Phony Ppl were in Germany last July when they got the news: Megan Thee Stallion heard their crisp funk nugget, “Fkn Around,” and wanted to hop on it. “It was one of those kind of magical come-togethers,” guitarist Elijah Rawk tells MTV News over the phone.
The world got its first taste of the song in December when Phony Ppl, made up of Rawk, Elbee Thrie, Matt “Maffyuu” Byas, Aja Grant, and Bari Bass, joined Megan Thee Stallion for NPR’s Tiny Desk. Megan adds a demanding verse with a strong do-as-she-pleases vibe to Phony Ppl’s cautious lyrics. “When we heard her verse through FaceTime, the one line that stuck with us was ‘I got me a European papi out in Italy,’ and we kept saying it over and over on tour,” Rawk said.
Fast forward to today (February 13) — just in time for Valentine’s Day, for a hilarious bit of irony — and the group has released a music video about a car wash that rinses as much dirt as it does commitment. While Phony Ppl put in some serious elbow grease as mechanics, Megan Thee Stallion cruises through their car wash, tempted by a bearded Adonis as her corny boyfriend sits shotgun.
“We wanted to mess with certain ideas and flip them,” Bass says. “Instead of having a car wash full of girls, we decided that we’d have our own body shop and that Meg would be in the car wash with the kind of car that she would want to see.”
The vid is an all-around good time, featuring a ton of improvised dancing around sparkling rides, building up to Megan’s ferocious verse, which she delivers surrounded by shirtless dudes, and culminating in a giant party where no one is with anyone, and everyone is with everyone. Committed relationship, who?
Like the song that the video is for, “Fkn Around” doesn’t necessarily promote infidelity — but it accepts that it exists. As Grant says, “Some people do it, some people don’t.”
“In 2020, everyone is learning that there’s a lot more that we can figure out about ourselves,” Rawk says. “We would never promote cheating, but I also think that, when you’re young, sometimes a window of opportunity won’t find itself in your life again. It might be more worth it, in the long run, to give yourself more experiences in your life then to limit yourself for someone or something that could end up being a waste of time.” (Of course, he adds, that doesn’t necessarily mean lying to your partner.)
Thrie likes to think about the situation in a slightly different way. “Cheating, cheating, cheating,” he says, turning the word over like a coin on his tongue. “It could be a game. You could be playing tic-tac-toe or basketball. Can you commit to playing that role?”
If this video is any indication, that’s one commitment Phony Ppl and Megan can keep.
Check out “Fkn Around” featuring Megan Thee Stallion above. The song will appear on Phony Ppl’s to-be-titled follow-up to their 2018 album, mō’zā-ik.