New Zealand indie rockers The Beths share the second single from their forthcoming sophomore album, Jump Rope Gazers, out July 10 through Carpark Records. The single, “I’m Not Getting Excited,” is accompanied by a music video that utilizes stop-motion animation interspersed with footage from the band during the first month of quarantine.
“People always ask ‘are you excited!?’ and it’s a fair question, because exciting things do happen to us sometimes,” says frontwoman and guitarist Elizabeth Stokes about the origins of the song. “Support slots, overseas tours, music releases. Stuff we’ve dreamed about for years. So the correct answer is always ‘yes.’ But the truth is that deep down there’s a tiny Liz saying, ‘don’t get excited.’ She is certain that anything good that could happen will most likely not happen, because of a freak accident. Or because somebody finally realises that we aren’t worthy, shouts ‘phony!’ and takes everything away. I wrote ‘I’m Not Getting Excited’ last year, well before everything really did get taken away. From everyone. It feels like the song has a new context, but we don’t know what it is yet. And now we all share a blurry, uncertain future.”
The music video, directed and animated by Callum Devlin and Annabel Kean, plays into the anxiety-fueled nightmares many are experiencing under quarantine, offering up unsettling imagery of dancing worms, green monsters and teeth falling right out of someone’s head.
According to Stokes, The Beths “turned our laundry into a film studio and spent our inside time mastering the art of stop-motion animation. We animated old towels, all the cardboard in the house and The Beths themselves…frame by bloody frame. There’s a lot of scary imagery in the song that we wanted to play on. There’s a madness too, in the contradiction between what the song is about and its frenetic energy. It has defined the lockdown for us—being locked indoors but furiously busy.”
The Beths’ first single for Jump Rope Gazers, “Dying to Believe,” was released last month. The band’s previous album, their debut Future Me Hates Me, came out in 2018.
Watch the music video for “I’m Not Getting Excited” below, and watch The Beths performing “Happy Unhappy” for Paste last year.