Alice In Chains is gearing up for the 30th anniversary of their classic album Dirt on September 29. The band recently announced a massive vinyl box set to accompany the anniversary, and is now posting some behind-the-scenes footage and rarities from the era as well! First up is a bunch of footage from the "Them Bones" music video shoot with an extensive comment by video director Rocky Schenck.
"Thirty years ago… I had an extraordinary experience directing the video for Alice In Chains' 'Them Bones' – still one of my favorites!" said Schenck. "I worked with this great group of guys for many years, and together we created some interesting photographic and cinematic art… and had a lot of fun doing it! This band always encouraged me to push my imagination to the very edge, and occasionally over the edge. It was extremely hard work, but we had lots of laughs and like any creative collaboration, plenty of drama!
"I sketched a crude drawing of the set I envisioned – a large dirt hole (or stylized 'grave') with dripping, broken sewer lines protruding from dirt walls surrounding the band, who performed amongst pools of toxic waste. A nuclear sky with blood red lighting would bathe the environment, with white spotlights on each band member and lightning and wind effects added. I realized that the environment I was imagining needed to be manufactured on a sound stage with a fantastical set, similar in vibe as the artificial world we created when I photographed the band's Dirt album cover earlier in the year.
"I wanted the camera moves to be strangely accelerated and aggressive – moving from extreme wide angles to tight closeups in seconds. To achieve this effect, I had the band members perform in slow-motion to the song played at half-speed, as the camera operator and crane moves were executed at full speed. When the film and music were transferred at normal speed, the camera movements became twice as fast and the band's performance appeared somewhat normal… but just a bit 'off.' The band was aware of the result I was aiming for with the quick camera moves, and deliberately added abrupt moves during their "slow-motion" performance to great effect.
"The crew was remarkable – from the cinematographer to the gaffers and grips to the art crew and the editor – all extraordinary!"