The Writings On the Wall by OK Go (official video) is an alternative song.
Song Title: The Writings On the Wall (official video) Artist: OK Go Album: Hungry Ghosts Genre: alternative rock, rock Lead Vocals: Damian Kulash, Jr. Backing Vocals: Tim Nordwind, Andy Ross Guitar: Damian Kulash, Andy Ross Keyboards: Andy Ross Bass Guitar: Tim Nordwind Drums: Dan Konopka Percussion: Dan Konopka Director: Damian Kulash, Jr., Aaron Duffy, Bob Partington Released: 17 June 2014 Number of listens: 4014 Current rank: 1712 (updated weekly) Highest rank: 1712 (play the video all the way through to register a vote for this song)
The Writings on the Wall is a single written and performed by the alternative group, OK Go, the first single from their upcoming album Hungry Ghosts. The single premiered along with the music video on June 17, 2014, and was published as part of the bands EP Upside Out, released the same day. Like previous OK Go videos, Writings video is a one-shot music video where the members of the band interact with a number of props to create numerous optical illusions during the course of the video, reflecting on the theme of a song about a failing relationship due to the couple having different points of view.
Kulash stated that The Writings on the Wall was written around that moment in a relationship when you realize its coming to an end and that its inevitable, where there is the feeling of having something coalesce and fall apart, like chaos and order. As such, the song is written to be melancholic and jubilant at the same time, according to Kulash. Writing has been compared to have a New Order-feel to the melody, according to the Los Angeles Timess Randall Roberts.
An example of the types of optical illusions used in OK GOs video, this specifically created by Felice Varini, in which the illusion is achieved by viewing from a specific angle.
The video for Writing was co-directed by OK Go frontman Damian Kulash, Jr. along with Aaron Duffy and Bob Partington, creative personnel from the Special Guest and 1st Ave Machine agencies, respectively. The music video premiered at a special presentation at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art on June 16, 2014, with its world premiere the next day via Rolling Stones website and OK Gos YouTube channel.
The video is shot in a single take using a hand-held camera mounted with round handles, moved about by members of OK Go and assistants through a warehouse with various stations created by everyday objects, clothing worn by the band, and painted surfaces in specific arrangements. Each station plays on the use of optical illusions once the camera is set in position, such as those by Felice Varini that play on the illusion working from one specific point, or illusions like the Necker cube that are based on a lack of depth perception. All the illusions were created by the camera shots, without the use of any post-processing special effects.
The illusions were tied to the theme of the song, as described by Rolling Stone, a pre-break-up report from a relationship in which two people keep seeing things in different ways. Kulash felt in planning the video that the use of illusions was a good representation of this concept. The band and crew were careful in selecting objects to use for the illusions and stuck to more common household objects, not wanting to create any unintentional meanings behind their selection that they knew some viewers would search for. In the songs bridge, the camera is mounted on a rolling device as it passes by wooden creates painted and populated with various objects, such that the words I think / I understand you / but I dont appear briefly when the camera rolls by and in the correct position. Kulash emphasized this segment as where the song comes out emotionally, and used the tighter confined space created by the crates to punctuate this segment from the larger warehouse space they had set the video in.
Pre-planning of the video was done about two months prior to the physical set construction, determining how the video would progress and using computer mock-ups to figure out the concept. The warehouse set was located in Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, where the band resided during the setup and filming of the video. It took about three weeks to assemble the set, finding that some of their original concepts did not play out in real life and required some fine tuning, such as positioning an apparent pile of junk as to resemble band member Tim Nordwinds face at the right angle without losing the fact that the junk was still made from common household objects. The video took about 65 takes to get right during filming. The concept of the one-shot was considered critical to the video as it provided immersion for the viewer in the unfolding of the video, making them more interested in the song. Nordwind considered this video to be the bands most difficult one to film given amount of involvement they themselves were in, including manning the camera and performing costume changes. The film was arranged to put most of these complicated shots where mistakes would be made at the front of the video to reduce the amount of time to reset the warehouse for subsequent takes.
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