Pierce The Veil are premiering their new video for “Circles” taken off their album Misadventures, which dropped May 13.
Read on to hear more from Vic Fuentes on the making of the video and how everything in the movie-inspired music video came together, plus see behind-the-scenes photos.
Your new video for “Circles” is based on the 1991 feature film “Nothing But Trouble,” which was directed and written by Dan Aykroyd and starred Chevy Chase, John Candy and Aykroyd.
Vic Fuentes: In that movie there – it's sort of like a slap-stick horror movie about trying to escape an old house from an old man that runs the house. So we kind of loosely based it off of that and we kind of adjusted it more to what would we be doing, you know? Everyday we have to check into a hotel on tour and so we kind of based it off of like, 'What if we checked into this hotel and it was just this haunted hotel with this old man who tried to send us through his bag of tricks in his house and capture us.' And it's like he would be doing this for years and all of these bands had disappeared, you know? In this house and we're trying to help each other out of it. So yeah, it's kind of based on this idea for the video.
When we got a peek at the script, it said Sleeping With Sirens and All Time Low made cameos. Can you tell us who was actually in it?
[Laughs]. I can't tell you yet – I can't give away the magic. [Laughs].
We were reading about how there's this one part where you guys are kind of running through these halls and there's these like flashes that are almost like a strobe-light and different things happen to all of you. Can you tell us a little bit about how that part came together?
So this video we did – we didn't want to use a lot of green screen and we wanted it to be in the old days where doors were opening and things were moving, it was all mechanical and always done by hand. There's literally points where like 10 people were opening and shutting doors and there was a guy with wires pulling an old rocking chair that makes it look like it’s haunted. There's a lot of really fun tricks like that throughout the video; us falling through a trap door—it's really us jumping off of a ladder on a mattress. So things like that were super fun and made it look like we were really going through all of these obstacles and booby traps.
The way it sounds definitely reminds us more of how music videos used to be. More of a production with a storyline.
Yeah! We love storyline. We know we're not actors, but we think videos are way more fun when the band is involved and is down to make it more fun. So whenever we write stories like this, we write ourselves into it because I think that's what we were used to seeing. Growing up, we would love to see the bands in the video, you know? Not just playing.
What's your favorite part of the video?
My favorite part is that we were able to get Matt Pinfield, who was a big part of MTV when I was a kid. You know, when MTV was playing music videos and music videos were larger than life. Matt Pinfield actually comes from that time and I remember watching him as a kid and it was just so crazy to have him be a part of this and be so goofy in it, and just embrace it and love it—it was so fun.
How did he get involved?
We had done Matt Pinfield's radio show a couple of weeks prior to filming the video. So we did this radio show with him, we all got along more than I think we ever have in an interview because Pinfield is just a huge music lover even to this day. You talk about any band he's like, 'Oh, I remember when we signed them. When I did this for them, when I was at this guy's house—whatever.' He's got stories for days. We all got along because we had a lot in common about our music taste and stuff like that, and he mentioned that he was in a video for, I forgot what other band, I think maybe Limp Bizkit or something like that. We're like, just joking around: 'Hey, would you ever be in one of our videos?' And he's like, 'Ah, of course!' He didn't even think we were going to be doing a video with him, so then we came up with this treatment and concept soon after that, and it just hit me like, 'Hey, why don't we hit up Matt? He said he'd be down. We're going to hold him to his word. [Laughs].' He was so down and he's such a huge supporter of music. If you wanna talk music about anything, he's always down. He'll talk to you for hours. So yeah, it was really cool to see him so excited and to take the time out of his life to come and do this and fly over here, and spend a few hours doing it and loved it.
How long did it take for him to get in that old man make-up?
[Laughs]. He was in make-up for probably like two hours, I think? Something like that. It wasn't too bad.
So you guys also worked with Drew Russ on this video, who shot “King For a Day,” too, right?
Yep. And “Bulls In The Bronx.”
What made you decide to go back for this one?
We had been receiving a lot of initial ideas and treatments from a lot of directors. After a while, I started to realize—we were getting all of these horrible treatments that I hated, that we all hated, and then it sort of hit me that the thing that we love about Drew the most is that he is able to make a good quality video, and he is also good on the creative side of writing things, which is a combination that is priceless when you are dealing with a director. Most directors either make amazing looking videos and they have no good ideas, or they have a lot of good ideas and their videos look horrible. So to find a guy that has both is really special, and if you know anything about Drew, he can come up with cool, funny ideas, he understands his audiences and he can make it look cool, too. He knows how to make cool videos and he knows how to get a good crew and stuff. So yeah, that's why we decided to go back with him.
Do you have any crazy stories of things that happened while filming this video?
I mean, to create this stage set, it was all done in one location. They literally built these things within thirty minutes, they would have a whole bedroom built with like phones everything. So it was really pretty crazy to see the crew working so crazy and fast. The room that we're in, the bedroom, smelled horrible because they splattered food stuff all over—I think there was salad dressing all over the bed to make it look gross. I think at one point Mike almost knocked out the cameraman on accident in the newspaper room because we had to spin around really fast and we bumped into the guy with this like two-hundred pound thing and knocked right into his face. We had to jump off a ten-foot ladder onto a mattress which was really crazy. There was a lot of little fun, crazy things that happened during the video in such a short amount of time.
Do you ever feel nostalgic for that time when music videos were huge? There used to be world premieres of music videos on MTV—do you think it's harder now for artists to create really cool videos like that?
Yeah, I think it's really hard. I do remember, like you said – I remember when Michael Jackson would put a new video, it was literally like a world event. The whole world would be watching NBC, they would air it on regular TV because it was such a huge thing. I remember everyone would sit by the TV and get together to watch it. You don't have that anymore, so I think like I said the biggest thing you have to do now is just have fun with it and represent yourself the way you want to. For this video, we like to be involved in it and we like to kind of go that extra mile ourselves in there as well. It's really fun.
Is there anything else you want fans to know about the video?
Matt was really awesome. I guess at the end of the day, this is probably one of the most special songs we've ever written, as far as the meaning behind it, and we wanted to come across as something positive and really gives you the message that it's about taking care of your friends, escaping things, and helping each other out when you need to. That's kind of what we want to portray at the end of the day.