Youth Lagoon Slams Washed Out’s New AI Music Video

Youth Lagoon Slams Washed Out’s New AI Music Video

Several prominent indie musicians have released AI-generated music videos in recent months, and every time, the reaction within their fan bases has been extremely negative. Last fall the emo supergroup L.S. Dunes had to post a statement defending their use of AI for the “Old Wounds” video. Earlier this year, Mannequin Pussy tweeted through the backlash for their AI-assisted “Nothing Like” video. Now it’s Washed Out’s turn to learn that indie audiences really, really don’t want to see creative jobs replaced by AI.

On Thursday, Washed Out, aka Ernest Greene, announced his first album in four years by releasing lead single “The Hardest Part.” The song’s video was created with Sora, OpenAI’s new highly touted tool that can generate realistic video imagery based on text prompts. Our comments section was disgusted with the choice, and it turns out, so was Washed Out’s indie-pop peer Trevor Powers, aka Youth Lagoon. In a tweet Thursday night, Powers shared his contempt for the video:

This Washed Out AI vid is the best case for blatant artlessness I’ve ever seen. It says nothing, does nothing, is nothing. Ugly slog too. Being an artist carries the responsibility of telling the truth. Ur personal truth. Some guts. Anything short of that, ur a bore & a grifter.

Washed Out’s tweet and Instagram post proudly announcing the use of Sora to create the video also elicited some strong pushback, though inevitably a few of the people(?) who pay for blue checks on X/Twitter did express their support.

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