Can you find the beauty in potholes, rust and cracking cement? Winnipeg band Royal Canoe can, and you can see it in their latest music video, "Exodus of the Year."
The band invited filmmaker Matt Rankin to work on the project with them. He already had old stock footage of Winnipeg in his vaults, then they came up with an extensive list of other things that, to them, felt like their Winnipeg. So they use images of crumbling roads and graffiti cover-ups to paint a loving portrait of the city.
"The idea is that it's the first unfalse travelogue of Winnipeg," said Matt Peters of the band.
"Because I think there's been so many Winnipeg tourist campaigns that show a side of the city that we all see, but that's not the Winnipeg that you know, that's not the Winnipeg you love, that's not the Winnipeg that you think about when you're getting nostalgic for the city. That's the part we want to show."
"I think it's just that Winnipeggers have been bombarded with versions of the city that are shiny and polished, but I think that people are maybe waiting for somebody to articulate something that is just a little more like what they see every day," added band member Matt Schellenberg.
"Admittedly we went a little more towards not having some of the shiny parts because people have already seen that, so it's a sort of subversive kind of view of Winnipeg, but one that we all really see beauty in as well, even in the grit."
Peters says the reaction has been extremely positive.
"To be honest, we were a little worried because it does walk that fine line between irony and sincerity, but that's a fine line that Winnipeggers know all too well."
According to filmmaker Matt Rankin, "The thing I love about "Exodus of the Year" is that, both musically and lyrically, it really sounds like the Winnipeg we carry around in our hearts. It’s both sad and beautiful, frustrated and triumphant."