The Vaughns dropped the single “Santa Cruz” back in May of this year, their first release since their 2015 album Tomfoolery. The song is a major step forward for the band, both stylistically and in regard to their maturity. Last week, the band continued to build upon this success with the premiere of the music video for the track, filmed and produced by Kelsey Ayres and Rich Weinberger of Caskethouse Co.
The video matches recurring, flowing visuals with the smooth, bluesy melody of the song. The pinball gliding across the board and the plasma of the lava lamp floating provide an aesthetic that complements the slow rhythm and low, often whispering vocals throughout the song, intermittently juxtaposed by bouncing backing vocals and thumping bass. The vintage theme, characterized by the 60’s Pontiac, old film, the pinball machine, and lava lamp also reinforce the timelessness of the core message in “Santa Cruz,” that love (or lack thereof) is unapologetic, a truth as relevant today as it was fifty years ago and further still.
The Vaughns also use “Santa Cruz” as yet another opportunity to establish themselves as the antithesis of the expectations and stereotypes of a female fronted band, proving that one doesn’t need to be delicate and poppy. Rather, Anna Lies digs deep and produces bluesy and soulful vocals that transcend common convention. Of course, the intended literal meaning of the lyrics “I’m a woman/ I know I shouldn’t even be talking like this” is in a different context; however, the double entendre is apparent.
“Santa Cruz” is streaming now on The Vaughns’ YouTube channel, and the track can be streamed (or purchased) on their Bandcamp page, as well. Also, if you love this song (and yes, that is a rhetorical question), you can catch a special acoustic set on October 21 at Flemington DIY for The Hook Journal and N.J. Racket cross-promotion event.
Adam gave man-birth to N.J. Racket and is as close to an "editor-in-chief" the site has. He's a god awful photographer.