Local Current Blog

Friday Five: Atmosphere, Toki Wright and Big Cats, and more MN-made music videos

Atmosphere's Slug and Ant (Photo by Dan Monick)

This week’s Friday Five is stacked. Some of the most beloved names in local hip-hop released videos at a breakneck pace earlier in the week, and we also got a little preview of John Mark Nelson’s forthcoming album and another pair of songs from a very mysterious Minneapolis act.

Happy Valentine’s Day, lovers, and hope to see you out at a show this weekend.

Toki Wright & Big Cats

This new Toki Wright and Big Cats collaboration sounds so inventive and impressive. Their new album, Pangaea, is due out later this year, and the duo is currently on tour with Atmosphere for a mini-tour of the state. Speaking of…


With their annual Welcome to Minnesota tour now underway, Atmosphere released a new video for “Bob Seger” that reimagines the legend of Paul Bunyan. So that’s why Babe is a blue ox…

John Mark Nelson

To get a sneak peek of his new album, due out later this year, local music video series Spaces follows John Mark Nelson into the Library Studio in Northeast Minneapolis to capture his performance of two new tunes.

No Bird Sing

“When writing Apogee, emcee Joe Horton imagined two eternal beings who are locked in orbit around one another, taking turns sleeping and being awake,” No Bird Sing write in their description of this new video, which stars Horton and guest vocalist Aby Wolf. What follows is an incredibly vivid and thought-provoking portrayal of Horton’s story, proving once again that he and his No Bird Sing bandmates excel at making art you can sink your teeth into.

Sans Caballo

I first came across this band/artist last year while sifting through Vita.mn’s Are You Local? submissions, and even though they only had one track to their name I connected with their music instantly. There was just something about it; the vocals reminded me of Beck, but weirder, and the way that the song unraveled hit me square in the gut. The project has been quiet since then—according to cryptic messages I’ve seen on Facebook, they claim they’ve been cryogenically frozen—but lo and behold, just this week they released two more tracks.

When I asked the band/artist about their/his/her plans, they told me via email that they have an EP called It Counts coming out next Friday, February 21, and that “the band will devote the next 7 months to finishing their tree house recording studio in upstate New York they started in 1976.” And then they included a picture of a treehouse, and said they might release more stuff sporadically, and with little notice.

And that’s literally everything I know about Sans Caballo.

  • BK

    Sans Caballo is spot on. Seriously. More please.

    • You’ll probably have to send a letter back in time.

  • Esom Ashour

    Show us the picture of the tree house!

    • MPR Digital

      Here it is in all its glory: