The Femme Fatale Joins the Music Duo for An Electrifying Vocal Debut in "Disintegration"
Burlesque queen Dita Von Teese dons her signature vintage corsets and gowns to incarnate a woman lost in sensual fancy in this video for electronic outfit Monarchy’s new single, “Disintegration,” directed by Roy Raz. “She’s a 1950s style housewife stuck in a toxic, dry relationship. She’s fantasizing, releasing herself in a dream world of lovers,” says the band’s Andrew Armstong. The fortuitous pairing began on Twitter, and after spending an extravagant Christmas in Paris together—joined by local characters like Catherine Baba and Diane Pernet—a friendship was forged. Soon Armstrong and partner-in-music Ra Black were penning songs for the master of striptease. The result is a synth-soaked track that brings model and author Teese’s inimitable suggestive touch to Monarchy’s soulful dance. “We considered doing an x-rated version of it,” says Armstrong. “Maybe we will some day.” Switching between stark domestic scenes to muscular choreography performed by Israel’s young Batsheva Dance Company, Tel Aviv-based Raz draws us into an imagined erotic world that is part retro, part surreal. “There should be something reserved, unreachable, unobtainable about an ideal muse—close enough to inspire but just out of reach to keep the mystery,” says Armstrong. “We have that in Dita.” Here Von Teese makes some confessions, including ex-husband Marilyn Manson's thoughts on her foray into music.
How did the collaboration come about?
Dita Von Teese: I had done a couple recordings of me “talk-singing” Mae West/Marilyn Monroe style for my burlesque shows, but those songs together with onstage visuals is different to just listening to my voice. Monarchy believed in me, so I did it anyway, and asked them to make me sound good!
Have you always been interested in music?
DVT: I love music, of course, but I never had any intention of performing or helping create anything besides the music for my shows. I had a lot of input into things like styling for some of the music videos that my ex-husband [Marilyn Manson] did, but I wouldn’t ever have dared get involved in any other aspect of music. Actually, we played the song for Manson and the first thing he said was, “Why didn’t you tell me you could sing?”
How was it working on film rather than live performance?
DVT: I’ve been in a lot of music videos over the years, so I thought it was fun to be performing the lyrics while taking off my clothes for once! It’s nice to let go of the control of all of that and to trust someone. But I’m also a control freak about my hair, makeup, and wardrobe and doing it all myself for the video while also being in front of the camera isn’t so easy. I think I drove them crazy, asking if they could fix that “one hair out of place”!
What was it like working with Roy Raz?
DVT: He’s amazing. I loved the video he did for “I Won’t Let Go,” so when they told me they were trying to get him to do one for this song, I was thrilled to have the chance to work with him. We had an amazing time together in Tel Aviv making the video. It was an absolute pleasure, and delightful to be in that amazing city.
The Britpop Legend Directs an Aquatic Dance in the Dark for Serafina Steer
A synchronized underwater ballet unfolds in this Jarvis Cocker-helmed video for harpist and singer Serafina Steer’s ethereal new single, “Night Before Mutiny”. Recorded in twilight at London Fields Lido, the surreal visuals show a doomed flotilla of paper boats hovering on the surface of the outdoor pool’s misty waters, as swimmers Asha Randall and Olivia Federici, both members of the UK’s Olympic team and known as Aquabatix, slow-dance to Steer’s lament, sung over the sounds of a harp, a string quartet and a Victorian wind machine. Legendary Pulp frontman and solo artist Cocker both conceived of the video and produced Steer’s upcoming third album, The Moths Are Real. Marking his music production debut, he also appears on the record alongside a stellar cast of musicians including Polar Bear drummer Seb Rochford, Pulp bassist Steve Mackey and The Flying Lizards keyboardist David Cunningham. Steer’s melancholic compositions and stories evoke the tall tales and tragedies of a distant place and time. “There’s a song about a whore called Serafina, an old sea shanty,” Steer explains of the inspiration behind “Night Before Mutiny”. “It’s a bawdy song, from the point of view of this sailor, and it’s quite rude about her.”
The Moths Are Real will be released by Stolen Recordings on January 14, 2013. “Night Before Mutiny” will launch this Monday, November 12, at ATP Presents at the Sebright Arms, London.
Top Makeup Artists Define the Season’s Trends in a Sultry Short From Tokyo Magazine The Reality Show