Four-piece Jersey band Levy & The Oaks are taking all their individual talents in separate genres — folk and pop included — and pooling them together to devise an exotic blend of music entirely their own. Their self-titled debut album just dropped last Friday and is eight tracks of thoughtful production and wild turns at every verse. On new track “Slowly In The Water”, the band transforms singalong pop into an experience that would be hard to imagine if they hadn’t just invented it.
The music video for “Slowly In The Water” focuses on the juxtaposition of sunset, silhouettes and singalongs vs. overcast alleyways instrumental to highlighting varying instrumentation like slide guitar and unconventional percussion. The cinematography shows shining sunlight falling on the band as they immerse themselves in the performance, with scenes set in Jersey City and Manhattan, two locations that have provided constant inspiration to the band. Each shot is set up with such thought and purpose, whether it’s framing the drums in a graffiti-ridden alley
overgrown with green or arranging the band in matching outfits on the curb of a strip mall.
The attention to detail in the music video mimics the precision in the song itself. “Slowly In The Water” buzzes with Western twang, indie pop beats, and happy harmonies, all wildly different elements that fit together like puzzle pieces — only Levy & The Oaks could have played with the puzzle long enough to figure that one out. The entirety of production is so heavy and cohesive that the brilliant songwriting can get lost in it, but when lead singer Duane Okun sits on a rock by the water and sings “Slowly in the water, I started breathing/All I really needed was something to believe in/The waves subsided as I decided all of me is changing and nothing is divided”, something inside the heart seems to open up just quickly enough for a little hope to quietly, thoughtfully, and eternally sneak in.
Read bassist Lou Panico’s synopsis about “Slowly In The Water”‘s music video below:
“We knew we wanted our debut music video to be for “Slowly In The Water”. Lyrically, the song touches on some deeply routed social and political issues that are currently most relevant than ever. The city-vibe came naturally. Being from the tai-state area, it made sense to keep in our backyards. We thought “homeless”, busking on the streets, and banging on trash cans. Our video director Peter Dolshun had been shooting us for a few weeks and at this point was decently familiar with the song. Unbeknownst to us, Peter started to visit local junk yards gathering random pieces of scrap metal and buckets. He hand crafted the drum set you see in the video out of what he collected. It only cost him $4! After that, we simply put on some dirty cloths and traveled to and around Manhattan to film on location. In Jersey City, it started to pour in the middle of one of our performance shots. Obviously we thought this was most fitting. The only location not filmed on city streets is the final shots of Duane floating the water. This wasn’t an easy shot. Duane jumped into a pool with a suit on and had to float above the water for multiple takes with zero assistance. If you’ve ever met Duane, you’d know that he’s not known for his swimming abilities (baseball, maybe). So my hat is off to him for fighting through that. Peter, from scratch again, built a floating buoy tripod-device to hold the camera steady above Duane in the water. Needless to say, this video was shot completely DIY. So thank you to Peter Dolshun and his team for helping us bring this song to life. We hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it!”