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Watch Sebadoh’s Understated But Gut-Punching ‘I Will’ Video

Sebadoh, "I Will," 'Defend Yourself,' video

The first song from Sebadoh’s first album since 1999 is a rarity in the nostalgia circuit: It brings out something new from founding member Lou Barlow, if only subtly. As our review of the mostly solid Defend Yourself explains, “I Will” “is a genuine break-up song, rather than a threatened breakup that a younger Barlow might have deployed as an exercise in brinkmanship, a way to forestall finality. He doesn’t lose control, or even sound as though he’s capable of losing control.”

The video makes this point as gently as the song’s opening seconds, where Barlow sings, with unsettling self-control, “Can you tell that I’m about to lose control?” and then turns around to confess, “Someone else has found her way into my soul.” The director is Adam Harding, who also helmed the playful video for “All Kinds,” off of Sebadoh’s recent The Secret EP (also worth noting: Harding’s band Dumb Numbers just put out their self-titled debut album on Barlow’s label Joyful Noise).

Footage of the Dinosaur Jr. founder playing guitar or strolling around with his cats intermingles with shots of lyric-scrawled pages. It’s a portrait of the artist as a no-longer-young man, whose decisions about love and relationships are now made for keeps.