The Bad Ideas, Katy Guillen & the Girls, Warm Bodies, and more: May’s must-see local music videos

Summer’s here, right? Despite the potential for sunny days to lure us away from our computers and phones, it’s been rainy enough to need some quality entertainment while we’re stuck indoors for the fifth day in a row. Well, we’ve got you, kids: be it the disturbing synth work of Umberto, Katy Guillen & the Girls’ bouncy blues rock, or a heaping helping of Bob Dylan tunes. It’s June’s Cine Local.

The Dark Dark, “Beacon”
May 2
“The only way this band would make a music video is by gunpoint.” Simple concept, simple 
song, but well-executed (pun absolutely intended). The spare set compliments the spare music, and kind of reinforces the song’s tense emotional core.

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Warm Bodies, “Everything is Not Okay”
May 6
Shot live at the 89th Street Collective on March 10, there’s something refreshing about 
the VHS graininess, and audio that pushes the limits of being blown out, while still remaining clearly audible. The energy from the quartet pushes through all of this and your internet connection to smack you in the face and wake your ass up.

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Umberto, “Awakenings”
May 10
Despite the fact that Umberto’s not been in Kansas City for ages, he started his musical career here, and damned if it’s not the sort of music we’re proud to call somewhat our own. Plus, this new stuff is creepy as hell — even more so than Umberto’s prior releases, if possible. The new album, Alienation, is due out Friday on Not Not Fun.

Katy Guillen & the Girls, “Heavy Days”
May 12
The title track to KG & the Girls’ forthcoming LP is so good. Everything they do is good, but man, “heavy” is so perfectly appropriate an adjective for this song. The new album is due out June 24, so I guess we’ll just put this on repeat until then.

The Philistines, “Making ‘The Backbone of Night'”
May 11
The Philistines’ debut full-length, The Backbone of Night, is due out this week on Kansas City label the Record Machine. Seeing how you can stream the whole thing at the Obelisk, why not take a peek behind the scenes of the album’s production, including the 12-person “guitarchestra” which graces the track “The Accretion Disco”? The album release party is Saturday, June 4, at the Living Room.

Bob Dylan Fest at the Lawrence Arts Center
May 12
Presented as part of the Tuesday Music Series at the Lawrence Arts Center, Larry Carter’s annual Bob Dylan Fest had its fifth iteration on May 10. This is just part of the concert, featuring performers the Heebie Jeebies, Darrell Lea and John Lomas, Greg Pelligreen and Larry Carter, Bob Garrett, Alonzo Beardshear and Ross Black. 

Godzillionaire, “Absolute Zero”
May 15
Godzillionaire’s been playing shows for a few years, but despite featuring Lawrence rock luminary Mark Hennessey of Paw as its frontman, the band always seems to hang a little under the radar. This gorgeous black and white video by the Masonic Film Society should hopefully raise their profile.

The Bad Ideas, “Party Bus”
May 17
I honestly think this is how the Bad Ideas get together for every show they play. It’s like the opening to some sort of punk-rock heist movie, in which the Bad Ideas is the name of the group that’s been put together to rob some crooked music promoter who’s been taking advantage of bands across the city.

Dre Tee, “Save Them Souls” featuring Tornado 4:18
May 22
Dre Tee does socially conscious hip-hop that leans heavily Christian, but honestly — given the long history of gospel finding its way into hip-hop cuts since the first days of the genre — it manages not to be preachy. There’s a nice beat behind it, and this might be the first piece of Jesus music I’ve heard in a decade that actually managed to be stylistically timely, as opposed to a couple years behind the trends.

Are you a local musician with a video? Send it to nicholas.spacek@gmail.com

Categories: Music