A meeting of gorgeous, untouched scenery and outlandish cartooned hallucinations map out a perfect visual accompaniment to Pill’s new track, “Medicine”, off their forthcoming Mexican Summer debut, Convenience, out August 19. Try to make sense of everything that goes on, and you might lose your mind. The video, directed by Milton Melvin Croissant III, depicts the band traversing desert plains, bumbling through scenic ravines in their van, and swimming blissfully in rivers, all while superimposed cartoon pieces enhance the experience: Flying stacks of money, warped rocks with a grotesque tongue sticking out, a stereo with a face, an illuminati eye smoking a joint.
But the music dictates the trip. Mickey Mouse-stile hands squiggle in and out from all sides of the screen, grabbing for whatever instrumental element comes to the forefront, for that given part. Veronica Torres belts out her incensed vocal parts while they hold up megaphones and microphones, while Ben Jaffe’s got goddamn saxophones coming out of his ears,all while red and white pills are being hand-fed to all the band members. Everyone looks dubious in their frontal headshots, the animations swirling and happening all around them. But they grow used to it, with welcoming smiles, as Torres sings, “Come the water’s fine, the war is over.” It’s simultaneously irresistible and yet irksome. Ben Jaffe’s saxophone acts as a textural under-drone, until it flares up and an arpeggio sends a thrilling, liquid buzz cascading down your body. And it seems that way for all the instruments. They all play as a constant, until they don’t. It all seems safe and normal, until it’s not. A steady, simple drum rhythm goes on for what will seem like forever, and then a sudden fill throws everything off kilter and you have to find your footing again, just like with the visuals, just like a drug trip.