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Polartropica, 'GIVE THEM HELL (Serial Killer Slayer)'

Here's a roaring anthem as we enter the Year of the Water Tiger. In light of rising anti-Asian hate crimes and gender-based violence towards trans women of color, L.A. artist Polartropica's "GIVE THEM HELL (Serial Killer Slayer)" is a rallying cry to fight back. Rocking the song are playful-but-vengeful drums and punky guitar riffs as Polartropica belts out the punchy refrain: "Give them hell!"

In the video game-inspired music video directed by Wes O'Connor, Polartropica wears a bejeweled fèngguān and dances victoriously among fellow warriors with names like Neon Matcha and Fury Fatale. As these characters battle across Los Angeles, Angelenos will recognize historic landmarks where immigrants have built cultural communities, including Chinatown and Olvera Street. When Polartropica lifts a jackfruit above her head in a 99 Ranch Market, it's a nod to the musician's childhood spent in the countryside of Taiwan where her grandmother owned a fruit stand.

"GIVE THEM HELL" is both an ode to the L.A. underground music scene and a call to listeners to gather their own community of superheroes. The song's serial killer is never seen or named, but that's the point: "I don't give a f*** about what's his name."

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Jireh Deng