David Bevan

writer

Biography
Manhattan, NY

  • The Helio Sequence / Photo by Pavlina Summers

    Hear the Helio Sequence's Full Seismic 'Negotiations'

    Three years ago, the Helio Sequence were on tour when they received some bad news: a spell of heavy rains back home in Portland had sparked a plumbing disaster that flooded the duo's studio and practice space. Though their gear was spared, they were forced to set out in search of a new place to work, eventually happening across a spacious, converted break room in an old warehouse. The extra square footage afforded them the opportunity to experiment with different equipment, and when they settled down to write and record Negotiations, their fifth full-length and latest for Sub Pop, the duo (singer/guitarist Brandon Summers and keyboardist/drummer/one-time Modest Mouse touring member Benjamin Weikel) decided to ditch the sleek digital textures that have defined much of their work up until now for a setup that features vintage synthesizers, reverb, and microphones.

  • Jay-Z and Pearl Jam / Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage

    See Pearl Jam Back Jay-Z on a Scorching '99 Problems'

    At the tail end of their two-hour, festival-closing set Sunday night at Jay-Z's Made In America get-together, Pearl Jam launched into what set list-studying Ten Club nerds and casual fans would call an unlikely number: "W.M.A.," a saturnine, long-forgotten mid-record cut from 1993's Vs. that the Seattle alt-rock survivors usually sneak into their set as a means for launching into a cover, or stretching its tribal rhythms into an extended jam perfect for snippets of other artists' poetry. The track, which was inspired by events that took place outside the studio during the recording process, touches on themes of racism — "W.M.A." is Vedder for "White Male American" — which made it the perfect backdrop for a similarly minded surprise guest appearance on Sunday from the festival's curator.

  • ARIEL PINK'S HAUNTED GRAFFITI

    This much-mythologized Los Angeles singer-songwriter has blossomed from prolific, no-fi cult personality (in the vein of hero R. Stevie Moore) to one of the new century's most influential recording artists through his chill waves of unease. He first entered the larger conversation music when The Doldrums (one of eight innately psychedelic albums he wrote and recorded alone on eight-track between 1998 and 2004) was re-issued in 2004 on Animal Collective's Paw Tracks imprint. Since then, his outsider vision of the pop canon's darkest corners, has evolved into a new blueprint for a generation of bedroom recording artists. Avey Tare: To us, he represents somebody who's just their own individual personality, doing their own thing… Geologist: And there are a lot of people now in his periphery! But there's no one quite like the original.

  • David Wax Museum's 'Harder Before It Gets Easier' Video

    Watch David Wax Museum's Eye-Popping 'Harder Before It Gets Easier' Video

    At first glance, David Wax Museum's new, Shutter & String-directed video for "Harder Before It Gets Easier" bears a striking resemblance to the body-painted ballet of Gotye's ultra-viral "Somebody That I Used To Know" clip. But like the New England duo's "Mexo-American" folk hybrid, as covered in last year's SPIN feature on the 'New Stars of Americana, the video below is a far more exuberant, brightly colored affair, and Wax and bandmate Suz Slezak's body parts even double as accordion keys.

  • Unnatural Helpers

    Hear Unnatural Helpers' Wonderfully Sludgy 'Toil'

    What they once called "The Seattle Sound" is apparently alive and well. Unnatural Helpers, originally a Dean Whitmore-led outfit of Sub Pop-employed ne'er do wells, is now a Dean Whitmore-led outfit of ne'er do wells employed elsewhere. But that doesn't mean they've strayed from the grunge blueprint that Mudhoney (frontman Mark Arm now works in the Sub Pop warehouse) hammered into place almost 30 years ago, the same one that helped put Sub Pop on the map.

  • Wax Fang

    Hear Wax Fang's Ferocious New 'Mirror Mirror'

    On October 30, Karate Body Records will unleash Mirror Mirror, third full-length from wild-eyed Louisville rock revisionists (and My Morning Jacket pals) Wax Fang. Like the Scott Carney-led outfit's previous musings (please track down a copy of 2008's La La Land if you haven't yet), it is a white-hot blast of white-knuckle cross-pollination (equal parts prog, Skynyrd, and Broadway) and oddball theater as evidenced by its uncompromising title track, streaming for the first time below. Pre-order it now right here.

  • Ariel Pink's 'Polygamist Fantasy': Behind His 'Only In My Dreams' Video

    Ariel Pink's 'Polygamist Fantasy': Behind His 'Only In My Dreams' Video

    In our new in-depth profile of Ariel Pink, the much-mythologized singer-songwriter spoke candidly of his eight-year relationship with fellow L.A. musician Geneva Jacuzzi and the difficult months following its end. But when he sat down to develop the plot for his Travis Peterson-directed clip for Mature Themes highlight "Only In My Dreams," he did so with her in mind as his co-star (she appears first in the opening shot), as the chief love interest in a constellation of women that comprises what he jokingly refers to as a "polygamist fantasy." Watch how the dream comes to life alongside some "Director's Cut"-like commentary from Pink himself: "I've been kicking the idea around for a while. It's a strange, perverted fantasy I suppose I've been concocting in my mind in some of my more vulnerable moments. But I wanted Geneva to be in it, so I had to run it by her.

  • The Very Best: Afropop Duo Deliver Heartwarming Sophomore LP

    The Very Best: Afropop Duo Deliver Heartwarming Sophomore LP

    Who: Johan Karlberg and Esau Mwamwaya, the two halves of the Very Best, met for the first time at a party in London several years ago. At the time, Mwamwaya was running a secondhand shop not far from his future bandmate's home. "I remember this guy standing alone at the party when I arrived, looking a bit lost," the Swedish-born producer says of Mwamwaya that night. "He told me he was a drummer, so I invited him to the studio and he ended up being a singer. But my first memory of him is this big smile, which he always has on his face anyway. He's always welcoming." The duo's debut full-length, 2009's Warm Heart of Africa, was the most irresistibly jovial record released that year, with Karlberg's ultra-buoyant, club-friendly production transported and vaulted even higher by Mwamwaya's skyward singing voice.

  • Ariel Pink / Photo by Nick Haymes

    Ariel Pink: In Praise of Guilty Genius

    At the foot of the ladder to his attic, Ariel Pink is finally still. Someone has entered his Los Angeles apartment unannounced, a slammed door sending shivers through the cabinets in the hallway where we're standing. "Who could that be?" he says softly, his face illuminated only by the loose, half-lit ceiling lamp jangling above us. In shuffles Emily, a friend in need of help. We exhale. "My fucking car died, man," she says, blowing her bangs out of her eyes as her bag falls from her shoulder to the floor. "I'm so stressed-out." Across the street, her white, late-model Volkswagen is roasting in the morning sun. She thinks it needs a jump. "Did you bring your paperwork?" Pink asks her, changing the subject.

  • Matthew Dear / Photo by Will Calcutt

    Matthew Dear Breaks Down 'Beams': Hear the Full Album

    Next week, Ghostly International will release Beams, the fifth full-length from well-dressed electro chameleon Matthew Dear. It's a step forward in every way, a record that finds the New Yorker turning to a production team (enter Van Rivers and the Subliminal Kid) for the very first time, pushing himself lyrically and sonically while also making the space to channel his inner 120 Minutes geek. Below, hear the record in its entirety and check out Dear's thoughts on each song's birth. "Her Fantasy" "Her Fantasy" took many turns along the way as it developed. I knew I had something special when I captured the arpeggiated synth progression that carries throughout the whole song. That was the backbone that you look for when starting a song: Something has to stick, and it was that Korg Poly Six line that did it.

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