Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Synth-pop legends Hot Chip share claymation video for their vibrant new track, ‘Eleanor’

London-based synth-pop quintet Hot Chip recently unveiled ‘Eleanor’, a vibrant, synth-heavy track from their eighth studio album, ‘Freakout/Release’. Following this release, they have now shared a bold, bright claymation video to accompany their fresh new track.

Eleanor is a characteristically addictive song from Hot Chip, fusing electronic and pop sounds with contrastingly dark lyrics, which explore themes of separation, struggle, and dealing with pain.

Indeed, in an interview with Magnetic Magazine, lead singer Alexis Taylor highlighted that the song referred to “a family forced apart by circumstances and how difficult (that) is”, particularly in the opening lines, “…can you really / Just ignore his prayers to be reunited / With that child that has lost its / Father standing there”.

Taylor then goes on to sing, “When the world smashes into you / Let it be a central part of you”, later reflecting, “We’re just a part of ecology”. These lines reflect the central lyrical themes of the track: as Taylor states in the Magnetic Magazine interview, they refer to the feeling of “accepting that you are small in the universe, and sometimes you have to let the difficult times that smash straight into you be a part of who you are … we are part of a broader world in which we play our roles in the ecosystem”.

Indeed, the claymation video for ‘Eleanor’ is directly linked to the track’s lyrics. Directed by Alice Kong through Partizan, it follows the song’s namesake, the rather unusual-looking Eleanor, through her everyday routine during which she suffers a series of inconveniences.

The colours in the video begin fairly dark, but get increasingly brighter as it continues. The video's pivotal moment is when we witness Eleanor walk into a pole, causing her to suffer a head injury. In a moment reminiscent of 'The Truman Show', she then looks upward to see the Claymation version of Hot Chip themselves filming her, to which she responds: “Wait, is this a music video? And is this clay?”

Eleanor thus finds herself able to take control of her own destiny and environment by literally sculpting the surrounding clay, just as Taylor sings “We’re just a part of ecology”. This cumulates in a rather shocking second half, in which she inflicts carnage upon the world in which she lives, and is ultimately squashed by a giant hand as the members of Hot Chip look on and clap – seemingly suggesting that her makers have reclaimed the autonomy over her life.

Aesthetically, the video is bright and vibrant, in line with the song’s upbeat, poppy sound. But it is also compellingly unique, strikingly odd, and has a rather dark ending, reflecting the song’s darker lyrics.

Overall, the ‘Eleanor’ video is packed with fun details and is an engrossing journey for its viewer. Certainly, Hot Chip have delivered a video that is unique, creative, and mesmerising enough to match the vibrancy and richness of their new music.

Ellie Henderson
Image: 'Eleanor' Official Single Cover

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