Flux Pavilion & Doctor P – »Superbad«. Well known dubstep producers, Flux Pavilion and Doctor P teamed up for »Superbad«. This stylish music video was directed and animated by James Swindells & Andrew Robinson.
Here are the final 5! Please complement this personal list by leaving a comment.
5. Fair Ohs – »Everything is Dancing« directed by Dave Ma. The truth about Batman and Robin as we have not known it before. Ma definitely established the better looking superhero duo. Perhaps, a little lazy and saving the world is not as important as having a large dinner, but also heroes need time off. Moreover, band and video deserve a lot more attention than they have been getting. Please take note.
4. Panda Bear – »Surfer’s Hymn« directed by Sam Fleischner and the Brooklyn-based creative company m ss ng p eces. This music video is a tribute to all the surfers taken by the sea. Shot in black and white, it follows skeletons who rise from the dead, get their surfboards and make their way towards the sounds of the waves. Pretty neat idea. Don’t miss the other major ghosts video of 2011, Toro y Mois »How I Know«.
3. David Lynch – »Good Day Today« directed by Arnold de Parscau. Great creepiness again. Back in 2010, Lynch announced a music video contest where directors were invited to submit their own music video creations to any of his songs. The master of mystery made the right choice: the winning video was directed by Arnold de Parscau, a reminiscent of Lynch’s own cinematical work. »Crazy Clown Time« marks Lynch’s solo debut as a musical artist.
2. New Romance – »Miles Fisher«. Miles Fisher, cast member of »Final Destination 5« and viral video hit-maker extraordinaire, made this music clip called »New Romance«. The clip is a bloody parody of the american television sitcom »Saved By The Bell«. The short comes from American Psycho producer Jake Avnet and director Dave Green. Highschool is killer!
1. Kyary Pamyu Pamyu – »Ponponpon« directed by Jun Tamukai. As I wrote in July 2011: can not be topped! Flying eyes and toasted bread, a hat made of fruits, candy canes, tons of puppets, over-sized goose, skulls and a consistently charming singer. »Ponponpon« is by definition overloaded as nothing I have seen this year. A nice little trip through the gardens of kitsch. Kyary Pamyu Pamyu is a model, blogger, and, most recently, recording artist from Harajuku. »Ponponpon« is her psychedelic tribute to Kawaisa and Decora culture.
10. Spoek Mathambo – »Control« directed by Pieter Hugo. Great video, every sequence and every frame is brought to the point. With a lot of wows and ohhhs. »Control« is a cover of the Joy Division classic »She’s Lost Control« of the 24 year-old South African producer and musician Spoek Mathambo. The video was shot in Langa (Cape Town) with the help of the local dance troupe, Happy Feet. The song itself is only medium.
9. Fucked Up – »Queen of Hearts« directed by Scott Cudmore. A slightly confused teacher leads her class through a rendition of Fucked Up’s »Queen Of Hearts«. An epic battle of boys vs. girls, which ends with an ominous blurring of »reality« and artifice.
8. St. Vincent – »Cruel« directed by directed by Terri Timely. »Cruel« is a comedy of horrors in which St. Vincent (aka Annie Clark) is kidnapped by a mom-starved family, who proceed to torment the singer before sending her to an early grave. Literally. »Cruel« has got something disturbing and a great creepiness.
7. Woodkids – »Iron« directed by Yoann Lemoine. Great shots, the stage-setting is clean and artificial, the atmosphere dramatic and the use of a super slow motion reveals even more detail of motion. Yoann Lemoine tends to exaggerate easily. The clip to Woodkids song »Iron« is highly confusing and leaves you speechless for a while. The only drawback is that the song itself is not so good.
6. Skrillex – First Of the Year (Equinox) directed by HK Corp. By now everyone must realise that 2011 was the year of the children. Remember Manchester Orchestras »Simple Math« (Winner Video of the Year 2011 UK Music Video Awards), Is Tropicals »The Greeks« or Modeselektors »Shipwreck«. Wherever you look: children play a key role, often in violent actions or, as in the case of Skrillex, in a very creepy story. This video did a million views in its first week of release (now more than 20 million) – not that bad for a dubstep artist.
In all respects, 2011 was another very successful year for music video directors who go against the current. Like 2010, an abundance of good ideas found their way to the public, particularly on YouTube, Vimeo and other social networks and video platforms. The revolution of the way we watch TV is still in full swing and definitely unstoppable. The slavery of the past few decades often based exclusively on the interests of big record companys and TV channels. That influence is still strong, but decreasing and it does not cause any harm if the balance of forces continuously changes. On a positive note, people with a special taste find more often the style they want. So enjoy the places 15 to 11, my personal impressions and highlights of the past year. The others will follow.
15. DJ Shadow – »Scale It Back« directed by Ewan Jones Morris & Casey Raymond. Ewan Jones Morris and Casey Raymond managed to put together an incredible video with a really low budget. The clip is about a memory sequence created by Ben Pridmore. Pridmore is the 2009 World Memory Champion, a title he also won in 2004 and 2008. Very unique concept.
14. Camo & Krooked – »Breezeblock« directed by Jack Pirie and Alex Hylands-White. Jack Pirie and Alex Hylands-White directed a somewhat loony music video for Camo & Krooked. The story is about an 80s game show presented with an extremely exaggerated dance battle. Machtdose video of the month july!
13½. Radiohead – »Lotus Flower« directed by Garth Jennings. How the hell did he do that? The year’s best dance moves part one comes from funky chicken Yorke boogieing, jigging and swaying to the song »Lotus Flower« like no other. Get yourself on the dance floor for some smooth swinging.
13¼. The Black Keys – »Lonely Boy« directed by Jesse Dylan. The year’s best dance moves part two. This single-shot video features the hot-stepping and lip-sycning of a man who is decidedly not the Black Keys. Nevertheless, this guy is pretty cool.
12. M83 – »Midnight City« directed by Fleur & Manu. One of the most popoular songs of 2011 was visually lifted with this freaky and fantastic short film about some telekinesis kids who escape from a boarding school and freely use their powers in an abandoned warehouse.
11. Beastie Boys – »Don’t Play No Game That I Can’t Win« directed by Spike Jonze. In case that anyone has missed Beastie Boys’ official full length, ultra HD and explicit director’s cut action-figure music video »Don’t Play No Game That I Can’t Win«. 2011 was not necessarily the successful musical revival of the Beastie Boys, but indeed a revival of excellent filmmaking (not forgetting »Fight For Your Right Revisited«).
These days lots of music videos frequently have one main thing in common: monsters (or sometimes even ghosts) and violence coupled with physical and psychological forces. Almost always. These six clips are highly recommended. Follow the links and enjoy them all. And beware: not for sissies!
David Lynch – »Good Day Today« directed by Arnold de Parscau.
Modeselektor feat. Thom Yorke – »Shipwreck« directed by: Tony „Truand“ Datis.
Kriget – »Submission« directed by Slobodan Zivic.
Deerhoof – »Secret Mobilization« directed by Ewan MacLeod.
Like a Stuntman – »YOY« directed by Matthias Fritsch.
High Places – »Sonora« directed by Keith Musil.