Back in May, singer-songwriter Matthew Ryan released Hustle Up Starlings. The album — produced by Brian Fallon of the Gaslight Anthem — was a sequel of sorts to Ryan’s 2014 offering Boxers, a record that American Songwriter called a “collection of chest-pounding rockers and desolate ballads that showcased [Ryan’s] anthemic songwriting and hoarse-throated vocals to great effect.”
One of the more desolate ballads on the new record, Hustle Up Starlings, is “Maybe I’ll Disappear.” On the surface, the song seems to be about a breakup and the turbulence and soul-searching that comes in the aftermath of such an event.
For the video, Marco North, a Moscow-based filmmaker, decided to give the song a surrealistic edge, exploring the wispy connection that exists between the physical world and the narrator’s inner reality.
“A song like this one has a very specific sense of space about it,” North told American Songwriter. “You could call it a landscape, maybe even call it an inner landscape. My approach was to avoid being literal about what the man, the narrator is sharing — and to betray his memories as much as possible. The process of creating this video involved animating parts of photographs, to somehow glue together a car, a road, and some street signs to create a world that feels real, a home they shared that feels real, but is truly some kind of fairy tale. Because his imagination is so flawed, so broken, the world barely holds together. I leave it to the audience to suspend some disbelief and get swept up in it. The girl, played by Masha Vatatci, has her own story and we get to imagine that as well. Her story does not fall apart.”
Watch the video below, and read our review of Hustle Up Starlings here.