Julianna Barwick Haunts Her Watery 'The Harbinger' Video

'Nepenthe' clip's route to transcendence winds like a river

Play
Marc Hogan WRITTEN BY
Marc Hogan

One theme of ambient-informed music like Julianna Barwick's is the idea that musical epiphanies aren't necessarily best achieved in a straight line. Music that immerses the listener can speak at least as profoundly as music that "speaks" in a narrative, storytelling sense. The latest video from the Louisiana-born, Brooklyn-based artist's otherworldly Nepenthe begins with her quite literally immersed, floating face-down in water. As gauzy vocal harmonies pile up patiently atop languid keys, the clip for "The Harbinger" takes its own circuitous path.

A translucent Barwick steps into a young woman's room, and, without spoiling it too much, that woman walks in something like Barwick's footsteps, finding for herself a certain mortality-tinged rapture. Director Derrick Belcham, who previously helmed Barwick's "Crystal Lake" video, says in a statement: "The video illustrates a moment in which an individual makes a sudden choice which they know will change their life forever, for better or worse, and the freedom that this affords them, liberating or oppressive. It is a non-linear illustration of catharsis." It's real purdy, too.

00:00 00:00 No Song Selected More info
00:00 00:00
placeholder
Now Playing
  • 1 Jessie Ware — Share It All " 04:18
  • 2 Rustie — Attak (feat. Danny Brown) " 03:01
  • 3 M.I.A. — Gold " 01:48
  • 4 A Sunny Day in Glasgow — Bye Bye, Big Ocean (The End) [Ice Choir Remix] " 04:35
  • 5 Azealia Banks — Heavy Metal And Reflective " 02:31

SPIN is a member of SPIN Music Group, a division of BUZZMEDIA