BETS Shares “Blister In The Sun” and “To The Kill” Videos

Today, alt-pop-star, Bets (the pseudonym of artist Betsy Hershey) is releasing two new music videos to honor the 40th anniversary of the Violent Femmes.

First she transforms the Femmes’ biggest splash into a shoegazey spectacle, putting the jaunty sounds of “Blister In The Sun” into slow motion, and re-contextualizing Gordan Gano’s original lyrics of addiction and rejection into a somber, gentle, ballad reminiscent of Mazzy Star. The heavily manipulated footage for this video fades in between black and white and color, tracking the woman’s longing gaze out of a backseat car-window, staring out at the city lights in a state of solitude. Says Bets, “Music + car + windows down, that feeling. Made in Tokyo. Where anything you want at night you can find.” Watch HERE.

Next, Bets reaches for a deep cut up, “To The Kill”, where she eschews the reverberating pedaled guitars for her piano. Showing off her ability to carry a track in such a solo setting, her vocals levitating up into the rafters, leaving you in a state of rapture. “We didn’t know about the extreme level of heartbreak that was about to unfold when we made this video.”, she says. “It’s always made me cry, and I know it will move others as well. Takuya Shima, the brilliant director and friend, was visiting from Tokyo and my friend, the artist Sam Sundos agreed to be in the film. His performance is so moving, which I find all of his artwork to be. I hope it breaks people’s hearts open like it does mine.” Watch HERE.

These tracks were originally released as part of her 2017 cover album Project Violent FemmesOriginally premiered via Nylon, alongside an interview, the publication said: “BETS’ wall of sound approach to the songs adds a lush softness that we feel like we could swim around in; the slowed-down cadence allows us to revel in the lyrical simplicity, without diminishing any of its impact. This reimagining is dreamy and gorgeous and, for us, it feels vital right now to appreciate the remaining beauty in this world, in an effort to better confront the darkness.”

In addition to her work under the Bets pseudonym, artist Betsy Hershey, was recently featured in TIME magazine for her documentary, “Guerrilla Habeas”, which tells the stories of two lawyers employing, “an unusual legal strategy” in order to help win cases in Immigration Court. The project was released as a part of MSNBC’s Turning Point series, executive produced by Trevor Noah.

Stay tuned for a new original album from Bets, coming later this year.

Exclusive Interview:

What was the creative process like behind your unique reinterpretations of the Violent Femmes’ debut album?

It was quick and filled with love. We made the cover album in one wild month. The sound of my voice was such a contrast to the content of their lyrics. And I just felt this was something I had to create.

The visuals in both videos seem carefully crafted to exude the mood and atmosphere of the music. Can you share more about the collaboration with the director and other artists involved?

All credit to the incredible director of both videos, Takuya Shima. And to his wife/muse/artist/actress, Jenny Shima (in Blister in the Sun). And to the brilliant artist/musician Sam Sundos (in To The Kill). They all brought their genius to the two projects, and I just felt lucky to get to collaborate with them.

What drew you to  “Blister In The Sun” and “To The Kill” that made you want to create something visual to pair with them?

I wanted to create a visual that captures that feeling of freedom for Blister in the Sun. To me that matches the energy of the cover, which I adore. And the To The Kill cover comes from deep pain and heartbreak and this collaboration and visual just adds another layer to that which feels so right (and heartbreaking) to me.

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