Rubblebucket’s Alex Toth is releasing a self-titled LP under his Alexander F moniker at the end of this week. The album was conceived during an 11-day silent meditation retreat in Canada, and features contributions by Perfect Pussy’s Shaun Sutkus, Celestial Shore’s Max Almario, and Here We Go Magic’s Brian Betancourt, with co-production by Steve Marion (otherwise known as Delicate Steve) alongside Toth. Today we’re premiering the video for the Kimbra-featuring single “Call Me Pretty” plus an advance stream of the entire album. Comprising 11 tracks of explosively jittery art-rock, Alexander F is an uncompromising, unpredictable work — with a voracious energy both gripping and slightly intimidating.
That all holds true for “Call Me Pretty” as well, but the song is still the outlier for taking the same components that make up the rest of the album — rubberband basslines and filthy, wiry guitars — and constructing something more pop-oriented. “Hello, I’m running/ Obviously I’m running,” Toth deadpans repeatedly into director Timothy Jacob Elledge’s camera while sitting cross-legged, sounding both cynical and scared. “I want a heartbeat that doesn’t care,” he sings ironically as the song’s pulse begins to ramp-up, before launching head-first into a soaring, shimmering chorus. “Just cover your eyes and call me pretty/ Just cover your ears and call me pretty,” Kimbra alternates in a comforting call and response with Toth. The song is about “how we run away from our fears and try to look away in hopes of maintaining a safe complacency.” Yet if his debut album is any indication, Toth is one of the least complacent songwriters around. Watch the video for “Call Me Pretty” and stream Alexander F below.