“And if this blood don’t turn to gold, I think I’m doomed…”
Celebrations! Tonight the wonderful Boy and Bear are playing in my city of Wollongong at what will probably be a sold-out Harp Hotel. I love this band – I’ve seen them four times in the past year and this will be my fifth go-around with their addictive and lovely folk-rock. So, to celebrate, I thought I’d throw together a little piece on their latest video, for one of my favourite tracks of theirs, Blood to Gold.
Each of their videos seems to have a cute, quirky concept behind it. For this video, they’ve gone for the symbolism of battling between light and dark, good and evil, night and day, etc. It’s done in gorgeous high definition, and packs a great deal in for a sub-three-minute song. I won’t bore you with much more of the details, but enjoy this! And please, for the love of God, support these guys! Grab the With Emperor Antarctica EP, or get along to a show. They’re lovely guys and deserve all the attention drawn their way. Right on!
“Living is just about people and love, and the rest you can forget it…”
Here’s a shout-out to a very talented dude and someone I’m very proud to know, Mr. Andy Bull. I’ve just followed the Clare Bowditch tour for two nights, where he opened each show and just nailed it. He’s really coming into his own as a songwriter and performer, so I thought I’d show some respect where respect is due and talk about one of his videos. Sadly, he hasn’t yet put videos to anything off his Phantom Pains EP, so I’ve gone with a favourite track of mine from his debut album, last year’s We’re Too Young.
Young Man features a tonne of cool effects, making it look like several Andys at once through clever split-screen and mirror imagery – remember those crazy wall of mirrors things from when you used to go to the circus? A bit like that. It’s a cute and simple video, and also shows Andy’s former hairstyle – he’s gone for the short, tussled hair now but it used to tangle all the way down to his shoulders. Very chique. Anyways, I really love this video, and the man himself – see what you think.
“Na na na na na na na, na na na na na na na na na na na na na…”
(you get the idea)
So, here we are! Welcome back to Y,WGAV!, and I thought we’d kick off with the triumphant return of your favourite band from when you were fifteen – My Chemical Romance. Sure, I’m being incredibly presumptuous and pretentious, but isn’t that my role as a blogger? Besides, MCR were huge a few years back, with The Black Parade being one of the highest-selling records of ’06 in both the pop and rock domains. Hell, for a brief moment there MCR was pop music. It’s only a matter of time before we find out if and how they can top the phenomenon of The Black Parade. But, for now, we have this crazy little teaser to accompany the lead single of the new record.
The first time you watch this will be amass with confusion. There’s crazy beat poetry, bike jackets, little kids with curly hair, shit getting blown up and a tonne of other wacky shit thrown into the mix. They’ve completely ditched the Black Parade concept and uniform and have taken their aesthetics to an entirely new level of grunginess. This appears to be about gang warfare, although with a Tarantino-esque cartoon take on it.
Who knows what this video says about Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, but all I can say is that it’s as red-hot as Gerard Way‘s new hair. This is one of the best videos I’ve seen in awhile – it’s exciting, it’s outlandish and it’s devilishly cool.
MC Bad Genius (aka Joel Beeson) is an Australian musician.
He is best known as the bassist and keyboardist of Philidelphia Grand Jury.
But you can call them the Philly Jays.
His favourite video is Yea Yeah by Matt & Kim.
It’s a pretty simple concept, but who doesn’t enjoy a good food fight? Nobody, that’s who. So to make it easier to see, you make the band dress in white and paint all the instruments white and make a backdrop of a kitchen (because its a FOOD fight) white as well. It sounds almost too simple. And if that is all the clip was, it would possibly get boring by the end, although I’m pretty sure that I would still like the clip anyways. But then they get cleaned up, change shirts and the food fight becomes a lot more literal, a lot more messy and a hell of a lot more ridiculous. To be honest, I wish this clip hadn’t existed; because we always wanted to do a food fight film clip. I guess it had already been done with “Salami Fever” by Pepe Deluxe, but this one is much better. And its much better than the idea we had, too.
“A homemade sandwich, half a jug of tea…”
Thank fucking GOD for the Country Music Channel on Austar. When there’s nothing good on the Comedy Channel, I strongly suggest you chance upon whatever bullshit they’ll be spinning – eight times out of ten it’s going to be some of the funniest shit you see all year. Like this relatively new audio-visual cringe-fest from Alan Jackson.
Now, if that name sounds familiar to you, it’s probably from watching a lot of the aforementioned Comedy Channel – Jackson was the country artist parodied on South Park for his awful song Where Were You (When The World Stopped Turning), in which he cashed in on the 9/11 attacks with some jingoistic bullshit set to four chords. Ahh, yes, you remember our old hick buddy AJ, right?
So, what’s he up to these days? Well, still cashing in on a target market, but it’s a different one this time – the “average Joe,” and their shit-average jobs that are apparently what keeps Uhhmurrica – sorry, America – together. So, he’s put together a montage of random dudes doing construction work, and then thrown him and his huge fuck-off band into the mix just to switch it up a little. It’s a sickly sweet sentiment, sure to bring a tear to the eye of hicks around the world and a hearty laughter to those of us who don’t find our cousins attractive.
