Arc Iris unveil video for ‘Kaleidoscope’

With their second album Moon Saloon due for release in August on Bella Union, ARC IRIS have unveiled a mesmerising video to new single Kaleidoscope”. Directed by Julia Liu and shot at Indra’s Awarehouse, a surreal and magical community dance centre in Austin, Texas, the video features acrobats, aerial dancers and the band themselves performing under stunning light projections. Of the video Liu says: “For three days we were on this manic cycle of shoot, perform, sleep, repeat. Filmmaking is a often a process which relies on a singular vision and there’s no time or space for other voices. This experience was the opposite. If someone had a cool idea, we would try it. ‘Kaleidoscope’ represents this weird, sleep deprived, ephemeral conversation between the dancers, projection artist, camera crew, and musicians. Some of my favourite shots are ones I would not have predicted, which is what excites me about the piece. That and all the acrobatics.” The ‘Kaleidoscope’ video has just premiered on Stereogum and can be viewed below:

Moon Saloon constitutes a natural progression from the whimsical explorations of the band’s debut album. Produced by the group and mixed by electronic producer David Wrench of FKA Twigs and Caribou fame, the album showcases beat-heavy melodies and textural, groove-riding rhythms. It developed from the band’s distillations of musical influences, combining traditional elements with percussive structures and dense, beguiling harmonies. In many ways this second album captures Arc Iris’ musical odyssey as a band. “It has a heavier sound, more intense,” says Arc Iris keyboardist Zach Tenorio-Miller, who makes liberal use of sampling in many of the songs. The group matches an unusual array of organic acoustic instruments with layered electronic sounds.

Lead singer and lyricist Jocie Adams, Tenorio-Miller, and drummer Ray Belli form the core of Arc Iris, all virtuosic musicians in their own right. Adams spent eight years as a key member of indie darlings The Low Anthem, effortlessly zipping from hammer dulcimer to clarinet to bass to vocals, sometimes barely pausing to take a breath. As the band members see it, “Moon Saloon” works like a song cycle that parallels the arc of Everyman’s passage through modern day dilemmas.

Adams wrote most of the songs during a songwriting retreat on an island in New Hampshire’s Lake Winnipesaukee several months before the recording session. For Adams, it was a week-long creative rush with no electricity, no running water, no cell phones—just a bed in a cabin and an acoustic guitar. She took her work back to Providence, where she and Tenorio-Miller worked on the songs, layering sounds, developing ideas, “transforming them into the world of Arc Iris,” Tenorio-Miller recalls.

Arc Iris have attracted fans around the world as the group’s stage performances become storied events themselves. Space domes reveal giant golden wings in flight while montages light up the backdrop with evocative images. Above all, the group’s love of music is a shared passion that comes alive with each song.

Moon Saloon will be released 19th August on Bella Union. Album artwork below: