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As It Is – The Reaper – Music Video Review

Brighton based quartet As It Is have released their third video from their latest album ‘The Great Depression‘. The video for ‘The Reaper‘ continues the narrative of the protagonist who is known as the Poet in the story of this concept album. The video depicts the Poet to continue to be conflicted about his mortality, relationship with death and whether he is ready to leave his current existence as the song opens with the powerful line “I’m staring Death in his eyes!” As well as depicting several other individuals faced with the same problem.

We also get a glimpse of guest vocalist Aaron Gillespie of Underoath can be seen as the character of the Reaper, gowned in a black cloak until his reveal towards the end of the video.

Speaking of the song and the video, guitarist Ben Langford-Biss shared.

“‘The Reaper’ is the moment in the record’s narrative where The Poet becomes so desensitised to the concept of death, that death appears and manifests before him, offering an ‘escape’- not in a malicious way, but as a means of release from the pain The Poet is feeling. It was one of the most crucial and challenging moments in the narrative, and it was the last one that came together – lyrically and musically. 

“To confer these themes of turmoil and conflict, the sort of inner claustrophobia The Poet is experiencing, we wanted the video to be gritty and dark. We ended up taking visual influence from some of our favourite horror movies and TV series, and our director Zak Pinchin really clicked with what we were trying to get across. 

“The video shows each of us waking up trapped in rooms, each room representing one of the four stages of grief that the record is chaptered into; denial, anger, bargaining & acceptance. Each of us faces off with death in some respect, whether that be in a literal or metaphysical sense, and there is an external antagonist controlling the events in the rooms – forcing us to face our fears, our grief, or even ourselves.  We were super excited that Aaron Gillespie was able to be a part of the video, to play the part of this puppeteer / antagonist! 

“Both the song and the video are so different to anything we’ve done before, and we’re so fortunate that our fans have embraced the darker and heavier side of our band & our constant desire to progress in new directions”

The video was released on Halloween 2018 which could have been an innocent mistake or intentional given the dark feel of the video but definitely seemed appropriate. The video itself is a creative masterpiece that depicts its subject through raw imagery and certainly fits the bands new aesthetic.