On their excellent new album Distances, Elkhorn guitarists Jesse Shepherd (acoustic) and Drew Gardner (electric) lean into the rhythmic possibilities afforded by not one but two guest drummers: the Virginia-based Ian McColm and DC percussionist Nate Scheible. The result is an expansive set of tunes like “Wilderness,” which floats along a determined but peaceful groove before taking a left turn into knottier territory. Shepherd joins us here to share a DIY-crafted clip for the song, an unfolding collage that suits the song beautifully.
“I’ve had the elements of this video laying around for a while, but they all got assembled very quickly. I was shuffling through my old files—as people home in a pandemic are wont to do—and came across some images I’d cut out of magazines over a decade ago. [I] bought a pretty basic app and a light and started messing around, [running] through a bunch of demos and tests to figure out what approach worked best and what to focus on. Then, just laid all the imagery out on my desk and started free associating under the camera phone. I’ve never really worked with animation before and I like the way the scenes flow into each other. Once you start with an idea it’s best to commit. Sort of like improvising in music. I like the video’s rough-hewn, propulsive style. Some oblique references to the state of the world and the little things that carry us through crept in. Originally, it was just a simple tune about good times, but over the course of recording and creating the video it’s taken on a darker tone. It was a journey. Sort of like the album itself.”