Francis and the Lights, led by Francis Farewell Starlite, have released their video for “Friends,” and as its name implies, friends of the band play a role in the song and in the clip, which features Kanye West and Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon.
The Jake Schreier-directed clip opens on West in a light-colored walled soundstage space. His contemplative look matches the song’s tone as the rapper gently sways to the sultry grooves. The camera begins to pan as West mouths the chorus, “We could be friends.” In the continuous shot, Starlite is then seen. He too looks reflective, before he bursts into some wild dance moves that lead him into a darkened area of the soundstage before he paces back into the main space. There, he’s met by Vernon and the pair performs whimsical and smile-inducing synchronized dance choreography that ends with West rejoining the mix.
For Chance the Rapper fans, the song may sound a bit familiar. As Chance points out on Twitter, Francis and the Lights was not only featured on Chance’s “Summer Friends,” but Starlite also produced the song and his “Friends” is sampled on Chance’s Coloring Book track.
In other music friend connections, West recently worked with Chance on The Life of Pablo‘s “Ultralight Beam” and Vernon has frequently collaborated with West, including on My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy and Yeezus. Starlite cowrote “Friends” with Vernon, ex-Vampire Weekend’s Rostam Batmanglij, BJ Burton and Aaron Lammer, all of whom also produced the song alongside Ariel Rechtshaid, Benny Blanco and Cashmere Cat.