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White Noise: Video of the week: Balam Acab – Apart

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Video of the week: Balam Acab – Apart

Anyone who regularly follows this blog will know how much I love Balam Acab, and in fact I still regard Wander / Wonder as my album of the year to date. Although the LP was a highly emotionally interpretable and sonically lush collection, to date this is the only fan-made video I’ve found that really does his sound justice.

This video for Apart tells a very simple story; that of breaking through a barrier and in doing so, gaining the possibility at fulfilling an unrequited love. Simple it may be, but it’s really in the craftsmanship and detail of this piece that the video excels. A beautiful stop-motion with a muted palette and gorgeous natural images, the video introduces itself by delving into a single drop of water just as the song proper begins, implying the presence of beautiful secret worlds that exist unseen in every hidden corner and unobserved facet of the natural world. A flower grows in a single droplet and rises up, a delicate and beautiful skater who dances elegantly inside her frozen world. A dandelion seed enters the magical world and is transformed, as she was, into the lover, as another part of nature come to life. Just as he sees her and the music slows, a wall of ice is constructed between the two and he laments his love, railing powerfully against his fate. His sense of loss is so strong that it produces a physical effect and breaks down the wall to enter hopefully into her world, cheering not at the achievement of his love, but at the possibility now offered to him. Throughout the music compliments both the visual action and style superbly, and the video stands as a beautiful and nuanced love letter to the secret worlds that exist in nature and our imagination, just as Wander / Wonder does across its course. 

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