* There are a lot of things you can call INXS, but typical is not one of them.
INXS demonstrated their originality with their decision to bypass the usual brand of MTV video - high flash - opting instead for a film clip for each of the 12 songs on their new album.
``INXS writes music that is challenging and sends a message to our fans that we are not afraid to be different,'' said the group's Michael Hutchence in an interview shortly before he and the rest of INXS embarked on a five-week North American tour.
The tour, to support the release of their album ``Full Moon, Dirty Hearts,'' will have INXS playing mostly at small venues, rather than stadiums and arenas.
``It will be like a bunch of warehouse parties,'' Mr. Hutchence says, ``so the audience is at one with us.''
The idea to do film clips for the LP's songs originated from discussions the Australian group had about finding ways to be different.
``We wanted to know what else we could do with the medium and how we could approach it,'' Hutchence says.
Nine filmmakers from Melbourne and Sydney worked on the project and Hutchence says the videos will stand out on MTV. ``These are not girls with leather hot pants. There's enough of that,'' he says.
One video shows a tracking shot of a castle door. As it pans closer, the camera leads toward the keyhole and the point of view shifts through the keyhole and onto a black void with INXS playing.
``Full Moon, Dirty Hearts,'' is the 10th album released by INXS in the last 13 years. The group's breakthrough album was the 1987 ``Kick'' release, which featured the ``Need You Tonight-Mediate'' single and video.
On the new album, INXS plays some funk, dabbles in a bit of jazz, and even delves into the blues with a duet between Hutchence and Ray Charles.
It's this type of musical mix that has kept INXS in the mainstream during the past 17 years.