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Girlpool Lives Every Band's Nightmare: Playing A Bowling Alley

Cleo Tucker and Harmony Tividad, the sweetly synchronized guitarist and bassist for Girlpool, aren't really feeling it in a new video for their song, "Powerplant." The singers, along with newly added drummer Miles Vintner, half-heartedly perform the track on a tiny stage at the worst possible location: a bowling alley.

As customers laugh and hurl balls at pins, the video's director breaks down the fourth wall, trying in vain to get the band to liven up. "C'mon! Put some smiles on your faces," he shouts, begging the band for one more take. "Let's go! Rock and roll. This is the magic of Hollywood, baby! It's Tinseltown, okay?" As the band launches into the song, the director quickly loses complete control of the set as dancing fans break in and take over the stage. It's a delightfully comical, meta commentary on where the band finds itself after signing with a major label, just ahead of releasing its second full-length album. Girlpool has an entire film crew at its disposal with the full backing of a powerful publicity machine, but the band is still playing a bowling alley to no one.

"Working by the powerplant," the band sings. "Jonathan's a ladder watching all the billboards change into a mirror image of his lifted thought."

"Powerplant" is the title track and third single from Girlpool's upcoming album, due out May 12 on Anti Records. The video was directed by Philip Steiger.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Robin Hilton is a producer and co-host of the popular NPR Music show All Songs Considered.