The MuseBox has announced the premiere of “I Can’t Return” on American Songwriter, the first single and video from Immigrant Union’s second full-length, Anyway. “I Can’t Return” was directed by Mike Bruce (Noel Gallagher, Black Mountain, Paul McCartney) and stars Omar Doom (Inglorious Bastards) and Carolyn Stotesbery (Love and Mercy). Featuring a psychedelic folk sound that front man Brent DeBoer describes as “Spiritualized being baptized in a warm bath of Creedence Clearwater,” Melbourne, Australia’s Immigrant Union hit the national spotlight in 2011 with their acclaimed rendition of Rose Tattoo’s “Bad Boy For Love” on Adam Hills Tonight on ABC TV. The performance occurred just before the band traveled to Portland, Oregon to record their self-titled full-length debut album with producer Gregg Williams (Sheryl Crow, The Dandy Warhols, Blitzen Trapper). All of Immigrant Union’s music is available on iTunes.
According to the music blog The Sound of Confusion, Immigrant Union are “something of a super group, consisting of DeBoer from The Dandy Warhols, Bob Harrow from The Lazy Sons, and four other well-known players on the Melbourne scene.” Forged through a chance drunken meeting between DeBoer and Harrow, their shared love of music led to a trip to the country and an all night jam, solidifying a friendship that would form the basis of Immigrant Union. Immigrant Union have already put out a self-titled debut album and will follow it with Anyway later in 2014. Part psychedelic folk, part traditional country rock, Immigrant Union have been building their name through stellar live performances at some of the country’s most iconic venues and boutique festivals.
Director Mike Bruce was eager to work on the video for “I Can’t Return.” According to Bruce, when DeBoer approached him to make the video, he jumped at the opportunity: “I’m always excited to work with such talented people as Mr. DeBoer. When I heard “I Can’t Return,” I knew I had to deliver a video worthy of the song.” He and DeBoer thought of several scenarios that represent points of no return, but eventually settled on the dark premise seen in “I Can’t Return.” The video tells the tale of a man who discovers his girlfriend is cheating on him when he accidentally finds incriminating pictures on her phone. His response is to take her on a small plane, fly her to a proper cruising altitude, and then jump out of the plane – a suicidal leap that leaves his girlfriend at the helm, powerless and paralyzed by fear. Bruce explains the thinking behind the final scene: “It’s really just a morbid fantasy we sometimes have when we’re in a bad situation that there seems to be no escape from. This guy decides, fuck it – if I jump out of this plane, there’s no way I can go back.”
According to Bruce, picking Omar Doom for the role of the emotional ninja was a no-brainer: “Like DeBoer, Omar is a friend, and just one of those guys that has this effortless “cool” about him. He also did everything I asked of him, which was a lot, and I have a lot of respect for actors who are willing to do whatever it takes to get what is needed. I literally put him through the ropes, and he never complained.” Doom explains why he was eager to star in the “I Can’t Return” video: “After years of being a devoted fan of The Dandy Warhols, I was thrilled when I was approached to act in a music video for Brent DeBoer’s side project, Immigrant Union.”