Chris DeLine

Cedar Rapids, IA

Moby “After” Video

Published in Blog, Culture Bully. Tags: .

The concept of this video from director John Irwin: “In a sterile and controlled future, suicide rates have risen and the powers-that-be are looking into the cause. An operator resurrects a female victim and sifts through her psyche, trying to understand the mechanics of her suicide.”

Repeating “But my mind was low,” Moby characteristically moans above a series of swooping electronics throughout the better part of the track “After.” The interpretation of this particular video will be different for everyone, but those five words stuck out as vastly important given an idea that I once read surrounding something called “Levels of Understanding.” To paraphrase, the thought revolves around the realization that these different levels of understanding can either expand or contract our perception of the world around us; liken it to standing either atop a skyscraper or at street level in an ultra-condensed metropolis. From the top of the building we’re able to better identify the scope of the world around us, but from the street it may appear as though the world is nothing greater than the cramped area that surrounds; a feeling of tunnel vision could kick in to further minimize the true depth of the surrounding environment.

This becomes a bit more relevant when considering Moby’s minimalist lyrics and the disheartening theme of the video. In comparing the high and low levels of understanding to moods, if a mind is low it drops down to that low level of understanding, so narrowly attached to what’s immediately around it that a person cannot see outside the small bubble that surrounds them. Perhaps things would be different in a “sterile and controlled future,” but in the present I feel that the idea makes a lot of sense. If you find yourself at a low point, give things a moment, a day, a week or even a month and your level of understanding, along with your mood, is bound to rise.

[This post was first published by Culture Bully.]