Beginning with an ornately drawn compass, Alma Har'el's lavish video for "Elephant Gun" is very much a study of travel, distance and home. Which makes sense when you consider Beirut, a band whose very sound evokes far away lands and an acute feeling of wanderlust. It's also no coincidence then that the song begins with the lyric, "If I was young, I'd flee this town."
Zach Condon's voice expresses a loneliness amongst the crowd of revelers who move beautifully around him. The walls are plastered with maps that lead elsewhere - perhaps to solitary oceans - but here he is with bottles of liquor, beautiful women and the temptations of extravagance. One imagines Condon's characters mingling with Gatsby or Hemmingway's lot in The Sun Also Rises - people who drown their sorrow in excess and life amid the foreign and unknown.
There is beauty in this strangely erotic room, and no doubt most of its residents are enjoying themselves. There is something sublime in "letting the seasons begin" and completely embracing the energy of the moment - the lust, the drinks and the music. But the look on Condon's face is the clue to everything he hides inside - the bored desperation of his dreams comes pouring out the weary notes of his trumpet. He can live in distraction or follow the postcards on the wall, but either way a life of escapism will leave one unfulfilled - dragging empty cans along the beach.