Things To Watch: Khruangbin, “Two Fish and an Elephant”

So, did you realize Houston has a Thai soul-pop band? None of whom are from Thailand, mind you, as far as I’m aware, but Khruangbin have embraced the ’60s-era pop/funk stylings of that country, where bands took American and British pop music and filtered it through Thai culture to make it something strange and different and their own, and they’ve made the sound their own now, too, and somehow made it weirdly “Texan” in the process.

Seriously, this band is like few others you’re likely to hear, at least if their recent full-length, The Universe Smiles Upon You is any evidence. We’re going to review it soon, I promise, but in the meantime, the band’s released a video via NPR for one of the songs on the album, “Two Fish and an Elephant,” and holy shit, you need to see it.

Honestly, calling it a “music video” feels a little small, to me. What it is, really, is a short film, set in the aftermath of something terrible that’s not quite finished — and in the midst of the carnage, there’s a moment of pure joy and beauty. It’s like a crazy combination of Quentin Tarantino and Fred Astaire, but set somewhere in Thailand. And over it all floats this soulful, earthy-yet-ethereal, hypnotic funk track, with a rubbery bassline, streetwise drums, and gently psychedelic guitars.

Simply put, it’s good, and again: you need to see it. So here you go:

Khruangbin will be playing at White Oak Music Hall on Friday, November 18th. Mark your calendars now…

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