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MGMT Pay Homage to '90s Alt Nation Era with 'Bubblegum Dog' Video

A wacky rock ballad segues way into a loving tribute to the glory days of alternative rock.

qmgmt lead press photo credit jonah freeman
Source: © Jonah Freeman
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MGMT, a.k.a. Andrew VanWyngarden and Ben Goldwasser are funny guys. "Legitimately funny guys," so say directors Julia Vickerman and Tom Scharpling (The Best Show) in regard to the band's over-the-top performances for their video "Bubblegum Dog," released November 29 as the second single from their forthcoming album Loss of Life.

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Taken at face value, the song's absurdist, non-linear narrative sounds more like "I Am The Walrus" than a clever take on the wide-ranging '90s genre labeled 'alternative' music. Paired with the eccentric, hysterical visuals that focus on VanWyngarden and Goldwasser encountering and attempting to flee from the Bubblegum Dog, eagle-eye Gen X-ers might recognize several references to the artists that embodied that style, including VanWyngarden looking like a '90s Eddie Vedder in the beginning of the clip (with full-on flannel shirt, shorts and Doc Martens). The teases go on with the Smashing Pumpkins' "Today," Stone Temple Pilots' "Vasoline," Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Under The Bridge," Alice In Chains' Unplugged, and more. Mark Proksch (The Office, Better Call Saul) makes an appropriate cameo.

Source: ℗ © MGMT / YouTube

MGMT - Bubblegum Dog (Official Music Video)

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Loss of Life marks the band's first new album since 2018's Little Dark Age, which completed the group's contract with record label Columbia. Releasing February 23 on Mom+Pop Music, the 10-song album was co-produced by VanWyngarden and Goldwasser alongside Patrick Wimberly (Solange, Ellie Goulding), and also features contributions from longtime collaborator Dave Fridmann and Q 2019 Icon Award honorees Christine and the Queens (as a guest vocalist on the track "Dancing in Babylon").

qmgmtbubblegum dogart
Source: © 2006 John Baldessari

MGMT "Bubblegum Dog" via John Baldessari - Noses & Ears, Etc. (Part Two): Two (Flesh) Faces with (Blue) Ears and Noses, Two (Flesh) Hands, and Hobby Horse

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In a joint statement, VanWyngarden and Goldwasser had this to say, tongue firmly planted in cheek: "All joking aside (never!), we are very proud of this album and the fact that it was a relatively painless birth after a lengthy gestation period, and are happy to be releasing this baby into the world with Mom+Pop. Musically speaking, we are running at around 20% adult contemporary and no more than this, please."

Loss of Life can be pre-ordered on MGMT's website, offered in various formats, including a "make your own" mega bundle.

Loss Of Life tracklisting

1 Loss Of Life (part 2)

2 Mother Nature

3 Dancing In Babylon (featuring Christine and the Queens)

4 People In The Streets

5 Bubblegum Dog

6 Nothing To Declare

7 Nothing Changes

8 Phradie's Song

9 I Wish I Was Joking

10 Loss Of Life


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