Cordelia & The Buffalo, “Hands Like Guns”

Post Author: Meredith Schneider

Indie pop/alternative six piece Cordelia & The Buffalo – led by vivacious Mexican-American front-woman, songwriter & producer Cordelia Vizcaino – has been making inspired music together since 2013. Cordelia herself is an activist, a fact that is noticeable in her art. We’ve got the exclusive video premiere of her most gut-wrenching commentary yet, a song called “Hands Like Guns”.

The name of the track and the band name scroll over darkened moving images of riots. The sound in the background is of international news reports on war and gunfire. It all layers over each other, then fades as the video captures Cordelia’s gorgeous, sullen image singing. She is seen with a montage of more violent footage, including blatant acts of police brutality and prayer vigils, juxtaposed over her. Cordelia’s passion for the idea of peace is palpable, as the emotions come to the surface while she sings.

This song – and this video – are beautiful testaments to the ideal of unity.

Cordelia herself had a lot to say about the track.

I wrote this song hoping to give voice to those who have been silenced. The song seed for “Hands Like Guns” first got planted in my mind when I heard about the murder of Basil Dacosta, a Venezuelan student participating in a protest that was shot by a member of the Venezuelan National Guard. The same year, the Ayotzinapa mass kidnapping and murder of 43 Mexican students of a Rural Teachers’ College happened. 

The song is about an imaginary conversation I would’ve had with the Venezuelan officer that ended the life of the innocent, unarmed student. As I kept writing, I realized this could’ve been said to the rest of those who have committed violent acts against others whom they swore to protect. After the song was released, I could see how it also came to relate to the Ukraine crisis, Beirut events, Paris bombing, Orlando shooting, Syria and many others.

In the music video I wanted to portray the pain and anxiety that some of our followers and friends live everyday, and our dedication to all of those in the rest of the world who can relate to social-political injustice. By the time I filmed the music video I had just read the gut-wrenching words that Isobel Bowdey wrote of her surviving the Paris bombing. It didn’t take much for me to be able to tap into that feeling of seeing it all through her eyes. Feeling so helpless.

Yes, we sometimes gravitate towards happy songs, but important topics like these should still be in the conversation. Instead of talking about one of the Kardashians’ new butt. We want to be able say that we are here and we don’t want to fight one other, but rather fight together for change.  

I really wanted the art you see in this music video to depict the hope that we are united, even if only through music…for now.