Kesha is ready to go back to her “roots of pure and utter debaucherous joy,” according to a new trailer she released for her upcoming album.
Of course, using a video trailer to prepare fans for an imminent album drop is nothing new. The last time a pop artist dropped an album trailer that struck this much of a chord, it was Lana Del Rey serving up three minutes of high American camp with her Norman Fucking Rockwell teaser. The 1960s surf video narrative worked well with her Americana aesthetic that was inspired by the classic painter.
And now, it seems as if a refreshed Kesha is taking the reigns with regards to her narrative with an album titled High Road. A follow-up to her 2017 album Rainbow, the trailer reveals that this one will be both a vacation and a homecoming of sorts, for those who find themselves missing the musician’s wild child image that made her famous ten years ago.
Like Del Rey’s, Kesha’s vision of Americana is one deeply informed by nostalgia. The musician’s Lisa Frank-inspired glitter-happy hippie visuals have evolved, though they are still wrought with the religious references that have seemingly been there all along. The trailer features some vintage vacation clips, cut with a sit-down interview with the musician herself, and an Urs Fischer-like wax candle made in her likeness, which burns in reverse at the end. “I’ve seen the light: life is like driving across the country in a pretty small Astrovan, with your whole family in it, for 90 years,” she tells the viewer. “Because I think life is a vacation from where we go when we die.”
Kesha says in the trailer that on Rainbow, she “had to address some very serious things,” a clear reference to her legal woes with producer Dr. Luke, whom she accused of sexual assault and emotional abuse in 2014.
In the video, she plays a cast of characters, from a late ’70s televangelist (clad in some very large shoulder pads) to a glamorous housewife dealing with an abusive partner. “Kesha got her balls back, and they’re bigger than ever,” she says. “So have a good time while you’re on this road trip from Hell.”