Staff Post: Sounds & Visions

Our blog today comes from one of our Senior Project Managers – Boris Campan and he certainly loves music! 

Today we’ll have a look into the world of music videos.

Nowadays some artists spend millions on their music videos for a result that is far from good in my opinion, that’s why today I’ll show you some of the best music videos.

First of all, I must say that for me the music and the video have to be great in order to make a great music video. So a great video on a poor song will never be amazing, and same thing for a great song with a lame video.

Let’s start with that amazing band that is Tool. When the band released this single from their 2nd album in 1993, they made a video in stop-motion animation obviously inspired by the work of the brothers Quay Wikipedia Page.  It was directed by Fred Stuhr but the characters models are made by Adam Jones, Tool’s guitarist.

 

Still in the 90’s a young musical genius called Jon Crosby started his career under the alias of VAST (Visual Audio Sensory Theater) and released an eponymous album in 1998. It was a mix of both acoustic and electric rock (himself playing most of the instruments), recorded with an 18-piece orchestra and with addition of samples of Monks singing or even traditional Bulgarian songs. The result was great and one single was released from it called “Pretty When You Cry”. The music video that comes with was a bit of a “Little red riding hood meet David Lynch and it turns into a nightmare” kind of thing.

In 1971 Limerick sees the birth of a kid named Richard David James. He got the exact same name as his brother who died few years ago as his mom is certain that her newborn baby is the reincarnation of her dead son. The family relocated to Cornwall and quickly the young Richard D James was seen as a little music prodigy. He started to make music at the age of 11 with a computer that didn’t have sound on it! And he soon became one of the greatest electronic musician and probably one of the main influence of today’s music for a lot of artists (yes, even Kanye West worked with him and sampled his work) under the moniker of Aphex Twin. In 1997 he released “Come to Daddy” and asked a young director called Chris Cunningham to make a video for it. Video in which almost all the characters have Richard James face!

For me, the other very important musician in electronic music is Tom Jenkinson, also known as Squarepusher. This English musician, who happens to be one of Richard James best friend as well, after creating what some journalists called “Drill’n’Bass” started to mix elements of Jazz and  Musique concrète into his electronic music as well as introducing a lot of improvisation in his concerts to create a very unique sound. In 1997 for the release of his ep Big Loada, he asked Chris Cunningham to make a music video for it.  This video is almost a short movie which shows the attempts of kids to escape a mental institution in Japan.

One of my favorite band is a Belgian band from Antwerp called dEUS. The singer is a very charismatic guy called Tom Barman (he’s also a director) and the band has been one of my favorite since their beginning in the early 90s. They released many great albums and in 2012 for one of them, they released a music video for a song called Ghost. The video was directed by Saman Kesh and is about Jesus being a Californian skater and what happens to him if someone pushes him on the edge…

Finally I’ll finish this selection with the immense Sage Francis. Sage Francis is a Hip-Hop artist but also spoken word poet from the USA. He’s an activist and his lyrics are often politically engaged. You can catch him and B. Dolan another HipHop/spoken word artist at the Fringe in Edinburgh this august.

In his 2014 album “Copper Gone”, he has a song called “Make Em Purr” (produced by Buck 65) which is about an average white man in his 40’s who got cat with health issues (see what’s happening her?) and the artist called Wasaru made an amazing music video for it.

I hope you enjoy the selection!

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