Metal/funk/rock band Primus have released a new video for “Pure Imagination,” Les Claypool’s hommage to the 1971 classic movie, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.
Chocolate bananas, chocolate pretzels, chocolate bars, chocolate everything… Do you dream in chocolate? Primus front man Les Claypool does.
In celebration of National Chocolate Day, Primus front man Les Claypool lives his childhood dream of becoming Willy Wonka in new song and video “Pure Imagination,” inspired by the 1971 classic Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.
The eighth studio album by American metal funk rock band Primus, Primus & the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble, was released October 21st off ATO records. The album debuted on Billboard’s Top 20, and reached number two on the independent chart. To promote the album, the band is currently touring the US and they have released their own line of Primus chocolate bars.
In a recent press release, Claypool said of the concept album,
“The idea was to combine the Frog Brigade and Primus, and do this record…I really wanted to pay homage to a film (1971’s ‘Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory) that was very important to me as a kid and very influential to me musically… And as opposed to just going in and recording the songs and playing them the way they are in the film, we twisted them up a bit…twisted them up a lot.”
The band was formed in El Sobrante, California in 1984 with Les Claypool on vocals and bass, Todd Huth on guitar, and a LinnDrum drum machine while they struggled to find a drummer. The band suffered a series of line up changes, which led Claypool to put the band on hiatus. After hiatus, Claypool recruited Larry LaLonde and Tim Alexander, who recorded Primus’s first album Suck On This in 1989, which was funded by a loan from Claypool’s father.
The band’s first studio album, Frizzle Fry, was released on Caroline Records, and there growing popularity helped them to get picked up by major label Interscope Records in 1990. Primus’s first album off interscope was Sailing the Seas of Cheese, released in 1991, which featured singles such as “Jerry Was A Race Car Driver” and “Tommy the Cat.” The album sold to gold status in 1993, and certified platinum in 2001.
Primus then had a sting of albums from 1993-1999, which included Pork Soda, Tales from the Punchbowl, Brown Album, and Antipop. Afterwards, the band went on hiatus, and Claypool told Rolling Stone the reason for hiatus was that playing in the band “wasn’t fun anymore.”
In 2003, the band reunited and released EP Animals Should Not Try To Act Like People, which eight years later was followed by the LP Green Naugahyde. Primus’s latest album, Primus & the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble, was recently reviewed by Collin Brennan at Consequence of Sound, who stated, “Pure Imagination” stands out as the track that best incorporates the darkness and whimsy into something resembling a unified aesthetic.”
In the video “Pure Imagination,” the audience is taken back to the original Willy Wonka, to the movie that inspire Claypool’s imagination and musical talents, into a world of chocolate and magic, and into every child’s paradise.