By: Ian Maikisch
Retrolux has a new music video and I got to talk to Anna James and Maynard Shaye about it! Seriously hope you enjoy the interview and the band’s new music video. XD
When it comes to the part where I should tell you to “see the video”, or how “great” it is, or how “you will really be missing out if you don’t watch Retrolux’s new music video”, I’m not going to say any of those things.
I’m just going to steal a page from Funimation’s book and just say, “You should be watching.”
How did you come up with the concept for the video?
Anna: “Our idea was to place our main character in a handful of public places that would normally be quite crowded, but instead, these places are empty. We made sure not to allow any other living beings or even cars in our shots. The whole concept answers the question in the chorus, “How do I feel? How do I feel without you?” So, you see me waking up in bed and hanging out in my kitchen, alone. This doesn’t seem weird, but then the audience will start to notice the lack of people around me when you see me in an empty classroom, some empty stores, an empty skating rink, etc. Then, of course, at the end, I am surrounded by people, which reflects the lyrics in the last chorus, “How does it feel without me?…You can go on without me.”
Is the love story gone sour inspired by anything in Anna’s real life?
Anna: “The story in the video does not reflect my current life. I have had some toxic relationships in the past that included a lot of yelling and finger pointing, but luckily, that hasn’t been relevant for years. Shaye and I just wanted to make the video powerful by adding all of the crazy fight scenes that eventually caused my character to remove herself from the situation to heal on her own.”
Shaye: “Haha, Anna’s love life is so vanilla. She’s been with her boyfriend since before the band started so it’s hard to imagine any real issues coming up to inspire any songs, haha, but she’d obviously know better than I would.”
What made you pick Matt Fowler over Matthew Fowler to be the love interest in the video?
Anna: “Wow, I love this. I couldn’t ever imagine Matthew Fowler looking mean or scary. He’s too sweet and innocent.”
Shaye: “HAHAHAHA, I love this question. This question for days. Anna was very selective with who could play her love interest. Only Matt’s acting chops could cut it. ;)”
What is your favorite thing about the Gainesville music scene?
Anna: “Where do I even begin… it’s definitely the reason I decided to stay in Gainesville and go to UF after graduating from high school. It has grown significantly over the past few years, and it’s still always growing and improving. The university pulling in thousands of new people a year definitely helps with adding new musicians into the mix. I love how diverse and accepting the scene is. I love that every creative person in Gainesville always has five different projects going on and they are always adding to the culture of Gainesville. Gainesville is in a renaissance period right now. There are so many amazing musicians and bands blossoming here, and I really believe that a handful of them are working hard enough to really be successful beyond Florida. On top of all of the amazing, hard-working musicians, there are wonderful venues like Heartwood Soundstage, and all kinds of online publications like you guys and Gainesville Scene that help spread the word. The community is so supportive, and we are all so lucky to have each other.”
Shaye: “Gainesville’s music scene is super inviting. I think it’s because it’s still developing that every band can easily find a place. There are only a few bands in each genre, so each one has the opportunity to make a name for itself. The community is also incredibly supportive, and most venues really want to see local music thrive.”
What are your thoughts about the electronic indie scene in the area?
Anna: “I wish it was bigger, honestly. Sometimes I’m glad that we’re so unique in Gainesville, but other times, we have trouble fitting in on a lineup. I know that there are a lot of DJs and maybe a few other electronic bands in town, but I haven’t really seen anyone playing the same shows/venues that we do.”
Shaye: “The indie electronic scene specifically is hard in Gainesville, I don’t think it’s what a lot of people are used to here and there aren’t a lot of acts. There are a few though. Wild Pines and Nick Roberts both are making some awesome stuff, though they’re a little more laid back than we are. King Complex is also an amazing act with a style totally of their own. I think a lot of people don’t know where to put us exactly, we’re not really in the EDM scene – we’re not DJs, and we’re not a conventional band, so it’s a little harder to make our niche, but I think Gainesville’s starting to figure it out.”
Anna, if you were to give someone in their 20s one piece of relationship advice what would it be?
Anna: “Find someone emotionally and financially stable, and don’t settle.”
There is a part of the video where Anna leans back in the arcade and a light seems to come out of her chest. You have a few shots in the video like this, where it looks super awesome and well timed. Did you plan these things out or was it more like “the magic of the moment?”
Shaye: “That specific shot is one of my favorites. That one was just really lucky; we had a few takes of that shot, and noticed the lights in one of them and knew we had our shot. Some of the others were intentional, some of the others were good old fashion movie magic, hahaha”
Lastly is there anything else you want say about the video or about the band?
Anna: “Shaye and I shot, edited, and mapped out this video on our own, and we’re really happy about and proud of the way it came out for our first music video. It isn’t perfect, but it’s definitely a great first shot, and we’re excited to experiment more and create even better videos for our upcoming singles.”