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The Art of Visual Albums – Spotify for Artists


In the era of streaming, Instagram, YouTube and now even Canvas, Artists are leaning towards film to expand and promote their musical project more than ever before. Beyonc, Thom York, Solanj, Drake, And Kanye West I remember some huge names, but artists of all levels are tackling this medium. This year has produced like a movie Donald GloverOf Guava Island And KhalidIts narrative Free spirit Movies, where the content is story-driven; Prefers short visual EP MerebaOf The jungle is the only way, Which acts as an interwoven series of music videos; And experimental films such as Richie HaoutinIts audiovisual album Attached off, Which provides a window into his living creative process. We spoke with Mereba, Richie Haoutin, and Emil Navarre, director of Free Spirit, who inspired them to turn on the camera and what it was like to create their visual album.

Building deep relationships with fans

For Mareba, creating a visual album means an opportunity to connect more deeply with the audience, as he was turning on his sound and creating a fanbase. In early 2019, the LA-based singer, songwriter and producer shared a stunning visual element on his debut album, The jungle is the only way. The film, co-directed by Daut NM, gave Mereba an outlet where he could spread the stories he told. The forest

“[Films] Give yourself space and time to really establish a world of your own, ”she said, describing a particularly moving scene in the film where she dances with her father. “The depth of storytelling is different when you show the scope of your project that way – I knew I wanted to lead people in the world we created that my story also told.”

Courtesy of Merebar is still the only way out of The Jungle Is The Jungle

Courtesy of Merebar is still the only way out of The Jungle

Merebar Visual EP incorporates a visual element, such as poetry, to beautifully weave a scene and song into the next. “I wrote the story [of] My life has been like the last few years, and I tried to understand it in a linear way, “he says. The end result is an honest and captivating example of an artist that takes the audience not just a new word but an entire world.

The screen is the medium of our time

In September, electronic musician and DJ Richie Hawtin released an audiovisual album Attached off As an evolution of his award-winning close live show. The film offers a three-panel vertical view (crowd scene, stage setup, and equipment close-up) of its acting. Howtin said the film has allowed for transparency in its creative process and the underlying art of DJing.

From Close Combined, courtesy of Richie Houghton

From Close Combined, courtesy of Richie Houghton

Howtin’s inspiration for creating the film also sheds light on the impact of technology on how we use it and why it’s important to consider visuals. “While people still listen to music and enjoy the purely sonic experience, it feels like in today’s world of cellphones and image-driven social media, having an integrated visual component for any music release is more important than ever.” “Nowadays, with a mini-movie in everyone’s pocket, it seems that these devices allow you to explore more creative ideas, possibly exploring the possibilities that were once only presented in an audio context.”

The power of collaboration and skill building

For Khalid’s director Emil Navarre Free spirit Film, creating a visual album gives artists the opportunity to strengthen their collaborative process and show the world extra creative chops. The film, which is with the musician The second studio album, Was shown in theaters across the country and star actors, models and other artists besides Khalid. It’s a full-length musical-like scripted scene and a descriptive arc that explores the complex drama of the screen age.

Emil Nava Photo courtesy of Emil Navarre

Emil Nava Photo courtesy of Emil Navarre

“All we wanted to do was create a scene that felt like music could be part of a larger leadership,” Nava explained. “So whether it’s a party in a motel room or a road trip or a prom theme, I wanted it to feel very real and authentic, and make the audience really feel like you’re one of those kids in the scene.”

To capture the true youthful zeitgeist, Nava says what was the role of his director and the strength of the on-set collaboration. “It’s all about who’s around you. From actors to just about everyone’s amazing talent. Nava further suggests that adding a visual element to a music release allows an artist to demonstrate a wider range of creative skills. “I also think that artists will be able to show themselves more deeply.” [generally] Provide more colorful pictures of music. ”

Yet courtesy of Khalid's free soul

Yet courtesy of Khalid’s free soul

Howtin notes that the decision to create a visual companion for a music release is not binding on what you create; This may not be understandable for every project. He suggests asking himself, “What are you sending to your audience? Can it be done accurately, or is there a new level of detail or understanding that can be achieved by adding a visual element?”

Merebar’s Wisdom: “I just want to be honest with myself and find out if your story is worth telling.”

– Khalila Baro



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