Kim Gordon’s having a busy year. In March she released a noisy but atmospheric album called Glitterbust by a band of the same name consisting of herself and pro surfer Alex Knost. This morning, she’s released a solo single called “Murdered Out.” The song is a paean to stealth cars that have been completely blackened with matte black paint, as Gordon explained in a news release:
When I moved back to LA I noticed more and more cars painted with black matte spray, tinted windows, blackened logos, and black wheels. This was something I had occasionally seen in the past, part of low-rider car culture. A reclaiming of a corporate symbol of American success, The Car, from an outsider’s point of view. A statement-making rejection of the shiny brand new look, the idea of a new start, the promise of power, and the freedom on the open road. Like an option on a voting ballot, “none of the above.”
“Murdered Out,” as a look, is now creeping into mainstream culture as a design trend. A coffee brand. A clothing line. A nail polish color.
Black-on-black matte is the ultimate expression in digging out, getting rid of, purging the soul. Like a black hole, the supreme inward look, a culture collapsing in on itself, the outsider as an unwilling participant as the “It” look.
The song kicks pretty high ass—in the few years since Sonic Youth’s collapse, Gordon’s been doing the avant-garde thing pretty full-bore, not just with Glitterbust, but with Body/Head, a duo featuring guitar improviser Bill Nace, who released a self-titled LP in 2013. But this single features big riffs and deep-pocket grooves (drums on this were hammered by Stella Mozgawa of Warpaint), and Gordon’s distinctive cooing/warbling/moaning vocals are given equal priority to anxiously shrill guitar noise.