If you met a version of yourself that was given everything you ever wanted, what would you do?
In the music video for Gloucestershire artist Devon‘s new single “Once Upon a Line”, the results get pretty dark. Taking visual inspiration from Tim Burton and The End of the F***ing World, “Once Upon a Line” is a jagged, moody and dire piece of avant garde filmmaking. Shot in and outside a decrepit house, the video shows two versions of Devin – one who has all the fame and success, and one who is lusting after it. The portrayals of these two versions are not on the nose, and instead are acted out through a performance of detachment, and of instability.
With flashing lights, and gritty color palette, and harsh imagery of Devon bleeding from the mouth, the clip has a horror aesthetic to it, capped off by a scene of one Devon burying the other with all his accumulated wealth. Of that scene, Devon has said “I almost perished filming the graveyard part as by that time it was late, dark and so cold I couldn’t lay still when I was in the grave. My body was shivering whilst I had money and plastic sheets put over me.”
The track has elements of industrial music, with a deep, disturbing bass line and sparse drum machine beat. Devon‘s vocals capture the detachment of the lustful character in the video, until the chorus when the song blooms with a soulful melancholy. Lyrics like “I’ll never be for sale. A walking fairy tale. I’m working on dying in the Hollywood Hills” fits well with the dark messaging of the video, even as keys and a shimmering guitar melody add a dash of beauty to the darkness.
Watch the video above, and you can stream the track here: