Sean Lennon has been outspoken about the bleak future of the planet with his Artists Against Fracking campaign, but it’s no match for the wasteland in the new video for “Moth to a Flame” by the Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, his project with girlfriend Charlotte Kemp Muhl. After a massive explosion wipes out humanity, Lennon is left to wander the planet trying to survive until he is captured by a group of savage women. Does he escape? Watch the Daniel Kruglikov-directed clip to find out.
The track closes out the band’s spaced-out second album Midnight Sun, out April 29th, which is full of whirling synths and manic grooves. Highlights include the Eastern-tingled “Xanadu” and orchestral, Floydian epic “Last Call.”
“We’ve crystalized our particular style of post-modern psychedelia,” Lennon tells Rolling Stone. At their New York studio, the duo experimented with bizarre recording techniques, like using an 1890s calliope (an air-powered organ used in circuses), running drums through a Leslie organ and looping guitar feedback. At one point, Lennon strapped open-tuned acoustic guitars to a drum set, producing a droning effect with each hit. “We tend to mess around with our sound quite a bit,” he says. “We mic things from far away or too close. We run them from pedals you’re not supposed to.” In the case of “Moth to a Flame,” Lennon says, “I was running the lap steel through a wah pedal. I rarely hear people use wah on lap steel. It’s a subtle difference, but I think it really helped with the sound.”
For Lennon, the meticulous process was worth it. “Even though people don’t listen to albums anymore, we’re still fans of complete albums. We wanted it to be really satisfying from beginning to end.”