…like we’ll never wake up VIDEO/SINGLE: THE DEARS – Instant Nightmare [Pelletier / Hurtu, directors]
The Dears – Lovers Rock LP, is available at Bandcamp.
by Walter Price
Montreal’s seminal post-punk composers The Dears have returned with a haunting The Verve meets Metric breathtaker, “Instant Nightmare!”. The track’s phenomenal strings deceive the daunting message of inadvertently destroying. This lament delivered in a steady march of melancholic tones of vocalist Natalia Yanchak as the crunch of the guitar and harmonies of woo-s proliferates throughout.
This is an instant nightmare
And it’s like we’ll never wake up
I know you’re trying so hard
To be or not to be a fuck-up
This is an instant nightmare
But no one gives a damn
We know it’s all been made up
We know it’s all a scam
And the accompanying film adds more contrast to the fire. Co-directed by Alexandre Pelletier and Vince Hurtu with animation from Hurtu and Florence Levasseur, this video balances its artwork and the intense color scheme to simultaneously mask yet further the song’s heaviness. A real lockdown masterclass production. A technical fete during these difficult times…proving once again, where there’s a will there’s a way. Kudos.
Producer Alexandre Pelletier digs into some of the production’s backstory/process, “I was a fan of The Dears long before collaborating with them. I cold emailed them about a year ago, hoping to make a music video for them at some point. And here we are. Although we shot the video during the COVID-19 crisis, the concept was already green-lighted way before the pandemic started.
“Animation and other post-production efforts are still manageable in this current situation, so we kind of lucked out picking an animation focused concept. Part of the animation is based on rotoscoping, so we initially planned a studio shoot to create reference footage. Luckily, we were able to adapt and shoot this remotely, all thanks to Murray’s technical savviness and cinematographer Natan B. Foisy’s magic through FaceTime (thanks bud).
“In post-production, co-director and animator Vince Hurtu was able to create something amazing out of that footage. The video features an animated version of Natalia and Murray [Lightburn] performing the track. Sparsely punctuated by lyrics and vivid imagery, it echoes the song’s grim and somber themes and eerily reflects the situation we’re all going through.”
“Instant Nightmare!” is from the brilliant ‘Lovers Rock’ LP (via Dangerbird Records) and you can stream it as well as watch the mesmerizing film, below.
Band photo by Richmond Lam
Natalia Yanchak – piano/vocals
Murray A. Lightburn – guitar/vocals
Jeff “Looch” Luciani – drums
Steve Raegele – guitar
Rémi-Jean LeBlanc – bass
Directors : Alexandre Pelletier & Vince Hurtu
Animation artist : Vince Hurtu
Additional animation : Florence Levasseur
DOP consultant : Natan B. Foisy
MUA consultant : Garance Mouz
Producer : Alexandre Pelletier
“This is a super fun one, a heavy, trudging beast with strings and restrained vocals. Like the song is the Hulk and I’m Black Widow holding his hand saying: Take it easy, big guy.” – Natalia Yanchak