I’ve always loved the music videos of US band OK Go; always wildly inventive and innovative, they’re a stunning mix of energy, precision and wit. But I suspect their latest release ‘Upside Down Inside Out’ is a work of creative genius.
Shot inside a zero-gravity trainer normally reserved for cosmonauts, the clip combines extreme acrobatics with advanced aeronautics as the band float and swim in space, their gravity ranging from zero to twice normal during their three minute song.
It’s a triumph of artistry, technicality and logistics but the more I learn about the challenges faced the more impressive it seems.
The constant shifts in gravity left both cast and crew disoriented and confused, tired and frustrated. Some panicked, others threw up and a few actually passed out. But what sounds like an unbelievable ordeal may just be an extreme version of everyone’s experience of change.
‘It’s scary at first because you don’t know what to do or how to control yourself at all… one of the most miserable experiences I’ve ever gone through’ Andy Ross, Guitarist
‘Your brain says ‘This is not ok’ Trish Sie, Director
‘I’m too new at it and too scared and too nauseous to be like ‘that was awesome!’ because it wasn’t awesome… yet’ – Tim Nordwind, Bass
Yet they persisted, believing the gain would be worth the pain.
And here’s what blows my mind: after two weeks in a plane and just two hours and fifteen minutes of weightlessness, cast and crew managed to adapt to an alien environment. And to be sure, the results were indeed awesome.
Think about that next time someone says ‘I can’t work like this!’
Better still, play them the clip.
As the line in the song says ‘Gravity’s just a habit you can break’.