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Parlour Tricks, 'Broken Hearts/Bones'

The perfect music video makes me fall in love with a song by breathing life into its story. Here is a perfect music video. The band is Parlour Tricks, a band in love with radio pop, something I don't always embrace, but that's where the video worked it's magic. I madly love the story here, partly told in the song "Broken Hearts/Bones" and fleshed out in a supermarket gone wild with sadness, regrets and passionate lovemaking in the popcorn aisle.

I hadn't imagined when I asked singer Lily Cato how all this came to be that it might have been based on a real life moment. "A few months ago I was standing in the checkout line at the grocery store," she wrote back. "A very popular, very sad love song came on the radio. When it reached the bridge I suddenly became aware that everyone around me had started singing to themselves. Softly, but earnestly. There was a middle aged man, some teenagers, woman with a baby, dude with a motorcycle helmet under his arm, all of the women working the checkout counter. Everyone was singing and no one was acknowledging it. I had never seen anything like it. After the song ended the line shuffled forward, the next song came on, there were beeps from the scanners, the manager talking over the intercom. No one made eye contact. I might as well have dreamt it. I left feeling crazy; it was so funny, but also so moving. I had borne witness to a weirdly intimate, collective catharsis. All because that song came on the radio. I couldn't stop thinking about it. A few weeks later I called Dani (Brandwein, director) and told her about it, and the treatment for a 'Broken Hearts/Bones' music video practically wrote itself."

Dani Brandwein told us she was immediately drawn to the Lily's idea and loved the challenge of zeroing in on shared loneliness in New York, the group's hometown: "Broken hearts and broken bones are universal. Creating this world and seeing the characters through was a dream, and made for a unique shooting experience. I'm still a little bit in disbelief that we were able to shoot the entire video in only 6 hours in the middle of the night, talk about raising the stakes!"

"Broken Hearts/Bones" is the title track from Parlour Tricks' 2015 album, released by Bar/None Records.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

In 1988, a determined Bob Boilen started showing up on NPR's doorstep every day, looking for a way to contribute his skills in music and broadcasting to the network. His persistence paid off, and within a few weeks he was hired, on a temporary basis, to work for All Things Considered. Less than a year later, Boilen was directing the show and continued to do so for the next 18 years.