In March, Garbage announced that they would be releasing a new song called “The Chemicals” for Record Store Day. The annual music event isn’t until this Saturday, but now you can hear “The Chemicals” and see its new music video. The song features co-vocals from Brian Aubert of the band Silversun Pickups. Sophie Muller directed the video. Check it out:
Frontwoman Shirley Manson spoke to Mashable about “The Chemicals,” working with Brian Aubert, and how Sophie Muller filmed the music video:
I’m loving “The Chemicals.” Can you tell me about your collaboration with Brian Aubert?
It’s something we’ve sort of begun as a tradition from our days of doing duets with people we really love and admire, and this time around we wanted to collaborate with Brian just because we’ve had the pleasure of bumping into him on the circuit. He and I met doing a benefit at the Pablove Foundation a few years ago now, and we just love him. We love his energy and he’s really funny and an amazing talent and an incredible singer. And we love that he sounds androgynous — you don’t know what he is. You don’t know whether he’s a girl or a boy a lot of the time, and I love that.
Definitely a higher pitch.
Yeah he can sound — he actually is an amazing singer. He can do anything, which is actually a kind of annoying thing about Brian [laughs]. But when you listen to “The Chemicals” you can’t really tell who’s singing what part — because I’m female, you’d think I was singing the top line, but actually I’m singing the low part. So we just enjoyed playing around with that. It’s not often you get to do that with a young vocalist.
You’ve worked with director Sophie Muller many times before — since the ’90s. How did the concept for this video come about?
Well a lot of the people in the video are Sophie’s relatives and I know some of them, so we just thought it would be we’ve always been talking about the beauty of small punk clubs. We were sort of rueing the loss of a lot of those clubs that Sophie and I grew up in — that sort of sweaty excitement and the sensuality that comes when you cram people in such a tiny space. And we just thought it would go really well with the track. She had the footage and showed it to me and said, “I’ve got this footage, and if you love it I’ll cut it to ‘The Chemicals,'” and that’s about what she did.
We’re very blessed to be so close with a great filmmaker. We wouldn’t have been able to have a beautiful visual piece to accompany this track without her, so we really are so grateful to her. She’s been such a great collaborator to us and really generous.
So she filmed this independently? Where was this?
Yeah, she shot it in this tiny little club in London, and got her niece and nephew and all their little pals to come over and just let her film them for an afternoon.
It’s very evocative — that’s what I love about it. It just seems to go with all the lyrics really well. We just got really lucky.
Shirley Manson also spoke about Garbage’s tradition with Record Store Day and her opinion on digital music vs. vinyl records. You can read the full interview at Mashable.
The “Chemicals” single will be released on 10″ vinyl exclusively for Record Store Day on April 18th. Its b-side is a new track called “On Fire.”
Garbage has been busy recording their 6th studio album, the follow-up to 2012’s Not Your Kind Of People. It should be out later this year. 2015 also marks the 20 year anniversary of the band’s self-titled first album, and they promise some big celebrations. They’ve already announced a few concerts for their 20 Years Queer tour, with more dates promised soon. Keep checking back here for more of the latest Garbage news.