Video Premiere: The Van Allen Belt – “Songs”
The Pittsburgh-based art pop troop The Van Allen Belt are back with a new video for “Songs” off the 7” single of the same name. Like the group’s past videos for “Lovely in Akron” and more recently for “Humanist Hymns,” “Songs” is a trippy schizophrenic daydream full of inscrutable imagery and Lewis Carroll flights of fancy. This time around, lead singer Tamar Kamin stars as a drone in what appears to be a dystopian, Dickensian typehouse (?) lorded over by a scarred, pony-tailed superior — who seems to be shredding everything Kamin types — while a hooded female apparition appears occasionally to cause mischief and splices of psychedelic imagery wreak havoc on your retinas. The track itself is pretty standard VAB courtesy of their main songwriter and multi-instrumentalist B.K. Ferris, full of off-kilter instrumentation (like that weird plucking violin riff and huffing tape loop that bob and weave throughout the song) and a playground melody jam packed with fantastical turns of phrase that Kamin sings with a strangely proud intonation (“I was learning how to fight the army of despair”). “Songs” is a busy piece of hallucinogenic pop from one of the Steel City’s most underrated bands.
You can purchase The Van Allen Belt’s Songs 7” over at their Bandcamp page.