Florence + The Machine tried to make more than just a beautiful — though, somewhat disturbing — music video for “No Light No Light.” There seems to be a fable here, or a classic battle between good and evil.
The melodramatic clip literally pins Florence Welch against a contortionist/Voodoo priest and his minions (?), as she’s tortured by a Voodoo doll, falls from a skyscraper, runs from danger, writhes in pain. She ultimately, baptismally falls through a stained-glass window through the top of a church (?) and into the arms of an all-boys choir. The priest falls to the ground, dying it seems, and Florence is comforted safely by the boys and by the cutey pie she’s been singing about all along.
It’s actually kind of startling when you consider the symbolism, pairing classic Christian imagery against an exotic — and, yes, dark-skinned — “other.” I’m not sure if Welch intended commentary on spiritual matters, or was just playing with themes, but she returns, once again, to the symbol of immersion (water and otherwise) with the clip.
At the end of the day, it’s a bit too much to watch. I like the rality of her running scared, and the dancers who cause her pain are impossible not to watch. It’s just so… so.
“No Light No Light” is off of Florence + the Machine’s latest “Ceremonials,” already out this fall.
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