I really like this music video for St. Vincent’s “Cruel”. On the surface it appears to be the story of a man who uses his crippled daughter as a lure to kidnap St. Vincent to make her a mother to his children, but I read into it a little deeper and I believe the video is a metaphor for unhappy housewives and domestic servitude. At certain points in the video she is tied up, trapped, and drowned, and the most explicit and recurring image is of her being buried alive. Couple that with the very 40’s-esq melody that pops up again and again and I see this as a metaphor for women who feel trapped in a marriage because of her kids.
That’s just one interpretation, I guess. Beyond all of that heavy stuff though is a pretty fun music video that combines that previously mentioned 40’s melody with modern electronic indie beats and a video that, despite the serious implications of the message, also contains the image of St. Vincent nailing a guitar solo while locked in a car trunk. Good stuff.
“Cruel” is the first single off of her upcoming third album, “Strange Mercy”.