Flaunt Premiere | Jordan Raf "Peony"

by Drew Penner

Jordan Raf extols the virtues of history and the beauty of landscape on his latest music video, the exquisite slow-burn “Peony.”  The musician, of Persian and Jewish descent, co-directed the film with his buddy Johannes Greve Muskat, and even put on a real suit of armor to play the main character. “The armor was very heavy and painful,” he said of the shoot, which took place in a fjord outside of Oslo, Norway. “Serves me right being a slave for content.”

Photo by David Miller-Robinson

Photo by David Miller-Robinson

For this pop-ambient number, he enjoyed taking in the majesty of a Viking church that was built in 600 BCE. And while there, fish heads became the delicacy of choice. He even claims to have been tossed from nearly every single watering hole in rural Scandinavia. It’s kind of nice to have the subtitles superimposed at the bottom of the screen. But instead of a Disney sing-along dynamic, it seems to be about a 16-year-old snorting drugs.

This film, which the significance of of loss, plays with solitude and looks at the impact of TV on popular culture, according to Raf. It’s the polar opposite of the one that supposedly got him kicked out of the San Diego County Fair. In that one, "Scales of St. Michael," he experiences forced drinking and choking. Plus he gets peed on. “Peony” is much more stoic. Although stylistically it’s very au courant, with lens flares and heavy color-tinting.

His second LP, a three-year labor of love called Heaven, was released March 15. And you can catch him at Gold Diggers May 8, the historic dive bar on Santa Monica Boulevard.

Photo by Caleb Adams

Photo by Caleb Adams