Tag Archives: animation

Watch This Now: Elizabeth Rose – “Ready”

“Somewhere there’s a melody, slicing through reality…”

Here’s something nice and trippy for your Thursday lunch in the form of a brand new clip from Sydney babe Elizabeth Rose. Did I say “babe”? Good. Because I bloody meant it. This young lady has continually impressed me with her huge voice and booming electronica-flavoured pop, and to finally have some visuals to go along with it is an absolute treat for me. I really couldn’t be happier with this clip for her latest single, Ready, which serves as a spot-on companion for one of her best tracks to date.

We often talk about how mundane the “performance” video is on this blog, and part of me is always in doubt when all a video consists of is a band playing their song in a room or whatever have you. With that said: unless you’ve done some seriously bad acid, you’ve never seen Rose perform like this. Footage from her launch show at the wonderful Goodgod Small Club in Sydney this past February has been warped, twisted, morphed, transmogrified… whatever you want to call it, shit gets weird in this video. The stunningly trippy visuals recall a Flaming Lips video, and it suits the vibe of the song perfectly. Would love to see something more conceptual and even weirder for the next video, but this will happily suffice for now.

Old Favourites: Korn – “Freak on a Leash”

“Every time I start to believe, something’s raped and taken from me…”

Let’s go back. Back when the only thing Skrillex was dropping was a turd in his nappy. Back when the internet was a new exciting thing. Before YouTube, WordPress, Twitter, MySpace, VampireFreaks, Bebo, Friendster and all the other shit we’ve wasted our time on in the 21st century. Let’s go back to the turn of the century – specifically, 1999; where our heroes Korn were ushering in a new era of American heavy metal. The kind that ruled the charts and headlined stadiums as opposed to being played in sweaty barns by dudes in denim jackets. The kind that spawned a whole generation of clingers-on, copy cats and dudes who just wouldn’t shower. Here, Korn reigned supreme.

These days, only the most shameless of beings will admit to being Korn fans – and with rubbish like their last album, The Path of Totality, you can hardly blame them. With that said, around the time of their Follow the Leader record, it was safe to say that Korn were a band on many’s hot list – a band being embraced by both alternative and mainstream radio. Sure, other acts like Limp Bizkit and Nine Inch Nails were charting and presenting a heavier side of mainstream rock, but Korn added an even stranger element – a twisted, childlike sense of torment and despair, which essentially paved the way for what would come to be known as nu-metal.

If there was no Korn, there probably would be no Disturbed, no P.O.D., no Papa Roach… and, sure, the world might have been a better place (imagine having no Creed if Nirvana never existed!) The argument I maintain, however, is that it was worth putting up with this band’s countless years of rubbish – and the turgid acts that would generate from their influence – for their golden period from the mid to late 90s. It comes down to the greatness of Freak on a Leash – and, specifically, this video.

I have a very vivid memory of the Freak on a Leash video. I was maybe eight or nine years old when I first saw it, and I’d never quite seen anything like it. The top and tail consisted of a dark, alternative reality brought to life through animation. The bullet escapes from their world into the “real” world – and thus, the destruction began. The bullet shatters everything that gets in its way; seemingly for no other reason than for the sole primitive purpose of watching shit blow up. It’s not profound in any sense, and yet it feels so damn right when the audio-visual matches up. Freak on a Leash manages to be that much more enthralling and slightly terrifying on watching the bullet’s journey right up to Jonathan Davis‘ face and back. Don’t ask me how he made the bullet turn around. I was too busy looking at his kilt.

Over ten years on, I still look back fondly on the Freak on a Leash video. It captured my imagination and harnessed the idea that two contrasting worlds – black and white, yin and yang, real-time and animation – could easily be sewn together through the magic of music videos. I realise this lengthy post is going to tarnish my very precious indie cred, to which zero fucks are given. I paid the same respect to Slipknot a month or so ago, it’s about damn time I did it for Korn. Whatever.

Watch This Now: Cloud Nothings – “Stay Useless”

“Nothing I could do would make things change, I am stuck in here…”

Here’s an interesting one: Cloud Nothings are an act I was previously indifferent about, mainly due to their cutesy light surf-rock not doing a great deal for my senses. Their third album, Attack on Memory, has completely changed that – they’ve eliminated the room of squares and delivered a feisty, biting and downright exciting record. So, too, have the videos improved – while their video last year for Should Have was a sepia-toned feel-good splash of mushy generic hipsterisms,Stay Uselessdares to delve beneath the surface – and that alone should make it essential viewing if you’re a fan.

