A Dallas artist has helped the Toadies create a new animated music video a month after the release of their latest album, The Lower Side of Uptown. When The Toadies approached Clay Stinnett to illustrate the track "Broke Down Stupid," the band's singer, Vaden Todd Lewis, had an idea in mind.
“It’s a twisted story that deserves a twisted video,” Toadies guitarist Clark Vogeler says.
The video tells the story of man who's being tried for public intoxication. The video starts in the courtroom and flashes back to the night before at a bar, where he gets drunk, kicked out and tossed in a taxi, and he finally throws up in a restroom before being arrested, booked and processed.
Vogeler jokes that the plot may actually be a memory of Lewis'.
One of the most powerful and visually arresting scenes in the video is when a devil-like creature whispers into the man's ear in the courtroom. It ends with the man lying in the fetal position on the floor of his jail cell.
Vogeler says the band, which is in the middle of a four-month tour promoting the new album, hardly needed to describe the story to Stinnett before he got working.
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“He rushed off and returned a day later with dozens of images already completed,” Vogeler says. “The man is seriously an art machine. Over the course of a couple weeks, he created all the images used in the video, plus an enormous surplus that we sadly didn’t have the time to use.”
Stinnett says he was inspired by American artist Raymond Petition and Welsh artist Ralph Steadman. Petition's work is often violent and disturbing, and his influence is clear in "Broke Down Stupid." The hallmarks of Steadman's caricature and cartoon work also come through.
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“As far as inspiration, it starts with Clark’s story and direction,” Stinnett says. “From there I would just search for images to use as models and draw several options for the animator to choose from as a starting point. Process-wise, I was working extremely quick with ink and markers on several pads of Bristol board, lending to the gestural look.”
Once Stinnett finished the illustrations, the band handed them over to animator Devin Ensz, who "managed to turn a giant stack of crazy and intense images into a bizarre and funny narrative that works great with the vibe of the music it accompanies,” Vogeler says. “This video was made by the hands and brains of Clay and Devin, and we are grateful for their talent and hard work.”