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King Krule shooting the ‘Alone Omen 3’ video
Behind the scenes of King Krule’s ‘Alone, Omen 3’ videoPhotography Reuben Bastienne-Lewis

Behind the scenes of King Krule’s ‘Alone, Omen 3’ video

We speak to filmmaker Jocelyn Anquetil about working on the Man Alive! track’s new visual

If King Krule’s 2017 album The OOZ was one of music’s most existential offerings, then Man Alive!, his forthcoming third full-length, takes a more uplifting turn. Central to that is “Alone, Omen 3”. The song and its accompanying music video mark a heartfelt turning point in the musician’s work, tackling themes of loneliness but through an enlivened lens. “I felt like I had gotten out of a dark place, and I was on a high,” King Krule’s Archy Marshall said in a statement accompanying the single. “I appreciated the depression… but I also liked how I felt better in the here and now.”

The “Alone, Omen 3” video is directed by close friend and filmmaker Jocelyn Anquetil, and it presents a visual translation of Krule’s turning point. Set on the shores of the grey, winter-soaked Thames River in south east London in early January, “Alone, Omen 3” is a keen reminder of the power of loved ones in the face of solitude. “From my interpretation, the song is a happy song – happy but heavy,” reflects Anquetil. “The visuals go with the audio, but I think it's quite interpretable, and that’s why I like it.”

The video begins by showing Krule surrounded by a cast of mates, including band members and fellow musicians like Jamie Isaac. “When we were imagining the crowd, we were envisioning what loneliness could look like,” Anquetil explains. “There was a lot of character development which contains references, so there are a few little easter eggs if you can make them out. For example, we have a lost twin and a lost child in the group scene, which was completely by accident. Someone from the set’s kid just started walking around the shot, and it’s quite interesting to see how it played out. I was like, ‘Oh, there's a child walking around the crowd by itself – that looks kind of lonely’.”

Picking up on the track’s introspection is the second half of the video, which places Krule, clad in a mint-green suit, in the centre of an entirely mirrored room, making the musician come to terms with the many parts of himself. “This room is a visual accompaniment to what you are hearing,” Anquetil reflects. ”It’s meant to be Archy’s mind, so we’re in the mind. The room is an echoing abyss that allows you to fall into this really echoey, chaotic moment, and then right back to the idea that you’re not alone, rather there’s a million version of you echoing.”

Halfway through the recording of Man Alive!, Archy Marshall had a daughter, Marina. The musician has stressed that the album is “very much a document of pre-fatherhood and the need for change rather than the new life that ensued”, but the music on Man Alive! takes on a new dimension in light of his first-born. Asked about the impact that Marina has had on his work, Anquetil describes the ecstasy of their friendship group welcoming their first baby. “It’s nice, on a personal note, to see our first friend have kids,” she says. “For everyone it’s like a little dopamine injection.”

King Krule’s new album Man Alive! is out February 11