The award for August’s best shot of pop culture surrealism goes to the new music video for Tegan and Sara’s "Hang On to the Night," the latest single off the pair’s synth-pop dream of an album, Love You to Death.
As you press play, get ready to fall into a simultaneously bizarre and gorgeous animated world, one where a horse can sleepily flick stars into the night and cats can somersault through the sky. They’re hanging onto the night, literally, for dear life.
The video’s aesthetic may look familiar to you if you’ve seen Netflix’s dark comedy BoJack Horseman, because the two share the same designer: artist Lisa Hanawalt, whose anthropomorphic creatures are immediately distinctive. Both BoJack and the "Hang On to the Night" video are heightened by Hanawalt’s visions, which blend whimsy with sly perversion in a way that both makes perfect sense and none at all.
In the "Hang On to the Night" video though, Hanawalt — who also directed it — shifts from BoJack’s cheekier designs to something much softer, even dreamier. A giant, violet horse wipes the sleep from his eyes and walks through the night, as tinier creatures gallop around his ankles, gearing up for the night ahead or tucking themselves away.
Though, okay, Hanawalt still sneaks in some plants in hot pants shimmying against snake women with sizeable human chests.
But Tegan and Sara knew who they were getting. In pairing their sweeping choruses with Hanawalt’s designs, Nicole Stafford’s animation, and the lush purples of dusk, "Hang On to the Night" becomes not just lovely, but entirely unique unto itself.