EXCLUSIVE VIDEO - Behind the Scenes of August Burns Red's 'Identity'

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Mermen and metalcore make unlikely bedfellows. Thanks to a childhood spent singing along to the calypso-inspired jams in The Little Mermaid I never could have fathomed the music under the sea being anything other than upbeat and gleeful, that is, until August Burns Red took their punishing sound to the ocean floor.

In their insane video for the song “Identity,” the Pennsylvania band goes beneath the waves and has a colorful, albeit dangerous, adventure. Director Drew Russ filmed the band in front of a green screen where they acted out battles against imaginary foes. When everything came together the result shows the band in a way that you've never seen before.

"Historically we make fairly serious music videos, but if you know us as people, that doesn't really represent who we are," guitarist Brent Rambler says. "We've always wanted to make just a fun video, and Dustin had the idea to do an underwater or beach themed video for 'Identity' because of the surf rock riff in the middle. We pitched the thought to Russ, and he had tons of great ideas for all sorts of different things that could be happening. The end result is a visually pleasing video, that is tons of fun to watch."

Even more fun than the finished product is seeing the work that went into making it. As you can see from the video below, any time people act on a green screen hilarity is sure to follow. That is, until those shots are mixed with the animation and an entirely different world is created.

To create that world Russ enlisted a friend who he had worked on videos for in the past, world-renowned artist and designer Mike Hardcore. You may not know his name but if you have any interest in punk, hardcore or metal music we can guarantee that you own at least a few shirts and albums with his artwork on them.

“[Russ] told me his vision, gave me creative direction and then I put the pen to paper,” Hardcore explains. “All the illustrations you see were created by me. From the fish and plants to the sharks and whale characters. The coloring and animation were done by the rest of the crew, some of the best guys in the industry.”

Sketches that would later become the video.

Sketches that would later become the video.

This behind the scenes video gives us an idea of how the transformation was made from a couple of shirtless guys wrapped in blankets screaming at a camera, to one of the most colorful and visually stunning videos we’ve ever seen. Since it is such a laborious process from sketching to finished product you better believe that those involved were excited to see the finished product.

“I kept bugging Drew to see it, and he would send me small edited clips so I could see where it was headed, but finally seeing the end product in all its insanity was the best,” Hardcore says. “Honest truth, the most exciting part was seeing how colorful it was… until I heard that surf style bridge. I hadn’t heard the song before seeing the video, so when it came out of nowhere, I was quite impressed.”

First, you'll find the exclusive behind the scenes video with the "Identity" video in its fully finished glory just below.

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