Merchandise, “Flower of Sex”

JP Basileo

The ability to inject a mesmerizing dance rhythm and an alluring glam-melody with a weight that borders on profundity is a feat achievable by few artists; Merchandise is one of them. Their video for “Flower of Sex,” a new single from a forthcoming album on 4AD, is a testament to the art-punk duality of the Tampa-based band’s entire catalog. A pulsating kick drum, half-human, half-synthetic sounding, drives the entire song like an unrelenting piston, the inclusion of hi-hat coming off like a techno dance stereotype. But immediately it’s more than that, with the gentle, airy gyrations of David Vassalotti’s guitar, and the impactful depth of Carson Cox’s voice.

Altogether, the song skates between tender and apathetic, the warm watery guitar tones and cool crooning of Cox’s voice balancing out the thumping rush of percussion that lasts its entirety. It’s the kind of song that gets blood pumping in veins in such a way that calls attention to the fact that there is blood in said veins. The video, directed and edited by Cox, himself, is a surreal fleshing out of gorgeous flowers and foliage cascading over the lone frontman as he sings, impassioned, to the camera. It’s a gruesome kaleidoscope of synesthetic color attacking the senses until Cox is left standing holding a forlorn bouquet, his white t-shirt drenched in blood.

Merchandise is going on tour. Check ’em at these dates:

September

22 – Miami, FL – Gramps
24 – Gainesville, FL – The Atlantic
25 – Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade
27 – Nashville, TN – 12th & Porter
28 – Louisville, KY – Zanzabar
29 – St. Louis, MO -Blank Space
30 – Chicago, IL – Empty Bottle

October

02 – Detroit, MI – Marble Bar
03 – Toronto, Ontario – Silver Dollar
05 – Montreal, Québec – Vitrola
06 – Portsmouth, NH – 3S Artspace
07 – Boston, MA – The Great Scott
08 – Providence, RI – Columbus Theater
09 – Brooklyn, NY – Market Hotel
11 – Jersey City, NJ – Monty Hall
12 – Philadelphia, PA – PhilaMOCA
13 – Washington, DC – DC9
14 – Richmond, VA – Gallery5

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