On theme with her latest album “Solar Power,” Lorde has managed to turn video shoots for its songs into beach vacations — the latest of which is a bucolic seaside romp for “Leader of a New Regime.”
Directed by Lorde and Joel Kefali, the clip was presumably filmed in her native New Zealand and combines impressionist seaside shots with moments that recall “Lord of the Rings” or Robert Plant’s fantasy segment in Led Zeppelin’s “The Song Remains the Same,” particularly a scene where two young blonde women on horseback emerge from the waves.
The nature theme carries through the entire album, and it’s no accident, as the singer told Variety in our cover story earlier this fall.
“The fight to keep carbon dioxide below a certain level in our atmosphere, to keep our planet livable, is going to be the fight that defines my life,” says Lorde, speaking of her affiliation with the charity 350 Aotearoa. The New Zealand-based organization, an arm of international movement 350, has a simple yet herculean objective: to bring carbon dioxide levels back to 350 parts per million — a level judged safe by climate scientists — in the atmosphere. By eschewing a traditional rollout, Lorde hopes to contribute to that goal by making “people think differently about the act of buying something [and] the act of disposing of something.”
“I try to question the systems that are in place in my job,” she said, recalling her tour behind her sophomore album, 2017’s “Melodrama.” “I would see mountains of wasted food or plastic cups after the show,” Lorde remembers. Following the tour, she discovered “a newfound appreciation” for nature, finding salvation in the lush landscape of her antipodean homeland. “The purity of being outside was really magical to me,” Lorde says. “It felt like all the answers were out there, like I could be healed by the natural world.”
Lorde will launch a presumably environmentally conscious North American tour in support of the album next spring, kicking off April 3 in Nashville and wrapping May 7 in Santa Barbara, California.