Local Lou Reed-wave artist Anthony Worden premieres his first music video here, for the song “Who’s Who” off his debut solo record, Ideal Conceptions of the Beautiful and Good, to be self-released on vinyl May 12. Worden, who’s recording Demos was reviewed in Little Village 210, just finished a three-day stint of tours with Iowa musical companion Karen Meat over the weekend, making stops in the Quad Cities, Chicago and Milwaukee.
The album was written over the better part of the last year, recorded and mixed by sound engineering wizard Luke Tweedy, proprietor of Flat Black Studios. “Who’s Who” features Worden on guitar and vocals, accompanied by local musicians Elizabeth Moen on backing vocals, Matt Schulte on percussion, Brendan Spengler on keys, and Dana Telsrow on bass guitar.
Worden said he started writing the song after attending the launch party of Vetch, a literary journal focused on giving voice to queer and trans writers, held last year at Trumpet Blossom Cafe. Inspired by identity and gender politics, Worden said “Who’s Who” concerns itself with the pattern of people and legislators seeking to catalogue individuals based on how they present themselves and/or their sexual preference. He said, “This song is about that being no one’s business.”
Acknowledging the video’s homage to Andy Warhol’s Screen Tests, which were several-minute long video portraits of individuals in unbroken silence, Worden’s video displays several faces cast in varying angles and light.
The video was filmed and edited by Joel Anderson, formerly of the band Ten Grand and assistant engineer at Flat Black Studios, and shot in the Wake Up Iowa/Cobra Verde warehouse just outside Iowa City. Local musician and visual artist Ian MacMillan used an analog synthesizer to manipulate the heat and hues of the video.