"Now we gotta work on what you're going to do between the songs."
That's a conundrum any band that performs live has to face down, and one posed to Jason Narducy, the lead singer of the band Split Single, at the beginning of the new video for its song, "Untry Love." Narducy's bandmates insist that when Queen performed live guitarist Brian May would turn amp knobs, drummer Roger Taylor would "towel off" and Freddie Mercury would change into "shorter, tighter shorts." What's he gonna do? And so Narducy begins an adorable and hilarious quest to try as many different options for looking cool as possible over the next three-plus minutes: tossing guitar picks, sipping water, yelling the name of the city and, obviously, ventriloquism.
Oh, P.S.: Narducy's band in the video isn't actually the rest of Split Single itself. Comedian Dave Hill and singer-songwriter Anya Marina play his demanding bandmates. In real life, Narducy, who has played with Bob Mould, Superchunk, Guided By Voices and more, is joined on his new record by Jon Wurster and John Stirratt. You may know Stirratt as the bassist in Wilco and Wurster as drummer with Superchunk and Bob Mould, plus The Mountain Goats and the comedy duo Sharpling and Wurster. Before playing on Split Single's latest album, Metal Frames, the three had never played together, though they've known each other a long while.
Jason Narducy wrote in an email that he wanted to poke fun at how bands concern themselves with frivolous details:
"I did this as a young musician. The storyline I wrote for this video takes that to the extreme for the sake of (hopefully) being funny. Dave and Anya are good friends who liked the premise and I was thrilled they wanted to join in for some fun. We shot the video on November 9th in New York City, the day after the election. There was deep sadness on the streets and in all of our hearts. We had a meeting before we started working where we basically said, "We can either go home and feel terrible or we can be creative with friends and try to make something out of this s***** feeling." So we forged ahead. At one point in the video, I am supposed to act sad looking at an old band picture and it was not difficult to get tears in my eyes that day."
Split Single's album Metal Frames is out now on Inside Outside Records.