The use of found footage for music videos is certainly nothing new, but in the case of Brooklyn synth-pop trio Papertwin and their video for “The Pool” there was a through-line that made the decision seem a natural one. One of the prominent synths in the track, a wistful, slowly-unfolding bit of hazy-synth-gaze is the Ensoniq SQ80, the band explains. “It has a digital engine, but analog filters, which gives it a certain warm crunchy-ness, not unlike the quality of VHS tapes.” When the video’s director Michael Delaney explained his idea, it seemed like a perfect fit.
Delaney says the clip was inspired in part by video art pioneer Nam June Paik
“I encountered his installation ‘Megatron/Matrix’ (1995) on a recent trip to the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington DC and was equally inspired, immersed, and unsettled,” he says.
The billboard-sized installation is comprised of 215 TV screens.
“The rapid fire mix of modern dance, weird animations, and footage from the Seoul Olympics evokes a feeling of bombardment of information, which seems to be prophetic of the current state of media.”
“The Pool,” he says, was created using found footage from “VHS tapes found all over thrift stores in Los Angeles and partially edited using analog video equipment.”
“The use of antiquated technology presented technical challenges, but was overall a rewarding process. Weird glitches from the VHS tapes and equipment add character and life to the footage, which is somewhat lost in our pixel perfect digital age.”
“The Pool” will appear on Papertwin’s Vacation, via Druyan Records.
Photo by Tonje Thilesen