If you’ve ever wondered what might happen at the intersection of Keith Haring’s artworks and Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo, look no further than the music video for “Kids,” a track by self-described “garage-surf-punk mess” The Frights. Premiering below, the video (which was made entirely by the San Diego-based three-piece from start to finish) intersperses hand drawn props with found footage to create a visually powerful metaphor for growing up. It presents a nostalgic fever-dream of childhood, with lead singer Mikey Carnevale running away from home and hitting the road with his blow-up doll girlfriend, leaving behind his heartbroken parents (played by bandmates Marc Finn and Richard Dotson). “Marc looks really good as a mom,” Carnevale jokes.
Much like the video’s imagery, “Kids” lyrically expresses the familiar need to leave your parents’ home (“Have you ever felt the pressure building in your brain / Growing up is suicide and it’s driving me insane”) as well as the scary reality of trying to make it on your own (“We left our homes at last / I miss my mom and dad”). Carnevale’s grungy vocals combine with wobbly guitar riffs and the frenetic energy of the drums into a sound that is both upbeat and decidedly punk rock—a sound heard throughout The Frights’ recently released LP You Are Going to Hate This, which was produced by FIDLAR’s Zac Carper.
When asked about why they made the video entirely on their own, Dotson explains that the band likes to explore their interest in film and visual arts. “We think of stupid things to make every day,” he says, “so it’s fun to see some of them through.” The props within the video were drawn in “one really, really long day,” with the help of a few friends and girlfriends, and everything was shot the day after. This DIY aesthetic is what makes the video truly feel like an extension of the song itself, about which Carnavale says, “Appreciate your mom and dad. They’re on your side.”