In the video for the Black Angels’ “Black Isn’t Black” – off their latest release, Indigo Meadow – director Bret Zausmer drops the viewer straight into the scariest scene of A Clockwork Orange. Nearly the entire video is in first-person perspective: a nurse forces your eyelids open, applies eyedrops and injects you with chemicals as psychedelic images play across the screen.
As the tests begin, the Black Angels play sparse, haunting chords that seem to be off in the distance. Then, as the images on the screen become more violent, the band suddenly appear onscreen and snap forward with driving riffs that are equal parts Black Sabbath and Sixties psychedelia.
The song is a straightforward affair; singer Alex Maas tells Rolling Stone that it is “about the ‘before and after’ one finds love.” The video conceit was more elaborate. “The idea of music being a form of therapy was something that I heard from [the band] a while ago,” said Zausmer in a release. “For ‘Black Isn’t Black,’ my crew and I tried to push the concept of a therapy session with the Black Angels as far as we could, and [Clockwork Orange’s] Ludovico technique seemed to fit nicely.”