When describing their third single from Congratulations, the psychedelic “It’s Working”, MGMT likened the track to “surfing on ecstasy.” (Basically, the cover art for their album.) The song’s video is bereft of any wave-catching, but makes up for it with one serious mind trip. Is it anywhere near as creepy as the vid for “Flash Delirium”, which included an eel tracheotomy? No, but there’s plenty of absurdity to keep you scratching your head all day long.
MGMT – “It’s Working”
That made perfect sense, right? Andrew Vanwyndarden and Ben Goldwasser find a box, decide to build what’s in the box, and then… okay, we’re a little lost after that. Although if we ever went shopping for furniture at IKEA high as a kite, we have a feeling it would turn out something like this video.
Let’s just let the boys in the band explain what the video means. Andrew Vanwyngarden discussed the meaning behind the clip (directed by So Me, who helmed the vids for Justice’s “D.A.N.C.E.” and Kanye West’s “Good Life” ) to Pitchfork:
“Ben and I find this box and these instructions to put together a machine that’s constantly changing, and we end up losing control over it. Saying this now, it sounds so metaphorical for our musical career, which is really funny.”
Okay, we can buy that. But there’s a little bit more to it, right? Something a little more… chemical-based? Yes, indeed. Andrew also tells Spin:
“Lyrically, it’s about doing drugs. I didn’t realize it until now, but it’s kind of funny, because the first song on our first album was ‘Time to Pretend,’ which was about the imagined rock star scenario. So, ‘It’s Working’ is like, ‘Yeah, we went out there and we did a lot of drugs and it’s not that great.’ The song is mostly about ecstasy… it’s like surfing on ecstasy.”
Speaking of beach-specific activities and trippy visuals, anyone else think Ben and Andrew wandered off the set of “California Gurls” while wearing these outfits?