Nick Jonas thinks he's in big trouble on "Close."
The lead single from his third solo album finds him swearing up a storm at the outset of this throbby, synthy, decidedly Bieber-esque R&B jam. "Oh d--n, oh d--n, oh d--n," he exclaims repeatedly. "I'm so perplexed."
So what's got him so profanely discombobulated?
Why, a girl, of course.
(In this case, Swedish singer Tove Lo, who guests on the song and in the video.)
Close Is Complicated
It takes exactly one breath for Nick Jonas to tumble down a steep mountainside of sensual infatuation. "With just one breath, I'm locked in," he tells us. That's followed by another round of semi-panicked swearing as that emotional descent picks up speed: "Oh d--n, oh d--n, oh d--n."
But it seems like the girl in question is a bit anxious too. So Nick ditches his own fears in order to begin sweet-talking her through hers. "I know, I know you know you're scared," he coos persuasively. "Your heart, your mind, your soul, your body/They won't, they won't, they won't be careful."
It's pretty clear where things are headed next.
"'Cause if I want you, and I want you, babe," Nick tells her, "Ain't going backwards, won't ask for space/'Cause space is just a word made up by someone who's afraid to get too/Close."
And that's exactly where Nick wants to be. "Oh, so close, oh," he pants. "I want you close, oh."
Physically? Emotionally? Definitely the former, maybe the latter.
As for Tove Lo, well, she knows the kind of a promise-ring-wearer-turned-veteran-playa she's dealing with here. "I'm keeping cool while you keep on smiling/Saying all the things I'm thinking/ … I am like you, so I want proof of what you're feeling."
And that, of course, requires getting "close," which is exactly what happens in the video.
The first third of the video finds the camera focused on Nick, who's wearing a trench coat while sitting on a chair in a deserted airplane hangar. He's singing plaintively to … someone. But each time he leans toward that offscreen other, his chair gets yanked backwards, defying his desire to close the distance between them. Then it's Tove's turn, with those mysterious yankings assaulting her, too.
Of course the couple does eventually manage to get close. Really close. They shed their coats to reveal undergarments (which are rather revealing in her case). They interlock their legs and simulate sex with suggestive, stylized lunges and dance moves.
And I guess we must conclude that that's pretty much Nick's full understanding of what it means to get "Close."