Slow motion, couples caressing, wind-swept close-ups, sun-burnt-shaded images of wide-open vistas -- consider John Mayer's video for his duet with girlfriend Katy Perry, "Who You Love," an unintended lovey-dovey response to Kanye West's "Bound 2," with a mechanical bull instead of a motorcycle.
There's romance here, but it's more of the greeting card variety. In addition to the promised intimate shots of Perry and Mayer, the two told ABC's "Good Morning America" on Tuesday that everyone else in the video is a real-life couple.
Said Mayer on the telecast, “There’s nothing scripted in that video except putting a bull in the middle of the desert."
As for the mechanical bull that Mayer mentioned, that's a metaphor, said Perry.
“Relationships are kind of like riding a bull,” she told "Good Morning America." “You hang on for dear life and sometimes you get a little buck here and there and sometimes you get things thrown at you but you get back on.”
The "Paradise Valley" ballad, styled for dentist-office waiting rooms, puts a sweet spin on the heart wants-what-it-wants theme. The video also features some glitter, fireworks and confetti-gun-wielding Mayer, but you're on your own when it comes to that metaphor.
Pop & Hiss writers have previously gone all gooey-eyed over "Who You Love."
Times critic Randall Roberts, for instance, wrote when introducing the song that "musically, Mayer has seldom sounded more relaxed, and has rarely written guitar works as elastic and forgiving."
The single, continued Roberts, "has the feel of an old soul classic, and producer Don Was records it with a claustrophobic tightness. Featuring pedal steel, a nearly liquid Mayer guitar strum and an impressive duet with a surprisingly real-sounding Perry, the song shows an artist both relaxed and well-practiced."
Mayer's album "Paradise Valley" could certainly benefit from a little shot of Perry. As of last week, "Paradise Valley" has sold 288,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan, while Perry's "Prism" is still in the top 10 and has sold more than 711,000 copies.
Watch the video below: