provided by the artist


premiere: pleasure venom party in the face of pain

January 25, 2019
520 Picks

The soul of punk is cognitive dissonance: “the world is burning, so we might as well roast some marshmallows on that shit.” Enter Pleasure Venom, a straight up punk rock band from Austin, TX that delights in pushing both extremes to their, well, extreme. Their latest single, “Deth,” was written after the death of Tamir Rice. It’s a plea for life, as singer Audrey Campbell explains:

“We turn on the TV or read the news and wonder if people have just become numb to it all, to allow this to continue: ‘Can you feel at all?’ Another black man gunned down. The entire Trump presidency and their agenda. We all feel a bit helpless. This song is our way to try to push through it all. To have some semblance of solidarity.”

The video takes that feeling of helplessness and flips it into a celebration of life. Set in a sex shop, Campbell and friends throw a party to the consternation of the white store manager. It’s effervescent in all the ways that the song itself is raging. It’s a party against hopelessness. For Pleasure Venom, it’s a manifesto:

“Get a smoothie, play in a sex shop, hang and have fun with friends, then do a show. An idyllic day in the life as we want to see it. Young people, black people, queer people, and people of color, or anyone who doesn’t fit the mold, should be able to have frivolous fun without fear of something really bad happening. We are black, women, queer, and non-binary people enjoying life – no need to end in bloodshed or imprisonment when we have no intent to harm a soul.”