Moreira’s New Video is a Biting Metaphor for the Struggles of Puerto Rican Youth on the Island

Lead Photo: Photo by José Martí. Courtesy of Moreira

Catharsis and self-cleansing are different for everyone, but that individuality isn’t always appreciated. Spiritual renewal is serene and peaceful by stereotype, while any release of aggression is often denigrated as too antagonistic to be restorative. The video released today from Puerto Rican indie rock act Moreira, though, champions the singularity of coping, of renewal. In “La Vorágine,” there’s no right way to purge and emerge anew.

The track, slated for inclusion on Moreira’s sophomore full-length due this fall, is a nostalgic reflection on the naivety of youth — that period of bliss and happiness unthanked until after the fact once you realize you were likely at peak contentment back then. But founder José Iván Lebrón opted for an alternate, although somewhat related, exploration of the languid, synth-silkened number. The clip, directed by José Martí of experimental electronic project Dead Hands, follows four characters in their individual efforts of self-cleansing.

“Young adults are really having a hard time right now economically, and in terms of education and jobs,” he says. “I think the video deals with that, but in an internal way, just trying to think about [the characters’] lives beyond what you see in the video.”

The character collecting field sounds is actually Lebrón himself; manipulating ambient recordings for the forthcoming record, as well as other projects helmed at his studio La Colmena, serves a purpose for Lebrón that’s not only practical, but also personal.

Conquering the pummeling ocean waves, burning heaps of clothing like an effigy to oppression, dancing and twisting your body freely — these are liberating acts for young people living in Puerto Rico today, as the government puts its debt before the people, and the people organize and fight in resistance. All the corruption, colonialism at a height, austerity measures rolling in — the emotional toll can be immense.

“Cada cual es un mundo,” Lebrón adds. Every person is a world unto themselves, and each has their own methods of dealing, of fortifying a push forward or, at the very least, of persevering. “La Vorágine” recognizes the power in the personal, no matter what that means.