Hellbound Glory’s Leroy Virgil isn’t afraid to explore the lows to which desperate people will sink. In fact, it’s kind of the Reno, Nevada native’s forte. As far as lows go, robbing a strip club would seem to rank pretty high on the list, and that’s just what Virgil does in the new video for the band’s grungy country rocker, “Hellbound Blues.”
“Cocaine, Kurt Cobain, I’ve been blowing up my fucking brains,” goes the opening line of “Hellbound Blues,” a line that proves prophetic in the video, which was directed by Bob Wayne. Virgil and a female love interest show up to rob a strip club in the middle of the day, and hit an unexpected jackpot upon emptying the cash registers: a small mountain of cocaine. The two celebrate by snorting the haul back at their place, but the party quickly nosedives as Virgil’s partner overdoses and he commits suicide with the shotgun that he just used in the robbery. In typical Hellbound Glory fashion, no grisly detail gets spared.
The video’s lurid, violent subject matter already seems to have angered some of the band’s fans, prompting a video response from Virgil. “I understand. I get it. I feel you on that,” he says. “I don’t really like it that much either because I guess I just prefer comedy over drama but I think that Shooter [Jennings] and Bob [Wayne] both did a really good job on it, making it and creating it.”
One of the songs featured on Pinball, the band’s first new LP in six years, “Hellbound Blues” was first recorded in 2012 for an unreleased project produced by Jennings. It remains a favorite for Jennings, who returned as producer on Pinball, originally released October 13th on Jennings’ Black Country Rock label.