The totally impossible amount of new videos every week can be overwhelming. That’s where we come in. We’ve compiled five of the best music videos from the past week to transport you from a bitter winter into… well, at least some of these videos show a more artistic bitter winter. The music is good and the accompanying videos even better, so after the jump soothe your eyes with new offerings ranging from Pantha du Prince to interrupter-extraordinaire Kanye West, along with a Haiti benefit performance that aesthetically tramples “We Are The World.”
Kanye West – “Coldest Winter”
The maddening snow reminders can be forgiven if only because the song title demands such visual treatment; you’re not going to make a “Coldest Winter” video showing Kanye West sipping Mai Tais on a beach somewhere. As it stands, the video sounds and looks like Ringwraiths or Voldemort’s Death Eaters are conspiring to conquer Middle Earth with 808 thuds as mind control. Leave it to Kanye to include some totally gratuitous, slow-motion cleavage shots.
Pantha Du Prince – “Stick To My Side”
A bundled-up, combination Yeti/tree man trudges nonchalantly through snow. It’s not unlike my morning commute, but with more German minimalist techno. Eventually, Mr. Tree Man plays a cat and mouse game with a fur-and-pine cone-bedazzled creature, culminating in a hazy bonfire dance that actually doesn’t feel all that warming.
jj – “Let Go”
The harmonica intro sounds like something out of “Thunder Road.” Details make the clip, from an adorably slobbery panting dog to the burning embers and smoke curls emanating from flares and mouths alike. Even though the lyrics aspire for a place to live in the sun, everything is shot in stark black and white, the limited color palette punctured only by stray drops of ruby red blood.
Sunset Rubdown- “Dragon’s Lair”
Have eleven minutes to spare? Relax and enjoy the suitably epic video for “Dragon’s Lair.” Just a typical day: an innocent looking child collecting dead flowers, chasing hallucinogenic visions, and waging psychological warfare with a wide-eyed Medea dripping blood from her eyes. The landscapes are gorgeous, as is the music, and the fully-fleshed out story-line completely entrancing. No actual dragons required.
Various Artists – “I Put A Spell On You”
This benefit video and performance is oodles better than “We Are The World,” the song itself seeming so much more true to Haiti’s Creole and voodoo roots. The star power isn’t as ingrained in the zeitgeist, but titans like Nick Cave and Johnny Depp growl and gyrate through a serrated version of Screaming Jay Hawkins’ earworm. The moaning, sax-inflected climax is inspired, but just a warning: Nick Cave’s threats to put a spell on you are disturbingly authentic.
What were your favorites from the last week in music videos?