A couple of weeks ago I was lucky to be invited to the filming of the new Dexeter music video for Slow It Down, and so up the M1 I drove, next stop Leicester. This was actually my first time in Leicester, but I wasn’t there to site see, but to watch Metal Wasp at work as owner Dan turned Cafe Bruxelles into a film location for the evening…and into the night.
The aforementioned Cafe Bruxelles was perfect, being every bit as classy looking with it’s magnificent chandelier and Sistine Chapel like domed ceiling, as the new single deserved. As always seems be the case whenever I catch up with Dexeter, it was baking hot, and as we waited for the sun to go down, Dan made sure we didn’t lose any heat by setting up lights from all corners of the room. With no audience aside from the two members of staff, Dan and myself, there were some nerves from some members of the band. That’s to be expected, given how important this was and also very different it was to simply playing songs to a crowd of fans.
The way it worked was lead singer Dee was to sing as normal, but nobody else was plugged in. The studio version of the song was piped in over the PA, but I’m not sure of that is the sound we would hear on the video, or whether it would be laid over in the post production part of the project. In my naivety I thought I’d be there to see them play through a couple of times, job done, go home. That is not how it works, at all. Instead the whole band would be shot 4 times, and then each member of the band would be shot individually twice.
At the times when the camera was focusing just on an individual member, the other members of Dexeter wouldn’t be in shot, and therefore could do what they wanted. So what did they do? They all played along, each and every time. Well, that’s what I witnessed, until I had to leave at 11pm, so as to drive back home to Hertfordshire and not be too tired for work the next morning. It’s this kind of band togetherness that shines through in their music, and even more so as a live act, and tonight it meant each and every take was as natural as possible.
For the takes I was there for, I was the one who pressed play on the music, so I would be well within my rights to expect some kind of mention in the credits, right? Kidding aside, it was fascinating to see Dan working his magic, using rigs for his camera that they use on film sets, and tickled the fancy of this technology geek. He also took the time to explain each stage of the process to me, which he didn’t to do, but was very much appreciated. As for Dexeter – they put full effort into every take, even those that they weren’t in shot for, and it’s a credit to Slow It Down that I enjoyed listening to it each and every time it was played.
When I was in Cafe Bruxelles I couldn’t quite envisage how the video would turn out. I mean sure, I could visualise the setting, but Dan seemed pretty close to the band members at times, I mean really close! That’s why he’s paid to make music videos and I just observe from the sidelines, because the result is fantastic. The venue looks twice the size it actually is and those lights that keep the ambient temperature at blazing hot, have added so much more than just brightening the venue.
I was lucky to see the first cut of the video after Dan had worked on it for a week, and combined with a brilliant song and hard working and talented band, it looked quite quite fantastic. It looks like one live performance, but from being there I know how much time and work went it, from all sides. It was both an honour and a pleasure to watch these guys all work so hard, and even more of a delight to see the great final video for Slow It Down that has been produced.
You can download Slow It Down from iTunes here.
More photos from the video shoot: