It’s Kate Clover vs. the LAPD in Her New “Crimewave” Video

The West Coast garage punk enlists members of Dávila 666 and Crocodiles for her latest track.

It doesn’t seem like a coincidence that the 1980s proved to be a golden age of urban terror movies, given that nearly the entire decade was tainted by a Hollywood-bred conservative movie star stoking fears from the White House. With clear parallels to our most recent presidential term (did you know “Make America Great Again” was originally a Reagan campaign promise?), the new video from LA rocker Kate Clover feels both retro and of-the-moment, with equal amounts of over-policing and bizarre fashion choices reflecting both eras of American life.

The visual arrives today paired with a new single from Clover, a characteristically jammy garage rock tune in which she enlists genre peers Dávila 666 and Brandon Welchez of Crocodiles to round out her band. The track packs a heavy punch, and mounts on the hype for Clover’s hinted-at 2022 debut LP as well as her buzzy live show (as she’s finishing up West Coast dates alongside the Black Lips, keep an eye on her tour dates here). In the meantime, watch Clover and her band ditch the fuzz in the video below, and read on for a brief Q&A.

What’s the inspiration behind “Crimewave”? What was your writing process with Brandon and AJ? 

Lyrically “Crimewave” was inspired by the writing of Hunter S. Thompson. I was inspired by his journalistic approach to debauchery, a sort of “Let’s see what happens” attitude. I was in a very transitional phase of my life and related to that sentiment. I had a rough demo of the song and brought it down to Mexico City in the summer of 2018. We re-worked it a bit prior to recording, but most of the creative decisions were made in the studio. It was an inspiring process working with Brandon and AJ. They both don’t lead with their egos, so the best ideas lead the decision making. 

What do you want the audience to take away from the video?

At the time the concept was conceived I was reading Fear and Loathing in America. Thompson’s political writing uses a lot of satire, which was based on William Faulkner’s notion that “Fiction is often the best fact.” Thompson used satirical devices to make his point. I was inspired by that concept and used it to set the tone for the music video. In many ways the video speaks for itself. It was directed by a very talented director named Amber Navaro and was filmed on 16mm film in various locations across Los Angeles. 

You’re going on tour now with the Black Lips. How has your live show evolved in the past year or so?

We went on my first headline tour the first week of September [2021]. It was our first set of live shows since January 2020. The feeling of gratitude from us and the audience was palpable. Live music feels even more meaningful now. 

“Crimewave” will be released on your upcoming LP—tell us about what else can we expect from you in 2022? 

I have a lot more surprises to come! As of now that’s all I can say, but I can guarantee you it will be interesting!

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