Black Prairie, 'Let It Out'

Black Prairie visit a taxidermist // Courtesy of the artist
Fans of The Decemberists know Black Prairie, since many of those band members make up this Portland rock-infused bluegrass band. The group's new video is stuffed with dark humor — pun intended.

Black Prairie, a six-piece rock-infused bluegrass band that includes four members of The Decemberists, has been a mostly instrumental band for years, but on its fourth album, Fortune, just out yesterday, there's a whole lot of singing. The band has always had a good sense of humor and this video for "Let It Out," which features violinist Annalisa Tornfelt on vocals, will give you a good peak at their twisted ways. Black Prairie's driving force and humorist, Chris Funk, sent me a note explaining the evident fascination with taxidermy:

When you tour with people for a long time, after a while the stories start to run out. Though one day in the van Annalisa revealed that she in fact used to hunt squirrels with her friend Bethy in the woods. Not unusual for an Alaskan teenager I guess, however she then revealed they would make purses out of them and wear them to high school, even the bones in their hair to keep their buns up. And I thought smoking cloves while listening to The Smiths was edgy .... So it's not altogether too surprising that Annalisa came up with the loose concept of *shooting* (pun fully intended) our video in a working taxidermy shop at which point our director (Jason Roark) and his team (Ken Meyer, Kyle Eaton) ran with the story line and art direction. We were honored to have cameos from fellow Oregonians Michael Hurley (folk legend) and Claire Coffee (Grimm) take the time to enjoy the scent of salted animal hides and taxidermist glue.

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