If Yellowcard’s new video looks familiar, well, good. That was sort of the whole point.
Working once again with director Marc Webb, the band just shot a retro-leaning clip for “Rough Landing, Holly,” which serves as a sequel of sorts to its 2004 breakthrough video, “Ocean Avenue” (also directed by Webb; see “Yellowcard Get Homesick, Sing Of Spider-Man’s Struggle” ).
“The ‘Holly’ video expands on some of the elements of the ‘Ocean Avenue’ clip,” Webb said. “There are references to it, particularly some scenes involving a suitcase. It refers to that world, and I liked the idea of paralleling the band’s experiences over the past two years with some of the things [frontman] Ryan [Key] is going through in this video.”
In the “Ocean Avenue” clip, Key repeatedly sprinted through the streets of Los Angeles, seemingly being pursued by sunglass-wearing baddies (played by violinist Sean Mackin and drummer Longineu Parsons) while trying to track down a mysterious suitcase. In the “Holly” video, Key is once again sprinting through L.A., but it’s not bad guys that are after him — it’s his “own personal demons,” according to Webb.
“It’s about Ryan being chased by his problems and going through his past and his future to try and get away from them. The whole thing tells a story in a really unconventional way, with lots of really radical transitions,” the director explained. “In one scene, he crawls into a suitcase and comes out in an aquatic world. There’s another scene where he falls asleep on a floor and then he wakes up and he’s on a table, being operated on.”
But Webb was quick to point out that the “Holly” video isn’t all fancy transitions — there’s also a fair amount of story line to cover, most of which draws inspiration from the time Key and bassist Pete Mosley spent living in New York, writing the songs that would make up their Lights and Sounds album (see “Yellowcard Move To New York, Write LP About Hating Los Angeles” ).
“Ryan and I spoke about what he and Pete were going through in New York, and about a lot of the things they saw and did there,” Webb laughed. “I mean, they were a couple of young kids, living and partying in NYC. They did some pretty crazy things. And a lot of that, in one way or another, inspired this album. So we wanted to include it in this video.”
The “Holly” clip was shot over three days in and around Los Angeles County (locations included a hospital in downtown L.A., a high school in Venice and a suburban cul-de-sac in the Valley). Though it’s still in the early stages of editing, Webb says he already has high hopes for the video.
“I think the whole thing has a sort of a Charlie Kaufman-esque feel to it. I’d like to say it’s sort of a journey into the subconscious, like ‘Being John Malkovich,’ ” he laughed. “But what do I know. I hate talking about these things. It makes me sound like an idiot.”
For more on Yellowcard, check out the feature “Split Decision.”