Local Current Blog

Friday Five: Lena Elizabeth, We Are The Willows, and more new Minnesota music videos

Lena Elizabeth in "Loaded Gun"

Lena Elizabeth – “Loaded Gun”

Lena Elizabeth welcomes a camera into the studio while recording her new single “Loaded Gun.” The song isn’t a departure from her EP The Line, but it does feel like a strengthening and deepening; Lightnin’ Joe Peterson on the B3 organ adds a nice zing under Lena’s relatively cool vocals and Taylor Donskey’s upright bass. If you’d like to support the recording of the band’s debut album, Get It Right, check out this Kickstarter.

We Are The Willows – “The Prettiest Please”

Not too long ago, orchestral indie-rock band We Are The Willows traveled to Justin Vernon’s studio, April Base, to record with engineer/producer Mike Noyce (Bon Iver). They say they came out a different band. Here’s one song from those sessions: “The Prettiest Please,” something of a bleaker “Sweet Caroline,” or perhaps appropriate walking music for a cloudy day. The lyric video contains 180 collaged images from the New York Public Library’s public-domain digital archives. We Are The Willows have planned more singles to come, but while you’re waiting, you can see them perform at Mortimer’s on June 15 with Minneapolis band Har-di-Har.

George Hadfield – “Brenda”

Nope, “Brenda” is not a woman. She’s a synthesizer, and George Hadfield has named both this single and his upcoming album (out June 8) after her. Brenda was written, produced, and recorded by Hadfield, plus well-loved Minneapolis musicians Danny O’Brien (DEM YUUT), Garrett Neal (Holidae, Dream Crusher), and Stefon “Bionik” Taylor (known for his collaborations with GRRRL PRTY and its various members). Hadfield will get funky at Icehouse on June 14.

Wooldridge Brothers – “Drive Through Summer”

It’s not every week a re-release is featured on Friday Five, but Milwaukee’s Wooldridge Brothers are looking for a little momentum, and why not give them a boost? This is a fun video — produced and directed by Robb Fischer — that takes place at a drive-in theater. Plus, it was recorded in Minneapolis’s Terrarium Studios and co-produced by John Munson (the Twilight Hours, the New Standards). The Wooldridge Brothers perform at Eagles #34 on June 15.

The Jolly Pops – “I Am A Robot”

Kids’ band the Jolly Pops present the story of a shoe-eating robot. Oil your joints, because they’ve built in an ode to the robot dance; if you like awkwardly swinging your forearms in public, hit up one of their many Twin Cities gigs this summer, including the Stone Arch Bridge Festival on 6/17 and various shows at parks and libraries.