TRIPPY NYC art-rock outfit Battles have dropped a cosmic animation for their track “Sugar Foot”, featuring the gliding vocal talents of none other than Yes’s Jon Anderson, and visually referring more than a little to past galaxial greats such as Battle Of The Planets.
The song is taken from their latest LP Juice B Crypts, which is out now on Warp.
The visuals are as cosmic as the song itself, which begins in acid squelches, synth tones, vocal dit-ditting and builds into kosmiche. You think you’ve levelled out, but wait for that double-time drum pattern to scramble your head. Eeeep. We’re not in Kansas anymore. “Are you ready for …?” interrogates Jon of your being.
Conceptually, the animation depicts the Great Space Robot Festival that unfolds to avenge cancelled festivals and events in the wake of the ‘rona and lockdown and the implosion of live music, in the hope that humanity will be able to overcome the crisis and move towards a better world.
It’s inspired by matsuri, Japanese festivals rooted in regional history and culture that extend back some 400 years. Between 100,000 and 300,000 of them are held in Japan every year.
Matsuri are a form of prayer for good harvests; prosperity and safety; and also protection from disaster. This year, of course, they too were mostly cancelled.
Created by anime studio AC-bu, it’s the hope of the band and the animators that this video will replace these lost matsuri and bring some courage and hope to audiences around the world, and have a little fun doing so.
Battles have also recently released Juice B Mixed, a four-track remix 12” featuring rerubs from black midi, Shed, Delroy Edwards and DJ Nigga Fox.
This unique collection sees the remix artists taking from a wide array of sounds from across the sonic spectrum of Juice B Crypts, creating four new, unique takes rooted in the strains of punk, techno, and experimentalism that Battles is renowned for.
Juice B Mixed is available now digitally and on 12” vinyl here.