Six Questions w/ Geneva Jacuzzi About the Re-issue of ‘Lamaze’ + a Few Other Fascinating Things
Whilst so many artists love to go on and on about transcending genres, defying classifications and whatever else they’d like to make you believe but that might not actually be true, Geneva Jacuzzi is exactly what they think they are. In fact, even we’re not exactly sure what she wakes up and gets up to every day.
But whatever it is, she’s been doing it for more than a decade now. And the LA songstress – slash – performance artist – slash – visualist – slash – director – slash – style innovator recently came upon the realization that her debut album, the cheekily titled Lamaze, was released a full ten years ago, and thus was ripe for reassessment – considering all she’d accomplished since then.
And so this February 26, Mexican Summer will re-issue the fascinating, equivocal record to surely a whole new audience of Geneva Jacuzzi fans. A trio of videos have been released in advance, including ‘Do I Sad,’ ‘Love Caboose‘…and today the weird and wonderful original clip for ‘Clothes on the Bed’ has been dusted off for another viewing, to coincide with the track’s re-release as a single.
The video opens with Ms. Jacuzzi seemingly in the throes of a minor anxiety attack, before flopping on her bed, which has a keyboard on it, but not actually any clothes (though they are strewn around the chaotically “organized” room). It turns dreamlike towards the end, and some really strange stuff happens. The song itself brilliantly recalls the blip/bleep synth-pop of early Depeche Mode or Propaganda – but with her detached, ennui-drenched vocal performance very much bringing to mind Nicola Kuperus of ADULT.
We caught up with her for a six-question session on what it all means…or doesn’t.
What made this a good time to re-issue Lamaze?
To be honest, I don’t know. I’m usually not one to re-visit my past. I’m a futurist. But this record is very much a living breathing entity now and it wants what it wants. It’s a pandora’s box. A genie. I personally wouldn’t have chosen a pandemic as an ideal time for an album release, but Lamaze seems to think otherwise, so I’m interested to see how this whole thing plays out. Very interested.
When you listen to it now, how do you feel about your burgeoning musical self?
I have lots of feelings. Sometimes I feel joy and excitement. Other times I feel a sad nostalgia. I’m careful not to listen to it too much, otherwise I’m in danger of getting stuck in a loop…and my burgeoning musical self is already loopy enough.
What was the album influenced by? Musically and otherwise?
This question always makes my brain explode because it would take me days to go down the list. That being said…I drop little hints into the songs. Some are obvious, others are not. There’s nothing more fun than having a total stranger pick up on the not-so-obvious ones. It’s almost like a secret language.
How do you feel you’ve changed since then as an artist?
I wouldn’t say I’ve changed. Just multiplied into deceptively different versions of the same thing.
What was the idea behind the video for ‘Clothes on the Bed’?
It’s very very simple. Clothes on the bed. A room. With stuff. And a bed with stuff on the bed…mainly clothes. It’s so painfully simple that I have nothing better to do other than throw tantrums and fall asleep. Then a succubus comes out of the closet and sings her song. But there is no waking up from this dream.
What do you like most about Lamaze, and what would you have done differently?
I like how far away it feels. Like an island somewhere way out in the middle of the ocean. Bottom of the ocean. Far enough to be perfect. That said, I wouldn’t change a thing.