For an artist whose music certainly holds up by its own merit, Jamie xx hasn’t gone minimal on the visual elements accompanying one of his releases. The English producer enlisted filmmaker Romain Gavras to write and direct the music video for “Gosh” from his 2015 album In Colour, and so far it’s easily the best music video of 2016.
The video for “Gosh” depicts a dystopian future in which inhabitants of modern-day ghost town Tianducheng in China’s Zhejiang province gather around an albino icon personality. Chinese viewers familiar with the locale have instantly recognized it for its 108-foot Eiffel Tower replica – under which the 400-person cast acted out a vague ritual of some sort – and The Wall Street Journal has reported that some of them have voiced disquieted sentiments towards its portrayal.
Romain Gavras is the mind behind music videos such as those of M.I.A.’s “Born Free” and Kanye West and Jay Z’s “No Church in the Wild” – both of which featured far more subversive themes than his latest work. Regarding the “Gosh” music video, Jamie xx has said:
Romain Gavras has directed some of my very favorite music videos. I’m so happy that my music inspired him to make something this incredible for GOSH.
Indeed, despite Jamie xx‘s “Gosh” having already been out over a year, those who watch its new music video will find its understated production elements inseparable from the images it leaves in their minds. With any luck, a follow-up to the solo debut effort on which the song appeared will arrive sooner rather than later.