Have you ever had that feeling that there is something following you? That feeling of some unknown being lurking in the corner of your peripheral vision*. Maybe you’re anxious, maybe you’re batshit crazy. Or maybe there is something actually there. The unsettling discomfort of paranoia, be it out of anxiety, guilt or fear is an overwhelming force, a seed of self destruction that stems from a part of the mind we dare not gaze upon. Such is the case for the new video for I Won’t Be Back from China Doll.
Karin Page unveils her latest China Doll video I Won’t Be Back, a story of paranoia, guilt and regret. It’s a simply executed clip and delivers a fine mystery.
The musical ventures of Karin Page, (not that Karen Page) started out a couple of years ago and have been consistently churning out music in the indie-rock and pop vein. I Won’t Be Back is a defiant song, one that shows our protagonist is not the kind of person who willingly gives second chances to those who have not earned them. It’s sassy, emotive and is easy to sing a long to. Karin’s voice is just as commanding as the piano that thuds along the chorus.
The video for I Won’t Be Back picks up this theme but manages to run with it in a way that is not particularly clichéd or boring. Our protagonist is a 20-something male. He’s an office drone whose menial life is upturned by the presence of a mysterious figure creeping in the shadows and people on the street breaking out into song, reciting the lyrics of the track in a suitably creepy fashion. Our hero, bewildered, alone and afraid, stumbles his way through the day unsure if what he’s seeing is reality or if he’s just losing his grip.
Cross cut with scenes of Karin performing the track in a dark, smoke filled room things reach a creepy climax as the young man returns to his home shaken by the day’s events. It’s an eerie scene; the hallway is flooded with hazy green light as a woman shrouded in shadow calmly makes her way to the door to leave the house. The way she gently steps, casually stretching out her arms to touch the walls is sensual and unsettling at the same time.
I Won’t Be Back is a good clip that is able to offer up an interesting concept, one that we’ve seen before but manages to withhold from delving into tacky territory. The narrative is simple yet the sense of mystery is intriguing, which in turn allows the viewer to project their own personal boogeyman into the scenario, making for an entertaining, and perhaps terrifying, experience.
*Ed. Yes that’s your Editor in Chief cracking the whip son.