Club Kuru has become an instant favourite over here at word is cheap, moody grumblings have never looked and sounded sweeter. We have Danny Sangra to thank for the visuals and thus for pushing Club Kuru in our direction. He has managed to match the song beat for beat, shot for shot, perfectly encapsulating the tone and feeling. Edit, location and styling dominate. A continental paradise implodes as the climax builds distorting now muddled memories.
Possibly our favourite video of the year so far, at least top three!, we had to get in touch with Danny to find out; how best to shoot on a budget, what the importance of the edit was and just who is Club Kuru?
word is cheap: The track demands (perhaps post seeing the promo) a cinematic love engagement as moody vocals meet minor chords. How did the project with Club Kuru come about and did you instantly know what you wanted to do when hearing the track?
Danny Sangra: It was a mutual friend (Jess Jobst) who told me about Club Kuru. She thought it would be perfect to make a video for and told me to listen to his stuff. I hadn’t made a music promo in a while, however as soon as I heard the tracks I was in. It immediately felt cinematic. The problem was (typically) how to do cinematic on a budget. Jess had a styling in mind and so I knew we had to find a location that we didn’t need to build.
Where was the promo shot? There are a tonne of perfectly framed shots, how long did they take to find?
We filmed in Trieste, Italy. Laurie Erksine (Club Kuru) knew the area well. We had some specific ideas for scenes. I knew the key elements of story I wanted to shoot. Then we just drove around and found places that looked interesting. As I was shooting it myself. It meant the minute I saw something we could stop and film. Then move on. I shot as much as I possibly could. I didn’t have any lights so I used natural light for pretty much for all of it. Did the best I could with what was available.
I recently read an article about what is in the briefcase in Pulp Fiction. Of course we want to know, what’s written on those documents?
Haha it’s better if Laurie told you that. Those are his words and wouldn’t sound as good coming from me.
The cast and clothes really round off the look of the promo, subtle glamour, was this the aim?
Yes that was the aim. Jess Jobst and Kat Hawker worked out the styling and Sarianne Plaisant dressed the sets to make sure everything felt part of the same world. We wanted a slightly Talented Mr Ripley vibe mixed with late sixties cinema styling. Jess and I would pass back and forth films and trailers. The area already felt like it could be a Godard film setting (e.g Le Mépris shot in Capri) so it was down to the styling of everything to emphasize this.
The editing adds to the emotion throughout helping set the tone, especially at the end, was this always the plan?
From the beginning we knew that the film wasn’t going to be a straight forward narrative. This video was all about the edit for me. The video wasn’t about the narrative making sense it didn’t have to. The idea was to show the destruction of memory loss. The track builds up and so the edit matched the rythmn. As I cut the video I pushed the edit into two extremes. The uncomfortably long to the crescendo of single frame flashes.
Who is Club Kuru? Was there a chance of him/her/them making an appearance?
He’s the guy in the video!