Deftones shared a new music video for their Ohms album cut “Ceremony.” The video stars The Last Man on Earth’s Cleopatra Coleman and was directed by Leigh Whannell, the actor/writer/director who co-created the Saw and Insidious franchises with James Wan.
The song begins as an exercise in tension and release, with jagged guitars calling out as the song builds up to its explosive and melodic chorus, “So I’m leaving you tonight/It’s not fun here anymore/I’ll be joining the parade/Of the ghosts who came before, before/Leaving you complete, no surprise/With one kiss, one caress, ooh.”
The video shows Coleman passing through a series of doors, into a bar, then into a VIP room and so on until she reaches the room that she’s been looking for at the end, and the person who waits inside it. The conversation at the end is yet to be deciphered by lip readers, but it’s possible that Deftones and Whannell would prefer that it remains a mystery since the whole video seems rather cryptic.
On the way there, she is asked to give up something each time she passes through a door by members of Deftones, who act as bouncers. Each of the entrance tests appears to reference different Deftones songs. However, the first and last test may be exceptions to this. To gain access to the bar, keyboardist Frank Delgado asks Coleman to tell him something she’s never told anyone before, and she responds, “I’m not who I say I am.” At the last door, she only has to say “Yes” when frontman Chino Moreno asks, “Are you truly ready to go in?”
As for the references, when bassist Sergio Vega asks Coleman to give up something meaningful to her, she hands him a golden fly statue, which appears to reference their most popular song, “Change (In the House of Flies).” At the next door, lead guitarist Stephen Carpenter asks her to take a risk by putting her arm through a slot in the door. This might reference “Risk,” but she’s then bitten by what appears to have been either a snake or a vampire, which potentially alludes to the “Kimdracula” line “These snakes were your arms.” After this, she threatens to cut drummer Abe Cunningham’s throat, which seems to reference the repeated “Knife Party” line, “Go get your knife.” Cunningham gives her entrance to an elevator, which could also potentially be inspired by their song “Lifter” even though it’s just as possible that that one’s a coincidence.
The PRP observed that Whannell was given the opportunity to direct the music video after expressing how much he loved Ohms on Twitter. On Monday, Whannell commented on that experience, “One day I wrote on Twitter that I was loving the new @deftones album. The next day their manager sent me a DM asking if I wanted to direct a music video for them. I said yes. The moral of the story is talk about the things you love on Twitter, not the things you hate.”
Specifically I mean talk about the ART and pop culture you love, not the art and pop culture you hate. When it comes to politicians and their stupidity and insanity, all bets are obviously off.
— Leigh Whannell (@LWhannell) April 19, 2021
Photo credit: Raymond Flotat