Continuing our survey of the Baltimore scenes; we present the world premiere for WAE’s video for “If U Wanna” directed by Nathan Duncan. Featured off the Friends Records release Glimmer; songwriter/performer Caleb Moore’s sounds are elevated outward toward expansive locales where the artist’s electric expressions are given grander environments to exist within. Duncan’s visuals follow our cosmic dreamer in the places that connect the rural lands of infinite sands to the utility light adorned municipalities of the asphalt paved realm.
WAE’s visual for “If U Wanna” invites the audience on an arid desert expedition among the jackrabbits, cacti & tumbleweeds that populate the rough & rugged frontier. Kaleidoscopic effects are seen in between aerial shots that focus on a mystical, nomadic wanderer. The mysterious desert dweller is seen illuminated by a host of effects from translucent television static, desert & city topographical imagery to cosmic effects gleaned from the galaxy above. As the moods & emotions go through the myriad motions of pensive thought; the camera begins to circle about both the dreamer & wanderer where insular & external worlds meet in cataclysm caught in the deepest state of dreams. The heavy feelings that populate “If U Wanna” are set free in a state of mind where thoughts are personified as a wandering wonderer to the stationary sleeper that seeks a more sound state of rest. Duncan’s visual combines this sleep-think logic in such a way that the audience has to rely only on the utilities of the unconscious to unpack the arresting sounds & visions that are placed before their senses.
Director Nathan Duncan provided us with the following exclusive behind-the-scenes thoughts on the video:
The song naturally elicited a very specific visual landscape in my mind and evoked a deep existential tension between desire and attainment. Say what?! I kept picturing a person reclined amongst a vast and unaccommodating environment, seemingly unfazed….A dreamer—living a simulated experience that deviated from the physical reality, or perhaps, the observed experience of another person.
So I set off for the West Texas desert with my friend Julie and we shot the damn thing with a DJI Drone. It was cold. It was dusty. Windy too. And we kept running out of battery power. =I can’t believe it actually got made.
If you look closely, you’ll see Jack Rabbits hopping around in some of the aerial desert shots. They were everywhere.
WAE’s Caleb Moore shared the following reflections about the song & video for “If U Wanna” :
The song is kind of a dark one—it’s about being in that ugly end zone of a relationship that’s going down the shitter. You’re co-dependent, annoying each other and can feel the end is approaching, even if you haven’t acknowledged it yet.
I explained a little of this to Nathan, but ultimately ended up letting him run with it with pretty much complete freedom to do whatever he wanted to do— I think the vibe of the song sort of has it’s own message, apart from the lyrics. I’ve known Nathan for a few years and have excitedly watched him grow as a filmmaker. I’m just so happy he agreed to work on this with me!
The new WAE album Glimmer is available now via Friends Records.