Rob Thomas is on the run — from himself. In his next video, the Matchbox Twenty singer chases himself through the sweltering streets of New York, running down avenues, zipping down fire escapes and climbing over cars as he tries to warn pedestrians, "This Is How a Heart Breaks."
The chase starts when Thomas sees someone running at full speed toward him, an out-of-focus, shadowy figure that could be someone he recognizes, or just a stranger. Not taking any chances, he turns and flees. (Click for photos from the video shoot.)
He can't really sing and run at the same time, so as he races down the sidewalk, swerving around people and obstacles, he only lip-synchs sporadically — words like "break down" then become shouts, warnings to get out of the way. (When the video was shot two weeks ago, director Pedro Romhanyi also shot additional footage of Thomas singing the entire song in close-up, in case he wanted to cut it into the narrative later.)
Not everyone heeds the warnings in time, and Thomas collides with a pedestrian, rolling into traffic, where cars brake to avoid hitting him. He leaps on the hood of one gridlocked auto, onto an adjacent one, and then drops down onto the road, running between lanes of moving cars.
He gets back to the sidewalk, slowing to a fast walk and singing, "And why you got to make it so hard on me/ Yeah, it's hard on me," as the shadowy figure gets closer. To shake him, Thomas makes a quick turn and runs into a restaurant. Now at top speed, he runs past surprised diners, waiters and kitchen staff as he heads through the building and out the back door.
He then runs into an apartment lobby, where he squeezes into a closing elevator. On the way up, he gets to catch his breath (and sing the chorus while he's at it). When he emerges, he runs down corridors, up stairs and out onto the roof — but the pursuer isn't far behind. Thomas climbs down the fire escape, leaping onto a ladder and descending toward the sidewalk, but he loses his grip and crashes to the floor.
Injured, he picks himself up and runs as best he can down the deserted alley he landed in and toward an outdoor parking lot. It is at this point that it becomes clear his pursuer is actually another version of himself. As the original Thomas limps toward a fence that only traps him in, the pursuing Thomas watches ominously, singing the lyric, "I'm sorry but it's not a mistake/ I'm running, but you're getting away."