[Premiere] 90s Japanese TV Gets Gloriously Glitched in This Music Video
Circuit-bent processors deliver some nostalgic VHS vibes from mid-90s Japan, and a fake documentary about a lost jellyfish becomes a low budget nod to Leni Riefenstahl in two new music videos from PolyGlove.
GIFs and images courtesy of Niall Conroy.
The aim of Dublin electronic music duo PolyGlove's songs on their new EP, On Tick, are no less than to help you transcend. It's something that music has been helping with for years. The title song on the EP, also called "On Tick," does this with its unhinged rhythms and delirious beats. The music video is something that seeks to match that in visual, if offbeat, form.
The video for "On Tick" (see above) was made by Niall Conroy, one-half of PolyGlove alongside Stephen Maguire. Conroy is a video maker who wanted to create a narrative for the song, using his homemade, circuit-bent equipment.
"The conception of the video was to attempt to mirror the song's demented intensity," Conroy explains to Creators. "We wanted to try make it seem as if it was physically assembled by hand, the work of a deranged outsider artist."
The subject matter of the video happens to be the rather niche area of Japanese television programs from the years 1995 to 96. A whole box full of VHS tapes loaded with these were chanced upon after a friend of the two brought them back from his family, after he visited them in Japan. It makes for an interesting juxtaposition. Inexplicable shots of a people running down the street, seemingly panicked, someone jumping off a bridge, are intercut with kaleidoscopic visuals—the grain of analog giving it all an added intensity.
"It was something which felt so familiar yet so alien—early 90s TV but from the other side of the world. We were instantly captivated," notes Conroy. Describing the vibe Conroy notes, "Like if Hiroshi Teshigahara remade The Face of Another after ingesting a number of amphetamines and locking himself in the Japanese television archives."
They cite the "whacky eclectic adverts" in particular as catching their attention the most, and they felt also captured the mania of the song the most too. "I borrowed the tapes from Shota [their friend] and started putting them though my homemade circuit bent video processor. I then began carving a loose narrative from the footage, with the main goal being to give the songs vocal samples a strong visual identity. We liked how the music changed the tone of the footage, the daytime friendly content suddenly becoming something a little more sinister yet still imbued with an air of comedic absurdity."
Along with this there's also the premiere of "Pure ZAQ," another music video from a song off the EP. For this one, Conroy decided to concoct a fake documentary, pooled from underwater footage he shot in Ibiza. They liked the way the sea's movements worked with the downtempo nature of the song.
"I came to the conclusion that we were going to create a lost Jellyfish documentary, one which went straight to video and never aired on TV, found at the bottom of a pile in the video section of a charity shop," says Conroy. "Utilizing a combination of analog and digital equipment I processed the footage to give it the desired look and feel, a cheap knock-off of Leni Riefenstahl's Impressionen unter Wasser."
Check it out below.
PolyGlove's On Tick EP will be released on cassette tape on June 9, 2017 by de/konstruk/cionez. Listen to more from the band at their Soundcloud. Check out more of Niall Conroy's film work at his website.