Arab Strap Share Disturbing Video for New Version of “Fable of the Urban Fox” | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Thursday, June 17th, 2021  

Arab Strap Share Disturbing Video for New Version of “Fable of the Urban Fox”

As Days Get Dark Out Now via Rock Action

Jun 10, 2021
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Scottish duo Arab Strap (Aidan Moffat and Malcolm Middleton) released a new album, As Days Get Dark, in March via Rock Action. Now they have shared a video for the album’s “Fable of the Urban Fox” but with a twist, it’s a new, slightly more electronic remix of the song done by the band. Rose Hendry directed the disturbing video, which stars Fiona O’Shaughnessy. The song is about country foxes who venture into the city, but the video presents a more human and chilling take on the song’s climax. Watch it below, followed by the original version of the song.

Moffat had this to say about the new version of the song in a press release: “When I wrote the lyrics for this in 2019, I was hoping its obvious allegorical message might not be relevant by the time it came out, but sadly it seems the lack of humanity in government and influence of rightwing media continues to prevail. We had a lot of good feedback for the album version, so it was suggested we release it as a single, but we felt it was a bit too long and attempted to trim it—but one thing led to another, and pretty soon it became a proper remix with new parts and drums, much like we did with ‘(Afternoon) Soaps’ back in the old days. So it’s the same song in a new outfit—a tighter fit for a new season, suitable for all occasions.”

Hendry had this to say about the video: “The film for ‘Fable of the Urban Fox’ explores the immediate aftermath of a moment of irreversible violence, by a woman who for reasons unknown to her, has snapped. What happens when you realize you have done something terrible? Can you be forgiven? Can we be unknowingly coerced into doing something we wouldn’t normally do? The music and lyrics in ‘Fable of the Urban Fox’ are so emotive and visually rich. It’s dark and stormy but there’s also an overall sense of hope in amongst something which ends up violent in imagery. When I thought about a fox, I thought about someone trying to survive and someone with a dream. I thought about people who leave home for hope of a better life whether on the edge of existence or for something better than their current. Hope and dreams are what move people.”

As Days Get Dark is Arab Strap’s first album in almost 16 years (stream it here). Also, read our review of the album and our recent My Firsts interview with Middleton.

Speaking on the album in a previous press release announcing it, Moffat had this to say, “It’s about hopelessness and darkness, but in a fun way.” Moffat went on to clarify that the intent for this latest album is not to “recapture the ’90s,” but to capture something new and unexplored for the group. “This album feels like its own new thing to me,” he said. “It’s definitely Arab Strap, but an older and wiser one, and quite probably a better one. I’ve never been interested in making slick records, but the new stuff sounds much fuller, brighter and better because we actually know what we’re doing. I think for a long time we didn’t know how to express what we wanted in a studio.” Nonetheless, he still reaffirmed that “we’re still doing what we always do: Malcolm [Middleton] gives me some guitar parts then I’ll fuck about with them and put some drum machines and words over the top.”

Middleton had this to say: “We’ve had enough distance from our earlier work to reappraise and dissect the good and bad elements of what we did. Not many bands get to do this, so it’s great to split up.”

For this album, Moffat and Middleton have reconnected with producer Paul Savage. “Paul brings comfort and trust,” said Middleton, “and a sense of continuity.”

Middleton added: “There’s no point getting back together to release mediocrity.”

Arab Strap previously shared the song “Compersion Pt. 1” from their upcoming album back in November, and it made it to our Songs of the Week list. Before that, in October, they shared the album’s opening track, “The Turning of Our Bones,” which was also one of our Songs of the Week. In February they shared a dark and violent video for the album’s third single, “Here Comes Comus!”

The band’s last album was 2005’s The Last Romance. Arab Strap were interviewed in Under the Radar’s very first print issue in 2001, for The Red Thread, an album released the same year.

Arab Strap 2021 UK Tour Dates:

9/4 Manchester Manchester Academy 2
9/5 Dorset, End of The Road Festival
9/6 Birmingham The Mill
9/7 Bristol SWX
9/8 London Electric Ballroom
9/9 Newcastle upon Tyne Boiler Shop
9/10 Glasgow Barrowland Ballroom - SOLD OUT

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