Hey Elbow, “Martin”

Sjimon Gompers

Swedish trio Hey Elbow are readying their debut album on Alice Boman’s imprint, Adrian Recordings, premiering the altered Earth visuals from Elvira Varghans and Maja Li for their new single, “Martin”. A band studied in the schools of jazz; the voices and guitars from Julia Ringdahl ring out above the mix of Ellen Petersson’s horn section and digital touches, which are carried by the percussion supplied by Liam Amner. With music that imagines the interaction of arts and the individual between audio and earthly environments, Elvira and Maja’s abstract video canvas provides a visual dimension for “Martin” to inhabit in all of it’s splendor.

To match Liam’s stampeding drums, Ellen’s alarm clock loop of repeating singular notes, electronic bass, and collection of horns are met with edited arrangements of footage. Natural settings from lavish green jungles, seascapes, blue waters, and azure skies play host as the backdrop for disembodied or disintegrating heads, cut-up images, and film pastiches galore. Floating lips sing the refrain of, “I don’t want to go, for the second time,” that is reiterated eight times as the entire song and video swirl into the grand swells of energized euphoria. The tension of Hey Elbow’s mix develops momentum through meticulous crescendos that breaks and reveal the full spectrum of abilities brought by Amner, Petersson, and Ringdahl—where heralding trumpets open the sea floor up to the heavens, with percussion infrastructure designed like a dam to harness the group’s harmonic powers. Once the floodgates have swung ajar, Hey Elbow pour forth an entire basin’s worth of unrestrained potential that catches all nearby items and notes of nature in their multilateral path of rushing, auditory waters. Directors Elvira Varghans and Maja Li wrote us the following about the making of the video for Hey Elbow’s “Martin”:

We wanted to create a visual interpretation that adds a component to the music and emphasize the greatness through an inspiring landscape and epic elements.

Hey Elbow also described Elvira and Maja’s visual rendering of their track:

The colors, the layers, the contrast of speed and calmness. Just like the song.

Hey Elbow’s album will be available in 2015 from Adrian Recordings.

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