The Top 25 Music Videos of 2012, Nos. 10-6
Now we're getting into the real works of incredible genius that hit the Web this year, including one of the few major acts I deign to include on these lists (The art of mainstream music video production being all but dead after all). It's a distinctly sexier set of selections than yesterday, so you might want to wait till you get home to press play... especially this next one.
10. Black Marble, "Backwards"
The sheer fact that "Backwards" even exists as a music video is enough to get it into the top ten. It's a Patton Oswalt rant come to life, full of naked chicks playing with rats, chopping things with axes, destroying cakes, and cleanings guns for absolutely no reason I can figure out in the slightest. I can't decide if the piece is a masterpiece of avant garde storytelling or if director Timothy Fiore was just using Black Marble's song to fulfill some extremely niche sexual need.
9. Niki & The Dove, "The Fox"
In two years or so, Niki & the Dove is going to be too big to bother talking to me anymore, mark my words. Until then, though, I still can't believe how good "The Fox" is as a video, and am very thankful they were willing to chat with me about it. The strange mixture of primitive animalism and the band's electronic sound is just plain revolutionary, and every single frame of "the Fox" could hang in a museum.
8. How to Destroy Angels, "Ice Age"
If you ask me, How to Destroy Angels is the best thing Trent Reznor has ever done that isn't The Fragile. "Ice Age" proves that. You have to be willing to invest the time in the video to really get the full effect because at first it seems like a just a typical folk song, albeit a slightly dark one.
As the videos nears its end subtle clues and strange static-y effects starts to sneak onscreen, making the viewer wonder if the whole thing isn't a desperate cry to be released from some kind of cybernetic nightmare. Then there's the fact that the beautiful ocean Mariqueen Maandig sings to the whole video turns to a cracked desert suddenly. It's like someone chose to record a song in a Harlan Ellison story.
7. Featherface, "I Saw You Dancing"
Until very, very recently, I called "I Saw You Dancing" the best music video a Houston band had ever produced. I can no longer say that with good conscience, but that doesn't take anything away from this heartbreaking video. A dancer trapped in the zombie apocalypse comes across a ghoul, and attempts to spark whatever humanity may be left within him through her art in a last desperate ploy to maintain beauty in the world. You'll be hard-pressed to get through this one without crying.
6. Dum Dum Girls, "Coming Down"
Dee and director Malia James set out to recreate one of Yoko Ono's most famous performance-art pieces in "Coming Down" by having Dee Dee sing plaintively while a cast of the upper class slowly cut her clothes off with scissors. It's a revealing work that dissects the nature of art itself, as the artist is reduced in front of an audience against her will. The result is somewhere between a confession and a rape, and it still sends shivers up my spine every time I see it.
Tomorrow is the finale. Who made the best music video of 2012?
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