A new animated music video for the band Old Robes (Daniel Munkus, Heather Sommerlad, and Rachel Epp) from their 2018 album The Spider and the Spectator on Subtle Soup Records.
Who is the Soldier Online? A gamer, lost in their own exciting but unreal world? A drone pilot, far removed from the too-real destruction they are causing? A troll, wielding heavy words at a distance? Just a persistent brute, pushing forward despite desperate odds? Or perhaps, quite literally, a dog in heat? (On the Internet, no one knows you’re a dog…) It’s this mystery character that I animated, always running, but always fragmenting and re-forming, in a world alternately collapsing and exploding around them. The animation is generative and audio-responsive, meaning that it is not “edited” in a conventional, linear way: rather it is a piece of software that responds to the changes in the music to create an evolving visual narrative. Although you are seeing one recording of the video, in its native form it turns out differently each time it is played, influencing the narrative implications. The look of the piece takes its playful inspiration from motifs in 17th-century Chinese classical painting.
When does a founding document become dangerous because of its seeming immutability? Perhaps always.