In Craig Finn’s gripping “God in Chicago” video, a young couple escape their desolate lives during a road trip to the titular city. Director Kris Merc translates Finn’s spoken-word tale with the gritty, bare-bones visual style of a modern indie film.
The protagonists head out in the early morning, traveling throughout the Midwest. “Went St. Paul to Cicero in my Chevrolet that didn’t have any radio,” the Hold Steady frontman recites over somber piano chords. “Had a boombox in the backseat that was running out of batteries.” By the clip’s conclusion, they’ve shared hotel rooms, meals and, eventually, beds before their “hungover” drive home.
Merc told video channel Nowness that he intended to explore the “meandering nature of youths” with the clip. “We created a narrative that follows the journey of two young characters who find beauty in their bleak circumstances, carving out hope in their own way while knowing their time together is limited,” he said. Finn added that he “wanted to show how easily it is sometimes to take a break, if briefly, from our regular lives.”
“God in Chicago” highlights Finn’s upcoming third solo LP, We All Want the Same Things, out March 24th.