FAT WRECK CHORDS
“FROM HER LIPS TO GOD’S EARS (THE ENERGIZER)”
April 3, 2006
Greetings to all my pals in the music video community! It’s Andy Gesner and the staff from HIP Video Promo, here to share another terrific new video from an emerging act. If you’ve followed the music news lately, you’ve no doubt heard Against Me! mentioned. The uncompromising punk band from Gainesville, Florida has signed a deal with Sire Records, and will be putting out a new album on the legendary imprint in 2007. A deal with a major is often the cause of hand-wringing ambivalence in the punk subculture, but the near unanimity with which fans have celebrated Against Me!’s move to the majors is telling. Nobody fears that this powerful voice of dissent and criticism of the establishment can be muzzled; on the contrary, punks believe that Sire will simply offer the band a gigantic platform for their scathing sentiment. And fans and journalists concur – no punk act deserves it more, and it couldn’t have happened to a better, more socially-conscious bunch of guys.
While we at HIP are waiting impatiently for the Sire album to drop, we haven’t come close to wearing out our copies of Searching For A Former Clarity, which has received rave reviews from Rolling Stoneand across the board. SPIN even named the album one of their Top 20 of 2005. Against Me!’s 2005 full-length broadened the band’s sound, complicated and deepened their politics, and appealed to mainstream music listeners without sacrificing any of the group’s devoted underground audience. Frontwoman Laura Jane Grace remained on her soapbox, but began to sing with greater nuance, communicating sorrow and ambivalence as well as her usual righteous (and justifiable) outrage. It’s probably too early to say so, but it’s our guess that in ten years, Searching For A Former Clarity will be remembered as a punk classic, worthy of enshrinement alongside albums by Billy Bragg and The Clash in the agitprop Hall Of Fame.
Grace’s poetry wouldn’t hit so hard if the band wasn’t as ferocious as it is. As you’d expect from a band that’s subtitled its tracks “The Shaker”, “The Mover”, “The Energizer”, and “The Roller”, Against Me! is rousing, kinetic, exciting, combustible. “From Her Lips To God’s Ears” is “The Energizer”, and in concert, it certainly does have that effect – until you’ve seen a room full of punk fans singing “Condoleeza, what are we going to do now?” at the top of their lungs, you shouldn’t disparage the political engagement of American kids. Yes, this song is an open letter to the current Secretary Of State: a broadside and an unanswered question, deploring mistakes, asking for clarification and direction, making our national bewilderment manifest. It’s written in blunt, straightforward language – the words are acidic, but the questions are real, and earnestly posed.
The video for “From Her Lips To God’s Ears” borrows its metaphors from The Wizard Of Oz, the Alice books, and its insidious tone from Terry Gilliam’s collage animation for Monty Python. Our protagonist is a rabbit-girl, tormented in her hole by the constant images of war and destruction brought to her by the nightly news. Armed only with a photograph of Condoleeza Rice, she sets off on a Yellow Brick Road of her own – where she encounters fellow travelers burdened by the same questions. Like the Wizard, Rice is shielded inside a temple and hidden behind a screen, but her interrogators bring the edifice crashing down around her. Striking the perfect balance between cartoonish whimsy and apocalyptic portents, the video for “From Her Lips To God’s Ears” communicates its message of defiance with the sledgehammer force of the songs on Searching For A Former Clarity.
Here at HIP we are proud once again to be working with the very cool folks at Fat Wreck Chords on this punk rock masterpiece. On top of their recent appearance on Conan O’Brien, and upcoming David Letterman and Jimmy Kimmelperformances, Against Me! will spend the month of April rocking a town near you while on The Occult Roots Tour with Alkaline Trio, and will be available for video interviews and IDs, so if you’d like to interview this band please don’t hesitate to get in touch! We will also have plenty of copies of Searching For A Former Clarity on hand for on-air giveaways! And look for the April 11th release of the “From Her Lips To God’s Ears (Energize-O-Trom) Remix By Adrock” single, featuring a remix by Adrock of the Beastie Boys! If you need more info call Andy Gesner at 732-613-1779 or e-mail us at info@HIPVideoPromo.com.
For info about Against Me’s previous video, “Don’t Lose Touch” click HERE