Video Premiere: Merso – Serial Killer

Local Music, KEXP Premiere
08/31/2017
Dusty Henry

When Seattle prog-rock purveyors Merso released last year's Red World, they sought to examine what it's like to become a monster, drawing heavily from Alan Moore's iconic run of the Swamp Thing comics. Monsters can be a hard thing to define. They're not always the mythic beasts we see in literature or in film. As the band's new music video for "Serial Killer" exemplifies, sometimes they roam among us.

Over the course of eight minutes, shadowy, grainy footage shows three women prowling the streets wearing pig masks and wielding baseball bats. They're modern day vigilantes, looking for recompense against vile men committing heinous acts in Seattle. There's thievery, perversion, and most of all an attitude of "I can do whatever I want" from the men as the gallivant around town in black and white film. The murky filter of the footage adds to the ominous, skin-crawling mood of the footage. Seeing familiar locales from Seattle pop up in the background of shots makes it feel even more foreboding and emphasizing how close to home these issues really are. Below, director John Backstrom and Merso lead vocalist Trisan Sennholz shed more light on their thinking behind the video.

John Backstrom (Director):

"For the "Serial Killer" video, Tristan and I developed an idea that combined themes from the Red World record with the lyrical story within the song. As you'll see, it's an inversion of the "Three Little Pigs" fable, wherein the titular characters hunt the big bad wolf. As natives of the Seattle area, we also saw a natural parallel with a very real problem in the city: violence against women, and the black-hearted men who get away with it. So, with the music video, we saw a great opportunity to craft a short narrative depicting strong women taking a stand against injustice. It was a joy to work with the three leads, Javonna Arriaga, Melissa "Dutchie" Broersma, and Laura Swift– they really made the characters their own. I hope the video will inspire all the scumbags out there to fix their hearts or die."
Tristan Sennholz (Merso):
"Serial Killer (the video) is about three badass women who roam the streets of Seattle looking to punish shitty dudes. We wanted to make a video that is a fuck you to all the red pill overdosing boys doing sketchy shit in Seattle. Slightly inspired by '70s revenge flicks like Death Wish, the idea for the plot came to me when I wondered what the three little pigs fairy tale would be like if the three pigs are hunting the wolf the whole time."
Check out the video below. Be warned though, it comes with its own harrowing and violent moments. But most of all it's a classic revenge story, highlighting no bad deed going without repercussions. You can catch Merso this Friday night with Religious Girls and DYED at Black Lodge.

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