Once again, SUPERSWEET’s roving eye was caught by another oddball animated music video, this time in the form of Times New Viking’s ‘No Room To Live’; a painstakingly-spliced-together homage to the talented artists of the band’s Midwest hometown, Colombus, Ohio.
At SUPERSWEET we love doodles and so it seems, do the artists of Colombus, so we got hold of one of the video’s directors and an unsuspecting member of the Times New Viking to find out where the ideas came from, and who had them. The ideas, that is. Read on!
DIRECTOR: BRANDON REICHARD AND PELHAM JOHNSTON
SS: Where did the idea for the video come from? Was the song an influence or did the animation idea just lend itself to the track?
Brandon: It’s hard to say where exactly the idea came from; it kind of just ‘appeared’. When we start working on an idea, it always starts rough and gets polished as we go, it’s never something that happens all at once.
When we create music videos our primary concern is to create a ‘perfect visual accompaniment’ to the song. The idea just fit - the song has a great walking pace to it. When we have an idea that doesn’t fit with a particular song we are working on, we put it off to the side - something might come along in the future.
SS: It seems like the individual artists had a free range over what to do with the frames they were given. Were there any that were just to zany to use?
Brandon: We encouraged people to be as ‘zany’ as possible; we used every frame that came to us for better or for worst. We wanted people to see a sampling of what Columbus has to offer.
There are a lot of incredibly talented artists and musicians who live here that will never move to New York or Los Angeles or anywhere else. There is a Midwest ennui here that appears in a lot of work that makes it unique, this video showcases some of that talent.
SS: You've worked with the band before of course, but how is it having the band on production detail? Does it make the process easier to get a result every one's happy with?
Brandon: When we start a video, the first thing we do is listen to the song several times and find out what the band is thinking. We use this as the framework that our ideas will fit into. They are a great band to work with, they have a lot of ideas and are very receptive to the ideas of others.
This is our fifth video with the band and by now they don’t have to explain anything to us. We know their aesthetic, we know what they will and won’t like; that makes things easy. For the most part they just trust us to make a good video and we do the best we can.
BAND: ADAM ELLIOT FROM TIMES NEW VIKING
SS: You guys did production on the new video, has this always been the case and do you see it as a way of retaining creative control?
Adam: We came up with a crazy concept, something that involved happy accidents and random contributions. Amazed that it worked. By ‘production’ we decided on concept, but it was really Brandon and Pelham who did the hard work, and of course the 37 other people who did frames. All three if us did some frames as well. By staying involved in the process we can make sure it works with every other detail involved with being in a band.
SS: You worked with Brandon Reichard and Pelham Johnston before, in what ways did you find that their direction style compliments your music?
Adam: Working with Pelham and Brandon is laid back. They live down the street, are willing to work extra hours and with a low budget. They’ve worked on all our videos and you can see their growth as video artists with each new video. They keep coming up with amazing/insane ideas. They have three ideas in the vault before we even finish a new one. Who else is willing to hand process 8mm in their studio apartment?
SS: What is 'No Room To Live' about and did this effect the way you made the video?
Adam: ‘No Room To Live’ is about living in a sheltered environment that can be controlled. We filmed us walking a walk we do often. By having random people illustrate this mundane act we kind of hint at the world seen through the eyes of an outsider I think. The video is better than that answer!