If you’ve never taken LSD and want to know what a good acid trip feels like, watch the video for Pearl Earl’s “Meet Your Maker.” It’s fitful and angular and giggly all at once, an astral spaz of ultraviolet confetti.
Prismatic colors and neon-drenched shapes leap around, strobe lit, onto a floating astronaut. Three silhouettes galvanize from the stars playing Krautrock punk. The video, which premiered on the blog The Grey Estates last week, captures the voyage of three space maidens in search of meaning.
“Planet Earth is particularly puzzling as they question the contradictions and hypocrisy of human nature," Pearl Earl drummer Bailey K. Chapman says.
Ariel Hartley, lead vocalist and guitarist, considers “Meet Your Maker” the invisible title track of Pearl Earl’s self-titled album, released last month.
“It’s written from an alien’s perspective, looking at humans through a lens, asking questions of, ‘Why is society so skewed?’ and ‘Who is the maker of these people like that?’”
"It's written from an alien's perspective, looking at humans through a lens, asking questions of, 'Why is society so skewed?' and 'Who is the maker of these people like that?'" – Ariel Hartley, Pearl Earl
The song bursts with the fantastic authority of The Raincoats, a Funkadelic version of Cocteau Twins. Each drum stomp, each keyboard squelch, complements the kitschy wildness on the screen like an ode to Bruce Haak performed by Gang of Four.
“The video ties in with the album as a visual inspiration for the influence on my songwriting and aesthetic for the band,” Hartley says. “I absolutely love rainbows and colorful neo-psychedelic art, and I knew this particular video would really showcase that.”
It also showcases the weirdness of Dreamy Life Records, which releases Pearl Earl’s albums. Co-owner Jim Vallee considers the video for “Meet Your Maker” a perfect representation of the band: “It’s psychedelic, it’s sexy but it’s goofy at the same time. It conveys the excitement of their live performances really well.”
Keyboardist Chelsey Danielle hadn’t joined the band at the time it wrote the song, Hartley says, “but she was there while we filmed the video and provided us mimosas and watched all of us act like goofs on the green screen, so she was very much a part of it.”
You can tell the group had a blast making the video. In their space suits from last Halloween, the self-proclaimed Cosmic Queens look sharp, official, calm. Bassist Stefanie Lazcano sways like a rapper, her red Squire bass guitar warped green.
The video work was simple: Cesar Velasquez, who plays drums with Denton-based Thin Skin, recorded the live footage, and Alex Aulson, frontman for Austin-based Machete Western, did the editing. In Chapman's words: “Alex was the one who made it super trippy and manipulated.”
“I sought out Alex Aulson,” Hartley says, “because he has done videos that I really love for one of my favorite artists, Jay Watson from Tame Impala and Pond. And I love his solo project called GUM."