Lady Gaga

takes her penchant for eccentric and provocative imagery to the extreme in the video for her new single,

Born This Way

.

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Gaga, or Mother Monster as she affectionately refers to herself in the epic seven-and-a-half minute video, finally dropped the much-hyped spectacle today.

Directed by

Nick Knight

,

Laurieann Gibson

and Gaga herself, the promo sees Gaga in a series of trademark looks - barely-there bikini? Check - while cavorting with half-naked dancers on the planet G.O.A.T.

"This is the manifesto of mother monster," Gaga (real name

Stephanie Germanotta

) explains of G.O.A.T (a Government Owned Territory in space) during the spacey intro.

She says: "On G.O.A.T., a government-owned alien territory in space, a birth of magnificent and magical proportions took place.

"But on that same day as the eternal hovered in the multiverse, another more terrifying birth took place - the birth of evil.

"And as she herself split into two, rotating in agony between two ultimate forces, the pendulum of choice began its dance.

"It seems easy, you imagine, to gravitate instantly and unwaveringly towards good. But she wondered, 'How can I protect something so perfect without evil?'"

Gaga ends her prologue two-and-a-half-minutes into the video, toting a machine gun and sporting those prosthetic horns she pimped on

Jay Leno

recently.

She finally bursts into an energetic dance routine, checks out her dancers in her blinged-out lingerie, and morphs into a pink ponytail-clad, tattooed skeleton in a tux.

Born This Way

has been somewhat of a controversial release for Gaga. From the moment the single dropped, comparisons have been drawn between it and

Madonna

's 1989 classic,

Express Yourself

. Similarities or not, there's no denying that Gaga's video is a one-off.

Call it a veritable smorgasbord of quirk, laden with a dollop of existential, inter-stellar themes. Or Gaga does naughty alien to

Express Yourself 2.0

. Judge for yourselves.

Gaga will reportedly soon release a second video for the song featuring an acoustic version that will be available on iTunes.

Born This Way

is the first single to be lifted from her new album, set to be released on May 23.

What do you make of the video?

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