Oakland-based singer/songwriter Rachel Lark is back with a presciently comedic single and video, “The World’s Really Fucked But This Show Will Be Pretty Good.” Featuring toilet paper thrones and an upbeat soundtrack to the apocalypse, it follows the release of “The Unicorn Song” and is the second offering from Lark’s new EP Sex and Balances, out September 25. Full of political angst and existential dread, the EP speaks to the moment of 2020 better than Lark would like it to. “I hope the video can create a moment of catharsis for viewers, especially those in the West dealing with these climate change driven fires,” Rachel said. “I want to make people feel inspired to not give up and keep fighting, not only for our future, but also for our present, because it just feels better to be part of a movement than to be isolated.”
Over a series of post-apocalyptic scenes, Lark cleverly tackles existential questions about the end of the world and the increasingly futile personal decisions we make in the face of almost certain catastrophe. Lark immediately asks “Why do anything at all? / The world is big and fucked / and you are weak and small,” before ultimately realizing that even if it doesn’t matter in the end, “You should all do more / I mean, ‘should’ is a funny word / But what I’m saying is you’d be a cooler person if you did more stuff.”
This attitude is reflected across Sex & Balances, an EP in which Lark explores her place as an artist and cultural actor, questions the values of the world around her, and ponders the contradictions that fuel her creativity. It is a collection of songs that are lyrically driven, genre-defying, brutally honest, and infectiously catchy — how many other songwriters can turn “As we go down in flames” into a cheerful children’s sing-a-long? Rachel Lark’s brand of feminist folk/punk shows the world that original music is still possible. She has a way of not just making political statements, but articulating them in a way that makes you feel like she cracked open your head and exposed thoughts you didn’t even know you had.
Lark’s sometimes extremely graphic content has kept mainstream attention at bay, but she has more than made up for it with a cult following in the west coast underground. She has cultivated a die-hard following on Patreon, which she relies on to fund all of her projects, most of which are self-produced. She is the host of the upcoming podcast, “What’s The Point?” and for the past four years she has been working on a rock musical called Coming Soon, a hilarious yet brutally raw adventure that follows one millennial woman’s quest for sexual fulfillment. She’s currently workshopping drive-in live shows as a way to bring live performance to people during the pandemic and works on different social justice causes when she’s not playing music. She has helped place immigrant families and individuals who had recently crossed the border with sponsors in order to get them out of ICE detention.