When I was a kid one of my favorite things was sitting in the car as we inched slowly through the carwash, brushes swishing, water sloshing, soap foaming—it was a womb-like, weird experience. So I was pretty pleased to see Soko's video for new song "Temporary Moodswings"—premiering below—is set in a car wash, except there's no car and it's not automated. Rather, she's dancing and writhing about and fooling around and getting suds-y with a bunch of leather-clad greasers. Musically it slots in nicely next to "Who Wears the Pants??" which we premiered back in January, bearing a kind of post-punk, Savages-esque swagger. Thus it makes all the more sense that for her forthcoming record My Dreams Dictate My Reality, she teamed up with producer Ross Robinson, who's worked on records with everyone from The Cure (of whom Soko is a huge fan), to At the Drive-In to Klaxons.
Turns out Soko not only stars in the video but she directed it too.
"I was driving back home at 4 AM and saw that car wash with disgusting lights and it looked like a movie scene," she explains. "I instantly knew I wanted to shoot something there, where I'm a little sub and people come and wash my sins away!"
"I got a whole crew of friends together in just a few hours and asked them to look like bad boys greasers—wearing all black, biker jackets, and white t-shirts—and wanted to be walked on a leash. 'Cos why not!"
As for the lyrics, which include the ever-apropos line, "I am a victim of my own desire…" (aren't we all?), Soko noted: "The song is about my childhood mostly. When you don't have any communication skills and you express your sadness by crying and throwing tantrums because no adults would lend an ear to talk your emotions out peacefully, throwing tantrums sadly because it is the only form of communication you have. It’s also about me trying to be a better person and break patterns and cycles that don’t work.
"So, yes, being washed, hosed, and soaped up for all my sins in the video was like my own version of going to church for confession and wanting to better myself. It's all filmed in VHS, we had to steal all of these shots in two hours with two cameras a tmidnight. I was on a huge adrenaline high, a tight crew and we just had fun. It was freezing cold and I actually got a bit sick, but it was way worth it! Directing my videos is one of the things that makes me the happiest. DIY 4 LYF."
Directed by SOKO
Edited by Nina Ljeti
Filmed by Nina Ljeti, Alice Baxley, Soko
The Dirty Girl: Soko
The Master : Matt Ornstein
The Greasers: Jake Hoffman, AJ English, Matt Campbell, Greg Moore, Chris Gibson
UPM: Ana Maria Hermida
Special Thanks: To The Whole awesome magical cast and crew for being awesome troopers. Plus Dylan Sosa, Katharine O'Brien, The Car Wash we destroyed. My Dreams Dictate My Reality—which also features two collaborations with Ariel PInk—will be released via Babycat Records through BECAUSE Music 3.3.