Ukraine’s capital has once again turned into a dystopia in the music video of a famous band.
This time, Kyiv was featured in the British rock band Coldplay’s cinematic video for their single “Trouble in Town,” which is inspired by George Orwell’s novella “Animal Farm.”
Coldplay released this new clip on March 12 and it has already gained over half a million views on YouTube.
The band revives Orwell’s dystopian tale critical of the terrors of Josef Stalin in the Soviet Union and gives it a modern politically-inspired spin.
The video features shabby New York avenues and Soviet-esque Kyiv streets plagued with crime and homelessness. The people in the video appear as anthropomorphic animals with human bodies and the heads of beasts who try to find their way out of poverty and brutality, while pig dictators argue at podiums on TV.
The main character is a fox portrayed by Coldplay frontman Chris Martin himself. Throughout the video, one can also see a homeless reindeer reading a copy of “Animal Farm” and hear famous Orwellian slogans from the book while Coldplay’s “limestone rock” – as they describe their music – plays in the background.
Watch the dystopian Coldplay’s video below.
Coldplay shot its video at Kuznya na Rybalskomu, a shipbuilding factory on Kyiv’s Rybalsky Island. The clip also features the Chicago Central House near the Olympiyska metro station and the so-called House of Clothes on Lvivska Square.
One can also recognize Starovokzalnaya Street, the Ukraine shopping mall, Premier Hotel Lybid as well as local Kyiv kiosks, food trucks and pharmacies.
Coldplay worked on the video with Ukrainian film production company Radioaktive Film. It is famous for its contributions to the Chernobyl miniseries and British satirical black comedy The Death of Stalin.
It is the second creative collaboration between Coldplay and the Ukrainian studio. In 2016, they worked on the rock group’s song “Up&Up” from its seventh studio album “A Head Full of Dreams.”
The political dystopia for the “Trouble in Town” single was directed by Irish cinematographer Aiofe McArdle, who previously worked with rock band U2, musician Jon Hopkins and singer Bryan Ferry.
Trouble in Town is part of Coldplay’s 2019 studio album “Everyday Life,” which ranked eighth on the Rolling Stone Top 200 Albums chart in November. The band said that royalties from the album will go to two charities: the Innocence Project and the African Children’s Feeding Scheme.
This is not the first time famous artists and companies have come to Kyiv to stage their performances or film videos — especially when they want a dystopian and futuristic focus.
This March, British singer Tom Misch shot his music video in the Kyiv subway and, in February, the fourth-biggest British mobile network Three UK featured the Ukrainian capital in its futuristic video ad.
In January, British singer Zayn Malik released the music video for his song “Flames,” which was also shot in Kyiv. It featured a group of cult members meeting the apocalypse in dilapidated concrete apartment blocks and wearing matching white outfits.
Among other artists who chose Kyiv to shoot their video clips or commercials are U.S singer Miley Cyrus and British DJ Mark Ronson, British rock band Foals, British rapper Stormzy, U.S. tech giant Apple, Italian denim brand Diesel and French luxury goods company Dior.
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