What does it mean to return to your hometown? What does it mean to return to your hometown during a pandemic? For Milwaukee-raised and Brooklyn-based musician Justin Schmidt—a.k.a. X Harlow—returning to your hometown during a pandemic means one thing: donning a skull mask and freaking people out on Lincoln Memorial Drive.
Okay, it means a lot more than that. In the new video for “Parking Lot” (from the 2020 album Anchorite), X Harlow explores themes of isolation and memory by revisiting a series of pandemic-ghostly Milwaukee landmarks. The Domes, Leon’s, and those giant salt piles in the Port of Milwaukee all make appearances. Plus, the video is stocked with delightful green screen scenes straight out of one of those “Make Your Own Video” joints in Wisconsin Dells.
Schmidt/Harlow should be familiar to students of the Milwaukee punk scene, having played in groups like Cougar Den and Youth Crush. The creative team behind the “Parking Lot” video, meanwhile, is made up of current Milwaukee artists: Samer Ghani (camera), Jared Hundt (editing), and Natasha Woods (art direction). Check out their bonkers creation—and X Harlow’s chilled-out track—below.
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