R&B singer Miguel took his live performance to new heights after attaching metal hooks to his bare skin and suspending himself in mid-air.
At an intimate album preview in Los Angeles last week in promotion of his upcoming project Viscera, the singer had staff members pierce the hooks through his back and attach him to wires hanging from the ceiling while performing a song called "Rope," which reportedly features the lyrics: "I'm hanging onto nothing, I'm hanging from the ceiling."
A number of concertgoers shared the graphic video on social media, as did Miguel on his Instagram account on late Tuesday. Viewer discretion is advised.
In the caption, Miguel said the stunt was rooted in trust. "To trust yourself, trust your strength, and trust the power of vulnerability without needing to control the outcome," he wrote.
In another Instagram post, he documented photos of his bloodied back and white tank top from the event and posed the following questions: "What is your relationship to pain? What is your relationship to change?"
The "Sure Thing" singer spoke about the suspension practice with Los Angeles Times earlier this month, sharing that he's made a practice of pushing his body to the limits through a series of "fully immersive, visceral experiences" that "may speak to some sort of wanting to not feel numb" within the last year. The practice is a "spiritual test," "meditative ritual," and, as he said, "exercise in trust."
"Initially it was a bit of, 'What is the most extreme way to push outside of what's expected? How far can I go in demonstrating how far I'm willing to go for art, for conversation?'" Miguel said. "I couldn't have known how committed I was to the real purpose of this sh-- until I had hooks in my back."
On the feeling of having his "body draped over the metal," he said, "It was a scary and freeing experience and emotion to go through because it's such a light switch. It has so much to do with pain. What does pain mean?"
Viscera does not have a release date yet, but it will mark Miguel's first studio album since 2017's War & Leisure. He's released a number of EPs since then, including 2019's Te Lo Dije and 2021's Art Dealer Chic 4.
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