Teaming up with director and animator Jack Kubizne, the Stay Useless video revolves around the twisted imagination of a little boy on the bus. The lyrics go from their face value to describing this character’s own inner turmoil. Just what the hell is going on as his world – potentially even his reality – warps and distorts around him? Is it all his doing? Is it simply a matter of his own pure imagination? It’s hard to say, but it certainly results in a very clever and very entertaining music video. Get amongst it.

Watch This Now: Garfunkel and Oates – “My Apartment’s Very Clean Without You”

“Got an extra key to my door now, your underwear’s not on my floor now…”

Here’s something delightfully bittersweet to start off the week, coming from the adorable Garfunkel and Oates, a comedy-rock duo out of the States consisting of Riki Lindhome (on your left) and Kate Miccuci (yes, that’s Gooch from Scrubs). Despite having quite a few videos up on YouTube, they rarely do “official” clips to their songs – their last came with the Republican policy parody Sex with Ducks. Of all the songs from their latest record, Slippery When Moist, I was perhaps surprised the most that this was the song they went with. For what it’s worth,though, upon watching the video, I think they made the right choice.

My Apartment’s Very Clean Without You is adorable. Depicting a messy breakup – literally, with the moving of houses and whatnot – the video is an animation from first-timer Deanna Rooney. The concept is simple, but also slightly twisted – all of the lyrical references to inanimate objects are brought to life by cartoon cats of all things. Yeah, I didn’t quite get it, either. Who am I to argue, though, when it’s all done so damn sweetly? I loved watching this video, and although I don’t normally enjoy their quasi-serious songs, I garnered a newfound appreciation for what these ladies do through this clip. Lovely stuff.

Watch This Now: Passenger – “The Wrong Direction”

“You build your heart of plastic, you’re cynical and sarcastic…”

Is it weird that one of the nicest guys in the Australian music scene is actually a Brit? Whatever the case, I’ve come to know and love Mike Rosenberg - aka Passenger – over the course of roughly 18 months or so. A lovely guy with a great talent, and he’s just dropped his third studio album entitledAll the Little Lights. It’s a sweet, heartfelt and charming record, as good as anything he’s done before – and he’s added a very cute little video to go along with it.

Mike isn’t really the music video type, and you can tell from his minimal, almost begrudging, participation in the clip. Taking a KISS approach, Mike plays his guitar, runs in front of a video screen (see if you can figure out the meta-lyrical nod) and lies down in a kid’s swimming pool. Sure, on paper, it’s not much to look at. It comes together as very unpretentious and sweet-natured, however, and I think that’s about the best reflection you can have of Passenger’s music. I also love the little cartoons that randomly pop up here and there, which you should totally look out for. Essentially, Mike is a champion. If you disagree, you are wrong. Have a nice day!

Watch This Now: Gorillaz feat. James Murphy and Andre 3000 – “DoYaThing”

“You wanna do it, but you don’t know what you’re doing, baby…”

We’re off and racing! Sorry about the lack of posts last week, gang – as mentioned in the Keane entry, wasn’t feeling too great after a nasty cough and extensive gigging. Feeling much better now after a great weekend of rest, followed by seeing both the legendary Judith Lucy and the amazing Manchester Orchestra live. What a treat!

Let’s bring the focus back, though, as we’ve got some big music video fish to fry. The biggest of the lot has to be DoYaThing, the new “3 artists, 1 song” single put together by Converse.You might also remember My Drive Thru with Julian Casablancas, Santigold and Pharrell; or maybe I’m a Goner with Andrew W.K., Soulja Boy and Matt & Kim. Needless to say, it can be pretty hit and miss in these collaborations. With DoYaThing, however, it’s safe to say that we’re onto a winner with this one.

But onto the video. In terms of the continuity of the Gorillaz universe, the original line-up is back together and living in a shoddy London flat, having finally escaped from Plastic Beach. Noodle is back, her android version nowhere to be seen. Russell is still giant, but he now resides on the roof. As for 2D and Murdoc, they’re just as dodgy, seedy and downright lovable as they ever were. On the surface, there’s not a lot going on in this clip. Essentially, 2D is getting ready to leave the house, he checks on the other Gorillaz and heads out. There’s a lot of very clever little subtleties amongst the clip, though; as well as some cracking easter eggs. My personal favourite aspect of the clip, however, has got to be Andre 3000 turning up in all these random places. So that’s where he’s been hiding for the past few years – in the fridge!

