‘Jellyfish’ by Galapaghost tells a provoking story in video and music/lyrics
On his new single “Jellyfish,” solo artist Galapaghost, real name Casey Chandler, tells a compelling story that uses both the song and the video and leaves plenty of blank spaces that almost dare the listener to fill with their own ideas.
Music should always tell a good story, although the means for which that goal is reached varies greatly depending on the artist, the genre, the song, and the feeling that’s conveyed. Listening here you want to know who these people are, what their history is and why they’re in the current situation.
Although all of that is left up to interpretation, the gist of the song captures the feeling of rejection from both sides of an arrangement. It’s a situation almost everyone has faced at one point or another in their lives, although rare is it to see a song cover both sides so fluently.
The video starts with a man, who you can safely assume is the man the song is about, running at a full sprint. He arrives at an empty room as the opening verse begins.
Galapaghost sings, “When you told me you might need something more exciting” as the camera in the video, directed by Alonso Lujan, pans to the main protagonist, who has a visible feeling of disgust on his face.
After panning to a glass of milk, we see the man, portrayed by Justin Arnold, acting out his disappointment in what you can’t help but believe has to do with the news that his companion is seeking to find love elsewhere.
In a statement about the video, Lujan writes that, “Staying true to the inspiration of Casey’s song, that all familiar feeling of watching life pass you by, I wanted to encapsulate this emotion through a series of vignettes where we would explore both the contemplative beauty in the monotony of the drifting through daily life, and the chaotic energy of the dissatisfied mind.”
After watching the man express his visible emotion in what turns into a series of dances, over which you’d swear you hear him say “I’ll show YOU exciting!” we see a woman looking at the very same glass of milk, although the man is nowhere to be seen.
She starts dancing in step with the second verse that starts “Spinning on the hours of the day.” It’s a verse that signals progress beyond what’s happening right now. Time passes and you either move with it or you stay behind.
The camera then cuts back to the man, who starts to wave his hands about, leading to things in the room where the woman is in to levitate. In an act that’s clearly his response to her feeling. They both dance to the same song in separate rooms, and they’re both eventually levitating above the ground. It ends without any kind of closure, and given the type of song, makes perfect sense. When you feel heartache, or when you feel like you just had to deliver difficult news to someone who you at one time cared about, it’s not something you can shut the book on, sometimes ever.
The song itself, according to the official release, has much more of an electronica structure to it than Galapaghost’s previous works. There’s no verbal chorus to speak of, although there are breaks in the verses that in a way stand in as musical choruses with the la da da da da da la da da” working as a familiar melody that in tandem with the music would “technically” be the chorus, although it’s not exactly that, either.
The melody is a simple one, and the instrumentation isn’t anything groundbreaking, but, it fits the mood of the song, the video and the actors to a tee. There’s no other song that this video could have been created for. That’s not always immediately apparent.
Having no label, manager or band, Chandler produces all of his music himself. He hails from the small hippie town of Woodstock, NY.
He toured Europe and North America with John Grant for 6 months in 2010, which included a prestigious slot on Later…With Jools Holland. He has released five albums. His first two albums were released on a small Italian label called Lady Lovely. He self-released his 3rd album I Never Arrived in 2016 and it already has over 2 million streams on Spotify and many rave reviews from Paste Magazine, Substream Magazine, The Big Takeover, AXS and many others.
His previous album “Pulse” came out last January and his latest album “Sootie” was put out last August. His music also was recently featured in the Italian film “Il Ragazzo Invisible” directed by Oscar-winning director Gabriele Salvatores, who commissioned Chandler to write a title song for the movie.
If you’re new to Galapaghost, he’s a similar artist to such musicians as Low Roar, Glass Animals, John Grant, Beck and Brian Eno. He describes his genre representations as “Electro-pop, Ambient, Lo-fi electronic and Trip Hop.”