Lord Huron has leaned toward conceptual narrative videos for its songs during the past eight years. But for its third album, Vide Noir, the group has embraced the idea of performance videos — including for “When The Night Is Over,” a noir, Twin Peaks-flavored clip that’s premiering exclusively below.
The video is one of five performance pieces included in a long-form faux infomercial Lord Huron made to help promote the album; They’re seen in abbreviated form during the “broadcast” but are being rolled out in as full-length videos, with “When The Night Is Over” as the second in the series. “This time around we had a different idea of how we wanted to do things,” frontman Ben Schneider, who formed Lord Huron in Michigan before moving to Los Angeles 13 years ago. “We made this infomercial kind of piece for the album, kind of this late-night, low-budget sort of ambiguous time period performance where we may look a little washed up and a little haggard.” And because all five performances were show with director Brother Willis during the course of one day during April in Los Angeles, Schneider and his bandmates — as well as friends who were adjunct parts of the clips — weren’t necessarily acting.
“It was like acting not to act,” Schneider explains. “(The director) said to be as awkward as we could be, but at the same time we still had to perform the song. And he had this idea that as we progressed we’d look more and more sort of tired — which happened naturally ’cause it was such a long day.”
Visuals aren’t the only fresh aspect Lord Huron brought to Vide Noir, which debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 last month. Produced by the band and mixed by Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips, MGMT), the 12-song set hits harder and more uptempo than its predecessors, which Schneider says is by design. “I think our biggest challenge was to expand upon our sound in a way that was surprising to people but also maybe compelling to people as well,” he explains. “A big part of that is we’ve really come into our own as live performers. We wanted to try to find a way to work some of that more urgent, visceral immediacy of our live show into the recording studio. It just felt like the natural next step.”
That, of course, makes the Vide Noir material “really fun to play live,” according to Schneider. Lord Huron is doing that now, with North American dates throughout the summer and a European trek starting in October — all while more full song performances from the “infomercial” continue to roll out. “We’ll take a break for some life stuff,” says Schneider — noting that bassist-keyboardist Miguel Briseno is getting married this summer, “but then it’s pretty much on and off touring for the foreseeable future. We’re just trying to spread the word about this record, any way we can.”