A couple of things to point out, too – why wait until the VERY END of the song to mention that women are, indeed, ALSO working class? And what’s up with the lyric “cradle of the promised land”? Call me crazy, but I was always under the impression that the promised land was indeed Israel, and not the U.S.?
Ahh, whatever, I’ve given this old prick more time than he deserves. There may be “nothin’ wrong with a hard hat and a hammer,” but there’s certainly a lot wrong with this song and video.
“Please take two steps back…”
The Ice Cream Messiah returneth! After the blow-up with his record label and public meltdown, Muscles dutifully fucked off for awhile and most thought we’d never hear from him again. Time to throw that idea out the window, though – with relief instead of frustration, thankfully. Muscles is back with a new EP, Younger and Immature, and a video quite unlike anything he’s ever done before to go with it.
In somewhat of a homage to The Prodigy‘s groundbreaking Smack My Bitch Up video, the party life of some crazy girls (you see what he did there?) taking in a very graphic and unforgiving night on the town. There’s blood, drugs, violence and a few moments where you might have to turn away. It’s pretty full-on as a visual experience, but in terms of pure visuals it’s possibly the most interesting thing Muscles has put his name to.
Not sure if I’ve linked to a censored version or not, but surely both are circulating. Anyways, see what you think – musically it’s a little less “fun” than Guns Babes Lemonade, but that’s quite alright when there’s such an interesting video to go along with it.
Monique Schafter is an Australian writer, producer and musician.
She is best known for her work as a part of the Hungry Beast team.
Her favourite video is Welcome to the Jungle by Guns N Roses.
I love this clip cos it’s all about Axl. With a frontman like that, who needs an uber-narrative, lame-arse guest rapper (I’m talking to you, Snoop) or fancy special FX? Just let the man do his thing… and in Axl’s case, it’s the totally awesome maneuvre known as the ‘The Snake’. That slinky rock star move where he shimmies from side to side in time with the music. I emulate this move whenever I’m drunk, regardless of what music is playing… if any.
I also love this clip ’cause it’s about Axl being corrupted. He gets off the bus an innocent country boy with a piece of grass sticking out of his mouth, only to be pounced on by a drug dealer and aroused by a panty-ho’d lady in the gritty urban JUNGLE that is NYC. Yep, the sex, drugs and rock’n’roll of New York turn Axl into a writhing wild animal rock star. Welcome to the jungle, Axl!
And then there’s the straightjacket sequence where they force him to watch episodes of Baywatch and NYPD Blue (I think??) and Axl totally wigs out. It’s straight out of Clockwork Orange! LOVE IT.
Most of all I love Axl’s look in this clip… the crazy teased up strawberry-blonde hair, the make up, muscle top, spray-on leather pants = total androg hotness.
I was around 6 or 7 when this clip came out, and just like Axl, I was totally corrupted… and that is why ‘Welcome To The Jungle’ by Guns ‘N Roses is my favourite music video of all time… and that is also why I dance funny.
“There ain’t no shaking the smell, like there ain’t no shaking the spell…”
It’s time to pass the torch. Gareth Liddiard is officially the best writer in Australia, and potentially its greatest musical performer. He’s confirmed it with his outstanding new record, Strange Tourist, which is his first solo outing away from The Drones, and has given us a lovely video as a visual companion to the first song on the album, “Blondin Makes an Omelette”.
It’s possibly one of the most simple videos to be featured on this blog, but it’s entirely effective – Gareth simply isn’t the type to go for all the fancy stuff. It’s just clear black and white, with bold shades of grey and Liddiard strumming out the beautiful tune on a chair. The strained emotion comes through, as does his authentic struggle with the Neil Young-esque guitar solo and the general authenticity of the man as a performer. What more could you ask for out of this man? Strange Tourist is one of the essential albums of the year, and for a no-frills approach, “Blondin Makes An Omelette” looks great.
“A thousand times before, I wonder if there’s something more…”
2009 sucked for reunions. It just fucking sucked, man. The previously blogged-about East 17 got back together, Limp Bizkit started recording a new album, blink-182 went on a reunion tour…and Scott Stapp made peace with the other cunts from Creed and made a new record. It just doesn’t seem fair for the shit-boring douchebag post-grunge movement to come back around, especially with such a god awful band – and, as you can see, such a godawful video.
So, Stapp might be bald these days but he can still bleet like the best of Eddie Vedder’s goats, and do his looks down the camera barrell like he’s just taken a shit and yet is still trying to pull off Blue Steel. The rest of the band – who also spawned into another variant of evil, Alter Bridge – haven’t changed much, either. They’re all still fuckstains of gargantuan proportions, singing a song about the weather. Yep, the fucking weather. You know when you’re struggling for conversation at the bus-stop and you make a comment about the weather? That’s how desperate Creed are. Sure, there’s some kind of greater metaphor at work, but it’s probably just some bullshit about how douchey and brooding Stapp is. So, they rock out underneath some cheap watery CGI and leave – truly a full on display of the modern post-grunge dickweed. That’s all there is to it, really. Prepare for some rage-induced headaches with this one.