Rolling down an empty country road, the four girls, dressed primly in their high-collared, Sunday-best stare dazedly ahead. Guitarist L.E.D grins out the window, taking a drag on her cigarette. Naima, who plays bass, wipes a speck of dried blood from her cheek as singer Clottie’s stony voice drones: “grab your gun and turn it high / you’re walking across the promise land / settle down and drink your joe / enjoy the scene before it implodes.”
Despite their doing nothing but gazing placidly out the windows of a vintage car, the black and white video rapidly builds suspense, instilling a wholly uneasy feeling. This could be due to the auspicious release date or the fact that anyone who follows the band knows that they’d never release a video in which they just wear pretty dresses and take an idyllic, back-roads drive. That would be far too mild. It had to take a turn for the ugly.
As the last verse fades out and is replaced by eerie, sonic guitar, the car pulls off the road into an open field. Rosy Bones, Clottie Cream, Naima Jelly and L.E.D each climb out of the car and pull out, what else, a body bag. Each holding a corner, they drag their victim into the middle of the field, give it a few kicks for good measure, then set it on fire. In the final image, day turns to night, and the girls stand around their billowing bonfire, looking something like the closing scene of a 1950’s adaptation of “The Virgin Suicides.”
While the aversive band has been known to raise the middle finger to anyone who tries to label them with a genre, videos such as this along with their increasingly Slits-esque sound places them rather firmly on the punk-rock stage. Not to mention the rejection of labels itself is a notoriously punk attitude. But like the great punk-rock bands that came before them, fitting into the genre does not in anyway make their music less unique or restrict them to a specific aesthetic. It serves more as a platform to jump from.
“Cracker Drool’s” video was directed by CC WADE, a fellow South Londoner who has been the brains behind dark and disconcerting videos like King Krule’s “Octopus” and “Rock Bottom.” After seeing Goat Girl’s unapologetically vile video for “Scum,” it’s no surprise they were attracted to WADE’s noxious visuals.
Only emerging from the underground indie scene every few months to release a masterly new single, Goat Girl continues to leave their fans desperate for more. The band’s bad attitude and nostalgic, gritty sound is exactly what 2017 needed.