The best songs are the ones that take you by the hand and lead you down mysterious pathways into the weird and wonderful brain of whoever it was that dreamed them up.
Taken from their forthcoming album, the new single from Jude Brothers, ‘yar wut yar / i love you for it!’ is exactly that kind of song.
Jude's exquisitely detailed romanticism and eccentric, otherworldly Appalachian country-folk songs feel like invitations to step inside their mind and live there for a little while, amidst all the existential dread and joy of living that resides there too.
Their strange, almost childlike intonation recalls Karen Dalton or even Joanna Newsom at points, as their words twist and turn and unfurl like an unearthed scrapbook of whacked-out Americana.
“My silly little soul don’t know better than to reach for yours,” they sing in the song’s chorus as they search endlessly for some sort of understanding of a relationship’s dysfunctionalities.
“It’s written about the painful, beautifully excruciating, sometimes addictive process of changing for a lover who doesn’t really love you,” Jude Brothers told us about the song. “Changing over and over again, until you hardly even recognize yourself! Meanwhile, you’ve been so busy changing shapes in an effort to please, that you fail to recognize the lover as an equally complicated and whole person.”
“Of course, by you, I mean me,” they add. “But maybe you know what I mean. This song is a playful, if not a little unhinged exploration of that dynamic.”
The incredible official music video for ‘yar wut yar / i love you for it!’ is premiering exclusively at Holler below.
“The video tells this story, through the story of a forest creature - ‘The Yar’ as I’ve been calling them,” explained Brothers. “We see The Yar first, content in their natural habitat, inspired in their solitude. Frolicking in the trees! Snuggling their lichen rocks! Playing with their leaves! As they begin to exhume these precious blue glass artefacts, we see their obsession snowball, until they’re eventually sucked into one of the bottles!"
"Inside, they find themselves in a strange otherworld of ecstatic, delusional and fantastic mystery. The Yar is enraptured by this cold, blue world and they begin to dance themselves to death, a sacrifice to the object of their affection. When they snap out of it and escape, they arrive back in their homeland, a naked and angry husk of what they once were. They eventually crawl back into their den, where they are then surrounded by a beautiful gathering of plant beings, who heal The Yar with the loving magic of friendship.”
It's rare enough to even imagine these kinds of things, but to be able to bring them to life in the way they have in this song and video is something that takes a very special kind of artist to do. Brothers told us how they explained the concept “dreamily and whimsically” to their director and collaborator Adeliza Backus-Pace.
“I knew I wanted to really dance in this video, as that’s something I did for a long time and sort of fell out of touch with,” Brothers explains. “Reconnecting with my body in this really vulnerable way, in this really vulnerable storytelling experiment, was a humbling endeavour! My inspiration for the early forest scenes was how I imagined fairies moving as a child, and for the scenes in the blue room, I was doing my best to channel the energy of Pina Bausch’s choreography for The Rite of Spring.”
“The Yar costume, which let’s be honest TOTALLY makes the video, was handmade by my friend Josephine Martin, who runs a small jewellery and art business called Rockhound Electro. I said something like, ‘Josie, can you make me into an Ozark forest floor in January?’, and this is what she delivered. I’ve never worn anything quite so beautiful.”
“My amazing crew of plant people showed up to a freezing cabin in the woods, did their makeup, giggled and snacked,” they remember. “Walking into the dressing room was like walking into a pure sunshine sleepover for cartoon woodland creatures. They brought so much necessary life to set. And when it came to the shoot, everyone absolutely killed it. The first time we shot the scene of them tickling me back to life, I real deal CRIED, so hard!”
Jude Brothers’ new album, render tender / blunder sunder, is released on 12th May on Gar Hole records. Click here to preorder.