito’s euphoric remix of their track “Sea of Dreams”. Directed by the band’s New York-based painter-filmmaker-frontman Chris Kittrell, the work captures the balletic Benji Staker dancing on Whidbey Island in Washington. “We were watching the footage in slow motion with a few instrumental songs we had recorded,” says Kittrell of his inspiration alongside bandmate Zach McMillian. “I started adding in footage of paint and the sky to recreate the feeling of the day.” Although the psych-folk outfit have signed to Atlas Chair records (owned by JD Samson of Men and Le Tigre), Kittrell still pursues other creative outlets. When not composing the band’s haunting lyrics, the singer–a one-time intern at The Row and Marc Jacobs–designs a hand-painted knitwear line called Beautiful Dreamers x Baby Alpaca. “We are going to have some parties in boutiques where we'll be launching our new collection,” enthuses Kittrell. “Melt-on-your-body knitwear. It's so soft!” Following his new wave reworks for LCD Soundsystem and Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Producer and LA resident Turbotito’s interpretation of “Sea of Dreams” features on Baby Alpaca’s forthcoming remix album, Strictly Sexual

Baby Alpaca’s Strictly Sexual (Remixes) is released March 2 on Atlas Chair

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