Is Kacey Musgraves’s New Video an Aesthetic Homage to Insane Clown Posse’s 'Miracles'?
...and does this mean that Kacey is a juggalette?
Photos via YouTube.
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”:
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.
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].”
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!”
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.”