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BirdPen's video of Hope And Dread

BirdPen have premiered their dark video for Equal Parts Hope And Dread with Prog.

It’s taken from third album In The Company Of Imaginary Friends, by Mike Bird and Archive vocalist Dave Pen, which was released earlier this month.

Pen tells Prog: “It’s so easy to slip into the darkness in the modern world. It’s like Alice In Wonderland, where you’re falling into the rabbit hole and it’s all spiralling out of control – but all you want to do is go home and be safe.”

He was partly inspired by reading about explorers in isolation. “I started just thinking about how we can go slightly crazy if we push ourselves to do things,” he says.

“Everybody seems to want to break free in their own way. Creating that atmosphere in the album was something I really enjoyed.”

Depression was another inspiration. Pen explains: “Often there’s not a lot of help for people suffering from mental illness. Depression is rife in society and people are scared to say how they feel. Everything is smiles and perfection – but it’s impossible to live like that.”

The video was made by Iranian creative Pooya Abasian, who’s worked with Pen on an animated promo before. “He wanted to make a live action video, with real actors in, so I sent him the song,” he says.” I definitely think we’d work with him again.”

In The Company Of Imaginary Friends is available via iTunes now (opens in new tab) and a white vinyl edition arrives next month. BirdPen are featured in the July edition of Prog. Pen recently launched another side-project, We Are Bodies, with French-based composer Robin Foster.

Martin Kielty

Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band (opens in new tab), a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories (opens in new tab) about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.