“I was so relieved when I finally quit smoking in 2016,” says Taleen Kali about the impetus behind the song Vague Flesh, recently featured in Amazon Prime’s time-travel thriller “Totally Killer,” starring Kiernan Shipka. “So many traumatic and horrible things had to happen for me to be able to finally stop poisoning my body with smoke and ash.”
Taleen Kali, the dynamo behind the avant-garde Dum Dum Records as well as DUM DUM Zine, dabbles in the mystical as a sound healer, guiding souls through group meditations. In 2021, she took a brief detour from the psychedelic punk path to a soundbath, with her album, Songs For Meditation.
Vague Flesh, a single from her latest opus Flower of Life, is a poignant ode to leaving behind a past mired in addiction, trauma, and the ensnaring chains of codependency. Following the release of Taleen Kali’s inaugural album in 2018, she began to navigate deeper, shadowed waters. The melodies began to evolve, drawing inspiration from the Middle Eastern tunes that once echoed in the background of her youth.
“I only showed it to the band once or twice and it didn’t quite find itself until the pandemic and home demos helped me fully actualize a more complex and nuanced song with a different time signature. It’s our first ever song with a drum machine and real drum hybrid–I love how the full drum kit comes crashing in at the end.”
The visual narrative captures the artist in a dance, almost spiritual in nature, on the sands of a beach, with roses accentuating the scene.
“When I first listened to “Vague Flesh” I knew that we had to make something beautiful and full of emotion, just like how the song made us feel,” muses director Rick Perez.
Interspersed are glimpses of an electrifying performance alongside her band. With the vast ocean as her audience, her impassioned serenade unfolds in a dreamlike panorama, her visage seemingly drawing emotions from another realm as she soon finds herself sensuously swaddled in black lace and leather.
“We wanted the video to capture the tension of letting go, and I love the beachy BDSM visuals that Rick and I collaborated on,” says Kali.
“Vague Flesh” is on Taleen Kali’s first full-length album “Flower of Life,” out now on Dum Dum Records. 2023 marked a significant feather in this accomplished polymath’s cap with the release of her first full-length album, “Flower Of Life,” via Dum Dum Records. Noteworthy names like The Smashing Pumpkins’ Jeff Schroeder and Josiah Mazzaschi added their magic at The Cave Studio to this piece de resistance.
Amidst the pulsating heartbeats of her Los Angeles cradle, Taleen Kali, of TÜLIPS fame, weaves melodies as ethereal as a night’s dream and as audacious as a crimson smirk on a gray day. Channeling narratives from her Armenian heritage, and giving a nod to her Lebanese and Ethiopian familial tapestries, Kali’s music is a melange of ancestral legacies and the rebellious tempos of contemporary subcultures. See her live, and you’ll fathom the whispers of acclaim winding through the LA glitz. That passion of her young, insurgent days has matured into a refined punk sophistication, interspersed with noise pop and a gracious homage to the golden era of new wave.
Order the Flower Of Life LP here
- 10.28 PSYCHED FEST • SAN FRANCISCO, CA
- 10.29 CAFE COLONIAL • SACRAMENTO, CA
- 10.30 THE DIP • REDDING, CA
- 10.31 WOW HALL • EUGENE, OR
- 11.1 LE VOYEUR • OLYMPIA, WA
- 11.2 REAL ART TACOMA • TACOMA, WA
- 11.3 FREAKOUT FEST • SEATTLE, WA
- 11.4 COFFIN CLUB • PORTLAND, OR
- 11.5 THE WINCHESTER GOOSE • CHICO, CA
- 11.9 GOLD DIGGERS • LOS ANGELES, CA
Info and tickets for Taleen Kali tour dates can be found here.
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