ABOVE: HIGHLY SUSPECT. PHOTO COURTESY OF SHERVIN LAINEZ.
Hot off Grammy nominations for Best Rock Album and Best Rock Song, rock trio Highly Suspect returns with a cinematic, short film-cum-music video for “Bloodfeather.” Premiering below, the video offers the best of what a music video can include: narrative development and stunning cinematography. “We’ve made a promise to ourselves that we will never be the band that tried to look cool pretending to play our instruments in front of a brick wall,” frontman Johnny Stevens says. “Our passion is art, and that means every form. If you want to see us play [the music], come to a show. Otherwise, we’re going to keep making movies for you.”
“Bloodfeather” began as a song about a dangerous girl but soon evolved into a larger metaphor, left for the audience to interpret. In the second scene of the video, directed by TS&R at Pier Pictures, Stevens voice echoes in the background (“A Georgia rain just kissed my lips / I live for moments like this / Steady the aim, girl / I know you won’t miss / I wish that you would aim for the blood of my heart”), while a young man sits in the middle of a saloon as older men beat him. The visuals immediately evoke notions of all things Quentin Tarantino, although the band originally had a much different idea. “When I was writing the song, I was actually thinking more along a James Bond theme,” Stevens explains. “But then I read a really great Western called Anything for Billy by Larry McMurty and we decided to go all Tarantino on the song.”
Brothers Rich and Ryan Meyer join Stevens to form Highly Suspect, a now Brooklyn-based band (by way of Cape Cod, Massachusetts) that has been making music since 2009. Though they’ve been around for seven years, Highly Suspect’s debut LP Mister Asylum was just released last year via 300 Entertainment. When it comes to music videos, each of which the band approaches as a short film, Stevens continues: “When I’m listening to other artists, I always prefer to hear the song before I watch the video. Sometimes the video can ruin how you feel about a song. I’m 100 percent positive this will happen for some viewers when they watch our videos, but that’s cool. They can just go back to listening on the headphones.”
FOR MORE ON HIGHLY SUSPECT, VISIT THE BAND’S WEBSITE.