Last month, Bibio released his seventh album A Mineral Love through longtime home Warp Records, a mixture of lite electronica, slow dance grooves, and pastoral folk. One of the album’s highlights is its soaring final track, “Light Up The Sky”, which sees Bibio (real name Stephen Wilkinson) deliver a rich falsetto over gentle psych rock guitars and a bubbling synth melody.
While writing the song, Bibio immediately envisioned its video as a live performance shot in an unconventional way. He enlisted his friend Joe Giacomet — usually a still photographer — to work on it with him. “He’d never made a music video before,” Bibio explains over email, “But I was seeing the approach to this video as being like moving portraiture.”
They shot the clip together over a three-day period in East London, overlaying footage of Bibio’s performance with projections of minerals from the album artwork. “We were going to just use a black background and use a variety of lighting and camera tricks, (but) then we had the idea to use the mineral images as a backdrop,” explains Giacomet, “This morphed into Stephen re-shooting the mineral images as video through a polarising microscope so that we could project them onto the backdrop.”
“The polarising filter is the thing that reveals the colours within the minerals,” says Bibio, “And if you rotate the polarising filter while videoing, you capture lush shimmering colours that change quite dramatically, whereas the minerals under normal light are quite colourless.”
All of the images in the video were captured in the camera rather than added in post-production. “It gives a much more analogue look — especially in this age of post-production effects,” says Giacomet, “We fed the image from the camera and projected it back into the set to create feedback loops with some stunning results.”