Written and shot during quarantine, the new release from Brooklyn’s shoegaze dream team uses deserted city streets and a cast of one to “explore the range of emotions surrounding the current state of the world”
I think it’s safe to say that most music produced over the last few months has taken one of two forms:
There’s that which has been created and released in spite of our situation—a dance track as defiant distraction, a feel-good tune as a form of joyful rebellion, a love song that graciously offers us, for the moment, something more familiar and comfortable to cry about than the news. This music serves as a sonic lifeline, reminding us that there was life before, there will be life after. and—goddammit—there is still life during this pandemic. Because we mustn’t forget that.
Then, on the flip side, there’s that which dives unflinchingly into it all and seeks to sort through and make sense of the mess. That which attempts to filter the feelings, analyze the experiences and untangle the wires of emotions we’ve found ourselves confused, confined and sometimes strangled by over the last four months.
This new release from Minaxi is definitely the latter.
Written and shot during quarantine, “B” and the accompanying music video—which I’m thrilled to premiere right here, right now—together explore the current state of the world and the ways we’re experiencing it now, both as individuals and collectively.
“B” is from Isra, the second installment of the band’s Zia Fantasy trilogy, and drops this Friday. Over email last month, Minaxi’s Liam Christian—who wrote the song and stars, alone, in the video—discussed his feelings during the beginning of quarantine and told us how “B” came to… well, be:
“During April and May, the pandemic had entered an era of debate, an era it has up to now never left. I noticed that our collective attitude toward covid, which had for most of us been in a constant swing back and forth, had transformed into something way more individual. It felt as if many of us had decided what was happening and how we were going to deal with it, and would from that day onwards try to make that work regardless of what happened. This self-righteousness bothered me a ton at the time, and it got me thinking about the troubled people in our lives, and where they might be if their friends and family had forgotten them, or worse, ignored them. In a sense, the person I sing about in ‘B’ is the world around us, our families, friends, etc.”
While Liam penned the song and serves as the face in front of the camera, it was his bandmate Shrenik Ganatra who was behind it. The musician, designer and, it appears, artistic jack of all trades filmed, edited and directed the beautifully shot black and white work, and was also kind enough to share what his vision was when making the video:
“The music video for the song ‘B’ explores a range of emotions surrounding the current state of the world. The empty, eerie Williamsburg scenes almost imparting a post-apocalyptic feel to the otherwise bustling neighbourhood in Brooklyn are a metaphor for how challenging the pandemic has been for us on so many levels. It also sheds light on how it often feels like you’re on your own in this uncertainty trying to survive, just like everybody else.”
With that, we’ll leave you to it. As COVID continues to dictate many (but remember—not all!) of the rules of our existence and loom impossibly large in our world and lives, may “B” and its video—as well as all music being released right now—serve as… well, whatever you need it to be.
That’s the best part of art, after all.
“B” is written by Liam Christian, produced by Minaxi and mixed by Patrick Hunt. The music video features Liam Christian and is filmed, edited and directed by Shrenik Ganatra.