Best known up to this point as the lead-singer and songwriter behind Office Culture, Winston Cook-Wilson, is currently building to the December release of Good Guess, his third solo album under the Winston C.W. name. Winston appeared on these pages back in October with the record’s fabulous eight-minute title track, which served as a brilliantly unusual introduction to the record. Today, Winston is premiering the latest offering from the record, Business.
Described by Winston as being about, “the business of getting through life and a given day”, Business is a song that exists on the blurred lines of dreams and memories, about how as people, we often don’t want to look ourselves in the eye and admit to our past mistakes. As Winston elaborates, “the narrator is looking for a way out of a hall of mirrors that reflects back ugly and poignant memories”. Throughout, Winston seems to nod to the idea of being where you don’t belong, repeating the line, “I had no business being there”, and contrasting how even in the freeing solitude of nature, reality still grips, “deep in the forest I heard cars on the road, all night I hear them come, hear them go”. This exploration plays out not just in the lyrics, but in the music too, from the opening riff, designed to sound like, “a natural process playing out”, through to the skipping, lurching rhythm, “like the image of a real thing projected on a faulty projector”. Listening to Winston C.W’s music, what really shines out is the care that goes into each note, the way he, and his fellow musicians, let the track breathe and develop, never rushing anywhere, yet always striding forward with ambition and purpose.
Check out the fabulous accompanying video below, and read on to hear the thoughts behind it and how creator Kyle Wilson went about creating it.
I wanted to have a central character that travelled through different landscapes that start stark and desolate, that literally reflected the lyrics, and gradually moved towards more luscious and abstract environments. I like the contrast of nature vs. science fiction/fantasy in telling the story of how physical and mental spaces coexist. But mostly I just really like this song and wanted to have a little guy wander lost through a big weird world and hang with animals along the way.
Books + magazines I used: Canyons of America, Canadian Landscapes, 1980’s National Geographic Magazines, 1970’s OMNI Sci-Fi Magazines
After spending some time with the song, my process was the following:
• Find backgrounds/environments that might complement the songKyle Wilson on making the video for Business
• Find a main character who could travel through these scenes; I found a superhero character with his back turned and a heart on his cape, which I thought was perfect for what the storyteller is going through. I also like how small he is in comparison to the vast worlds he moves through.
• Pick out scenes that would flow in a story and alter if needed. For example, I cut lines behind hills in the cactus scene, both for cacti to emerge out of and so the main character could fall into seemingly a cave, which is the next scene.
• Find other characters and smaller environment objects to add to backgrounds and interact with the main character. Some of these I already had cut out from my collection. Have some of the other characters/objects continue into the next scene to support a continuous thread.
• Write a sticky note for each scene describing what happens, like a storyboard for a movie.
• Once I had all my pieces for a scene, I’d tape the background to my desk, position my stop-motion camera app above the desk and start taking shots, moving the pieces the smallest amount after each picture, until all scenes were compiled and put to the music.