Space is an important concept addressed by DIY punk communities. Marginalized groups are made acutely aware of what space can represent (power, safety, validation) because they are most often denied space or they need to fight much harder to carve it out for themselves. When Mitski began her set at Palisades last month, she delivered a message to the crowd, with an emphasis toward women and people of color in particular: “For the next 30-45 minutes, this is your space. Take up space!”
For another group of people, New Yorkers who take the subway, space is a highly valued commodity in a world where riders with the effrontery to manspread, bring in bicycles, and treat the subway car like their own homes run rampant. It is within this realm of chaos that Worriers have chosen to stage their new video for “Most Space”, off their upcoming record Imaginary Life. In an interview with Rookie Mag, vocalist/guitarist Lauren Denitzio explains, “One thing that’s pretty consistent for me is dealing with this sense of disorientation in terms of one’s relationship to space and to gender.”
The first line of the song is “I want to be the man with the most space” (a reference to Hole’s “Doll Parts”, later referenced directly when Denitzio sings “I want to be the one with the most cake.”) In a system of space and gender, power quickly emerges as a driving element, as the man with the most space also happens to be the one who can declare statements like “You better listen to me” and “Spin the world around me.” The video, produced, shot, and edited by Denitzio, features the band and their friends engaging in some creative and over the top bad subway behavior that includes arm wrestling and reading Jessica Hopper’s The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic on someone’s lap. In true Worriers fashion, “Most Space” matches the gravity of gender-space discourse with anthemic pop guitars and a fun sense of humor.
Imaginary Life comes out August 7 on Don Giovanni Records.