Based out of the land of sand dunes in Seaside, California, Burnt Palms premiere the video for "Isolation" off their album, The Girl You Knew, from the label, We Were Never Being Boring. The work guitarist and vocalist, Christina Riley, her camera captures late-evening introspection and the band occpupying forgotten areas. Riley plays with the forward and backward sequence of images to create a disjointed feeling with drummer and Clara Nieto with bassist Brian Dela Cruz to help explore the desolate and empty spaces of existence.
Selfie images follow Christina getting into her car in reverse, as the road behind and the road ahead are decorated by the disembodied gleam of street lights. "Sitting here in misery, the other side of me…told her to stay away, she doesn't want to live another day, but it seems she's here to stay." Burnt Palms not only deliver a rumbling rock song of solitude, but take you on long, late-night drives to secluded areas to enjoy a session that is just the three of them. The build up of anxiety and tension is released in the ultra earnest chorus of, "fuck you, fuck you, I don't want to see you," where Burnt Palms embrace their own assertive autonomy. From the barren and vast concrete locale reminiscent of Fort Ord's remnants to the quiet coastal roads dotted by traces of illumination; Burnt Palms' ruminations of the serious are celebrated in a statement of solace. Christina Riley talked to us about both the making of the video for, "Isolation", and their upcoming album, The Girl You Knew, for WWNBB.
Tell us about the making of the Christina Riley video for "Isolation”.
Originally my friend Christine Shaw and I had a really great idea for the video so we went out and shot some stuff of me. But when it came time to edit, we realized we didn’t take enough footage to complete our original idea. Running out of time, I decided to take some “selfie” videos at 3am. I had a vision when I couldn’t sleep that it would work well with the stuff I shot of Clara and Brian. I used the street lights to sort of tie the clips together even more and give it that sort of mentally messed up feeling. I’m a photographer so I’m always sort of thinking about visual communication.
How did the desolate locales and lonely highway imageries come into place to underline the isolated places and spaces of, "Isolation"?
The song was written at a time when I was really low and I had sort of isolated myself from everyone, mentally. It was important for me to express what I was feeling visually to go along with the music. The endless backwards moving road, the dreamy streetlights and lonely shots of me walking alone…kind of hopeless and stuck in a way.
I love that closing 'leave me alone' refrain of "fuck you, fuck you". What circumstances and incidents inspired the song?
I answer a lot of that in the above questions, but it's about drowning in misery, feeling hopeless, wanting it to go away so bad, then finding the strength to tell it to FUCK OFF! Getting through it.
Tell us about what making your second album, The Girl You Knew was like.
Making the album was so much fun. We flew out to Brooklyn to record with Gary Olson at Marlborough Farms. We stayed at his place which was so amazing and very inspiring. It took us three days to record the album. We also got to explore a little…went bike riding, got lost, and met up with some friends. It's the best to hear the recording for the first time after playing the songs so many times.
How was it different for you all from making your first album?
Our first album was recorded at bro town sound in San Francisco with Gary. Brian wasn't with us at the time so Clara and I recorded with Paul Towber on bass. Clara and I hadn't been playing together too long before we recorded. It all happened pretty fast.
Summer plans for Burnt Palms?
Our summer plans are to work on more songs, play as many shows as we can/want. We are thinking of a short North West tour in September!
The new Burnt Palms' album, The Girl You Knew, is available now from We Were Never Being Boring.