Mitski’s Be the Cowboy is full of little hooks and big ones, tumbling around and catching hold as the songs speed past. A perfect example is “Washing Machine Heart.” It’s two minutes long, but it has at least three distinct musical ideas within it. First there’s the percussive, almost industrial opening section; then, after 30 seconds, a sweeter synth-pop doodle; and finally, at around 1:10, the knockout punch. “Do, mi, ti/Why not me?” Mitski sings, repeating the solfege syllables as if trying to will them into making sense.
The music video for “Washing Machine Heart,” which Mitski released as a Tidal exclusive last week and widely today, dramatizes this development in elegant black and white. Mitski starts off standing still as a statue, then slowly comes to life, moving like she’s imagining what it’s like to be a body in love. She spends most of the video alone, aside from a few props — a taxidermied falcon, a glistening oyster, a lighted match. Director Zia Anger (who also worked on the great video for 2016’s “Your Best American Girl”), cinematographer Mia Cioffi Henry and choreographer Monica Mirabel help build the video’s air of mystery, but the songwriting and the presence are all Mitski.
Mitski is currently touring the U.S., with dates in Australia and New Zealand starting early next year.
Mitski Tour Dates
Saturday, November 10 – Austin, TX @ Emo’s
Sunday, November 11 – Dallas, TX @ Trees
Tuesday November 13 – Nashville, TN @ The Basement East
Wednesday, November 14 – Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade
Friday, November 16 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
Saturday, November 17 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
Sunday, November 18 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer
Friday, November 30 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel
Saturday, December 1 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel
Sunday, December 2 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel
Monday, December 3 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel
Wednesday, December 5 – New York, NY @ Town Hall – The Ally Coalition Talent Show
Monday, January 28 – Auckland, NZ @ Laneway Festival
Saturday, February 2 – Brisbane, AU @ Laneway Festival
Sunday, February 3 – Sydney, AU @ Laneway Festival
Monday, February 4 – Sydney, NSW @ Oxford Art Factory
Thursday, February 7 – Melbourne, VIC @ The Corner Hotel
Saturday, February 9 – Melbourne, AU @ Laneway Festival