Chvrches, Robert Smith Channel Film Noir for New ‘How Not to Drown’ Video

Earlier this week, Chvrches and Robert Smith released their collaborative single “How Not to Drown,” from the group’s upcoming album Screen Violence, and have now released a music video for the song directed by Scott Kiernan (who also helmed the band’s earlier “He Said She Said” clip).

“We’ve been working with Scott on all the visual aspects of Screen Violence and this video is the second installment in a connected trilogy,” Chvrches lead singer Lauren Mayberry explains. The video builds off of the surreal, film noir-inspired imagery from “He Said She Said,” now with the addition of the Cure frontman appearing on a television screen.

“We talked to Scott relatively early on with the Screen Violence concept, because we didn’t want it to be Eighties or Seventies horror pastiche we can relate,” Mayberry adds. “How do we extrapolate that into other spaces? And he definitely got all the cool references we were going for. He’s just like, ‘I’ve never made a music video. What’s the end product you’d like?’…This is the first time we’ve made a music video where his mock-ups look exactly like what we planned.”

Due to the lockdown, the members of Chvrches and Smith filmed their parts remotely, with Smith shooting the takes himself at home in front of a greenscreen. “I just made the occasional hand movements in front of the camera,” Smith says of his filming process. “It’s awkward, but you get past it by telling people from an early age that you can’t dance.”

Screen Violence, which derives its title from one of Chvrches’ original proposed band names, will be released August 27th via Glassnote Records, and was largely recorded remotely between Glasgow and Los Angeles during the pandemic. The album follows the band’s 2018 LP Love Is Dead.