Out today across all digital viewing platforms, British duo AlunaGeorge have unveiled their new music video for the Bryson Tiller-featured “Cold Blooded Creatures,” taken from their Champagne Eyes EP.
The artistic NSFW visual, premiered today on Broadly and was directed by Award-winning New York-based duo rubberband (Jason Sondock and Simon Davis). The video is a deeply personal one for Aluna Francis, inspiring her to pen a heartfelt essay diving into and breaking down preconceived notions about a common societal stigma. As Aluna explained on Broadly:
“In brief I was exploring the notion of the ‘one night stand’ being an opportunity for liberation as opposed to the traditional idea of it being a shallow, drunken mistake. I wondered what it would be like if you decided, because you were never going to see that person again, to just be you’re most natural self without the mask of who we often pretend to be and the investment we have in showing our ‘best,’ ‘hottest’ selves to a potential partner in a relationship. The significance of the one night stand was being an opportunity and catalyst for change in oneself. What would that look like?”
Directors rubberband continue: “When we took on this project, we wanted to challenge the way sexuality is depicted in a music video context. Our goal, beyond translating the song into image and remaining true to Alunageorge’s aesthetic, was to strip away the judgement surrounding sexuality. Showing a sexual encounter in its simplest form: two people granting permission to be witnessed in their most vulnerable state. Our attempt to not only show the universality of attraction, but to subvert the taboos surrounding nudity.”
Watch the video for “Cold Blooded Creatures” HERE.
The song is featured on the duo’s Champagne Eyes EP, which marked their first release as an independent band. Recorded and executively produced by Aluna Francis and George Reid in New York City this spring, the EP marks a return to the deliciously twisted electronic soul that made audiences fall in love with the group’s 2013 debut album Body Music. Infusing their signature sounds with a lyrical exploration of sex, power, and the complexity of identity, these songs will move your body as well as burrow into your brain.
The 6-track EP features special guest collaborators Cautious Clay, who appears on the first single taken from the EP, ‘Superior Emotion’ a slow-burn slice of immaculate R&B with serpentine beats and a deep groove. “I’m looking for that high / Superior emotion,” Aluna intones in her unmistakable alluring coo. I used the term “superior emotion” [for] when obsession and attraction can trigger a perfect explosion of feelings and then we call it love when it’s not. We complain about it but secretly we want it, It’s really addictive.” Watch the official video for ‘Superior Emotion’ Ft Cautious Clay HERE.
Champagne Eyes also signifies a turning point for front-woman Aluna as a songwriter, marking her emergence as a singular socially conscious voice. “My identity is a culmination of lots of really particular and diverse ideas and values,” she says. “I’ve decided not to apologize for that anymore.”
That search for depth in an image-focused world gives AlunaGeorge’s latest music an undeniable heft. Take EP standout “Shallow Water,” a glitchy future-soul jam on which Aluna takes aim at the “rich girl problems” of some social media posts. “There was one point where I was like, ‘What the fuck is this feed? This is total bullshit,’” she says, speaking of her relationship with Instagram. “So I unfollowed everyone and I was like ‘Right, what am I interested in?’ And I was interested in the future female conversation, mainly led by women of colour, and white women who are allies to women of colour.”
Now fully at ease in her own skin, Aluna’s new music is imbued with a sense of hard-won empowerment and grown-up sexuality. The white-hot Bryson Tiller duet “Cold Blooded Creatures,” for instance, is about how a one night stand “can be an opportunity for you to explore things about yourself that are inhibited,” Aluna says. Meanwhile, she wields her confidence like a weapon on “Faulty,” in which she claps back at internet trolls. “I won’t be that girls when Even Little Miss Perfect’s judged by everybody,” she sings, before intoning spikily: “Why don’t you get the fuck out of my way?”
The same no-fucks-given attitude permeates Champagne Eyes’ title track, which centres on Aluna’s allergy to schmoozy music industry parties, while “Famous” responds to #MeToo by focusing on a young girl who is getting justice for sexual harassment. “I wanted to make it into a celebration,” Aluna says. “To look to the future, and have something to aim for and aspire to.”