Watch the Mind-Bending New Video for Björk’s ‘The Gate’
Stop whatever you're doing right now and get Björk's new music video in your eyes.
Brace yourselves and oil up your eye sockets – Björk has released a new music video. Her latest track, The Gate, arrived last Friday, and now we’ve got a video to go along with it. Björk has always been as much a visual artist as a musician, and many of her videos are elaborate and so visually striking that you end up wondering if you’re actually awake or not while watching them. Even by that token though, the video for The Gate is something else.
It was directed by Andrew Thomas Huang, a film director and visual artist who previously worked with Atoms for Peace to make the video for Before Your Very Eyes. The costumes, meanwhile, were designed by Alessandro Michele, of Gucci fame. The visual effects were put together by Wolf & Crow, if you’ve seen an ad with amazing CG in the past few years, chances are they were involved.
Just like the song, it starts out with a slow, melodic rise, and then retreats into something much more unconventional. The latter half of the song is dominated by Björk’s vocal, as she chants “I care for you” over and over again. During this portion of the video she is locked in a strange, intense dance with a bizarre mirror image, wearing the same outfit but instead of normal body, there is only a scaffold and a mirrored masque.
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They pass a ball of light back and forth and are drawn closer to each other as the song progresses. It’s not sexual, but it’s certainly intimate. Both Huang and Björk have said that it’s really about love as a kind of cosmic energy, a positive, hopeful step after the tragedy which inspired her last album, Vulnicura. It’s hard not to be mesmerised by it as you watch. Björk is one of those rare artists who has managed to span a career of almost three decades without ever tapering off. There have been a few missteps, sure, but everything she’s produced has had a clear driving concept, she’s never pandered to anyone.
The video is narratively linked to the ones made for Vulnicura, particularly the one for Black Lake, which was also directed by Huang. All of her albums are contextually linked because she puts so much of herself and how she’s feeling about the world into her music, but Vulnicura does feel like part one, and the upcoming Utopia is part two. Björk has described it as her “Tinder album”. The previous one was about the break-down of a long term relationship, but this one is about seeking out new love.