VR SEX, the acid punk alias of Andrew Clinco of Drab Majesty (who dons the moniker Noel Skum for this project), has unveiled another single from his forthcoming album Rough Dimension. Titled “Walk of Fame,” the song premieres today with a cinematic music video directed by Jai Love. Join them as they walk along Hollywood’s Walk of Fame with a charismatic cast of characters– including a cameo from local legend Angelyne.
Skum comments: “In 2021, as Covid regulations began to lift and foot traffic in the city increased, myself and director Jai Love started frequenting the Hollywood Walk of Fame in an effort to document the present-day personalities that make up this colorful stretch of sidewalk. In our travels we befriended what some would call a Jesus impersonator who goes by the name of Jesse Christmas. While donning Christ-like garb and a crown of thorns, in no way does Jesse actually claim to be the second coming of Christ, nor does he profess any sort of religious dogma; he mostly just likes to walk around Hollywood Blvd. dressed as Jesus because according to him ‘the dude had sick style.’ When we approached him to be in our music video Jesse obliged but under one condition: He also wanted his rock n’ roll alter ego ‘Clark Nova’ to be featured. ‘Walk Of Fame’ is both an audio and visual chronicle of a day in the life of Jesse Christmas aka Clark Nova.”
VR SEX takes its title from an architectural phrase but more importantly refers to the warped, wicked underworld the songs both chronicle and condemn. Skum vents his scorn for and fascination with the seedy, surreal margins of low-life Los Angeles, doomed to dead ends of vanity, lust, and technology. Although initially launched as an outlet for “heavier sounds” beyond Clinco’s duties in new wave fantasists Drab Majesty, VR SEX has ripened into a compelling exercise in world building, weaving themes of gritty city neo-futurist sleaze within a framework of driving, distorted guitars and cathode-blasted synths. Echoes of Chrome, Wire, Minimal Man, and Sisters Of Mercy ripple through the collection but ultimately Rough Dimension charts its own twisted vision of “our unforgiving reality.”
Written and demoed across two weeks alone in a Marseille flat using his prized 1980’s Gibson “Invader” and a laptop, Clinco then took the tracks to Strange Weather studios in Brooklyn to record with Ben Greenberg (Uniform, The Men) who helmed 2019’s debut, Human Traffic Jam. The results are notably ripping, refined, and riveting. Riffs in alternate tunings chug and churn over mid-tempo drums punctuated by spikes of sci-fi electronics while the vocals swagger and spit venom. Rough Dimension is a bristling mix of the melodic and the macabre, absurdist observations of fast living and desperate measures, the clock of youth ticking towards midnight as dreams unravel in Babylon.
VR SEX’s specialty is making these cautionary tales of psychic decay and tainted love a thrill rather than a drag. There’s a sunglasses at night glamor to Clinco’s choruses and solos, a wit to his black leather judgements. The music’s milieu tends towards parasites and predators but its mood skews refreshingly accelerated and amused, cruising the strip with a cigarette, watching goths and limousines crawl in gridlock beneath digital billboards. The Rough Dimension may be a cesspool, but it’s home.