PopMatters is moving to WordPress in December. We will continue to publish on this site as we work on the move. We aim to make it a seamless experience for readers.

Music

Future States - "You Got It All Wrong" (video) (premiere)

Photo courtesy of Terrorbird Media

Psych-pop wonders Future States change the modern music video landscape for the better with this new deeply interactive experience.

The year is 2017. Gone are televised highlight reels showcasing the biggest music videos of the month or week. In their place is a world of social media and instant gratification, marking a setting perfect for virtually anyone to put out their own music video. But, with so many being uploaded at a time, it can be argued that most videos now saturating the market are less than standard quality.


To stand out amongst the crowd, some artists have gotten crafty. Such is the case of Future States. The Canadian psych-pop wonders have put out their latest music video for their single, "You Got It All Wrong", and it's sure to turn some heads and keep some eyes glued to the computer screen.

First and foremost, it's a genuinely interesting listen. The psychedelic angle is on full display here, with an offbeat vocal arrangement, distorted guitar riffs, and ominous pops of synth and sound abound. It never feels like a hard listen despite the quirks of its construct, and comes across as a charmingly lo-fi affair throughout.

The nature of its accompanying music video fits the same vibe, though the real flair comes in the form of interactivity. Listeners have the opportunity to change the course of the band's performance live with the help of some behind-the-scenes magic spent while developing the video. It incorporates state-of-the-art programming so that the actions of each member can be changed on the spot, fundamentally changing the course of where the performance goes both sonically and visually at a moment's notice.

The original version of the tune is already something completely enjoyable, but Future States elevates themselves to another level entirely given the dedication that they have put into providing a unique user experience for their fans to enjoy.

On the music video, they say: "The idea for the video came from wanting to create a project where we could work with our good friend, Aaron Krajeski, who is a talented developer and interactive media artist. We had previously collaborated with him on visuals at a few of our shows (he's also collaborated with the Besnard Lakes on projections in the past). For these, he programmed projections that would track and respond to our movements on stage using an Xbox Kinect sensor. These were weird and beautiful, and we knew we wanted to work on a larger project together.

"Aaron's skills provided us with a huge realm of possibilities, and we asked ourselves - how do we involve listeners/viewers in performance? How do we invite people into our song? We chose as our starting point something we're all super familiar with: the music video that features a band's performance. We then settled pretty quickly on the concept of mixing or remixing the track - of allowing people the opportunity to choose when each of us would play. And then really liked the idea of building a visual choose your own adventure, where the user could kind of escape the performance and see us doing something different. We imagined that every time a user plays the video, they could create a new version of the song and keep having fun with it. We wanted to prioritize this fun and creative aspect, handing over control to the user/viewer/listener."

"As a band, we've enjoyed taking each new project as a learning opportunity, and this was no different. We'd teamed up with a talented friend to help with the technical aspects of the project, then decided to art direct, shoot and edit the footage he needed ourselves. We rented a bunch of gear, prepped costumes and lighting, and spent a single day at a local creative space in Montreal called NOMAD. We invited our friend Daniel Slapcoff to help direct the shoot and give us an outside perspective. We got the performance footage down pretty quick, then came up with different ideas for the alternate background videos and shot a ton of them. It was a day spent having fun together and coming up with funny things to do on camera. Only six made the final cut, but we have five or so additional background vids that may see the light of day eventually. Nick (keys) edited the footage for Aaron to work with, and then he and Chuck (vocals/guitar) worked with Aaron towards refining everything.

"We're really happy with the final product: it came out as lo-fi, goofy footage meets high tech coding, and back-end, which sort of reflects our musical aesthetic and personalities. We spend a ton of time perfecting arrangements and vocal harmonies but are also wary of making our music too perfect or shiny; the same goes for this video. We're super grateful that Aaron was able to help us make the idea a reality, and that a MuchFACT grant helped us with the funds to make it all happen."

Tour Dates

30 November 2017 @ Brasserie Beaubien - Montreal, QC W/ Ports of Spain, Manners and Old Soul Rebel
1 December 2017 @ SINK Gallery - Nashua, NH W/ Ports of Spain
2 December 2017 @ O'Brien's Pub - Boston, MA W/ Ports of Spain, Colbis the Creature and Giant in the Lighthouse
3 December 2017 @ Cafe Nine - New Haven, CT W/ Ports of Spain

Please Donate to Help Save PopMatters

PopMatters have been informed by our current technology provider that we have until December to move off their service. We are moving to WordPress and a new host, but we really need your help to fund the move and further development.


