Florence + The Machine’s newest album How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful won’t be released until June, but man, oh man, are the singles and videos building up the hype. Her latest video for “St. Jude” is magic to me. The song is ethereal and gorgeous, but the video has a very grounded feel to it. The way that the sounds of kids laughing or a passing man asking her a question weave into the song playback is super effective. It’s a pretty simple video outside of the trick with the birds at the end – which will definitely leave you wondering if that was found in nature or created in post (probably the latter, but music video magic makes it acceptable to believe the former) – but the distance traveled feels greater than the sum of its parts.
I love the way the simplicity of the video reflects the simplicity and bareness of the song. Am I worried Rhinna’s jacket is going to slip off her shoulders every time she moves? Yes, but I am a total worry-wart. Regardless, the song and video are proof that sometimes less is most certainly more.
I’m not going to believe for one second that the surprise of Maroon 5 showing up to perform their new single, “Sugar”, at a bunch of weddings was as spontaneous and unexpected as this video makes it out to be. I’ve worked in production and the amount of set up required to pull this off is pretty extensive. But, knowing that does not preclude my ability to get pure joy out of the authenticity of the shock on the bride & groom’s faces when the curtain pops down and reveals Maroon 5 rocking out.
The video is smooth, it’s fun, it’s glamorous and it does the song justice. A little bit of sunshine in these winter months.
I recently moved back to Portland and have been living with my parents while I settle in and get my life situated again. This means a couple of things: #1 I seem to watch about 70% of my TV on my iPad because we only have 1 TV in the house and my dad is not a fan of the CW, sitcoms or the night soaps that I tend to prefer. #2 I do not get to watch music videos every morning as I get ready for work or whatever I have planned for the day. That may be the saddest part of this transition. I try to keep up by following certain pop culture and music blogs but I know that there are so many music videos that I am totally missing out on.
Until I can get my act together and have a TV again, I’m going to try to be better about highlighting the music videos that I DO get to see that really stand out. Up first:
Sia – Elastic Heart feat. Shia LaBeouf & Maddie Ziegler
It’s gotta be tough to be Beyoncé’s little sister, always in her shadow like that. Luckily for Solange Knowles, she is just as – if not more – awesome as big sis. The thing that Solange has going for her that Beyoncé really lacks (in my opinion) is an independent originality that makes her feel completely authentic and unpackaged. Beyoncé is rad, don’t get me wrong, but she always feels put together and calculating. Solange’s music and persona have always felt freer to me. Her new video totally gets that. Check it out.
I’m really sad that The Sing Off isn’t returning this year. It’s been a bright spot in the reality schedule over the past few years and it’s pretty disappointing that NBC didn’t see that. Anyway, Pentatonix, last season’s rightful winner, are getting ready to release their album and have an advertiser sponsored video to show for it. I’m not gonna lie, the video is terrible and their version of Nikki Minaj’s “Starship” isn’t as innovative as the stuff they did on the show, but I feel like they deserve to be promoted so here you go. Listen to Pentatonix and convince NBC that if they had just left The Sing Off as a winter replacement show instead of relying on it to launch new shows in the fall things would have been much better.
Madonna has made some fantastic, groundbreaking music videos in her time as a popstar, but her newest, for “Gimme All Your Lovin” is not one of them. First of all, while Nicki Minaj seems totally appropriate, M.I.A. could not look more out of place among the cheerleaders and football players. In addition, Madonna looks kind of bored and all she does is walk with a little booty shake. It’s not an innovative video by any stretch of the imagination and the football theme is a little lame. However, it does have one thing going for it: Madonna’s hair looks amazing. In fact, that’s kind of all I could focus on while watching the video.
It’s been a while since I’ve seen a new music video that I liked. This morning I saw Snow Patrol’s video for “Called Out In The Dark” which is just charming and fun and I really loved it. I think part of why I liked it so much has to do with my experience working in commercial production. I’m a big fan of behind the scenes stuff which is the focus of this video. I love the part where lead singer Gary Lightbody flies across the green screen and his torso disappears thanks to his green t-shirt. I also think Jack Davenport (from the upcoming Smash) is kind of fantastic and just generally like the concept. Plus, DANCING!