Since the early days of the genre, horror and rock/metal have gone hand in hand with the end result, seeing everyone from Black Sabbath and Iron Maiden to Rob Zombie and Slipknot turning their sinister ideas into visual masterpieces.
Taking inspiration from the likes of Nine Inch Nails and Rob Zombie, Belfast goth/rock crew EB & The Deadlights have put their own twist on the genre for their latest video, “Hollow Eyes.”
Too good an opportunity to pass up, V13 spoke to Ethan to get all the ghoulish details from the video shoot in the latest edition of Behind The Video.
What’s the concept behind the video? Help us to understand the video’s concept in more detail and how it ties into the lyrics.
Ethan: “I (Ethan), for the most part, handled the directing of it, but it is usually a team effort at the end of the day. I always roughly have an idea of what the video will include, and then Luke Carlise, who films, as well as the rest of the guys, throw their thoughts in when they have an idea.”
Did the band have a concept in mind based on the song, or was the video creator given full reign to come up with a suitable visual companion?
“We had this full concept built around the album, but I think if we were to really try and pull it off how we wanted, we would’ve needed about a 5k budget minimum for video, haha! We started this mini concept of all the videos being tied in about this guy who is basically losing his mind and can’t differentiate whether it’s in his head or real. ‘Hollow Eyes’ is the wrap-up of that storyline and sort of shows someone who’s reached the edge of the cliff and decides to jump, for lack of a better term.”
Where was it made?
“Carindhu House, which, coincidently, is apparently one of the most haunted houses in Northern Ireland.”
What was your favourite part behind the creation of the video?
“All of it, probably. To be honest, this is probably my favourite video we’ve done. The whole day was just very fun, also to see the end product turn out more or less exactly how we visioned it is a very good bonus.”
Based on how this one was made, are you looking forward to doing another?
“Honestly, I personally could give or take videos. I do enjoy them for the most part, but I think if I got told I would never have to do another, I wouldn’t be overly concerned. I’d love to fully take the director seat someday when we have the budget to do so and have actors take part and fully fledge out our own mini movie to our music; that would indeed be very cool, but other than that, I’m not overly fussy.”
Was there anything during the making of this (or any other) music video that happened unexpectedly, or you were surprised to learn?
“Well, the Carindhu House place is extremely creepy and obviously, your mind goes into overdrive in places like that if you start panicking and you thinking you might’ve heard something coming from the opposite direction from everyone, or maybe that’s just me. To be honest, I didn’t look into the location much beforehand. I just assumed it was an old abandoned house, not an old abandoned mansion that was used as a military hospital and is supposedly the most haunted house in the country!”
What should a music video set out to accomplish? Do you feel like yours did that?
“In my opinion, you should be getting more eyes onto the song; putting out a video is all well and good, but if it doesn’t benefit the actual music, which, let’s face it, is your product to sell to people at the end of the day, then it is pretty pointless. I like to think ours have complimented each song they’ve been done for, at the very least!”
What do you hate about music videos? What did you wish there was less of? What could the medium do away with?
“Honestly, as I said earlier, I could get told I’d never have to do another video, and I wouldn’t lose any sleep at night, even though, for the most part, I do enjoy them. I mean, for us, if we aren’t shooting near someone’s house or a bathroom, we have to sit in our cramped cars and try to fumble on a face of makeup, that’s usually quite awkward to get done. Other than that, no real complaints.”
What is one thing you absolutely refuse to do for a video that everyone else seems to be more than happy doing?
“Honestly, again, nothing really. We usually have some form of blood involved in one way or another, and I think I’ve had either a beating or a death to be on the receiving end of in our last 4 consecutive videos, so I’m pretty much open to most things as long as it isn’t a god awful idea.”
What is one thing you’re more than happy to do for a music video that everyone else seems to absolutely refuse to do?
“Again, honestly, I’m not too sure. I know some of the guys are a bit standoffish when it comes to using blood, but when you’re in a horror band, there’s not much can be done about that!”
Is there any part of the process you’d do differently now?
“Not really, for things like videos, we’re always usually quite prepared and know what we have to do, and it’s just a case of getting it done. We’ve had a few lineup changes, but I think even the newer guys, like Reuben & Reece, have seen how myself and Mac usually operate at them, and it’s just the general vibe of ‘Right, let’s get this done.’”
Which statement seems most true to you: Music videos are a “high” form of art; music videos are a “low” form of art; music videos can be “high” or “low” art; it doesn’t matter, all art is art; it doesn’t matter, nothing really matters.
“Oof, that got unexpectedly deep towards the end. I think they can be a high or low form of art it just depends what you are doing. Honestly, the video should complement and fit the theme of the song. Like, if we do a song like ‘Hollow Eyes’ then have this big happy, positive video for it, it doesn’t really work. Everything needs to complement everything else.”
Any mishaps on set?
“Well as I said earlier about the cymbal stand thing for ‘Heaven Into Hell’, that stumped us a bit. The first video we ever shot for our song ‘Empty Frames,’ our guitarist at the time brought a speaker to play the song through, which didn’t work, which obviously made us all panic, but we got there in the end. I think we’ve been pretty fortunate for the most part, we’ve used a real knife in most of the most recent videos, so I’m honestly just happy no one’s gotten stabbed!”
Any concepts where you started and midway through thought, “What the fuck are we doing?”
“I think that’s just a part of being a band like ours! Honestly, not really we’ve gotten everything done for the most part, but when we looked at the album concept then started planning how to bring that to life, I think we sort of realised that we just didn’t have to budget to pull it off and make it not look terrible unfortunately.”
For more information on EB & The Deadlights, visit their Official Facebook Page.