Ex-Chairlift guitarist Aaron Pfenning is Rewards, a solo project that takes full-band form when on tour. (Last year, Rewards tours included a stint through the States with Warpaint, and through Europe opening for Brandon Flowers). An occasional member of the live Rewards experience is Dev Hynes (Lightspeed Champion and, more recently, Blood Orange), and so it may be tonight at Greenpoint’s Coco 66, where Rewards plays a bill headlined by Blood Orange (whose new material is great) and underscored by Glossy Wheel and Beige. “What A Loser,” a new track from Pfenning, joins “I Used To” as stopgap teasers for a forthcoming single due this year via James Murphy’s dayjob (well just jobjob now, I guess), DFA Records. It’s an inviting track. The attendant video imagery is mostly goofy self-portrait vanity footage captured via iPhone, which brings a levity that squares interestingly, but nicely, with the slow, flushed synth-pop at play. And there’s the vocals, mixed low and sultry in their baritone until shot through various pitch-shifting effects, all of which would be dour and ghostly if not for the instruments’ tonal and chordal warmth. UPDATE: Aaron explain the concept:
It was shot as me imagining myself as Winona Ryder playing the role of a nun from Sister Act (you know the Whoopi Goldberg movie) in which she discovers she no longer wants to be a nun and escapes to document her journey and self discovery while on the run and holed up in a shabby motel.
Wino forever. You can take it: