If you need a soulful update to your Christmas playlist, “#Toyland” may be what you’re looking for. Ray Angry and Katherine McMahon, collaborating as Public Domain, recently worked with artists such as Questlove and Black Thought on their funky version of the 1903 original. Along with the track comes a music video directed by Tatjana Kretveski, which features an avant-garde circus. Just as whimsical as the song and music video is its cover art, which was designed by Efram Wolff, the same artist who designed Stevie Wonder’s Innervisions cover and several 1970s Motown records. Watch the video for “#Toyland” below.
The Public Domain project discusses and critiques the methods in which narratives are sold by creating their own versions of century-old songs, such as their recent “#AlcoholicBlues.”
“Each Public Domain release navigates themes of intellectual property as a commodity, appropriation, identity, and the illusion of newness,” reads a press release. “Throughout the project Angry & McMahon expand upon expired copywritten material to sculpt a contemporary narrative about the cyclical nature of history while exploring generational shifts and the notion of ownership.”
Last year, Ray Angry worked with Imani Coppola to raise awareness for the Black Lives Matter movement in their song “WTML (Don’t Shoot).” This video, in conjunction with the current project, reveals how the artist consistently shares an important message with his work.