The Darcys chronicle the very sad, sad, sad lives of Toronto girls about town in the video for "Josie," the latest from their Steely Dan tribute album, AJA.
Believe it or not, music videos still exist. Sound Tracks trolls the internet to find the best and the worst of local artists’ new singles and the good, bad, or otherwise noteworthy visuals that accompany them.
On the frontlines of an up-and-coming generation of Arts & Crafters, Toronto art-rocking foursome The Darcys are staying true to their aesthetic. Though, sometimes it’s hard to imagine how they stand it since more often than not that aesthetic is pretty bleak. Their latest video for “Josie” off the January release, AJA, is a perfect example.
In “Don’t Bleed Me,” The Darcys and director Mike Portoghese predict a Toronto literally crumbling at the end of its days. “Josie” has a much more subtle tone, still the repeated shots of urban wastelands and blank, staring eyes say there’s not much life left in this Toronto either.
The Steely Dan original (the entire album is a tribute to the band’s 1977 album Aja), the song tells a story about a mysterious woman who is returning from a stint off in some unknown location (probably for 28 days), and the frenzy that is sure to ensue upon her arrival. Directed by Arts & Crafts Renaissance man and founder of The Untold City, Aaron Miller, who also manages the band, the video taps into the darker side of the song. While the band’s murkier approach to Steely Dan’s songs highlights the gravity of lyrics like “Dance on the bones till the girls say when/Pick up what’s left by daylight/When Josie comes home,” and visuals that juxtapose severe concrete high-rises with women virtually devoid of feeling create a “Josie” that’s a tragic figure of modern femininity in low-fi black and white.
Without being too overt in featuring typical Toronto landmarks, the dystopian metropolis is still unmistakeable as our own T.O., as much as it saddens us to admit it.