It’s hard to believe Leonard Cohen’s been gone for five years, but a new music video seeks to keep the master writer’s memory alive. Director Daniel Askill has just revealed the video for “Puppets,” a song from Cohen’s 2019 posthumous album Thanks for the Dance. Watch the video below.
“Puppets” marks the fifth music video from Thanks for the Dance and the second offering from Askill, who also directed “Happens to the Heart.” Cohen’s son Adam served as producer for his father’s last album and worked closely with Askill on its accompanying visuals.
“It has been such a gift to have the opportunity to create these visual responses to the music of Leonard Cohen,” Askill said in a statement. “Cohen has an incredible ability to create a bridge between the sublime and the prosaic — the metaphysical and political. In ‘Puppets,’ he does that while addressing dark themes with a poetic insight.”
“German puppets burned the Jews,” Cohen declares in the song, a typically haunting rumination on abuse of power. “Jewish puppets did not choose/ Puppet vultures eat the dead/ Puppet corpses they are fed.”
Bobbi Salvör Menuez stars in its black and white video. As Cohen’s gravelly voice bellows, Menuez traverses an alley littered with papers. She walks slowly, in time with the song’s booming piano. Eventually, she lights herself on fire. The sound of flames persists after the song ends.
Cohen passed away on November 7th, 2016. Watch his final music video below.