Technical death metal band Allegaeon have shared a new video for “In Flanders Fields,” an acoustic classical guitar song very far removed from tech death. The song was first released in December as a B-side to their symphonic single “Concerto in Dm.”
The melancholic guitar piece was inspired by Major John McCrae’s poem of the same name. A string part accompanies it, fully embracing the sentimentality of the song. In the video, guitarist Greg Burgess sits alone in a field of poppies with his eyes closed and the wind in his hair as he plays the guitar part. The camera switches between close-ups of the guitar fingerpicking and poppies and wide shots of the field, with nothing else in sight but sparse trees and mountains far off in the distance.
Burgess began his statement on the track with the history of the McCrae poem, “In 1915, Canadian poet and military doctor Major John McCrae lost one of his best friends to a German artillery shell during the second battle of Ypres. Inspired by grief, McCrae began the first draft of ‘In Flanders Fields.’ Three years afterwards, the poem had such an impact people started honoring soldiers by wearing poppies on their lapels.”
He continued, “Being from the US I was unaware of this poem and tradition, until we were on tour in Canada with NeObliviscaris in 2018. After being stranded by an ice storm in Ottawa, I was introduced to this poem and it struck a chord with me – inevitably this piece of the same name followed.”
“As for the video,” he spoke on the twist of humor inherent to the video’s existence. “Do we really need another classical video set in a beautiful place, having the performer with eyes closed perform? Probably not. Do we need a video where we have the juxtaposition of a classical guitarist in a beautiful place, while repping tech death? Survey says…. why not?!”
Over the holidays, Allegaeon shared a similarly situationally humorous cover of Wham’s “Last Christmas” featuring The Black Dahlia Murder’s Trevor Strnad and Cattle Decapitation’s Travis Ryan. Allegaeon also released a cover of Yes’ “Roundabout” in April. In August, they revealed that they have been working on a new album, following up their 2019 record Apoptosis.