Shawn Majors, Youth Pool, Wuzz, Company Retreat and more: the best in local music videos

Labor Day weekend is over. You’ve got a long stretch of work staring you in the face, with no holiday until Thanksgiving. Maybe you’re a little sunburned, maybe still hungover from yesterday’s cookout. Why not watch some videos from the area’s finest and ease into that work week? There’s hip-hop from Shawn Majors, RileyPnP, and Tech N9ne, indie rock from Youth Pool, Wuzz’s old-school metal, and even some lovely choral work from St. Thomas Aquinas and the Summer Singers of Kansas City.

Shawn Majors, “I Still Love You” 

There’s something kind of weird about a rapper performing in an empty club, but damned if it doesn’t show confidence. Majors shot this in the Batcave, and the purple visuals complement the song’s laid-back vibe. The same goes for the slightly jarring stop-and-start elements, which emphasize lines like The race wars give ’em good ratings. The track’s off Majors’ No More Love, which came out last year. 

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Dead Ends live at Aftershock

The members of KCK’s Dead Ends refer to themselves as beatdown deathcore, which I fully respect. Combining elements of death metal and hardcore, the group reminds me of a younger Altered Beast. It debuted a brutal new single, “Wasteland,” earlier this month, and has an EP on the way. Not too shabby for a band that played its first show at the end of June. 

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Foreigner with St. Thomas Aquinas High School Choir, “I Want to Know What Love Is”

August 16

When Foreigner played Starlight Theater on August 15, the FM warhorse had a little help on its second-to-last song of the night. KCMO 94.9 had sponsored a contest,calling on local choirs to compete for tickets to the show and a chance to perform “I Want to Know What Love Is” with the band. The winning ensemble was the choir of St. Thomas Aquinas High School, and the group knocked it out of the park. 

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Youth Pool, “Dive In”

Oh, man, do we ever love that split screen. The cool blues and grays of Youth Pool’s video for “Dive In,” directed by Skyler Brown, perfectly reflect the fuzzy tone of the song. It’s great to see a band from Kansas City digging into the early ’90s sounds of My Bloody Valentine and Ned’s Atomic Dustbin and mixing it with a hint of dream-pop. This is from 2016’s EP of the same name, and while the band released a two-track EP, Live From the Sunflower State, back in June, it promises a new EP soon. 

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Summer Singers of Kansas City, “Judas Maccabaeus”

This is something a little different. Per its website, “The Summer Singers of Kansas City is a community chorus of 125-150 voices that begins weekly rehearsals in June of each year in preparation for a performance of a major choral-orchestral masterwork at the end of August.” This year’s performance was of Handel’s Judas Maccabaeus, in the nave of Grace & Holy Trinity Cathedral on August 20. For those looking toward next year: expect Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana in 2018. 

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Tech N9ne on BET Versed

BET’s all-music offshoot, BET Jams, features a show called Versed, on which the finest lyricists in hip-hop show up to drop live verses, exclusively for the show. Tech N9ne doesn’t necessarily drop anything new — this is from “Get Off Me,” from 2016’s The Storm — but the beat’s still new, and when he drops that Babadook reference, it still kills. 

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Wuzz, “Wormwood”

It’s a damned shame the volume occasionally blows out the mic on this video, because Wuzz’s newest song, “Wormwood,” is a solid piece of old-school metal. Something like the less-thrashy elements of Metallica mixed with Slayer’s darker numbers like “South of Heaven,” this is a killer tune, shot live as part of Stratgazer’s Metal Invasion at Voodoo Lounge last month. 

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RileyPnP, “Never Switch”

I’ve lost count of how many videos I’ve posted from RileyPnP this summer. If there’s a better soundtrack to the heat and craziness of the last few months than Riley’s chill trap, though, I can’t think of one. Director Kendu the Stampede makes the video for “Never Switch” a hazy bit of traveling through the skies, the road, and eventually ending up on the streets. 

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American Dischord, There’s No Place Like Home Tour preview

Featuring the band’s “B&E,” off its split with Florida’s Scars N’ Stripes, this is just as much a music video as it is a promo for the band’s upcoming October tour to the West Coast. The band will be hitting up Colorado and Utah on its way out to the Pacific Northwest and California.

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Company Retreat, “80’s Babies”

Punk trio Bent Left has been on radio silence for a good long while. But it’s been busy in the studio, recording a new full-length and rebranding as Company Retreat. It’s the same energetic, raw rock, but there’s a new emphasis on power-pop elements. Encapsulated Records from St. Louis is putting out the album, which the newly renamed band will mark with a release show on Friday, October 6, at Davey’s Uptown.

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Categories: Music