amateur_best_they_know_1Stolen Shots is a column in which our bud, fellow director Caleb Jackson picks apart some music videos that we love. Check out what he’s got to say, because it’s awesome.

“They Know”, by UK based artist Amateur Best (aka Joe Flory) is haunting, synthy, emotional and has a really 80’s goth feel to it; the vocals appropriately drift into soft falsetto making for a unique, yet familiar experience. I stumbled upon the video for this track today and instantly realized it’s genius.

Director Effie Pappa really knocked it out of the park with “They Know”. From what I understand, this is her directorial music video debut, but upon viewing, you wouldn’t know. It’s obviously very well crafted, utilizing space and choreography to make a really interesting accompaniment to such such a moody song. You can see Pappa’s penchant for composing a frame in this video, which is likely due to her extensive background experience in animation. I love how she mirrors and splits the screen, probably to save money on actors, but it actually amplifies the the psychologically driven ambiance of the piece.

The other cool thing about Pappa’s style is the influence of folk art themes, usually telling narratives about family and a more natural way of living.  You can also see her Greek heritage come out in this; the production design is comprised of Ancient Grecian Mathematic symbols. Aesthetically, there are some nice call outs to old horror films and German expressionism.

“They Know” is off of Amateur Best’s latest album, The Gleaners, an experience 3 years in the making which drops October 2nd on Brille Records.

Caleb Jackson is a director/writer/producer at Felt Film. He’s got some more music video reviews at Lowlyer.