The new Hoobastank single, "The Reason," is an archetypal rock ballad about love gone awry. It's bittersweet, pleasantly melodic and predictably soothing — which is exactly why the band wanted to shoot a video for the song that was dark, violent and a little twisted.
"All the directors who sent us treatments gave us these sad breakup stories," singer Doug Robb said. "I remember instructing our record label to tell everyone that we didn't want a direct interpretation of the song at all. We wanted something that had almost a 'Sixth Sense' plot twist to it."
The video treatment Hoobastank chose came courtesy of director Brett Simon, and chronicles a jewelry heist, in which the band dupes the owner of a pawn shop by faking a hit-and-run accident in front of his store. When he hurries outside to help the "victim," the rockers enter his store, break into the safe and make off with the goods. The band shot the clip in Los Angeles in early February.
"It's nothing you would ever expect from us," Robb said. "And it's shot in a way that's really interesting because the sequencing jumps back and forth in time throughout the video."
Even though "The Reason" is rapidly heating up at radio, Hoobastank are already planning their next single. The band favors "Just One," an up-tempo track from its current album, The Reason.
"The song is about a life philosophy about not waiting around for things to happen, but doing them yourself," Robb said. "I've known a lot of people who bitch and complain about their lot in life, but they don't do anything about it. I feel very strongly against that. I think if you want something, you should go out and get it."
Hoobastank will shoot two different videos for the song, and have organized a contest with MasterCard around the filming of the clips. Fans entering the contest will have a chance to win a four-week summer internship to work on the videos with the directors and the crews. (See the band's Web site, www.hoobastank.com, for details.) "What's cool about it is we get to see two videos for one song," Robb said. "One will probably be [more serious] and the next will be the funniest thing ever."
The videos won't be Hoobastank's only interaction with students. The band will headline this year's MTV Campus Invasion Tour, which launches March 19 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and ends April 24 in Norfolk, Virginia. Lostprophets and Ima Robot will open all dates (see "Hoobastank, Lostprophets To Invade College Campuses").
"Playing colleges has always been really good for us," Robb said. "The fanbase is just built-in, and they're always ready to get really rowdy. Plus, touring with the Lostprophets is gonna be awesome. We took them on their very first U.S. tour two and a half years ago and we became really close. It's gonna be like hanging with some of your best friends for a couple months."