“James” – the Forthcoming Video

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James - Coming Soon

We are very excited to announce that this Friday, we’ll be releasing the video for “James”, our rant at let-down losers of the worst kind. Shot and made by the amazing Ross McWhannell, who has worked with us on such fantastic videos as 1000 Bulbs and The First Word is the Hardest, it’s a claustrophobes dream of glitchy goodness and instrumental abuse.

For us, it’s a privilege to work with Ross again, and we kinda had to do it from right across the globe. Ross is based in New Zealand and we only had access to him for one day… He shot us rehearsing for a tour, and we think he’s really captured the aggression of the song.

You can do ANYTHING… If….

One of the things we love about the video is that it was such an unbelievably low budget shoot:

  • Lighting – 2 x B&Q halogen lamps
  • 1 x camera (Ross’s own 5d mkii)
  • 1 x lens (borrowed 100m macro)
  • 1 x band
  • 1 x room
  • 15 mins to shoot
  • 2 days to edit and grade etc.
  • 1 x talent/skill/experience/plan

It’s the last one that’s the important one and that thing is Ross. The rest is either cheap or borrowable…. I know a 5d mkII is relatively expensive camera but camera’s capable of shooting good looking HD footage are much more common than they were. The odd’s are that if anyone you know bought a DSLR that cost more than £400 in the last year it will shoot HD video. The most important thing was very much Ross…

Firstly, he loves film, cinema, whatever you want to call it. He has an eye for composition, he knows what looks good. He knows lighting because he has studied it formally and informally. He has made music videos and short films and adverts. He knows cameras because he has studied them, read the manual, used film and digital cameras of all kinds. He’s read the books, studied the interviews, watched the making of’s. He is expert in the software and understands the technology intimately. This is not his full time job but he has the skills, dedication and knowledge of someone who is not only totally professional but who also passionate about the art of making moving images and making them look good.

Secondly, he also had a plan. A very distinct plan that figured in the limited equipment and the very limited time. None of us have a love of performance videos but it’s the quickest route to a complete and convincing artifact. The problem was that the only day we could do was (and remains) the only days rehearsal we have ever had before playing the songs from April live.We decided we could spare 15 mins. Luckily, Ross had it in his head exactly what he needed. He could visualise the way that the end product would ‘feel’ even though he was totally open to what happened in the moment….

Tomorrow we’re going to release not only the video for James but also a detailed making off blog post and also all the assets/raw footage will be available soon so that anyone can download and have a play at making their own… We think it’s very cool little video! I think there’s a deeper lesson about craft, work ethic and visualisation though…

Ed x


Join the discussion and tell us your opinion.

September 23, 2010 at 1:04 pm

Waiting with baited breath!

September 23, 2010 at 6:16 pm

We are very excited to announce that this Friday, we’ll be releasing the video for “James”, our rant at let-down losers of the worst kind.

It seems a little odd to write a song like this, personally i don’t think he’s a bad trumpet player at all and seems to be quite a nice chap..

September 30, 2010 at 1:32 pm
– In reply to: Craig

Haha – different James. Though it is nice pick on our own James. Fo Sho!