Luke Steele’s H3000 taps into gaming technology for latest music video
The futuristic animated music video for Empire Of The Sun member Luke Steele’s new electronic music project, H3000, was created in Unreal Engine.
The 3D video game engine, owned by Epic Games, is the same used to create Fortnite, Street Fighter V and the 2020 remake of Final Fantasy 7.
H3000 is a collaboration by Steele and producer-songwriter Jarrad Rogers, best known for his work with Charli XCX and Lana Del Rey.
The two met in a Los Angeles studio where Steele was working on the DREAMS collaboration with Daniel Johns. He met Rogers through producer M-Phazes.
“It was the start of summer in California, which is always such a great time,” Steele recalled.
“We just connected. The band is about the heavens and what will be the issues of the heart in the year 3000.”
In the video for new slow-burning single ‘Running’, the pair become avatars Luke 18 and Mstr Rogers who are chased over the black tundra back to their craft after they ‘liberate’ an artefact.
It was made by production and design company Collider and features “a playable final game level” released on Twitch, with the original plan for fans to find hidden tracks and merchandise.
The video’s director, Andrew van der West, noted the game worlds of today are far more real, rich and breathtaking, giving even cinema a run for its money.
“When I listened to ‘Running; it immediately conjured up epic, expansive landscapes — endless and formidable, the two figures dwarfed in the sheer scale,” he said.
“I’ve been following Unreal Engine for some time, but this was the first project that Collider decided to jump all in and embrace a very different way of working,” he added.
“It was exciting to approach what would have been a traditional animation process in a very different way and discover the beautifully rich, immersive and serendipitous possibilities that Unreal Engine can create.”
H3000’s self-titled debut album will arrive on September 17 through EMI Music. The band is working on designs for a live show.
Steele said working on H3000 was like a dream.
“We started at one place and ended at another.
“You don’t really understand how you got there, but you know it was guided by something very special.”
Empire of the Sun have not released any fresh material 2016’s Two Vines.
But the act’s other half, Nick Littlemore, confirmed they have already done “quite a lot of work” on the follow up.