Could an angelic hitman roving around the verdant countryside in a Mercedes-Benz be a harbinger of the apocalypse? Maybe, if you ask E L L E.
The London-based electronic artist spent most of the 2020 lockdown in her childhood home in France working remotely for a car rental company specializing in Mercedes-Benz and listening to nonstop trance music, paving the way for her single “Deepfake.” The glitched-out track is part punk offering, part nightmare pop — and it’s exactly the type of freaky juxtaposition to which E L L E finds herself drawn.
"I'm really into contrasts and displacement, and that is really what the video is aiming at. At the time I was watching a lot of Milla Jovovich movies, so that shaped a lot of the style of the imagery and the lyrics,” she tells NYLON via email. “It's very much role-playing and playing with identity through certain signifiers and contexts. ‘Deepfake’ for me is simultaneously playful and sinister."
The playful and sinister vibes are impossible to miss. E L L E has her Kawaii visuals on lock — platform sneakers, a bonnet holding in her flowing pigtails, bejeweled Y2K sunglasses, a massive teddy bear — all while waving around an old musket and referencing Resident Evil (“Ride double shotgun, I’m Milla Jovovich”) in a twisted and totally fun E-girl fever dream of a video. The track rages into a full-blown trance apotheosis, complete with flickering images of burning debris, and, of course, a looming sense of doom.
Watch “Deepfake” below.