First Look: The Sundance Channel's 'New American Noise'
By Chloe Fitzpatrick
Nokia Music has teamed up with The Sundance Channel to bring a new collection of music documentaries to screens. New American Noise is a six-part series of short films in which each unique piece captures a music scene in a different American city.
Each film is directed by folks already involved in alternative music scenes, in hopes that the series will create a truly intimate and authentic view of each musical landscape. The documentaries include profiles of impactful musical artists, interviews with fans, footage of live shows, and cinematic portraits of the cities themselves.
New York City’s installment is titled “Spit Gold Under An Empire,” a nod to the ways in which NYC’s underground rap scene is able to thrive when ignored by the capitalist system of the mainstream music business. Director Emily Kai Bock, she of the beautiful music videos for Grimes’s “Oblivian” and Grizzly Bear’s “Yet Again,” features individual artists and groups in the scene, including Angel Haze, Kirk Knight, The Underachievers, C.J. Fly of Pro Era, and our favorite drag rapper, Mykki Blanco.
We’re also very excited to see the full version of Abteen Bagheri’s "That B.E.A.T." The 23-year-old director behind A$AP Rocky’s “Peso” and Delta Spirit’s “California” has created an inspiring portrayal of the New Orleans sissy bounce scene, where queerness is vital, standards of beauty are challenged, and a diversity of bodies is celebrated. The short will include interviews and music from Sissy Nobody, Nicky Da B, Diplo, and Big Freedia. Even the two minute trailer will make you want to turn off your computer and fly to New Orleans. Promptly.
Bagheri is also profiling Portland’s indie shoegaze paradise and Los Angeles electronic artist SFV ACID, Tyrone Lebon is documenting the hip-hop happenings of Atlanta’s strip clubs, and Bob Harlow is taking on Detriot’s warehouse scene, where music is thriving in a struggling city.
All six of the short films are premiering today on The Sundance Channel.