Directed by Arnaud Deroudilhe (Kaytranada, Mayer Hawthorne, Busy P.), the video tells the story of a woman in an apartment that looks like an abandoned hotel worthy of the Shining, all alone with her demons, facing herself in the mirror, leading to madness. It’s also an interpretation of these times in Covid lockdown. Controlled movement, slowed traffic, parties at a standstill, if there is indeed a situation where “the movement” could be elected “the most ironic and controversial gesture” of the year 2020, it would be this winter .
Like many musicians, SebastiAn has been deprived of playing live and touring this year. And yet his work has never ceased to celebrate speed and its turbulence (the clip “Run for Me”), lyrical flights (the last vertiginous Saint Laurent campaign of creator Anthony Vaccarello on the roofs of Paris), as well as the race of the world and its madness (the clips of “Sober” and “Beograd”).
Directed by Arnaud Deroudihle (collaborator of Kaytranada, Tinashe, Busy P, Breakbot, Teki Latex or PNL) says: “The clip is inspired by the myth of Narcissus and transposes it into a more contemporary version. Self-contemplation is not a new thing, but social networks have created a new relationship with others and with oneself. They are often used in a very egocentric way as a kind of existential self-promotion in which each has thirst for recognition. This self-love leads to slowly killing us. As with Narcissus, the obsession with our own image individualizes us, cuts us off from any real connection with others, and therefore in the long term, with ourselves. We shot the clip a few days before the first confinement, the idea of the camera was originally a desire to focus all the attention on our character, it took on a new dimension with the events that followed and marked this year 2020.”
Exactly a year ago, SebastiAn returned to wide critical acclaim with his sophomore album Thirst (via Ed Banger Records / Because Music after his 2011 debut Total. Iconic fashion house Saint Laurent produced his stunning music video “Sober” ft Bakar HERE and directed by Saint Laurent’s creative Nathalie Canguilhem. Shot in a spectacularly unreal part of Turkey where 732 château-style villas have been built, yet left empty – starring French actor Félix Maritaud and SebastiAn – it brings the viewer into the perfect world to experience SebastiAn’s brand new single. The pulsating synth driven track features rich vocals from rising London artist Bakar and a signature SebastiAn bassline.
Other tracks released from Thirst include the title track “Thirst”, “Run for Me”featuring acclaimed R&B singer Gallant, “Better Now” featuring American singer Mayer Hawthorne, “Beograd” and “Doorman” feat. Syd (The Internet), which was premiere by BBC Radio 1’s Annie Mac as “Hottest Record”.
Bringing different styles together as one on the new record – from European techno and electro to classic pop and R&B, hip-hop and American gospel – SebastiAn has also called upon an impressive list of artists to feature on the 14-track album. They include acclaimed singer and actress Charlotte Gainsbourg (SebastiAn primarily produced her 2017 album Rest), cult pop duo Sparks, GRAMMY-nominated singer Mayer Hawthorne, American singer/songwriter Syd from The Internet and experimental Iranian/Dutch artist Sevdaliza.
SebastiAn says the approach of making the new album was formed by his previous production work with the contrasting personalities of Frank Ocean and Charlotte Gainsbourg and switching his process accordingly. He explains: “I found this really interesting. My record came about from all the encounters I made going between these two projects.”
SebastiAn has been releasing pioneering and acclaimed music via label Ed Banger Records for years. Since his debut album, SebastiAn has also produced for other artists including Frank Ocean, Kavinsky, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Philippe Katerine, Woodkid, and has created remixes for Daft Punk, Kelis, The Kills, Rage Against the Machine and more.
SebastiAn’s revolutionary debut featured his signature eclectic combination of sounds – techno, electro, house, funk, soul, pop and classical elements – to create something new and unique. He has also co-produced several film soundtracks including Quentin Dupieux’s “Steak” (2007) – in which he also had a leading role – and Romain Gavras’ “Our Day Will Come” (2010) and “The World is Yours” (2018), which he produced with Jamie xx.
Outside of traditional music releases, SebastiAn is also heavily involved in (and respected by) the worlds of art and fashion. He recently began a long-lasting collaboration with world-renowned fashion house Saint Laurent and the luxury label’s creative director Anthony Vaccarello. He created the sound for most of their catwalk shows, including the most recent at Paris Fashion Week, and the label produced the visceral visual for Thirst, which was directed by Gaspar Noé.