WATCH the new video for "Hallways" directed by Laure Atanasyan and read Kim Taylor Bennett's review from Noisey below.
When Brooklyn duo Color War dropped their video for "Shapeshifting" at the tail-end of last year, it instantly rocketed to the top of my best videos of 2014 list. Not only was the song the bomb—a glacially cool cut of synth-pop—but director Crystal Moselle followed three teen ballerinas as they bent and danced and dipped all over the NYC city streets, capturing everything in glorious slo-mo. (Fun fact Moselle is also the director of the award-winning documentary The Wolfpack. Read all about that here.)
This is just some background really. What we have today is exciting for several reasons.
1. Color War's new track "Hallways" is excellent. With its boomy 80s smacks and Italo disco oscillations, singer Lindsay Mound's 2 AM croon weaves a spell of recollection: remember passing that person you liked in the school hallway? When one flicked glance and look away was enough to have you blushing in your Keds. Sigh. At least that's what I thought when I first heard it. But then, the more you listen, the more a different, more heartbreaking narrative emerges: about walking past your ex's house, the key you never gave back burning a hole in your pocket, daydreaming about encountering that lover again and falling into a tryst made breathless by the weight of history.
"And of course I kept my key / We had a home inside that house," she sings. Oof. If that doesn't hit you in the heart, I don't know what will.
2. But onto the accompanying video, premiering above. It's genesis came about in the best the-internet-brings-randoms-together story I've heard in ages. According to Billy J (the other half to Color War) it went down like this: a fan and director in Paris called Laure Atanasyan heard the song and shot a video in her bedroom and sent it over. Simple as that. It's sort of a one-step on from the "Shapeshifting" video—it's intimate and teenage and you feel just a little voyeuristic watching it, like you've stumbled on some found footage of Ally Sheedy back in her Breakfast Club post-makeover days.
Of course Lindsay and Billy loved it. Below is a little exchange to find out more about the mysterious Ms. Atanasyan.
COLOR WAR: Tell us a little about your background. Where did you grow up and how did it affect your visual point of view?
LAURE ATANASYAN: I grew up in Toulouse, south of France. There I was steeped in cold colors and landscapes with fog in winter. But I spent all my summer holidays in the French Riviera where light is really special, in orange tones. So to my mind, light, and colors are really important, they help a lot to transmit an emotion. This is also where I started to do videos around 15 years old with my friends, my brother and my sister.
CW: How did you discover the song “Hallways" and why did you choose it as inspiration for your video?
LA: About a year ago, a friend, Rémi, came to Paris and asked me to listen to the music of this band Color War, I would probably like it. When I listened to their first song, "Plate Tectonics," they fully conquered me. Last summer I traveled to The United States for the first time during one month to New York and California. There I was thinking about directing a music video. When I came back to France, I looked for a song to do this project and the pop sound of "Hallways" with its hypnotic voice was really in line with my state.
Read the full interview on NOISEY