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- Posted on Aug 23rd 2012 4:30PM by Nicole Pajer
The result is a 26-day cross-country journey with Faye playing the "Love Runner," sprinting from coast to coast in order to reunite with her long lost love in New York. She battles a variety of obstacles along the way including fellow band member Chad Petree who plays the part of "The Chosen One," her dark apprentice who attempts to stop her by any means necessary.
It all started when Faye and Dawson had secured a trip to go tornado chasing.
"Carah had never been and back in the day she always wanted to go but we didn't have time. We had plane tickets to Oklahoma and we finally had this plan to go chase," Dawson tells Spinner.
The band had an RV stored in New York that they needed to pick up, so they decided to cancel their tickets to Oklahoma and drive across the country collecting footage for the video. "We called a bunch of camera guys and were like, 'You guys want to go on vacation for a month?' and we got in a truck and we drove all over the country for 26 days," Dawson explains.
The journey took them from their Los Angeles home to Oklahoma, where they picked up Dawson's storm-chasing van, affectionately known as "The Phantom."
"It's jet black and looks like the 'A-Team' van or the 'Ghostbusters' van. It's got 900 pounds of metal around it," he describes giddily. "It's got lights, antennas, satellite dishes all over, these massive mud tires, chrome and completely unnecessary boy things all over it -- giant grills." Dawson and Faye tracked storms from Oklahoma to South Dakota and San Antonio before heading to New York to pick up their RV and return to L.A.
While they didn't get their "money shot" of Faye running with a tornado in the background, the band did encounter several storms along the way.
"We did shoot a tornado by accident," says Dawson. "Carah shot it on her phone without even realizing it." The electro indie rockers also got caught in a giant hailstorm.
"We saw a funnel cloud and we knew it was going to touch. It was to the point where the photographer was like, 'Get in the van now! We gotta go now.' We got in the van and a wrath of rain wrapped around the tornado to where you could not see the actual funnel; all you saw was just a wall of black. We turned the van around and then drove right into a hail core!"
Storm chasing has been a passion of Dawson's for as long as he can remember. "I'm from Oklahoma. so I was raised around it and have always been extremely fascinated by it. I remember being super young and being grabbed out of bed in the middle of the night and thrown in the bathtub with a mattress over me. Tornadoes have just always been really fascinating -- first for the awe of it and then I started studying the meteorology and the science of it."
The Shiny Toy Guns mainstay has also taken an interest in training with the Red Cross and becoming CPR certified. "Moving forward, I want to get my license to be a first responder at the level to be in an ambulance. This is a hobby -- it's cool to see the weather, cool to be around things you can't control and it's also cool to help people that have been victims of it."
For those interested in pursing a storm-chasing hobby, the band has some advice: "The first thing to do is to start understanding the storms. Before you go out there, you have to start understanding they are unpredictable. To a degree though, you can get a best guess based on certain variables so doing your research is really where you start," Faye says.
Dawson points out that a great way to become educated is to contact your local weather service and ask for free training classes, and there are also professional storm chasing excursions that you can be a part of. "They take you in a big van or SUV and they obviously can't guarantee you anything but they drive you into storms all over the United States 24 hours a day. You get to take pictures and learn," Dawson says, while explaining that when it comes to storm chasing, location is everything.
"If you are fascinated by storms, you need to be in an area where there are a lot of active storms -- which could be anywhere in the Southeast or in the Midwest -- just about anywhere except for Death Valley or Los Angeles."
The band is extremely proud of their latest video. More importantly, they are excited to release their third studio album, III, and to be back in action with Faye, who says that the reaction to the new STG tune has been extremely positive. "I think our fans are just ready for new music in general. We're so anxious to get our album out too because it's taken so long."