Grimes’ 2015 album Art Angels was fantastic, and one of the standout tracks was “California,” a breezy thing that reflected the chill vibes of the state while lamenting the fact that Grimes kind of hated it there. “You only like me when you think I’m feeling sad,” the song goes, though the vibrant video she just released for the song doesn’t reflect that line at all.
And that’s to say nothing of the newly reworked song that’s paired with the video, which lives in the same world as the album version, but does away with much of the guitar lines in the first half. So, it’s a clubbier sound, then, but also one that manages to build expertly to a kind of catharsis not found in the original version. It’s good! And so is the video, which was directed by Grimes and her brother, Mac Boucher, and finds the singer adopting several personae: she’s a sculptor, she’s singing in the rain, she’s twirling ribbons in a gymnasium, and she’s playing a banjo at a disco rodeo while dressed like some forgotten-era of LSD-dropping Madonna. All that and still it manages to be less intense than her last video, “Kill v. Maim.”
Watch the video below.