One would think that after years of constant touring, a hiatus between albums would be a welcome respite to decompress from music — or at least allow time to catch up on a little TV. For Yukon Blonde frontman Jeffrey Innes, it meant getting back to work, writing songs intended for a new collaborative project. But when his friends ended up being busy on the road, the Vancouver songwriter instead recorded the songs himself under a new moniker, High Ends.
For his recently-released debut, Super Class, Innes worked quickly, making sound-rich rockers built around grinding synth textures, clicking electronic beats, and poppy hooks. You can hear it in the single “Intoxicated,” a song about a disintegrating relationship where he can only express his feelings when he’s drunk, and much too late: “When I’m intoxicated, I love you / Everything you do, I’m addicted to your indifference…” sings Innes in the opening lines.
Still, for a song about dependency and heartache, High Ends’ new music video is actually quite cute and sunny.
The “Intoxicated” video recalls those brightly colored cell animation sequences on early Sesame Street. But instead of learning your alphabet, High Ends depicts a surreal art museum full of stop-motion modernist sculptures and abstract paintings — all swaying, melting and dripping tears of clay along to the song’s chiming chorus. It’s a simple treatment, but one that suits the song’s woozy, had-one-too-many mood.
Here’s what the video’s creator Tyler Witzel had to say about the inspiration for the project:
At the time Jeff asked me to do the video, I had been working on a few designs for large outdoor, public sculptures. I thought animation would feel right for the video and aesthetically I wanted it to have a ’70s era National Film Board feel. From that came this idea of a drunken visit to an art gallery where everything kind of looks like the inside of a person’s body. I didn’t want anything overly literal associating to the themes of the song but if you’re wondering what all the pink goo is about, it’s “Cartoon Moonshine” or Pepto Bismol. Your choice.