Filmed in a deserted slice of Central Park, the latest video single from Joudy’s forthcoming LP is a re-interpreted and re-recorded version of a 2016 song, intended to “[build] a bridge between the past and the present of the band”
Sometimes what’s just as interesting as a piece of art—something that, of course, is inseparable from the work itself—is the context in which it was created and the intention with which it was made. The when, the where and, of course, the why.
So is the case for Venezuelan trio Joudy, who arrived in NYC in 2019.
As anyone who’s picked up their life and moved to a new city knows, this upheaval presents you with a challenge—and an opportunity. To rebuild a life and have the rare chance to reconsider what you want to do and who you want to be. But as a band, Joudy hasn’t elected to start over nor to move on. They also haven’t opted to stay the same. Instead the trio has chosen to evolve, to take the music of their past and incorporate elements and influences of their present, keeping a foot firmly planted in each world while continuously moving forward.
The latest example of this endeavor is “El Despertar,” the new video single from the band, which I’m thrilled to premiere here!
“Puedes entrar al vacío / Deprisa descalzo y con frío / El sol no ha venido / Puedes entrar al vacío“
(Or: “You can enter the void / Quickly barefoot and cold / The sun has not come yet / You can enter the void”)
Inspired by Venezuelan tonadas (folk songs), this song—the latest drop from Joudy’s forthcoming LP Destroy All Monsters—is a reinterpretation of “El Despertar del Instinto” from the band’s album Obertura, which was recorded in Venezuela in 2016. Where the original sat firmly on the face-melting end of the sonic spectrum (which, if you’ve seen Joudy live, is what you expect), this is a more intimate, stripped-down take on the track—a rare, surprising treat from the band—filmed in a deserted slice of Central Park and featuring nothing but frontman Diego Ramirez, alone, with his guitar.
“We re-interpreted this song for our new album with the intention of building a bridge between the past and the present of the band,” Joudy shared of the song. “The two parts of our lives feel distant / disconnected from each other, but at the same time, are part of the same journey.”
This isn’t the first time Joudy has re-interpreted, re-recorded, re-packaged and re-released older tunes from their catalogue. As noted above, while they continue to grow, the band’s roots run deep, and if “El Despertar,” was intended to be a bridge between worlds, the foundation of that very structure would be “El Preambulo.” The Obertura opening track enjoyed a second drop in 2020 with the intention to introduce the Venezuelan band to a new audience following their move to NYC, and I had the privilege of premiering a performance of that very song, filmed at Gold Sounds, on BdBK in November 2021.
“After relocating to New York and reforming the band in 2019, we performed a live session with this song as our introduction,” the band told me of that release last year over email, “an invitation to all the new listeners and a prologue to the sound that we wanted to start sharing in our new world.”
Back to “El Despertar.” Joudy create and release with intention, so it’s no surprise that the new video—directed by frequent and long-time collaborator Gabriel Duque—isn’t a standalone work, but part of a bigger picture, as the prequel to “Uneasy,” the lead video single from DAM, which came out two months ago.
So! Now that you know where Joudy’s been and where they are, let me tell you where you’re going: To Alphaville TONIGHT to celebrate the video release when the band hits the stage with Ugly Mutts and Batsbatsbats Ghostghostghost—
Tix avail here. Don’t miss it.
Feature image (provided by the band): Tommy Krause