Sunday, 30 January 2011

Great Music Videos Vol. 1.

I thought I'd try something a little different this time around. Instead of going on and on about album art, I thought I'd pick a few of my favourite music videos and have a look at those. After four volumes and twelve albums it is getting harder to think of truly great album covers. Though I'm sure there are many that haven't occurred to me yet. So for now I'm going to leave that and come up with another few posts worth of ideas (feel free to leave any suggestions in comments). In the meantime here are some brief thoughts on some great music videos.

Killing Joke - 'Love Like Blood'
'Night Time', 1985

My first pick this month is the fantastic classic by Killing Joke. A proud left wing band, this anthemic song has a suitably inspiring video with classic socialist imagery used throughout with the colours of the flag of the Second Spanish Republic featuring prominently. Not only is the song brilliant with it's steady drum beat, haunting melody and astounding bass line courtesy of the late Paul Raven - but the video is a high point for industrial/goth/indie bands that followed.

Moonspell - ‘Finnisterra’
'Memorial', 2006

A bit of a heavier choice now and quite a modern metal video. Moonspell's use of 'Gothic' imagery over the years has been somewhat cheesy. However the heavily CG video for 'Finnisterra' is so over-the-top that it is borderline genius. The band and director have lost all sense of subtlety, and the resulting video is a brilliant summation of the song.

Android Lust - ‘Stained’
'The Dividing', 2002

It's hard for me to say anything bad at all about Android Lust. Shikhee's song writing and conceptual execution is simply astonishing. The complexity and beauty of the music is so brilliantly mirrored by the imagery of AL, and none more so than in this video. 'Stained' is full of surreal, alien, sexual, and claustrophobic images that are held together by the band's distinctive style of melodic industrial music. This video will no doubt leave a lasting impression on the viewer.

Fields Of The Nephilim - ‘Psychonaut’
'Psychonaut (Single)', 1989

Fields Of The Nephilim have always used the music video to their advantage. The early promotional videos for 'Preacher Man' and 'Blue Water' were like short sci-fi/horror films set to the band's music. On ‘Psychonaut’ though they go one step further, using a catalogue of imagery held together by the visceral scenes of a Sun Dance. The grainy and sometimes oversaturated images are spooky enough, but when layered and blended as they are the video takes on a very surreal facade.

The Faint - ‘Agenda Suicide’
'Danse Macabre', 2001

The Faint are easily one of the most underrated of all the New Wave style indie bands of the new millennium. Punk, New Wave, Synthpop, and even Industrial a can all be heard in the band's sound making them somewhat unique amongst their ilk. A unique band needs a unique video, and the video for 'Agenda Suicide' is just that. Wonderfully animated in a modernist-meets-pop art style, the visual accompaniment sums up in four minutes, the angst of the modern age.

Great Music Videos Vol. 2 coming soon...


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