“This ain’t a love song,” snarls Paul from Gramsci, and indeed this ain’t a love song music video. It’s stark and monochromatic black figures on a white background, as the band play the song, slowed down to give it a dreamy feeling. Or as the description on MySpace helpfully explains, “drifty floaty black and white silhouettes overlaid intermingly splace”. Ok.
The video begins with a band member rolling a cigarette and lighting up, and we see him smoking it throughout. While cigarettes in music videos were a fairly common thing in the ’90s, by the 2000s it was less common, and the Smoke-free Environments Act amendment wasn’t far off, killing smoking at indoor music venues.
So it got me thinking. What if “This Ain’t a Love Song” is about giving up tobacco? What if it’s a bittersweet kiss-off to the difficult life of smoking. And it kind of fits, there with both the song and video casually passing as a typical relationship song.
The video finishes with the cigarette being stubbed out, and the guy who does it seems really relieved, like he’s stubbing out all the drama and emotion contained in the song. Well, that’s my theory. Because if it’s only a song and a video about a relationship, it’s kinda dull.
Best bit: the look of intense concentration when rolling the ciggie.
Next… an equine command.