Good music is international; if it hits, it hits, no matter what style or language it was written in. That’s one of my core principles as a music listener, and I know my Everything Is Noise colleagues take a similar stance on this matter. You don’t need to understand something to feel it, you know? Which comes in handy once again today, as we’re premiering “Graven” by Danish-German dream/art pop duo Vil – not only the song, but a video for it, too.

Vil is essentially the working partnership of Lovis Bechmann and Julius Pollux Rothlaender; since 2016, the two have established a certain atmosphere of floating melancholia over two EPs and a full-length record, all released via ListenRecords. ‘Circling in stillness, inviting the listener to explore and question the space they inhabit‘ is how the band puts it in their EPK, and I genuinely couldn’t agree more; there’s just something deeply gloomy yet uplifting, consoling about their music.

“Graven” comes as part of the duo’s moons project, which consists of the album itself and the cross-media attempt to collaboratively enhance the music through creative interaction with different artists. Each song will, in the end, be accompanied by another piece of artwork, be it a video (as is the case today), a poem, a painting, or something else entirely. It’s an intriguing concept, and I’m looking forward to seeing how it ultimately pans out.

Check out the video for “Graven” below!

The song’s title refers to the street called Graven in Aarhus, Denmark, a location which influenced the song’s atmosphere and lyrical content. Judging from the sound alone, one might expect it to be a quite melancholic affair, but looking at the lyrics (and the subsequent English translation, which was thankfully provided to this poor non-Danish-speaking muso) actually reveals a moment of uplifting interconnectedness in rainy weather:


I regn, i regn med kaffe
Brosten, brosten fører mig hen
Til deres sko, deres kroppe, deres længsel
Deres sko, deres kroppe

Mine, mine celler heles ved dem
Og deres sko, deres kroppe, deres længsel
Deres sko, deres kroppe

Det grønnes i mine lunger, i mine fødder, i mine årer


In the rain, in the rain with coffee
The Cobblestones, the cobblestones leads me to
To their shoes, their bodies, their longing
To their shoes, their bodies

My, my cells are healed by them
And their shoes, their bodies, their longing
Their shoes, their bodies

It’s getting green in my lungs, in my feet, in my veins
(Repeated many times)


You have to admit, these words do paint quite the wholesome picture in one’s head, especially when paired with the ethereal music they’re set to. Speaking of: it’s rare for Vil to feature drums in their songs, so it’s a tasty treat for all of us that they were able to connect with Icelandic drummer Magnús Trygvason Eliassen (Amiina, ADHD, Moses Hightower) to give “Graven” its steady pulse.

Now, as for the video above, which was directed by Latvian artist, choreographer, and director Klāvs Liepiņš, it depicts scenes from the quotidien of a seemingly quite lonely individual, culminating in an emotionally charged, solitary dance. Perhaps it’s meant to show the unseen wealth of emotional response hidden within those among us who appear to be the most disconnected; in the words of Liepiņš himself, ‘Loneliness as well as happiness varies in its form and nature. In the music video “Graven”, the character portrays those differences, revolving his existence around his inner liberation of post-Soviet generation gender conventions.

The Roethlander-Liepiņš connection seems to date back to 2018, when the former scored a choreography for the latter when Liepiņš was still a Contemporary Dance student in The Icelandic Academy of the Arts. It’s nice to see these kinds of bonds rekindled from time to time. Now, back to Vil

As I mentioned above, Vil will be releasing more songs as part of their ongoing moons project over the next few months. If “Graven” is any indication of the degree of musical sophistication and collaborative creativity invested into this song cycle, we should be in for quite the stunner once it’s completed. Lovis Bechmann and Julius Pollux Rothlaender show a heartwarming degree of commitment to their shared Vil legacy, which is commendable from a personal and artistic standpoint.

If you, like me, are now intrigued about everything related to Vil and moons, you might want to follow the duo’s social media (Facebook | Instagram | YouTube) to stay in touch with their creative goings-on. You can also check out their music on Bandcamp and Spotify, and have a look at their website.

A heartfelt thank you to everyone involved for entrusting us with your precious work; many thanks to ListenRecords as well for consistently fostering and encouraging minds like these. Last but not least, thank you for reading today’s premiere – I hope it gave you some enjoyment.

All artist images courtesy of Juli Großer

Dominik Böhmer

Dominik Böhmer

Pretentious? Moi?

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