Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Fray - “Heartbeat”

  We start out with a few folks standing on what looks like a really cold beach, with the icy waves rolling in and the sun nowhere in sight. That doesn’t seem like a really happy beginning to a video, so luckily we switch to the band traveling along in a car. Everyone seems to be drunk, laughing and carrying on, so I’m definitely voting for Opening B, because you can basically deal with anything when there are adult beverages.

  The car pulls up into a parking area, with everyone piling out and lugging musical equipment down to the beach we thought we had escaped just a few seconds ago. Cut to a couple of women riding in the back of a truck. They’re trying to look pretty and everything, artfully draped in Native American blankets, but you can tell they are not impressed with the cold wind blowing their hair around. I’m guessing they really didn’t know what they were getting into when they answered the casting call.

  Back to the beach, where people are still lugging equipment and walking really far, so I’m guessing they messed up and didn’t pick the closest parking lot. A few of the fools decide it would be way fun to run splash in the cold water a little bit, even though you can practically see icebergs floating around. (That one guy looks like he instantly became sterile the very second the frigid water hit him.)

  More people show up at the beach, including the Poncho Twins, and everybody goes racing to wherever the band is heading. People are dragging coolers and sleeping bags, so this might be an Occupy movement of some kind, although the political injustices they are fighting are not really clear. (Every citizen should have their own beach? Rich people have too much sand in their cracks?)

  Suddenly, it’s night time, with the band performing on the beach near a really aggressive bonfire. Everyone looks very happy, so they probably did jello shots at some point. As the loving crowd sits around the band in a nature-loving circle, the camera focuses in on lead singer Isaac as he sings the lyrics and makes strained faces as he tries to get the words out. (Or maybe he’s just standing too close to that fire.) We also get some shots of the rest of the band, but they don’t look as strained and are not quite as interesting.)

  At 1:10 in the video, on the left, we are presented with the perfect example of a drunken frat boy thinking that the song and the band and the beach are all about him, doing a wobbly fist pump and nearly falling into the fire. A few of the people around him look more than happy to give him an extra push, should he need it.

  Now we’re in a slow part of the song, so we have a montage of the band members softly playing their instruments, the beautiful but deadly bonfire burning, and various people sitting around making life-long bonds that hopefully will be remembered in the morning. The editor also inserts some footage of people who seem to be in another place entirely, and it’s not clear if this was done just to help set the mood or if the drinking continued when they got back to the editing room.

  Isaac starts getting serious with the singing again, and we have another montage of people on the beach riding piggy-back, because what’s more fun than carrying someone on your back as you stagger through shifting sands, and shots of a girl with a now-questionable reputation being helped out from underneath a pier. Then it’s time for the chorus again, and all thoughts of sluts in dark places are forgotten as people run back to the circle and join hands.

  And that’s pretty much it, as the band continues to play, Isaac continues to emote rather strongly, and the sandy beach folk sing along, make out, avoid the death fire, and drink. There’s also some folks who attempt to dance, but attempt is the operative word here, as it looks more like they might be having mutual reactions to the broccoli casserole they had for lunch.

  Oh great, some fool has whipped out a box of sparklers, which is a completely safe thing to do, hand burning metal wands to drunk people and let them wave them through the air. Everyone has a great time with this bit, naturally, laughing and frolicking, because alcohol desensitizes you to the fact that your hair and clothing might be going up in flames. Oh well, we’ll just assume that somebody up in that mess has insurance.

  The madness continues with some of the party revelers taking off some of their clothes (not all of their clothes, of course, because it’s really cold and some of the guys want to avoid evidence of shrinkage issues) and racing into the icy water like there’s a prize at the bottom of the cereal box. This goes on for a bit, with half-frozen beautiful people getting each other all wet and showing off the fact that they clearly don’t have a single ounce of body fat.

  We finally wind it down, with the band finishing up the song, Isaac and his microphone posing dramatically near the fire that no one seems to be monitoring, and shiny, happy, wet people sitting around in a post-coital glow. As the camera pulls back, we see that one couple is standing far away from the death fire, wearing warm and comfortable clothing, and not drinking anything. These are the people you need to ride home with. Once you find your underwear…

Click Here to View this Video on YouTube.

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