You and I, we unite like the sunshine…
Let us never forget that there is strength in numbers. Individually, we are powerful – but together, we are unstoppable. How better a way is there than through music, the world’s universal language, to highlight the power of the human connection? Through a slow, heartfelt R&B jam and poignant, doting lyrics, Cardiff’s Baby Queens evoke the full spectrum of love and appreciation in their new song and music video, “Unite.”
Cue the waterworks.
You and I, we unite like the sunshine
Only you, you are mine
You and I, we unite like the sunshine
Only you, you and I
Watch: “Unite” – Baby Queens
Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering “Unite,” the latest single off Baby Queens’ self-titled debut album (released 28 October 2016 via Strangetown Records). An all-female Welsh group, Baby Queens’ five members (Monique B, Cara Elise, Estelle Ios, Vanity Jay, and Ruth Vibes) consist of two sisters, two cousins and their adopted sister, and they are all equal parts songwriter, musician, and music lover. “Unite” finds the quintet diving into deeply emotional, tearjerker territory, employing a heavy electric guitar underneath Vanity Jay’s intrepid vocals that pushes the song and drives its emotional character.
Oh no, here we go
This life is like a roller-coaster
So hold on tight
You set me free… you set me free
Here on this ride, together
“We wanted to release “Unite” as it’s different to anything we have released before,” explains Cara Elise. “Vanity and I actually wrote the whole song in one take. We were having a conversation about true love soul connections… we sat with the guitars on a hot summer’s evening and jammed the entire tune out from start to finish.”
That warm summer scent ebbs through “Unite,” which along with the entirety of Baby Queens, was produced by Super Furry Animals’ Cian Ciaran. The song is just the right speed to be brooding, without dragging its feet – allowing for a fully immersive experience that hits home.
As humbling as Baby Queens’ song is in itself, the breathtaking “Unite” music video takes the song’s beauty to new levels. Directed by Tom Swindell, “Unite” centers around an elderly Japanese man’s relationship with his late father. The man “owns an audio museum that was originally his late father’s dojo that got damaged in the earthquake,” explains Jay. “He’s trying to re-build and clean up the mess left in the aftermath. You see him looking through old family photos from his childhood, and the connection he had with his late father. so the lyrics from the song connect with that backstory and the beautiful location.”
We see the audio equipment and classic speakers from around the world. We see the transformed dojo, with pictures of the father, the famous sword fighter, offering a touch of history and nostalgia. Damaged in the earthquake, one of the buildings is gathering dust. “It’s an amazing yet sad story… I think it works with the track, and opens up a different narrative from the song’s lyrics,” says Swindell.
Swindell’s narrative portraiture is stunning as he captures this man’s story. “We get clips of the old man looking through some of his old family photos and even bowing down to a photo of his late father,” explains the director. “The relationship between father and son, and the love and the respect that the son still has, shows us an interpretation of the song and its meaning, and also provides a connection of the past and the present, even though they are now separated by death, and one day in the future they will again meet and unite…. it comes full cycle.”
Baby Queens’ music shares a symbiotic relationship with this poignant and grabbing music video. They elevate each other, finding new meaning within each other from which the audience may learn an additional lesson or perhaps fall into a bittersweet reverie. “There’s a line in the song that says, ‘Unite like the sunshine,'” points out Swindell. “Japan is often referred to as the ‘land of the rising sun,’ so you could say that the song and video are connected in that way too…. [it] might go over some peoples heads, but it’s hidden in plain sight.”
Enjoy “Unite” via our exclusive stream and stay tuned for more from Baby Queens.
cover photo: Baby Queens © 2016