Week in Pop: Blue of Noon, Cotillon, Gosh!, Sidewalk Chalk

Sjimon Gompers

A quick convenience store run with Jordan Corso of Cotillon; photographed by Laura Lynn Petrick.


Busting down the bathroom door to catch up with Cotillon’s Jordan Corso; photographed by Laura Lynn Petrick.

Jordan Corso’s anticipated second Cotillon album The Afternoons was hyped for nearly two years after the release of the beloved debut self-titled. The NYC based DIY-pop wunderkind recorded the blistering & blissfully brilliant Burger Records/Super Fan 99 record with Al Carlson at Gary’s Electric in Greenpoint to make the album that we direly need to stay happy & inspired during the bleakness of 2017. The Afternoons finds Jordan, Shane Butler, Jon Nellen, John Andrews & Dave Collins conjuring together the privy sound of enjoying the ineffable & abundant tranquility that the most sublime days & evenings offer. Presenting the music video world premiere for the lead off album single “Secret”, Super Fan 99 label boss Lucas Barham created the following minimalist b/w video for “Secret” that offers up French lyrical subtitles with the camera fixed around the motif of a reel-to-reel player on a desk full of curios. Barham hones the focus on various knick-knacks, portraits, drawings & various devices that appear as ephemeral items connected to the overall aesthetic of Cotillon’s sensibilities, sound & style that blends contemporary & vintage elemental components.

The video for Cotillon’s “Secret” is executed by Barham is if it was a throwback to the nouvelle vague era of experimental & revolutionary cinema where penchants for noir are met with the new wines & designs of today’s fashions that feel like yesterday’s subverted/obscured/withheld progressive styles. The camera finds focus on a desk with a tape recorder, a cassio, car phone, notes, music theory paperback, ashtray complete with smoldering cigarette & a miniature Aphrodite of Milos (Venus de Milo) alabaster statue. French new wave icons (and sketches of pop art débutantes) line the walls as Jordan’s hook-laden song of clandestine conversations & covert connections are set to a visual collage of figurines, headphones, pedals, a car telephone & various other charged items important to the Cotillon creative process are seen as behind-the-scenes drafts & scribblings that shines an insightful light on the aspects of aural-aesthetic inceptions/conceptions & the like. “Secret” allows the audience to get a closer listen & view to Jordan’s DIY world where his anthem of obfuscation is coupled with clever art house visuals of curiosities & oddities that further illuminate the song’s own cryptic nature.

Cotillon ‘Secret’ from Super Fan TV on Vimeo.

Cotillon’s Jordan Corso provided the following reflective words regarding Luke’s video for “Secret”:

Jordan of Cotillon; captured by Laura Lynn Petrick.

I’m a big fan of Luke’s work and longtime friend, it was a no-brainer and flattering when he offered to make a video for secret. The song itself is about letting your guard down and opening up to someone for the first time.

Director & Super Fan 99 label boss Lucas Barham provided the following insights about making the video for Cotillon’s “Secret”:

Catching up with Super Fan 99 label boss Luke Barham, aka Uncle Luc; press photo courtesy of the artist/label.

Cotillon was the first artist on Super Fan aside from myself so we’d spoken about me directing a video for a while, with this second record it felt like the time was right as I knew much more about Jordan. When we first met a few years back I remember him telling me he loved french new wave movies so we had that in common. Eric Rohmer in particular has been a big influence across all the videos I’ve made to date and this is no different, with the addition of the lyrics subtitled in french I pushed that idea a little further.

The idea was that the video be an invisible portrait of Jordan or at least my idea of what his room might look like. The initial idea came from watching documentaries where a room or location is recreated to help paint a picture of a person or place where an incident occurred. The Devil and Daniel Johnston in particular did it really well. I’ve always loved record sleeves where there are loads of tiny details, where the image is littered with books, magazines and records so I could later look them up and discover the world of that artist which is exactly what I’ve tried here. Hopefully every frame has something new to spot. It was originally shot in colour but Jordan got more involved as the edit went on and we arrived at a finished video that we were both satisfied with.

I worked out no video I made had cost me more than one hundred quid to produce so named the productions £100 Pop Vids. The biggest expense is usually a prop or train ticket to get to wherever we’re shooting. I don’t profess to be a filmmaker and have not studied film, it’s all DIY. I like to encourage bands to do the same, there aren’t really any wrong or right rules in my mind. Just make something that visually pleases you. If you have a good idea it doesn’t have to cost loads of money.

Jordan Corso of Cotillon in front of a wall of prizes; photographed by Laura Lynn Petrick.

Further more on The Afternoons, Corso’s confessionals are illustrated with a sincerity reminiscent of (Sandy) Alex G’s output where the most subtle & effective arrangements have a lasting impact. Conversations past & present collect on “Promises 1” & soar on the predominately instrumental sequel “Promises 2” to the cool stepping city-strolling “I Like People” that will bring a smile to your face with the titular lyrics of “I like people who don’t like people…”

The sea to shining sea travels of Jordan & company carry forward on the hazy & buzzing harmonies of “Black Sea”, to the airporting adventures of “SFO” that oscillate between the two coasts while taking time to lampoon the super-strange not-so-discreet charm of the technocratic bourgeoisie that have attempted to takeover San Francisco. Anecdotes of colloquial intimacy & all sorts of idiosyncrasies are illustrated on the catchy & personal “Alex’s Room” that exudes the experience of life with roommates who are dear friends. Songs like “Dish Set” recall the kitchen collections that we inherent in our transitory existences in a ballad that we all can connect to in our ways, where the fun of “Fang” exhibits everything from Pavement stylistic tributes to the exhilaration & discovery that comes from inspired experiments with electric instruments. The closer “Staying In” is an ode to take a night off from a night on the town that reflects the process of aging & the kind of amour that keeps you feeling fresh as a daisy. This finale is the anthem for canceling your plans on a Friday night & telling friends & loved ones that it is an internet & chill kind of evening (and everyone is invited).

Cotillon’s The Afternoons is available now from Super Fan 99 & Burger Records.

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