Shame is a familiar bedfellow for queer people coming to grips with desire for the first time. For Los Angeles singer-songwriter Grant Genske, who performs under the name Eliason, the twinkly power ballad “Heaven Knows” is meant to expose the anxious underbelly that comes with queer lust -- a feeling he had to endure soon after his first hook-up.
“I grew up in an extremely religious home, where sex was pretty taboo,” he tells Billboard. “I had a firm belief that sex was dirty and scary, something to be kept secret, and that gay sex was absolutely f limits.”
In the sensual video for “Heaven Knows,” out today (Aug. 29), Eliason untangles the inner demons he’s held at bay. Intertwining moments that, as he describes it, are “poorly lit and pornographic” with a teen horror-flick visual aesthetic, Eliason’s first encounter into unknown pleasures is drowned out by a swarm masked creatures looking to prey on his unguarded vulnerability.
“The idea was to combine horror-pop with something extremely sexual, to contrast fear and desire," he says, "to show that they are both, unfortunately, a part the gay experience.”