Qasim Naqvi is a Pakistani-American experimental composer, better known for his owrk with Brooklyn-based trio Dawn of Midi. He recently released his first solo full-length. Teenages is out now via Erased Tapes. As the press release reports, ‘Teenages’ captures the sound of electronics living, breathing and mutating of their own accord – almost autonomously – with only subtle, sparing but perfectly-judged and masterful guidance.
He shared the official video of the track “No Tongue”. It was directed by Christina Burchard and performed by dancer Matthew “ET” Gibbs. Burchard had this to share on the making of the video: “The track “No Tongue” is minimal, cerebral, and the harmonic shifts and strange sounds that appear throughout give it an otherworldly vibe.
Qasim and I talked a lot about his relationship to this album and how he felt sometimes he was dealing with another consciousness inside the machine, and the experience was more like a conversation with a sometimes unwelcome host. These conversations conjured images in my mind of aliens, artificial intelligent machines, or parasitic organisms that affect the brain. There was also something about the song that felt computational, like mathematics and geometry.
I immediately thought of dancer Matthew “ET” Gibbs. I had been following him on Instagram and am a big fan. ET is a bone breaker. Bone breaking involves mostly arm contortion, an optical illusion that makes it appear he is breaking his body to create new shapes. It feels unnatural, uncanny, and beyond. He also specialises in tutting which uses hand and arm gestures to create geometric shapes in space. Matthew choreographed his own performance and often pulls from movement found in nature, like jellyfish and spiders, to inspire his moves. He also pulls from fantasy and alien-like creatures.
I found a guy in East LA who owns three old bunkers from WWII and we used one of them for the location of the music video. I love how Matthew looks in the space, like he’s in a vortex swirling the energy around his body. His muscles flexing to every nuance in Qasim’s track as if in conversation with the sound. Our Director of Cinematography Lucas Gath did an incredible job building a milky atmosphere bringing us deeper into the void.