Music Video Fail Of The Week: Grouplove ‘Goes Native’ For New Single

By Arturo R. García

Well, they kind of warned us with that picture, didn’t they?

Thanks to our reader Abigail for tipping us off to this glowing feature in Spin Magazine about L.A.-based rock Grouplove. And while it’s good to see an up-and-coming group get some shine, the video for the band’s single “Colours” takes a turn far, far off the Common Sense reserv – uh, let’s just say it’s not very sensible. We can’t embed the video (though you can watch it at the link to the article), but there’s a plot round-up under the cut.

Directed by Jordan Bahat, the video starts with lead singer Christian Zucconi being led by two men toward a tree somewhere in the desert. A rope is slung around a tree and Zucconi’s kicked down. Yup, he’s about to be lynched. (One wonders how this led the magazine to compare the video to Where The Wild Things Are.)

But wait! Zucconi’s fearless bandmates appear on the scene, clad in “warpaint,” feathers, “headdresses” and brandishing “tomahawks” and skinny jeans. They rescue Zucconi, who is revealed to be part of the “tribe,” as he’s also sporting feathers. After an “emotional” reunion with his love interest, played by keyboardist/vocalist Hannah Hooper, the quintet gallops off Monty Python-style, their journey intercut with shots of them “dancing.” On a positive note, their pogo-ing did not lead to any spontaneous rainfall.

Later, Hooper dabs blue paint on Zucconi’s shirt, presumably to welcome him further into the circle of American Apparel, or something. We see the group celebrate for a bit longer before getting hit with the Big Twist: it’s all been a dream. Zucconi was not rescued. The video closes with a shot of him hoisted from the tree. Well, okay then.

Normally Bahat would be to blame for the stunningly tone-deaf costuming choices made here, but in the article, Hooper gets (unintentionally?) thrown under the bus:

Zucconi and Rabin credit Hooper with much of the video’s artistic vision, and love her fresh perspective; the painter and graphic designer had never been in a band before. “Hannah did all the costumes herself,” says Rabin. “The visual presentation is always really important, and we tend to divert to Hannah’s opinions on that stuff. She tells us when shit sucks.”

Yeah, but who was around to tell her that?