Several days prior to the premiere of the new video for Babelord’s “Love Without Wanting,” I reached out to songwriter and one-half of the local duo, Daniel DiMarchi, to let him know that I had some questions to shoot his way about the project. He asked me if I’d already seen the video (I had not), and then recommended I go into it blind, with the added reassurance that “the universe will always return all of the love that you send to it tenfold.”
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While I am at least temporarily reassured about my karmic balance, the suggestion that experiencing this video the first time with minimal expectations puts you, dear reader, and myself in a bit of a bind. My exact task here runs the risk of diminishing the singular experience of going into the Dylan Owens-directed video blind, but I will do my best not to taint the absolutely bonkers narrative, which DiMarchi insists is based on “a nonfiction experience that fully happened a few months ago.”
Let’s start with brass tacks: Babelord shot the video during one sixteen-hour shoot in a community theater outside of Boulder. Halfway through the shoot, the crew lost power, thanks, presumably, to the “massive blizzard” happening outside. Luna Acquavella designed and built the video's very adorable and very purple alien puppet. (One spoiler: “We asked [Acquavella], ‘Can you make it puke?’ The rest was history.")
DiMarchi edited and created the visual effects himself, drawing on the same psychedelic-rainbow shlock aesthetic that dominates his memes. "Maximalist" feels like an understatement, which is usually the case with Babelord.
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In designing the video itself, DiMarchi and frontperson Babelord — or, rather, “the Babecorp Foundation” as he casually refers to the two of them — decided to visualize the selfless love promoted in the song as a deeper, more connected space within human existence. Naturally, this manifests as (among other things) keytars and roller skates shooting through the galaxy, and the aforementioned purple alien experiencing E.T.-levels of cosmic homesickness in the throes of a Soul Train-style dance line. Have I said too much?
It's about love, baby. Loving yourself, loving others without ego. And it's about the fundamental ridiculousness of the human project, if you'd like. “We enjoy confronting the ramifications of the physical, real-world meatspace,” DiMarchi says. “It’s ridiculous that we are all big sacks of flesh and goo, and we should not feel shameful about our disgusting yet natural tendencies.”
In the interest of preserving the experience, let's just leave it there.
Listen to Babelord and more favorites from Westword writers on our Westword Staff Picks playlist.