“Beautiful, beautiful, magnificent desolation.” That was Buzz Aldrin’s pithy description for what it felt like to stand on the moon. It’s also the idea behind the recently released debut EP from Brooklyn’s Tiergarten, Magnificent Desolation. “He’s in the middle of this ocean of emptiness,” frontman Alex von Klemperer observed of Aldrin’s experience. And that idea of profound vacancy is reflected in the record’s lead single, “Aeons (Infinity Glow).” Today, Nerdist is premiering the track’s new video.
On the surface, “Aeons (Infinity Glow)” is a deliberate homage to ’90s alternative rock and post-hardcore. There’s the buried murmur of My Bloody Valentine. The grating guitar sounds of early Foo Fighters. And von Klemperer’s voice resembles the blithe brood of Deftones’ Chino Moreno.
The greatest common factor of all these bands’ sounds—if there is one—is bleakness, and there are certainly austere tones that arise in the video’s dark, sepia-toned close-ups as well as in von Klemperer’s lyrics. “You disappear in the place that owns us forever,” he sings in the first verse. And later, during one of the instrumental breaks, he repeats the word “disappear” several times. But Aldrin returned from the void, and Tiergarten follow suit, glossing their sounds in a lustrous production value and invoking the more modern cool that they’ve borrowed from their influences of the aughts (Autolux, Queens of the Stone Age, and Interpol).
True, the video’s close-ups can be space shuttle claustrophobic, and the video’s circling shots recreate the spinning delirium one might experience from a window of that same shuttle. But this is more a piece of awe-filled wonder than the existential dread of being lost at sea. It’s an honest ode to the infinity that awaits us at the edge of our planet. Sure it’s lonely and desolate, but we went there and came back and that’s fucking incredible. What else can we humans do out there in the beautiful, beautiful, magnificent void? Not knowing the answer is the best part. As von Klemperer poses repeatedly in “Aeons”: “I’ve got a lot of questions.”
May we always be curious.
Magnificent Desolation arrived on June 17–check it out on Bandcamp here.
Featured Image: Tiergarten