Trip Through an Animated Alien World with a Cyclops Monk [Premiere]

There's a wicked dose of alien psychedelia in video artist and animator Curtis Peel's music video for Eric Krasno’s “On the Rise.”

by DJ Pangburn
Jun 16 2016, 8:45pm

Screencaps via author

Soulive founder and guitarist Eric Krasno has been writing and recording for nearly two decades. But it's only on his new solo record, Blood From A Stone, that he steps up to the microphone. While most of the tracks sit comfortably on the blues and R&B end of the musical spectrum, the single “On the Rise” explores a more psychedelic vibe, complete with a laid-back groove and cinematic orchestrations.

Video artist and filmmaker Curtis Peel gives “On the Rise” an equally psychedelic animated music video, which premieres today on The Creators Project. Amidst the procession of imagery are a levitating cyclops buddha, several technicolor nature scenes, and multi-hued babies in strange wombs. Peel tells The Creators Project that the song’s groove and “sugary, psychedelic choruses” suggested to him that the video would need a lot of color instead of a heavy emphasis on plot.  

“For me, the narrative was this sort of gradual reveal that culminates at the end of the final chorus,” Peel says. “At first you think you're just watching this cyclops monk enjoying a meditative ritual on a hilltop of some distant planet, but as he starts to trip out, you realize that he is envisioning a distant civilization that has long since been buried beneath the ocean.”

“The waters subside, revealing ruins/infrastructure akin to a major metropolis like New York City,” he adds. “Our monk feels compassion for the humans that didn't survive whatever catastrophe had its way with them and decides to plant the seeds for their rebirth, but the humans quickly grow out of control and the monk flees the planet.”

Peel animated the video using primarily Adobe After Effects. He compiled over 50 scenes individually, then transitioned between them sequentially. “Given that the story-line ended up being this stream of consciousness, this gave me the freedom to simultaneously storyboard and piece together the animated bits as if you were turning pages in a comic book,” Peel says. Check out the music video for "On the Rise" below: 

Click here to see more of Curtis Peel’s video and animation work.


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music video
after effects
Science Fiction
blood from a stone
Curtis Peel
Eric Krasno
On the Rise