Thanks to the qizidary of You Tube, I’ve been making a playlist of some of my favourite music videos, all of which I’ve been able to find online.
10. Radiohead – High And Dry (US Version): to be honest I don’t think I’ve actually seen the UK version of this. There’s obviously some kinda noir-ish vibe happening with this video, with shady looking bankers and a pair of bank robbers. It’s also good to see the band not having to act (Thom Yorke excluded): they just go into the dinner and orded some food, with the waitress saying how she (probably) loves their accents. The end makes me smile, but that’s ‘cos I’m fucked up:
09. Aphex Twin – Windowlicker: mind you, I’m not as fucked up as this video, here presented to you in all it’s 10 minute, hi-res glory. The director, Chris Cunningham said he has a “spiteful sense of humour” and it shows in this grotesque pardoy of hip-hop videos. Taking his idea for “Come To Daddy” (demonic little kids with the Aphex Twin’s face), he pushes it even further having booty shaking, bikini girls in the video with Aphex Twin’s face. Truely horrendous, but hilarious at the same time.
08. Deftones – Minerva: a lot of the time, performance videos bore me. These days it’s a case of getting the band to perform whilst some SFX makes the video look eye catching. This video is different: match the performance with the music. In this case, the sheer wall of sound that is Minerva is matched with some epic, desert landscapes. There’s a degree of honesty about it too, having the lights, amps and camera rails all present. You can almost feel that it’s the music that whipping the wind up.
07. Bloc Party – The Pioneers: this one’s fairly new and has actually been used for two songs: the Pioneers and Helicopters, depending on where you live. Again, it’s good to see a band not having to do any acting, just animate them. Can you imagine trying to direct people who can’t act against some blue screen: “Ok, now the bug has transformed into a giant bug and you’re scared ok?”. Well, George Lucas has made a career out of it.
06. Quannum – I Changed My Mind: a little seen animated gem, from the only single from the group’s so far only album, Spectrum. Of course the fact it features DJ Shadow was a major factor in my desicion to purchase. This video was made by the guys at Shynola who also animated the brilliant pixelated video for Junior Senior’s “Move Your Feet”, as well as videos for UNKLE, Radiohead, Blur, Lambchop and ….
05. Queens Of The Stone Age – Go With The Flow: also animated by the dude’s at Shynola. I was tempted to put in “No One Knows” if just for the weird factor, plus the added Dave Grohl-ness. But “Go With The Flow” has such a unique look, I don’t think I’ve seen any kinda of film or animation look like this. Truely unique:
04. Doves – Pounding: the guys that are in Doves aren’t good looking, even for people from Manchester (drummer Andy looks like John McEnroe). But they make great music, three albums in and they haven’t delivered a dud yet. At first glance, you’d think “Hang on, you were just going on about bands who just perform with some fancy SFX, and how boring it was,”. Well yes, it’s boring now, but back in 2002 when I saw this I was blown away. Pounding is a driving, fiery song, that well… pounds and pounds. The video is beautiful to look at, the shimmering haze that envelopes the scene is something I can watch again and again.
03. V.A.S.T. – Pretty When You Cry: I first saw this video on a late night, Channel 4 show (I forget the name, it was shit anyway). The announcer said the video had been banned, which of course got me interested. I’d never heard of the band, but the video impressed me enough to get the album. Talk about weird; it’s a kind of perverted little red riding hood tale with plenty of memorable images.
02. Bjork – All Is Full Of Love: another Chris Cunningham video, this time a lot more easier on the eye. Apparently the influences came from Cunningham’s long standing love of robotics and a book of histoirc Japanses erotica Bjork had given the director. With the two combined, they’ve created a beautiful look for the video. Two trivia notes: this is a specially composed remix of the album track “All Is Full Of Love”, and the two robotic arms you see at the start are almost completely CGI.
01. Beastie Boys – Sabotage: this video comes top of loads of polls, and it’s not hard to see why. It just has shitloads of energy, fast edits and matches the soundtrack perfectly. It’s one of few videos I can watch again and again. Part of it must be down to the Beastie Boys knack of taking crap clothes and costumes and making them into characters (see their other videos for Intergalactic and Body Moving), so much so you end up wanting to watch the exploits of Cochese, Vic Colfari and The Chief. After seeing so many videos that try and empathise with criminals, it’s refreshing to see a video that makes being a cop look like a blast.
So, I’ve decided to update this page with some more videos, but these ones you probably haven’t seen. First up, a band called Kashmir with a song called Curse of Being A Girl. I would have liked to have seen the director’s instructions to the two girls:
“Ok girls, you’re going to be going on a roller coaster for quite a while. Blonde chick: look bored ok? And brunette chick…. wait, are you wearing a corset?”
“Yeah, think I look kinda sexy right?”
“Aren’t you worried your tits are gonna fall out?”
“No, but if they do you’ll edit that bit out right?”
Mates of a State are a husband and wife duo who make really charming, upbeat synth pop. The video here reflects the kinda homely, cutesy vibe they’ve got:
This video for Parabloa just missed out on my top 10. It’s another amazing visual fest, directed by the band’s guitarist Adam Jones. An expert in stop-motion animation, Tool’s videos are obtuse and frankly, I don’t have a fucking clue what they’re on about, but boy does it look good.
Now for three of my favourite videos by a top director, Mark Romaneck, who’s directed videos for the likes of Madonna, Lenny Kravitz, Linkin Park, Nine Inch Nails and Jay-Z. Here’s three of my favourites, starting with the immense video for “Hurt” by Johnny Cash:
Next up is the video for the debut single from Audilave entitled “Cochise”. It seems a simple enough idea, have the band perform in a massive fireworks display, you wonder why it’s not been done before:
Lastly, here’s the video to one of my favourite Bowie songs, “Jump (The Say)”, off his under-rated “Black tie White Noise” album (sounds a bit crap on this one):