Dan Konopka: OK Go videos are 'extension of our art'

OK go

OK go

Few bands have embraced the benefits of the YouTube generation more than OK Go. The US indie pop rockers have created several viral smash clips - including their latest creation, the dog-filled 'White Knuckles'. We caught up with drummer Dan Konopka to find out all about their unusual approach.

You guys obviously put a lot of effort into your videos.

"We give that as much effort as we give to our music. It's something we take a lot of pride in. It's an extension of our artwork. We spend a lot of time on it, we go about it in such a different way to a lot of bands."

They seem very organic, is that the case when recording them?

"Everyone puts a lot of effort in to make a one-take video. The amount of preparation that goes in is a lot more than a video edited and shot over two days. The treadmill video took eight days to choreograph. So we spent eight days tying not to kill ourselves on those treadmills!

"When we're shooting videos it's pretty intense. It's work time, it's the same as making a record and by the end of it we have a new piece of artwork that we can be as proud as a new single."

We recently saw you facing off against Animal from the Muppets, how did that come about?

"That was a cool thing to have happen. We record the Muppet theme song for a new record of bands covering the Muppet tunes so we were friendly with the Muppet camp and we wanted to do more because OK Go and the Muppets seem like a really natural fit. We found out we'd won a Webby award and the Muppets were going to be there because they'd won six awards after they did the Bohemian Rhapsody video."

Where did the stare-put contest concept come from?

"We thought it'd be great to do something Animal wouldn't be comfortable with, and we came up with sitting still! When we went in the room with Animal it was like seeing Bowie or something, when we got in the room it was like, 'Holy s**t, that's Animal!'"

Rich Chamberlain

Rich is a teacher, one time Rhythm staff writer and experienced freelance journalist who has interviewed countless revered musicians, engineers, producers and stars for the our world-leading music making portfolio, including such titles as Rhythm, Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, and MusicRadar. His victims include such luminaries as Ice T, Mark Guilani and Jamie Oliver (the drumming one).