Los Angeles is a little like experimental pop music. Most people don't actually like it, they just put up with it because its influence, its creative contribution, is so valuable. After all, what's to like? As St. Vincent
points out in the video for "Los Ageless", from her new album MASSEDUCTION
, it's a city that drives people nuts in their frenzy to stay young and relevant.
Stylized with that weirdly sanitary, sexy/sexless feeling that St. Vincent's music videos traditionally have, "Los Ageless" depicts Annie Clark participating in such Los Angeles-inspired activities as having some casual plastic surgery, eating small portions of nasty looking food, and staring seductively at the camera. Maybe this is projecting, but after watching this video a few times and reading through the lyrics just to be sure, I'm not entirely certain that Clark dislikes L.A.'s superficiality. At the very least, it seems like she could be fascinated by the aesthetic of things that don't seem to show any wear and tear.
At the very least, the video seems like a warning for anyone entering Los Angeles: prepare to be seduced by its love of youth. Be prepared to submit to its demand to stay young at any cost. Interestingly, the last few lines of the song are left out of this cut of the music video. These lyrics read:
"I guess that's just me, honey, I guess that's how I'm built
I try to tell you I love you and it comes out all sick
I guess that's just me, honey, I guess that's how I'm built
I try to write you a love song but it comes out in a melt."
It's unclear if Clark is singing directly to Los Angeles here, or to some unspecified lover, but I choose to interpret Clark's lyrics as directed towards the city, clarifying that she meant to write something complimentary but ended up accidentally writing something closer to the truth. She, like L.A., can't love something unequivocally. She'll always notice the flaws first. MASSEDUCTION
is out on October 13th via Loma Vista Recordings.