What more can you say? It’s Gorillaz. It rules.

Watch This Now: Gotye – “Easy Way Out”

“Seventeen seconds and I’m over it, ready for the disconnect…”

He’s back! Not content with one of the best Australian albums of last year, mind-blowing animated clips and THE video of 2011, Wally de Backer has come back yet again with a new Gotye video. A collaboration with Oh Yeah Wow, whose Set Sail clip was recently featured on the blog, de Backer has nailed it yet again. Seriously, does this guy kill kittens or drown babies or something? No-one can be that good at this level of consistency. Something’s gotta be up.

Anyways, the clip seemingly focuses on the mundane daily routine, and how much it can be quite soul-destroying and exhausting. Wally plays all of the characters, going in dizzying circles similar to Kylie’s Come Into My World video – and there’s nothing wrong with that at all! There’s so much to be packed into this crazy two minutes, and there’s something new to enjoy with every view. Hell, you can get at least five views in the next 10 minutes, why not give it a go? Trust me, you’ll love every second of it.

Watch This Now: Set Sail – “The Boat Song”

“I just can’t stop singing, oh how baby I love you…”

Man, I am in a great mood right now as I write this – and I can’t help but feel it’s because of what you are about to watch. Meet Set Sail, a charming three-piece pop/rock band from Sydney. You might have heard about them in the news recently due to their lead singer, Brandon Hoogenboom, after his recent deportation from Australia due to visa issues (read more over at Tone Deaf). Thankfully, the trio have taken it all in their stride, continuing to bring good vibes and positivity to their ever-expanding fanbase. Seriously, these guys must have popped up overnight – they’re at nearly 20 thousand Facebook fans!

Anyway, onto the matter at hand. Before all this mess, the band teamed up with animation collective Oh Yeah Wow to bring us this adorable clip that packs as much as it possibly can into its brief running time. The band are out at sea, having a whale of a time (forgive the pun)… that is, of course, until an evil sea monster takes off with their boombox! What a bastard! Will they get it back? Oh, of course they will – it’s all about the happy endings, after all! How they do it, however, is what makes this clip worth watching. A very impressive and super-sweet clip from a band that might be facing rough seas at the moment, but can always see the silver lining.

P.S: Don’t forget to click over here and join the campaign on Facebook to Bring Brandon Back!

Old Favourites: Neil Diamond – “The Chanukah Song”

“Harrison Ford is a quarter Jewish – not too shabby!”

Why should Christmas get all the fun? Way back when Adam Sandler was actually funny (if you were born after 1992, you may have trouble remembering this), he penned a Hannukah carol to celebrate the Jewish festivities in the only way he knew how. It’s turned into a mini-anthem of its own, and a couple of years ago Cherry Cherry himself Neil Diamond decided to have a crack at it.

This adorably cheesy video clip is the result of said cover, and although Diamond plays it straight in his cover, he still keeps the humour intact. There’s a lot to like about this – it’s family friendly, it’s cute, and for all of its dagginess it doesn’t make me want to skull-drag innocent children along dirt roads the way that many a Christmas carol tends to do. L’chaim, bitches!

Watch This Now: Gotye – “State of the Art”

“We can pretend there’s an orchestra in the loungeroom…”

Well, I’m pooped. Dozens of videos, an award nomination and probably more blogging than I’ve done in one week than probably any other week in the history of the blog. In other words, it’s been a mental comeback week – and the hundreds of views I’ve been getting every day are at least an indication that it’s not all in vain! Let’s wrap the week with a smashing new animation from Gotye, who you may know from ABSOLUTELY FUCKING EVERYWHERE RIGHT NOW thanks to his hit Somebody That I Used to Know. Overplay aside, the man born Wally de Backer is killing right now with his chart-topping Making Mirrors record – and a very clever animation team has put their work towards one of the more peculiar tracks from it.

Essentially telling the tale of a man obsessed with a new organ, it’s brought to life with charming and cute animation in this clip, which pays remarkable detail to every last movement within the song. Seriously, it syncs up perfectly! I first saw this clip when I caght Gotye live at the end of last month, and I’ve loved it ever since. Seriously, it involves Gotye – the guy is freaking King Midas right now. You can’t really go wrong here.

And with that, I am OUTTA here. Thanks so much again for the positive feedback and the support – very much appreciated! Seeya next week.

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