Music

Books

Film

Recent
Books

Is Carl Neville's 'Eminent Domain' Worth the Effort?

In Carl Neville's latest novel, Eminent Domain, he creates complexities and then shatters them into tiny narrative bits arrayed along a non-linear timeline.

Film

Horrors in the Closet: Horrifying Heteronormative Scapegoating

The artificial connection between homosexuality and communism created the popular myth of evil and undetectable gay subversives living inside 1950s American society. Film both reflected and refracted the homophobia.

Music

Johnny Nash Refused to Remember His Place

Johnny Nash, part rock era crooner, part Motown, and part reggae, was too polite for the more militant wing of the Civil Rights movement, but he also suffered at the hands of a racist music industry that wouldn't market him as a Black heartthrob. Through it all he was himself, as he continuously refused to "remember his place".

Music

John Hollenbeck Completes a Trilogy with 'Songs You Like a Lot'

The third (and final?) collaboration between a brilliant jazz composer/arranger, the Frankfurt Radio Big Band, vocalists Kate McGarry and Theo Bleckman, and the post-1950 American pop song. So great that it shivers with joy.

Music

The Return of the Rentals After Six Years Away

The Rentals release a space-themed album, Q36, with one absolute gem of a song.

Music

Matthew Murphy's Post-Wombats Project Sounds a Lot Like the Wombats (And It's a Good Thing)

While UK anxiety-pop auteurs the Wombats are currently hibernating, frontman Matthew "Murph" Murphy goes it alone with a new band, a mess of deprecating new earworms, and revived energy.

Music

The 100 Best Albums of the 2000s: 80-61

In this next segment of PopMatters' look back on the music of the 2000s, we examine works by British electronic pioneers, Americana legends, and Armenian metal provocateurs.

Music

In the Tempest's Eye: An Interview with Surfer Blood

Surfer Blood's 2010 debut put them on the map, but their critical sizzle soon faded. After a 2017 comeback of sorts, the group's new record finds them expanding their sonic by revisiting their hometown with a surprising degree of reverence.

Music

Artemis Is the Latest Jazz Supergroup

A Blue Note supergroup happens to be made up of women, exclusively. Artemis is an inconsistent outing, but it dazzles just often enough.

Books

Horrors in the Closet: A Closet Full of Monsters

A closet full of monsters is a scary place where "straight people" can safely negotiate and articulate their fascination and/or dread of "difference" in sexuality.

Music

'Wildflowers & All the Rest' Is Tom Petty's Masterpiece

Wildflowers is a masterpiece because Tom Petty was a good enough songwriter by that point to communicate exactly what was on his mind in the most devastating way possible.

Music

Jazz Composer Maria Schneider Takes on the "Data Lords" in Song

Grammy-winning jazz composer Maria Schneider released Data Lords partly as a reaction to her outrage that streaming music services are harvesting the data of listeners even as they pay musicians so little that creativity is at risk. She speaks with us about the project.

Music

The 100 Best Albums of the 2000s: 100-81

PopMatters' best albums of the 2000s begin with a series of records that span epic metal, ornate indie folk, and a terrifying work of electronic music.

Books

The Power of Restraint in Sophie Yanow, Paco Roca, and Elisa Macellari's New Graphic Novels

The magical quality that makes or breaks a graphic novel lies somewhere in that liminal space in which art and literature intersect.

Books

'People of the City' Is an Unrelenting Critique of Colonial Ideology and Praxis

Cyprian Ekwensi's People of the City is a vivid tale of class struggle and identity reclamation in the shadows of colonialism's reign.

Music

1979's 'This Heat' Remains a Lodestone for Avant-Rock Adventure

On their self-titled debut, available for the first time on digital formats, This Heat delivered an all-time classic stitched together from several years of experiments.

Film

'The Edge of Democracy' and Parallels of Political Crises

Academy Award-nominated documentary The Edge of Democracy, now streaming on Netflix, lays bare the political parallels of the rise of Bolsonaro's Brazil with Trump's America.

Music

The Pogues' 'The BBC Sessions 1984-1986' Honors Working-Class Heroes

The Pogues' BBC Sessions 1984-1986 is a welcome chapter in the musical story of these working-class heroes, who reminded listeners of the beauty and dignity of the strong, sooty backs upon which our industrialized world was built.


Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews



Features
Collapse Expand Features

PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.