The Artist Explains: Sion Hill - 'Beaches'

Ireland's Sion Hill talks to us about his chilled music video 'Beaches', encouraging the idea of being more self aware and grounded in a superficial and capitalist world. 
'Beaches' is a laid back indie pop track with a great guitar groove and warm, enveloping vocal that makes you want to put your phone down, chill out somewhere fun with all your best friends and live in the moment. 

Sion Hill Explains
Where was the video for 'Beaches' filmed?
The video was filmed by my cousin in New York while we were visiting a friend living there. We brought a camera along and thought it was the perfect opportunity to make a video. The video was inspired by a friend I hadn't seen in a while, who sat on his phone all through lunch and we barely spoke at all. I wanted to make a video that shows a big contrast between the corporate rat-race, our dependence on the internet versus the laid back easy going lifestyle - skating, surfing, chilling out and not stressing so much about money - just living life and being free.
So I thought what better place to show this contrast than New York City. The Big Apple. The city that never sleeps.

How does the video compliment the song?
This song is about being more self aware about the technological era and boycotting the corporate capitalist lifestyle and the impact it has on our lives. It's a revolution of the self. I'm not suggesting you pick up arms and go fight. It's about stopping to think about what you're doing, spending more time with friends, less time texting. Etc.
There are so many young girls I know who wake up in the morning and flick through their instagram feed seeing all these beautiful women and compare themselves to them... 'I'll never be as beautiful, never be as good as them'.
I do this all the time.. comparing myself to other musicians & artists more successful than myself and it can really get people down, make them lose confidence in themselves. There is a serious problem with depression, especially in young people nowadays and I think smart phones & the internet have a lot to do with that.

This 'Move to the Beaches' idea is not literally - go and move to the Carribbean (or what's left of it) - its more about becoming more self aware and stepping back from the rat race and the social media craze of the 21st century and thinking more about a free-living lifestyle. But by all means, take a holiday to the Bahamas, too, and bring me along in your suitcase.

Any behind the scenes stories?
We met a bunch of skaters along the way who invited us to a skate park to film them.. Two of us ended up buying skateboards, which was sick... I'm addicted now. We were skating literally everywhere & one day we decided to skate in the subway and the police stopped and arrested us. Somehow we managed to get out of it by playing the Irish card (so many police officers in NYC have Irish heritage) so they let us off and brought us out for coffee and doughnuts! Doughnuts!!! It was fucking hilarious. I don't think it gets any more cliché than that!

Tell us about the ideas/ themes/ imagery used?
We used imagery of people on their phones.. we couldn't escape it really. It wasn't hard.. and we contrasted it with imagery of free-living rebels. Those who are against society and the system.. the main hook is 'start a revolution' so the skaters totally represent that theme.

What is the message you hope people take from watching the video?
The message I hope people take from the song and video is that we need to focus more on what really matters.. relationships, real friendships. I'm not saying to give up social media or throw away your phones.. I like using Instagram & Snapchat as much as the next person does.. but I would like if people would take a step away from technology for a bit and become more aware of the dangers associated with it.
It's a very judgemental world we live in and we need to be able to deal with these issues and be more confident in ourselves so hopefully with it being an upbeat tune, it inspires a few people along the way.

Interview feature by Karla Harris