Video Premiere: Thetan – “Frustration/Focused Hatred”

Apparently powerviolence doesn’t lose its power when it loses guitar. Thetan are TECHNICALLY a drum and bass band, but the style is much more violent.

“Frustration” and “Focused Hatred” come from the duo’s 2019 LP Abysmal, but the video that smashes them together was filmed earlier this year. They came to NYC to film a video for their collab LP with Kool Keith, Thetan, and played a show just before COVID-19 shut the city down.

The video is as frantic and manic as the maniacs’ music. Colored filters overlain on the subjects shake, as the camera cuts. At times, mirror images look like Rorscach tests, though it’s hard to make anything with your head banging.

Drummer Chad L’Eplattenier explains this holdout from the world before.

“This was filmed in Queens right before everything got turned upside down. It’s so weird to think that a few days later everything shut the fuck down. What a great show this was! The Third Kind, Gridfailure and Fuckcrusher all killed it! Thanks to Dave Brenner for setting up the show and shooting.”

Bassist/vocalist Dan Emery touches on the song choices and meanings.

“‘Frustration’ is a song about being in a manic state of mind. The lyrics are all over the place and based out of confusion and desperation, the last line in this song alludes to caving in to impulses. ‘Focused Hatred’ is a song about a person from my childhood. One of only a few people that I can honestly say that I truly hated. Her death brought me relief and happiness in a way that I am not proud of, but as part of my own personal reckoning, I have to acknowledge. Not every person in your life is worthy of forgiveness, and that is okay.

“This video is the perfect visual representation for what these songs are meant to embody. It is spastic and unpredictable in much the same way that my thinking was when I was putting the concepts to paper. We try to write songs that have a psychological dimension, as if they were the personification of certain emotions. I think the way this video was shot and edited enhanced that dimension.”

Enter that dimension in the player below.

Buy Abysmal on vinyl via Anti-Corporate Music. Pick up a digital copy via Thetan’s Bandcamp.