Lodger was a side project by Damon Newton of the Dead Flowers – especially a one-man band, from what I can tell. And the dramatic waltz “Forever” has a similar sound to the slower, more ballady numbers that the Flowers did.
The video, directed by Jonathan King, keeps things very simple. It’s shot in black and white, with Damon sitting in a black room. He’s surrounded by a very particular selection of items: a grandfather clock, a pocket watch, two clockwork birds in a cage, suitcases, a trunk and two sheet-draped chairs. All highly symbolic.
Actually, I would like to meet someone who actually has a house decorated with every room like something out of a music video. It’s not a fridge, it’s a symbol of a failed marriage. And the kitchen bench always has milk dribbling off it.
There’s also a woman in the room. She doesn’t seem to acknowledge Damon, which probably means she’s a ghost and/or a memory. I might have been worried about ghost lady being just a music video prop, but she actually comes across as being cooler and more interesting than Mr Lodger. While he’s hunched over in his chair being mournful and miserable, she steals the show with her awesome hair and general air of confidence.
The challenge of this minimal setting is to keep things interesting. With a melancholic song and a low-key performance from the artist, it’s up to the director to add some zip – and this is largely done with editing. The verses slouch along, with the pace picking up for the chorus, shots overlapping to create a dreamlike feeling. Quite nice.
Best bit: that the woman is more interested in the wind-up birds than the man. #symbolism
Director: Jonathan King
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision
Next… a video for a man or a woman.