Yesterday, legendary decades-spanning pop weirdo Scott Walker released the first full song from his 14th solo record, Bish Bosch, to be released on December 4th. It’s his first since 2006’s The Drift, which was something of an gothic masterpiece. I’ve joked in this space previously about the pretentiousness of that record, but I haven’t meant that in a totally derogatory way. While I find myself wanting to listen to his older records more often, the ones that temper the high-art with a little bit more pop structure (the 60s records are just chock-full of magnificently orchestrated, utterly heartbreaking pop songs, actually), there’s a singular oddness and commitment to vision on it that’s totally captivating. When he promised, repeatedly, to “punch a donkey in the streets of Galway,” you believed he was GOING TO PUNCH THAT DONKEY.
His new piece, “Epizootics!”, was debuted via a 10-minute short film that is flat out weird as fuck. At a time when David Lynch is tossed around a little too casually as a reference point, Walker, along with director Olivier Groulx have made a piece of art that actually gets real close to the smiling, surreal malevolence of Lynch’s best work. We are going to have to go through it, at length.
C’mon, don’t be scared. (Be a little scared)