Photos via YouTube.

Is Kacey Musgraves’s New Video an Aesthetic Homage to Insane Clown Posse’s 'Miracles'?

...and does this mean that Kacey is a juggalette?

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May 13 2019, 3:56pm

Photos via YouTube.

We are reporting live from the Year of Yeehaw, and reigning country queen Kacey Musgraves is here to remind us it’s almost summertime, baby.

Last Wednesday, Kacey dropped a so-called “official visual video” for her song “Oh, What A World” — the latest single off of her Grammy-winning album, Golden Hour. It’s classic Spacey Kasey, a warm-weather tune synced to frothy, psychedelic CGI visuals by TRIPPYOGI. The video falls in line with Kacey’s (highly coveted) “cotton candy stoner” aesthetic; in one shot, Miss Musgraves herself is rendered as a neon pink centaur standing in a field of crystals.

But, all blacklight posters aside, something else about the video may feel … familiar. Shortly after its release, my dear friend Anna posed the following side-by-side comparison of the videos for “Oh, What A World” and, naturally, Insane Clown Posse’s 2009 anthem “Miracles”:

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Twin metamorphoses. (Screengrabs via YouTube; side-by-side courtesy of Anna Yukevich)

And reader, I gasped.

The video for “Miracles” became infamous for its trippy, “not-inexpensive-looking” green screen visuals (crafted by Paul Andresen) featuring ICP’s Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J amidst myriad computer-generated “miracles” of the natural world. The video is also, quite literally, spacey, as the duo stands atop a satellite rocketing to outerspace for most of it.

When watched side by side, “Miracles” does indeed seem like a visual predecessor to “Oh, What A World.” In both, giant flapping butterflies, cosmic ephemera, and fucking rainbows abound.

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Musgraves's video.
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ICP's "Miracles."
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Musgraves's video.
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ICP's "Miracles."

Digging deeper, the lyrical similarities between “Oh, What A World” and “Miracles” are plentiful, if not fundamental. Both songs revel in the sheer beauty of life and the world that we live in, encouraging listeners to take a step back to appreciate nature, human and otherwise. Look around to see the “plants that grow and open your mind,” or “plant a little seed and nature grows”; admire the “things that swim” and “everything chilling underwater, please!

As if in tandem, Kacey croons, “There’s all kinds of magic, it’s hard to believe” while Shaggy and Violent J declare in awe, “Magic everywhere in this bitch / It’s all around you, you don't even know it.” Together, they ask the Big Questions:

“Are we here just once, or a billion times?”

Fucking magnets, how do they work?”

And well, if both songs and their videos are admittedly a little hokey, as Violent J once said: “I’d rather be the dumbed-down guy appreciating everything than the guy who knows everything and doesn’t appreciate [anything].”

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Can’t forget about Ari here, whose “God is a Woman” video somehow (?!) bridges out-there elements of femininity in both “Oh, What A World” and “Miracles.” (Screengrabs via YouTube)

There is also a case to be made — as there so often is — that both artists sprang from a similar ideological space, one that is deeply American, to buck against the mainstream constraints of their respective genres, be it country or hip-hop, from the South or the Midwest. While ICP’s brand of yeehaw is, uh, very different than Kacey’s Glossier pink-hued iteration, they’ve both sounded their battlecries. Kacey’s may well be the “yee-haw” to ICP’s “whoop whoop!

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Both videos end on a shot of our Mother Earth.

If Kasey is as aware of popular visual culture as we hope she is, it’s hard to imagine that she’s not *at least* down with the clown enough to recall ICP’s biggest hit. Real recognize real, and the realest notice and recognize “Miracles.”