Ghost Against Ghost, the progressive art rock project of Christopher Bono, has released a new video for their first single since 2018, “Darth Mango.” The track title is a reference to the president of the U.S. (who could very well be unemployed soon), and the new clip—directed by Laskfar Vortok and Strangeloop—is an ominous collage of images from throughout the past four years, of the Trump presidency and the citizen-driven backlash against their regressive policies. The intense, ominous track only serves to reinforce the idea of Trump as a villain created in a Hollywood studio.
Director Laskfar Vortok says of the video: “We wanted to delineate, in condensed fashion, the tumult of The Trump Administration disaster. The video for Darth Mango exists to give shape and sense to how cruel and unusual this approach to governance is. But because of the a barrage of disturbing video material, we also attempted to show, in counterbalance to the negativity, the societal backlash to corruption in government as it has manifested in The Women’s March movements, the student-led Climate Strike movements, the Black Lives Matter movements (in particular the responses to the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor) and the student-led March for Our Lives, which came in the wake of the Parkland School Shooting. By drawing on the frenetic energy and powerful lyrical content of Ghost Against Ghost’s music, we operated under the assumption that there is truly strength in our collective unity in the face of such terrible governmental designs, and we wanted the video to exemplify that.”
Strangeloop adds, “Utilizing a series of publicly available images of DJT we trained a GAN (generative adversarial network) to produce endless incarnations of his visage, albeit with some lucky random deformations that added novelty to the frenetic unfolding of the video. It felt strangely appropriate making literally fake images of a President who seems consistently obsessed with all things fake.”
Watch the clip for Ghost Against Ghost’s “Darth Mango” below.
Jeff Terich is the founder and editor of Treble. He's been writing about music for 20 years and has been published at American Songwriter, Bandcamp Daily, Reverb, Spin, Stereogum, uDiscoverMusic, VinylMePlease and some others that he's forgetting right now. He's still not tired of it.