Every once in awhile, beauty and defiance come crashing together in a most spectacular way. To wit, the gorgeously shot video for the sultry new Mika single “Sanremo.” It is an once a love letter to the ethereal Ligurian Coast Italian town, and a reminder that there are those who would still chose to marginalize the gay community.
Filmed in striking black and white to depict a 1950s when, as director WIZ reminds, “homosexuality, if not illegal, was socially unacceptable, a time of discrimination and persecution. ‘Sanremo’ represents liberation and transcendence.”
The track itself is a velvety smooth slice of Euro-R&B, with sonic nods to the likes of Pet Shop Boys and George Michael. Mika’s voice is at its cool, breathy best, as he enthuses, “To feel like this / Is one in a million.”
The track is taken from his excellent new longplayer My Name is Michael Holbrook, which he says is, “Inspired by life in all its glory and all its dark challenges. An explosion of joy, color and emotion even though it was born in one of the most challenging periods for my family and I.”
The album is also steeped in a bit of simple, but essential philosophy, which often comes with arriving on the other side of tragedy.
“I have come to realize,” he opens up, “that the only thing that matters in life are the people we love and the stories we tell. This album is dedicated to those people I love and to the notion that although we all hopefully grow with age, we should do so without losing our colors, our warmth or whimsy.”
What he said.
(N.B. Mika will be extensively touring Europe from November through February.)