The music video for ‘Animals’, the latest single from singer-songwriter Eddie Cohn, sees Los Angeles presented by Cohn and director Leslie Andrew Ridings as a mirage: an urban dream rising from a post-industrial landscape. But they’ve not done it with film manipulation, but rather, they let LA do it by herself; they’ve set up on the periphery of the city, and allowed the unique radiance of Southern California and the overwhelming presence of natural light to carry the video into a parallel world. Meanwhile Cohn serves as our guide to this striking Los Angeles, and he shares a side of this cultured city that’s often overlooked.
‘Animals’ is the latest chapter in a story that has been unfolding for Cohn for more than a decade. During his career as a recording artist, he’s consistently blurred the distinctions between rock, electronic pop, folk, and club music, drawing from the best of all styles. Ridings’s video for ‘Animals’ is also beyond categorisation, straddling the line between travelogue, documentary, and science fiction.
‘Animals’ was written in response to the tension in Los Angeles during the George Floyd protests, and Ridings and Cohn have captured that sense of destabilisation in their video. With the riots and protests happening just a few blocks away from where he lives, Eddie was drawn to write about the turmoil, human beings’ violent tendencies and how, maybe, we’re no different than basic animals.
The city looks fragile, its dimensions blurred, backlit, overwhelmed by the roaring sun. There’s also a beautiful woman in the clip who bathes in a river; at times, she’s completely immersed; in others, she emerges from the water with a look on her face somewhere between bemusement and challenge. She’s the spirit of the city: overwhelmed, dislocated, but ultimately unbroken.
Find out more about Eddie Cohn on his official website.