MAGNET Exclusive: Premiere Of Babes In Canyon’s “Year To Live” Video

Babes In Canyon’s Amanda Ebert was feeling like she’d given all she could to others, and she was craving a life more rooted in the present. Such was the inspiration for “Year To Live,” the title track from the Seattle-based trio’s most recent EP, available on Darcy Blue Records. The emotional and artistic fulcrum of Babes In Canyon is Ebert and husband Nathan Hamer, the latter a founding member of folk/pop outfit Kuinka, which has built up a robust following with headlining tours and festival performances. Babes is rounded out by bassist/percussionist Michelle Nuño, another Kuinka member.

This more intimate side project took shape during a severe storm that stranded Ebert and Hamer in a remote cabin near Washington’s Mount Baker. They killed time—and calmed their frayed nerves—by playing and writing together. That impulsive pursuit has led to a pair of luminous, harmony-rich EPs, including Year To Live.

Ebert had this to say about the title track: “We were driving across the middle of the country, looking out at the vast expanse and feeling as though my world was getting bigger. After a long stint of staying close to home, the varied landscapes helped me gain a sense of perspective and reflect on some of the patterns I’d been caught up in and how small my world had gotten.”

Ebert and Hamer shot the eerie and compelling footage for the video while on tour. “We were passing through some particularly weird and beautiful dystopian landscapes that reflected the song’s lyrics and mood, so we took advantage of it,” Ebert says. “There were petrified trees growing out of scorched soil, flowers miraculously blooming through lava rock, and so many signs of colorful, vibrant life thriving in this eerie, seemingly desolate landscape.”

The couple had a day off, so they started filming. “We’d drive until we found a spot that felt and looked right, then we’d hop out and shoot,” says Ebert. “The intense winds through the rocky landscape were so powerful that it inspired this idea of floating. Nathan would balance on a rock or a high-up peak while I laid flat on the ground with the camera, helping create some of the floating effects, all while performing the song live in double-time to achieve the slow-motion effect.”

We’re proud to premiere the video for Babes In Canyon’s “Year To Live.”

—Hobart Rowland