Name: Adam Bernard Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States About Me: Entertainment journalist with 20 years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, and B-movies. Part time ninja. Kicked cancer’s ass. My memoir, ChemBro, is out now!
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NYC nu metal band Xombie has been a longtime favorite here at Adam’s World. With their latest album, Super Cell, the band is moving more in a pure metal direction, the first example of this being the album’s lead single, “Might As Well.”
For the release of “Might As Well” Xombie made not one, but two videos, including a 360 video, which allows viewers to check out the entire scene via a mouse-operated panoramic viewing device located in the top left hand corner of the clip.
I caught up with Xombie frontman Atom Crews to find out more about the videos, and the song.
What inspired the lyrical content of “Might As Well.” It sounds like a bad relationship might be at the heart of it.
Not completely! Some of the story throughout the Super Cell album ties back to a break up I went through a couple of years ago – we’d been writing this album for nearly three years – but "Might as Well" became the end result of it all.
I'm a huge horror fan, and essentially this turned into a story of me as a psychopathic killer who's been through hell and back, and has become some kind of monster.
What went into the decision to have two unique clips for the song?
We originally shot this as a 360 video to have interesting content to post on social media. With 360 being a big deal for Facebook and YouTube now, we figured this would be a great way to gain some attention. The "tiny planet" version didn't come up until we came closer to the premiere, and our editor, Chris Seerveld, was messing around with the footage, and stitched the alternate version together.
We loved both so much that we decided to release them across different platforms so that users can experience both.
Eventually the "tiny planet" version ended up becoming the official version, and the 360 suddenly became the "alternate" so it could sound more exclusive, but the 360 version will always be the official version to us since that's where it started.
What were some of the intricacies of putting the 360 video together, and making sure every angle was worth seeing?
Conceptually, the video was really simple to shoot, but we had some hiccups along the way. We were originally going to shoot this in a studio as a performance piece, but Chris nixed that idea because he really wanted to showcase the city at some iconic locations, especially outside, so that you could really appreciate the 360 video, and not be confined to an enclosed space.
I think the most intricate part was building a camera rig for the verses where I was walking around the city. Long story short, we took a GoPro vest, and an arm extension, and drilled them into a deck tile we found at Home Depot. It was perfect to strap on and hide under the vest I wore.
We got a lot of shots that day, but the arm eventually broke when I had to get into a cab on the way to one of the locations. We found a replacement piece, but that also broke, on the Brooklyn Bridge. Luckily we got all the shots we planned for that day.
Do you have a favorite hidden moment in the 360 version?
One of the hidden gems I really like is the "Might as Well" skull that flashes in the sky on the rooftop shots. It comes and goes really quickly throughout the video, so if you're looking somewhere else it's easily missed.
Finally, what’s with all the fire, bro? Did Xombie become arsonists when I wasn’t looking?
Ha! We originally wanted a bunch of comets to hit, and progressively get worse throughout the video until everything was destroyed, but the VFX render times for a 360 video are ridiculously long – the final version alone took 20 hours – so we had to scale everything back.
We landed on just adding a bunch of fire that would keep spreading around as the video continued. If you look around toward the end, though, there are a bunch of explosions that Chris threw in. He's the real anti-hero here.
You can pick up Xombie’s Super Cell album, as well as their other releases, at their online merch store.