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Shirley Manson

Watch the haunting, political ‘No Horses’ video from Garbage

Riots, surgery and images of child hunger illustrate the visual

There will be no cops, just men with guns,” Shirley Manson sings. “In their shiny black uniforms and their big black boots/ With their shiny black batons and their sleek black cars/ With their fingers on the trigger.”

Garbage have dropped a visual for “No Horses”, punctuated by imagery that are disturbing, apocalyptic, yet altogether reflective of our turbulent times. Directed by Scott Stuckey, we see frontwoman Manson in a red cloak, washing the feet of drummer Butch Vig in a subversively religious shot. Clips of riots, surgery, child hunger, landfills and conflicts at protests are shown.

“It's been my observation that when governments disregard their citizens for their own greed, the ensuing soundtrack usually kicks ass. Like Nina Simone's ‘Mississippi Godda’' or the Clash's ‘Straight to Hell’,  ‘No Horses’ made me realise that I'm not going insane, these really are fucked up times,” Stuckey said in a statement. “The lyrics are powerful so the challenge was to add something visually that wouldn't ruin the individual's interpretation.”

The band also recently released an autobiographical book, This is the Noise that Keeps me Awake, with Manson speaking to Dazed about the project. They’re currently on an international tour with Blondie.

“It’s very Patti Smith stream of consciousness, very pertinent politically to what’s going on,” Vig said while describing the track to Variety.

“It’s actually a song that’s very un-Garbage like,” Shirley Manson added. “I was driving through the Scottish countryside last year and looking at these fields of horses and thinking, what will happen to them when we don’t need them as much as we once did? When they’re no longer working beasts, what will happen to the horses? So it’s an imagining of the future where the authorities destroy anything that doesn’t make large amounts of money.”

It follows their 2016 album Strange Little Birds, as well as their weird science-y video for “Magnetized”.

Watch the politically provocative video below.