Wallpaper. Reinvents the Lyric Video With NSFW 'Puke My Brains Out'

Wallpaper. Reinvents the Lyric Video With NSFW 'Puke My Brains Out'
Chris Martins WRITTEN BY
Chris Martins

Fun as it was to see Cee-Lo's iconic "fuck you" writ large across monitors everywhere, there's rarely much reason to share a lyric video — that interim eye-candy made to bide time between the MP3 leak and the official clip. But rakish Oakland pop provocateur Wallpaper. is all about confounding expectation, and the lyric video for his brand new "Puke My Brains Out" is exactly the kind of high-art meets low-brow deliciousness that keeps us tracking dude's every move. It's 3:20 of garishly computer-generated blue skies, rubber-skinned avatars doing unspeakable things, vomiting skeletons and warped "3-D" GIFs. All assembled by Reed himself to accompany a song whose lyrics seem to celebrate red cup frathouse culture while smartly skewering the ADHD-inducing overstimulation infecting first-worlders everywhere. The sound of the track is similarly jacked-up and diverse — a trunk-rattling combination of Bay Area bass, Sleigh Bells-style pop grind, and ever-building urgency borrowed from the Land of Rave. Check the NSFW (barf, sex, general creepiness) clip and our chat with the cracked mind behind it, Ricky Reed.

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What are we looking at?
We're looking at the new model for the lyric video. More specifically, we're looking at two weeks of intense ingesting of caffeine and alcohol. More specifically still, we're looking at my learning curve for 3-D animation. I got better as I worked on it, so I think the video gets better as it goes. Also, it's this kind of perverse seedy underbelly of the internet. A lot of the song itself is about this half-tantalizing, half-disgusting, wish-you-could-ignore-it-but-you-can't online world.

Describe the aesthetic you're pulling from. Seems like a lot of early internet stuff.
Which color pill it was from The Matrix? The red one right? Seapunk was my red pill, my Alice in Wonderland tablet sending me down the rabbit's hole. I started getting obsessed with vintage internet, the concept of the information superhighway, and the idea of the web as a physical place you can touch and fuck and get all over your body. It's an aesthetic that takes the internet and really gets it under your skin. Because for most of us, it isn't just this thing in a box on our desks. It's in our mind, in our bodies, in our junk. The internet resides in our brain, heart and loins whether we want it there or not.

And you hadn't ever animated anything like this before?
No, I was in New York doing a studio session and I downloaded trial copies of a couple animations programs. Basically, I had to knock this out before the trials expired because I couldn't afford to pay for the real thing — two weeks of learning how to create 3-D models, and then how to animate them.

So, the couple at the end. Were they, um, doing that when you found them?
No. I had to model people and make them do that. That sex position is actually crafted by myself. I had to learn how to hack these programs essentially. I basically spent four or five hours giving that guy a dick and making that girl's boobs big. If you think you've seen the dark side of the internet, you haven't seen shit until you're on the porn message board circuit trying to figure out how to make 3-D figures fuck. That's the darkest corner of the internet and I was there.

Lyrically speaking, what exactly are you getting at here?
The only cure that I see for overstimulation is puking your fucking brains out. The song is about being overwhelmed, about being pumped full of so many chemicals and so many ideas that you're left with two options: blow your brains out, or puke your brains out. I've also been reading a lot about the Central American ayahuasca drinking-and-puking ritual out in the forest. I haven't done that yet, but I think that's around the corner for Ricky Reed.

Speaking of Ricky, you appear as a cell phone being thrown repeatedly down a toilet. Why?
That's just my phone. I have a picture of me on my phone and that's what's at the end of the tunnel. Throwing your phone self down the toilet is a means to salvation, to paradise, to a worry-free existence. That's why there's a garden at bottom of the toilet.

Musically this song has a lot going on. What were your touchstones?
I just kinda put together the two styles which, for me, are the most sonically gnarly. Taking that late-'70s fuzzed-out punk universe and combining it with music from the trap. I wanted it to have all cylinders go and I couldn't think of any way to be harder than that. The loudest punk and the deepest bass. Nobody can fuck with that. That's the alpha and omega of heavy music.

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