Andy Butler of Hercules & Love Affair is taking it one step further. Known for pushing boundaries and reflecting on what's happening in the greater world through music, he's here with the new video for Hercules & Love Affair's latest, "Are You Still Certain?" featuring Beirut-based alt-rock band Mashrou' Leila, off the album Omnion. The video is directed by Butler & Joie Iacono as Hoarder.
The inspiration behind the video? Butler explains exclusively to Out.
"As an American of a certain age, the idea of the shadowy, dangerous Muslim has been around for much of my life. After chatting with Hamed at length, it cemented my hunch that I had a lot to learn from him and this collaboration. It was an opportunity to get perspective amid a lot of fear-mongering. I bought books about Islam and Islamophobia. Hamed and I, a few months later, were sitting in the studio, dealing with notions of spirituality. The lyrics for that song say, in Arabic essentially 'You, who say you know the truth, how is the truth working for you? Are you still certain?'. For a lot of people, faith and belief are the root of so many problems, so much so that there is more of stigma around believing today than not nowadays... We hear the argument that "faith" compels people to fly planes into buildings and blow themselves up in the middle of markets just as it put people on "divine" missions to plunder foreign lands and superimpose "superior" cultures on indigenous peoples. However, real faith also brings people together to greet each other in peace on a weekly basis, to listen to age old truths and lessons that run parallel in many cultures, and it prompts sincere self-reflection and growth in a lot of individuals. This song really tempers any notion of absolutism when it comes to truth. Working with Mashrou' Leila was an amazing process, as they are a band of brothers from different backgrounds. I went to Lebanon and took something of a back seat and learned and listened."
Watch the video for "Are You Still Certain?" below:
To coincide with this release, the Hercules & Love Affair "Omnion Live Part 1" tour dates were also just announced, kicking off in Philadelphia on September 19. Check out the full listing below and for more information, click here.
"OMNION LIVE PART 1" TOUR DATES
September 19 -- The Foundry -- Philadelphia, PA
September 20 - Elsewhere - Brooklyn, NY
September 21 - Bottom Lounge - Chicago, IL
September 22 - El Plaza Condesa - Mexico City, MX
September 26 - El Rey Theatre - Los Angeles, CA
September 28 - Star Theatre - Portland, OR
September 29 - Chop Suey - Seattle, WA