Sui Zhen is a Melbourne-based singer-songwriter,
who performs both solo and as a part of duo Fox + Sui.
She has picked five of her favourite videos: Colours and Soul by Dunkelziffer,
Amanaemonesia by Chairlift, You Changed Me by Sean Nicholas Savage,
Udi Baba Udi Baba by Asha Bhosle and Hawaii Bombay by Mecano.
Somewhere between Can, Liquid Liquid (for their Cavern clip) and Tom Tom Club (for their Genius of Love clip) sits Dunkelziffer. It’s happy and percussive space reggae that could please any adult and child alike. I aspire to make videos like this – expressive, colourful and ultimately satisfying. It’s the kind of labour intensive art that appeals to me – stop-motion animation with crayon, cubist figures and dope music – the kind of song to bring in the dawn.
A more contemporary video here, featuring green lycra, excellent dance moves, beautiful colour grading and classic 80’s synth pop. It’s from Brooklyn band Chairlift, who’ve continued a vibrant and tastefully psychedelic-karaoke aesthetic since their previous release with the data-moshed Evident Utensil. I’m mainly into the execution of their ideas. It’s supreme. Caroline Polachek is a babe and her subtly slick ponytail and self-choreographed ‘adult-contemporary dance suggestions’ blow my mind.
Oh yeah, and there’s amazing hand-drawn stop-motion animation too. Pfft. Too good.
Sean Nicholas Savage has my heart with this coupling of a true ‘romance’ song and wonderfully simple yet somehow still creepy video. His long stares and offbeat mannerisms are ever perplexing – and he has these wonky teeth that peek out with such good timing. I love the reference to David Byrne with the over-sized suit – not sure if intentional, but it works perfectly for this awkward character. The ‘wo wo wo’ intro and outro reminds me of Cantonese singing. This guy breaks. My. Heart.
No-one slides and sighs like Asha Bhosle (though the the deeper toned and huskier Asha Puthli comes close). This video has everything you could EVER WANT in a music video. TICK.
Lastly, I point you to this little number. I feel it’s closest to where Fox & Sui are heading at the moment out of all the above clips. Lo-budget VHS home-movie, Faux-exotica, bird sounds – the kind of magic that could only come from a Spanish-new-wave pop-rock band of the 80’s. Watch how the men turn to her for the ‘sighs’ in the chorus and her cheeky seductive lovemaking to the camera. Class act.
Sui’s debut album,Two Seas, is out now.
Sui will be going on tour from the 30th of May onwards. For dates and venues, head to Sui’s official Facebook page.