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Watch This: Sparks and Cyriak 'Existential Threat'


Veteran American rock band Sparks have been making waves in the music business for over 50 years now. After experiencing something of a resurgence with 2017 album Hippopotamus, the band has been collaborating with various independent animators to produce memorable videos for their songs.  Their 2020 album A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip has already given us the video for One For The Ages directed by award-winning Estonian animator Chintis Lundgren. Now with the latest track Existential Threat they turned to cult web animator Cyriak.

As the first new animation he has shared in six months, it's a high-profile return for the animator, who is known for his surreal and often subversive work. The video showcases his unique style, which is perhaps best described as a cross between Terry Gilliam's animation for Monty Python and your worst nightmares. It shares similarities with the style early internet animation hero Joel Vitch of Rather Good, only with a march darker underbelly and less kittens. Cyriak's style has made him quite in demand with musicians, and he has previously produced music video for Run The JewelsBloc Party and Bonobo.

The visuals depict a nightmarish spin on the mundane realities of everyday life with normality turning to disturbing and surreal imagery. It's a great fit for the song itself and perfectly syncs with it's jaunty but menacing mood. The animation even seems to 'dance' along with the tune.

"When I was asked to make a music video for Sparks I could hardly believe it", Cyriak explains. "They sent me the whole of their new album to choose from, and there was this one song that immediately stood out, The Existential Threat. Not only did the music fit perfectly with my animation style, the subject of existential dread is something I have been fascinated by for as long as I can remember. It was like I could see the whole video inside my head as I listened to the song"

"The brief was totally open, but I felt this track deserved more than just some crazy visuals. It has a psychology driving it, and a feeling that hangs over us all, especially in these modern times of information overload. Are these threats real, or imaginary? Are they just a paranoid delusion, or do we ignore them at our peril? It was great fun making this video, and I hope it makes people think about their inevitable impending death in a more light-hearted way."

Sparks' album A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip is now available on digital, CD, Vinyl and cassette. 





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