A Review: Maxwell’s Musical Visual The Glass House (We Never Saw It Coming)
Soul singer-songwriter, Maxwell released a new music video to the streaming outlet Tidal entitled, The Glass House (We Never Saw It Coming).
The song is a socially conscious ballad that is quite moving and inventive.
The video was written and directed by Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz. Maxwell wrote the song along with longtime collaborator Hod David.
The video begins showing the sun rising over a densely populated city, then the camera pans to a sizable family home overlooking the area.
Inside the home, seated on opposite ends of a very large glass dining table, there is Maxwell and breakout star Yomi Abiola.
The couple is clad in all black and staring at each other piercingly. Abiola’s character speaks and confesses woefully, “We should have loved more.”
Soon, Maxwell is singing and professing words of anguish. He expertly weaves in and out of a deep natural voice and a high almost lonely falsetto. His voice at times sounds like a soul shattering cry. A mourning dove in the night.
He rises to stare blindly out of a large window that presents a crystal-clear view of the city, while Abiola stands to reveal a very pregnant belly.
Abiola takes a moment to herself to prepare tea; however, she becomes so frustrated she shatters the glass.
Soon she rejoins Maxwell’s character with a very handsome toddler in tow that resembles the couple. They all stare wistfully out of the window until a nuclear bomb explodes in the middle if the city.
The video ends with the family looking out at the damage as Maxwell and Abiola fiercely hold hands
At first, one would believe that the couple is having a quarrel that is ending their marriage, but if viewers listen to the words of the song closely, they will find that the couple is facing a disaster which has little to do with their romance.
The heartbreaking ballad is about all the recent tragedies that the entire world has been blind sighted by in the last few years.
It seems that everyday when we open the paper or turn on the evening news, there is another travesty that has occurred in our nation. One practically pungent lyric of We Never Saw It Coming is:
We never saw it coming, like a truck that’s passing. A gun that’s blasting. I feel the lashing.
This line appears to be a nod to several tragic occurrences. “A truck that’s passing” seems to reference the terror attack that happened in Manhattan, New York last Halloween, when a driver plowed a pickup truck down a bike path killing eight people and injuring eleven more.
“A gun that’s blasting” is likely about all the major tragedies that that have been a result of gun violence and our nation’s negligence to enforce gun control.
The 2018 Valentine’s Day high school shooting in Parkland, Florida, The Santa Fe High School Shooting this May, the 2017 Las Vegas shooting where fire was open on concert goers, the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting that killed forty-nine people, and the Charleston church shooting that killed nine people in South Carolina in 2015 are just a few incidents where innocent lives were taken due to senseless gun violence.
Lastly, “I feel the lashing,” seems to be rooted in the acts of racial inequality going on around the country.
Black slaves were often lashed with a whip by their masters; however, in modern history African America’s have found themselves unfairly incarnated and killed by police brutality which has left a more permanent scar on the face of America.
We Never Saw It Coming offers a brief, yet harrowing view of our world today.
There’s even a lyric that acknowledges Selfie Culture, where people record gruesome acts like the ones aforementioned, without offering aid.
The video is artfully done, offering the artistic eye lush contrasts in color, lines, and symmetry. Another thing the video did masterfully, without a lot of frill, is relay a chilling story that victims of violence know all too well.
Maxwell and his short film family live in a beautiful home, they are young and vivacious with a gorgeous baby and another little one on the way. Then instantaneously their lives are interrupted by uncontrollable calamity.
Nationally and globally, families have had their lives ravished and their dreams shattered by meaningless hate crimes.
One simple thing that stood out artistically is the frame where Abiola stands and her pregnant stomach is covered in a lacey black flowered dress. That simple moment verbalizes that the baby is already enshroud in its tomb adored with black roses.
In reality, there are babies that will never be born, mothers and fathers that did not make it home, even children who will never grow up because of hate and violence.
This video preaches a resounding message of love. Perhaps, as Abiola stated in the video’s introduction, if we loved more and harder how many crimes of hate could have been prevented and totally eradicated?
The last item of the video that truly struck a chord was the bomb. With President Donald Trump and North Korea leader Kim Jong-Um in disagreement, and nuclear warfare becoming a more feasible threat daily, how utterly petrifying to think that such a horrendous act could be in our future?
Bravo to Maxwell and every party involved for a job well done.
The Glasshouse (We Never Saw It Coming) is in support of the singer’s upcoming concert taking place on August, 11, 2018. Black Summer Night for Social Justice, will include Fantasia, DVSN, Jazmine Sullivan and other artist to be announced. The concert will take place at Forest Hills Stadium in Queens, New York.
The event will tackle social issues that effect the world over and is sure to please, sonically. For ticket information and sales visit www.axs.com.
[UPDATE: The Black Summer Night for Social Justice current has been postponed. Story developing ]