For Monkey Suite, the new music video from Madvillain (the team of MF Doom and Madlib), director/cd Daniel Garcia was interested in creating a dark and moody 3D narrative. Having worked previously with V2 designer/animator Federico Saenz-Recio, Garcia turned to Version2s vfx/motion design and editorial divisions to complete the project. The video was commissioned by the artists record label, Stones Throw, and Cartoon Networks Adult Swim, as part of a CD/DVD project titled CHROME CHILDREN.
From the opening frames of Monkey Suite, worker drones appear in the form of broad, angular robotic figures, briefcases in hand as they march to the tune of turning cogs and gears. An animated Doom stands out in black, rapping as he enters a nightclub reminiscent of the 1920s, and takes the stage. The video maintains its period look while conveying a distinctly urban vibe and setting. Addressing issues of identity, class, conformity and status, as well as the murky lines that divide them, the clip grows ever more complex, its characters awash in shadows and light. Dooms role in this opera seems to be that of a man in the darkness, reaching not only for light but for its source and a means of sharing it with the world.
I was confident that Federico and Version2 could pull off the look that I was searching for, said Garcia, for whom Monkey Suite was part of a three-video package from CHROME CHILDREN. I knew they would bring something unique to the table.
Saenz-Recio, who used Terry Gilliams BRAZIL as one of his stylistic references, said that the director, label, network, recording artists and V2 all shared a steadfast commitment to experimentation and creative freedom. Although the schedule was tight, we were still able to stay true to the artists and labels vision, added designer/animator Craig Davis.
Having the entire creative community operating out of one location was invaluable, said head of production, Lydia Holness. We were brainstorming, throwing ideas around, able to cut on the fly, then sit down together and look at the work in progress, editor Scarpelli noted.
In the end, I think Monkey Suite is a good example of what we strive to do at Version2, Holness concluded. Were seeking out and executing creative that forces us to try new things, so that people can count on us to deliver something different each time out.
The Version2 group includes editorial and vfx/ motion design divisions working collaboratively and independently in the commercial, film and broadcast arenas.
Adult Swim will collaborate on a second hip hop album, this time with indie label Stones Throw Records. The album, slated to debut in October, will celebrate Stones Throws ten-year anniversary and feature all of the artists on the label. Stones Throw produces consistently original, globally acclaimed music, said Jason DeMarco, head of music for Adult Swim and exec producer of the highly acclaimed DANGERDOOM project. Madvillain's new song "Monkey Suite" and a full-length live performance by Madvillain and is included on the CD/DVD CHROME CHILDREN.