A couple of days ago, Perfume Genius announced the new album Too Bright and shared the stark, powerful first single “Queen.” Mike Hadreas, the man who performs as Perfume Genius, has said that the album represents a confident, confrontational embrace of queer identity and of the effects it can have, and that sure as hell comes through in the video, which is a truly great piece of work. Cody Critcheloe, the man behind the performance-art pop project SSION, directed the video, a surreal masterpiece that starts with Hadreas playing a street hustler and jumps into the unknown from there. The video has pigs, smashed computers, giant shrimp dinners, a one-legged Elvis impersonator, and a troupe of cheerleaders celebrating a suicide. It demands to be picked apart. Watch it and read some words from Hadreas below.
Here’s what Hadreas says:
I’ve seen faces of blank terror when I walk by. Sometimes from seemingly strong, macho dudes — somehow my presence confuses and ultimately scares them. There is a strange power to it that I’ve only recently begun to understand and embrace. After many years trying to sort out exactly what they are scared of, most of the time converting the result into personal shame, there are now moments of monstrous pride.
(via the Matablog)
Too Bright is out 9/22 on Matador.