At the end of last year I wrote about some of my favourite music videos that had been released over the preceding twelve months. It was fun and I’m going to be doing it more regularly this year. Like, every month starting from now. Now, I’m no expert in video, camerawork or any of that stuff to be honest. Far from it. What I will be attempting is to look at how well these clips marry with the audio that accompanies them. Whether it’s lo-fi production values matching with the nastiness on display or pristine visuals tying the knot perfectly with beautiful sounds. That kinda thing y’know. Please find enclosed below the first edition of 2016’s Reel Good Sh1t. As I skipped January, there are a few from both of the swell months we’ve endured this year. Just a heads up, like the fart that you know you probably shouldn’t drop anywhere near a colleague or your employer, this post and it’s contents are not safe for work.
Fall Of Minerva – Beyond The Pines
This may tick all of the boxes required for a short film style music video, but it ticks them with an Instagram filtered brush. That was a compliment, just in case that wasn’t apparent. Complimenting the bittersweet sounds of Basick’s newest post-metal maestros is this beautifully shot video that has moody ambient lighting, shadow play and Oscar worthy close ups of wringing hands and clocks ticking. I love the locations used because a forest always looks cool in any type of music video. Our hooded antagonist wanders barefoot through the pines (maybe, I don’t know much about trees either) bathed in natural light and shadows before reaching a stunning ancient building when the song hits it’s big, bullish movement. The juxtaposition of the dark elements of the video with the harsh vocals and stuttering groove riff is totally nailed and makes for an all together satisfying watch and listen. Beautifully put together by the crew and Fall Of Minerva.
The Black Dahlia Murder – Threat Level No. 3
This is one of those rare occasions where you could watch the video and probably guess the band who’s music is meant to be playing over it. That’s how ridiculously Black Dahlia this clip is. Borrowing from horror’s renewed obsession with the video nasty era, the video for “Threat Level No.3” is equal parts Driller Killer, Metalocalypse and Superjail; leaning more towards the batshit insanity of the latter. I’d be surprised if someone hadn’t been watching Superjail when drafting ideas for this. My favourite band’s obsession with the macabre and morbid always makes for entertaining video clips (seriously, they have the best back catalogue of music videos of any band I can think of; unbiased opinion) and this one might just be their best yet. It’s garrish and gruesome but still pretty funny considering it revolves around the trials and tribulations of a convicted child murderer. It’s on this list because it perfectly encapsulates the sick sense of humour that makes The Black Dahlia Murder so entertaining to listen to, watch and interact with. This type of video could only work in animated form, thankfully. Never before has a lead guitar section been literally face melting.
Fleshgod Apocalypse – Cold As Perfection
This band are so fucking classy. When I was a pup I heard Dimmu Borgir for the first time and I had no idea what I was meant to be listening to. Was I meant to hear a riff there or is there even one underneath all the orchestral hits? Is that fucking opera singing? Nope, not for me. Thankfully, Fleshgod Apocalypse popped up with their own take on symphonic shred death and I soon understood where Dimmu were trying to come from; the Italians just do it with way more panache and posture. Now, save for a Cradle Of Filth style finale, this video is pretty clean. It’s almost too clean considering it’s meant to be telling the viewer the tale of some Italian nobles and their sordid relationship. Everything is immaculately decorated and so are the actors. Fancy costumes, buoyant hair dos and the slickest facial hair were all staples of the era that Fleshgod are aiming for, I presume, and they hit it right on the well quiffed head. I don’t get what’s going on but the regal flavour of this one is just so sick, it could only be a music video for a band as fancy as this. Yeah, there’s boobies and suicide but the real clincher for this video is the band themselves popping up as the dirty, tavern band. Odd seeing them without their usual corpse paint/ballroom attire but again, totally fitting for the track.
Venomous Concept – Anthem
Last but not definitely not least is this short, sharp clip for Venomous Concept‘s “Anthem”. This one, like “Threat Level No.3” definitely suits the animation treatment. Stylistically miles apart from the other “cartoon” on this list, it still packs a mighty punch. In this case a strong hook from the left. Grind and punk have always been politically charged and this is no different, with Venomous Concept’s mascot of sorts sitting in school learning about the ways of the world before retiring to bed and dreaming of everyone’s favourite line regarding politicians and the lives they send off to war. The crude animation and monochromatic feel breaks up a bit during the dream sequence but the message is just as clear as the black and white used here. I love the parts where the lyrics are plastered across the screen in classic comic book style. It’s remarkably simple but crushing effective, just like the three and four chord riffs that make up this two minute roaster of a track.
So there we have it. Four awesome music videos that I found to be just as entertaining to watch as they are to write about. There’s no real delving into the techniques used or anything but who doesn’t like to watch a great music video now and again? Which was your favourite? Which music videos did I miss that you think should have been in here too? Let me know. All genres, all styles, all welcome. As always, if you’ve just found something new then go check them out and listen more. These are all great bands with current and upcoming releases. Enjoy them.