"You got all the time in the world, and you don't know who you are," croons lead singer Jarred Carrigan in the carefree air of "Pages," a track from the Holographic Sands self-titled EP. But in a video where a group of friends, somewhat solemnly and with a sense of friendly reverence, carry an urn through nature to send off a friend into the wind, that line becomes more emotional then previously thought. The quartet of young Minneapolis indie-rockers teamed up with directors Tyler Torrison and Marko Zitzer to compile a moving and beautifully shot montage of a journey into the depths of nature as a last hurrah for a friend who has passed. The song and video play off each other for an enjoyable three and a half minute picture. We got a chance to talk to the entire team behind the video and here's what they had to say.
With the video's directors, Marko Zitzer & Tyler Torrison:
The video was very beautifully done in terms of visuals and story. It has a very personal touch it. Can you give a bit of background on story behind this lighthearted tribute and what you wanted to convey?
Well we wanted it to have an autumn theme to it, and have the whole story take place out in the wilderness. That was kind of our starting point, but there wasn't really much story with just that context. We had been planning on doing a video together for one of the songs on this EP, and when I heard Pages, it seemed the most visual to me, and gave off this vibe of melancholy, somehow mixed with a sense of tranquility. I just had the idea of an Urn and the spreading of the ashes when I heard it, so we were able to form this little narrative around that. It's not a tribute to any particular person, it was just what I visualized when I first heard the song.
With a song like this, I can imagine you have to be pretty careful and deliberate with what to put in or what to cut out. Were you and the band always on the same page or was there ever a roadblock in where both sides wanted the artist direction to go?
With a subject like death, you certainly have be tasteful in your choices. At the same time, it's not something that needs to be shied away from. It's just part of life, and everyone has a different way of handling it. The idea was that the guys were hanging out with their friend as if they were still alive, simply having a good time with their buddy. The band was really fun to work with, and they gave us full control of everything going in so we kind of just told them what we wanted and hung out for a few days.
The whole video reminds me the scene from The Big Lebowski when they go atop a cliff and scatter Donny’s ashes. It seemed to have the same undertone: a group of friends ultimately unsure of how to properly send a lost friend off. Did you think about that scene at while shooting?
It's funny, we shot everything within a few miles of where the Coen Brothers grew up, but I hadn't seen that movie in years, so it wasn't on my radar at all when Jim and I were sketching out the idea, and it wasn't any sort of homage to that scene. I think Marko or one of the HS guys did bring it up when we were shooting though, so maybe it worked it's way into our subconsciouses somehow.
Where was the video shot? Was it hard to keep up and get all the action shots in nature such as kayaking or climbing up trees?
We shot it out in the western suburbs of Minneapolis. The canoe scene was on this bay off of Lake Minnetonka, and the tree fort looking area was at this place called the Richardson Nature Center. These are pretty public places, and we wanted it to seem deeper in the wilderness, so we had to shoot everything pretty carefully. We had 2-3 cameras going for most of the shoot, so keeping up and making sure we got the shot wasn't really a problem. The hardest part was deciding what to put in the video because we had so much awesome footage.
With the band, Holographic Sands:
Is nature a big influence for you guys? I saw you playing guitar while building a big tree fort in the forest during the video. I like to think this is how you write all your songs.
I think growing up in Minnesota really makes you appreciate nature. Season changes are so dramatic around here. When you're in the thick of winter, it's like, "Man, I wish summer was toasting my toes right now." When it's summer, you could really go for a naked dive into a snowbank. The crazy thing about that big tree fort was that we did NOT build it, it was one of like ten of those things in this weird little patch of forest. I think it's actually a place built for nature education for little kids. In fact, little kids were constantly walking through our video shots the entire time, while we were trying to drink beers and smoke and get rowdy. We write our songs in basements, but it'd be nice to export that process to a more natural setting . . . see what happens—probably a Barry White style lovemaking album for bunnies and deer.
I assume the video is a homage to someone you lost. It isn’t your usual ballad about losing someone close but to me makes a more emotional impact. Was it hard to put a song like this together?
Although the song wasn't written as a homage to someone we lost, the vibe of the lyrics sort of gives off an unsettling and uncomfortable feeling about questioning one's existence or life purpose. Honestly, this song came out so effortlessly (those can often times be the best ones)
Is the guy who eats the mushroom an expert on mushrooms or did he just eat it and hope for the best?
**Live fast die young bad girls do it well**
What was something funny or crazy that happened during the shooting music video?
We were trying to get proper shots of us driving around in a truck and we kept driving back and forth down the same rural road. Well, this gigantic Komondor dog (like the one from the Beck album) kept chasing after us while we were in the truck and at one point he jumped up and tried to attack Marko, one of the camera dudes. Almost got him. That would have been a good shot.