“Love ain’t love until you give it up…”
Pearl Jam have never backed away from bold political messages – listen to anything off their self-titled record from 2006, in the middle of the Bush reign, and it’s basically 45 minutes of “how the fuck did we let this happen?” Their agenda continues into the latest single and video from last year’s Backspacer – only this time, Amongst The Waves has come to take on a new meaning since it was written, given recent events.
The bulk of the video consists of absolutely gorgeous surf filming – that classic mid-nineties kind with the camera right in the middle of the wave, watching the surfer go by as it washes over your screen. I’m not really into the whole sport thing – either on land or in the water – but anyone can appreciate the skill it takes to create truly awe-inspiring surf videos. That clear blue water and the slow motion ripple is a hard thing to master. Interspersed with this is black and white footage of the band performing the song live. Not exactly inspired, but having seen these guys in November of last year I can affirm to their all-time great status as a killer live act. It all comes together quite cohesively, with the transitions not becoming too awkward. Sure, it’s no Do The Evolution but it’s a pretty decent effort for a Pearl Jam video.
The bigger picture, however, won’t really hit you until you watch the final seconds of the video. I strongly recommend watching the whole thing so it makes proper sense. It’s that much more bold and powerful once it all clicks.