Music Video: Snakes Of Russia — <I>Summoner</I>
January 23, 2024

Music Video: Snakes Of Russia — Summoner

In Snakes Of Russia’s new music video Summoner, actor Daniel Nelson wanders through the empty streets of a surreal metropolis that’s populated by large, floating jellyfish. The creatures drift over head, leading him through the city and to a desert temple.

“I wanted the video to feel like a waking dream,” explains director Kays Al-Atrakchi of MBK productions ( “This is also why I wanted to shoot it in black & white, since many people dream, including myself, in black & white.”

Curtis Davis served as DP on the project, which brought together a small crew for the downtown Los Angeles and California desert shoots. 

“We shot on a lightweight camera rig built around a Sigma fp, using only vintage Canon FD lenses to help give the footage a softer organic vibe,” Davis recalls. “The Sigma allowed us to capture in 4K raw in a package that is barely larger than a phone.”

According to director Al-Atrakchi (pictured, right), one of the project’s biggest challenges was connecting the CG elements with what was captured on-location. 
“The framing had to consider the CG elements that would be added in post, while Daniel had to imagine that these fantastical creatures were floating all around him, and convey both a sense of awe and fear.”

Snakes Of Russia’s Joseph Holiday appears at the end of the video, surrounded by a massive wall of synthesizers. 

“I wanted the last shot to be a bit like that of the final reveal in The Wizard of Oz,” Al-Atrakchi explains. “We ended up scanning in several of Joseph’s synthesizer modules, and then built set extensions with CG around him.”

Summoner’s post process was handled primarily in Blackmagic Design’s Resolve, which was used for both the editing and final color grade. The giant jellyfish and additional CG elements were created using Blender and composited with the help of Adobe After Effects. 

“Despite the massive amount of hours that went into it, I’m very happy with the end result, and I feel that it fully captures the mood and atmosphere that we were going for,” Al-Atrakchi concludes.