On November 9th, three days before the release of her latest album Things Take Time, Take Time (which you can read our review of here), Courtney Barnett released the music video for the track “If I Don’t Hear From You Tonight.” The music video is quite simple. It shows Barnett, Cate Le Bon (who played bass on the track), and drummer Stella Mozgawa (from Warpaint) performing the song in “the magical surrounds of Joshua Tree.”
Of course, the setting is what gives the music video its power. Much like the complete album, the music video for “If I Don’t Hear From You Tonight” utilizes space to its advantage. Whereas the album uses the production to create sparseness for Barnett’s lyricism to shine through, the music video uses the iconic nature of Joshua Tree to ground the relatable lyrics in a relatable setting.
On the song itself, Barnett has stated: “I think my stance in the past was like, ‘There’s so many love songs and they don’t mean anything,’ but there’s something really special about zooming in on a moment and capturing it. ‘If I Don’t Hear From You Tonight’ comes from the state of where my head was at — trying to communicate honestly instead of keeping [my feelings] guarded.” While it might seem cliche sometimes, that is absolutely the point. From the press release: “‘If I Don’t Hear From You Night’ is a profound and totally joyous song, one about being in love, but also about being in love with the feeling of being in love.”
That is a phenomenal summary of the song. Lines like “If loving you’s a crime, then gimme those front page headlines;” “Is now an ok time to tell you that I like you?;” and “All my fears collided when our mutual friend confided in me that there’s a ninety-nine percent chance that it’s requited” are borderline corny, but as Barnett said, it’s about communicating honestly. Sometimes honesty involves corniness.
Check out the video below, and let us know what you think!