No idea why Sub Pop quietly released a new video for a song on an album that’s been out for over a year by an artist who’s not currently touring and doesn’t seem to have anything new to promote, but I’ll take any opportunity I can find to listen to Natalie Mering’s amazing voice. “A Given Thing” is the closer from 2022’s And In The Darkness, Hearts Aglow and it encapsulates all the cosmic Karen Carpenter vibes we’ve come to expect from Weyes Blood.
It’s not a one way street
Sometimes our love is enrapturing
And other times, it’s just unraveling in front of me
And it feels like we’re burning
Making ashes of our joy.
Hopefully this video is a hint that something new is coming. But even if it’s not, who cares, it’s nice to have more Weyes Blood to watch.
Last year’s “Grapevine” ended up being one of my favorite songs of 2022 and now there’s a new video to promote Weyes Blood’s “In Holy Flux Tour” which will keep Natalie Mering and co. on the road through November. The video is something of a tour diary of the previous run of shows in Europe and North America.
I’d give anything to hang
I’ve been without friends
Oh I’ve just been working
For years and I stopped having fun.
I imagine that’s a sentiment that a lot of us can connect with. It’s been a weird bunch of years, hasn’t it? But there’s no question that all of our lives could be greatly improved if we incorporated more capes into a wardrobes.
I recently finished reading the big Weyes Blood profile by Margaret Talbot in the New Yorker. (I like to do the deal where you sign up for a six-week print subscription for like $6 and then spend the next six months reading those six issues.) Before reading that I didn’t know anything about Natalie Mering and I’d only heard a song or two. Must not have been in the right headspace because my first impression was it just sounded like boring Fleetwood Mac album filler. But the article inspired me to want to go back and listen closer. Mering is clearly a super interesting person with lots of ideas about music, nostalgia, and sounds. If her voice reminds you of Karen Carpenter, don’t forget that there was always a darkness and a sense of doom underlying those pretty melodies and dopey lyrics.
I haven’t had yet had a chance to dive too deeply into the message of “Grapevine” because I’m so knocked out by the sound of it. The tone of the opening acoustic guitar and bass is so warm and perfect that I find myself starting the track over and over so I can hear it again. It’s almost a minute before any percussion comes in and when it does it’ll blow your mind. Just listen. It’s worth it. (Make sure you turn up the volume. After I initially wrote this I listened to it in the car at “normal” volume and the experience was not the same.)
“It’s a wild time to be alive.” You can’t argue with that!
The new video features Weyes Blood’s Natalie Mering and a few of her friends frolicking naked in the woods and then getting freaky with some dayglo paint under a blacklight.
Mering says the video “was shot on 16mm pre-Pandemic, then edited together during isolation. Felt like the right time to let this video out into the world, seeing as we’re all getting saddled down by some pretty grim realities. This song is about yearning for wildness and Mother Nature in a time of chaos. It’s for sensitive people who worry about the fate of humanity and feel powerless to do anything about it.”
The song has a very strong Seventies Creepout vibe. Remember when Karen and Richard Carpenter ate a bunch of acid and spent a week locked up in the studio with Scott Walker? Yeah, me neither. But if that happened I bet the results would sound a lot like “Wild Time.”