If you picked up decker.'s Slider when the album came out in March, you might've been surprised by the band's choice of "Shadow Days" -- a long, eerie track built around a determined bassline and a guitar that wavers like a far-off police siren -- for its new video, directed by Trevvor Riley. It's far from the most radio-friendly track on the album; in the MTV days, it might have gotten a verse hacked out to make more room for the VJ.
But Brandon Decker tells us that the radio-unfriendly choice was partly by design. "The song's so damn long," he says, laughing.
"It's probably one of my favorites on the album, but it never lent itself to radio at all. It's an option to get a different audience to hear it and experience it. I think having a video allows us to reach a group of people we otherwise wouldn't have."
Like "Shadow Days" itself, the video deals more in implication than explanation -- Decker and the old man's fraught relationship isn't obscured, exactly, but you'll have to hash out the details of it (or maybe even invent them) on your own time.
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"I'm proud of it," Decker says. "It's different from a lot of -- and we've certainly done this, too -- a lot of videos that end up being . . . glossy, you know? You try to get some attractive female . . . this is kind of gritty and dark and a little mysterious, and I'm really proud of that."
It's a dark video -- at times, the shattering pots and glasses in the empty kitchen are the only things that can catch the light. "The song lends itself to that, definitely," Decker says, laughing, "but I think Trevvor's kind of gritty, dark, and mysterious."
I asked him if he was worried about changing the experience of a song that's been on peoples' iPods, now, for five months. "I hope it does," he says. "I think the whole point in doing a video is to kind of bring this visual aspect to a song. In this day and age that's so powerful, you know?"
The video's part of a larger attempt to widen the album's audience. "We've been on and off touring since March, probably doing shorter and longer runs every month. [But] we've got a tour in October and a tour in November . . . I think we're definitely trying to get a second wind out of the album right now."
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