Video: Black Lips – “Crystal Night”
From Satan’s graffiti or God’s art? out now on Vice Records. Produced by Sean Lennon.
Weird. It’s a dopey 50s love song pastiche, and also…it’s set during the event that kicked off the Holocaust, Kristallnacht. In the video, our protagonist gets kicked out of the prom by security (in brown shirts, of course) for spiking the punch. Ultimately, he’s thrown in the trunk of a BMW and driven away. If this is a reference to the historical “Night of Broken Glass” in 1938 when thousands of Jewish businesses, homes, and synagogues were ransacked and destroyed by nazis, it’s pretty tasteless. Tens of thousands of Jews were arrested within 24 hours and the Black Lips are joking about emptying your flask into the punch bowl?
We never said goodbye
Now you’re sent to die
On crystal night
It’d be pretty easy to argue that the Lips are trivializing the horrific pogrom against Jews for the sake of a goofy little ditty. And I’m guessing they might suggest that it’s only rock and roll and we should all lighten up. Part of what I love about this band is their snottiness and general DGAF attitude, so this is not necessarily “off brand” for them. (I suppose they did something similar with Hurricane Katrina ten years ago.) But this is pretty fucking odd.
Video: Black Lips – “O Katrina!”
From Good Bad Not Evil, on Vice Records, 2007.