The days are getting hotter, the nights are full of terrors, stay inside with me and watch all the glory of music and movies combined. These are the best music videos of the week.
5. Gravel Kings — “American Skies”
I try not to include basic performance videos in this column as they tend to be cinematically uninteresting and don’t push the medium. “American Skies” isn’t anything groundbreaking, but it is heartfelt and uplifting in the way it creates lights and smiles in a soft darkness. Plus, sales of the single go to benefit the ACLU Nationwide, and God knows I’m happy to signal boost that.
4. Chimney — “Walk Don’t Run”
This is an amazingly fun fairytale music video directed by Christopher Good that had me smiling the whole way through its surrealist journey. A young woman (Andreina Byrne) wakes up in a car next to a skeleton and finds herself starving. She has an increasingly bizarre set of adventures through a set of strange woods in a desperate attempt to find food, encountering weird people with incomprehensible motives along the way. Gun to my head, it’s a dissection of body culture, but more importantly it’s a collection of delirious anecdotes that manages to delight and slightly disturb at the same time.
3. Lauren Hoffman & The Secret Storm — “A Friend for the Apocalypse”
Lauren Hoffman is one of the preeminent music video talents on 2017, and I can sum up “A Friend for the Apocalypse” in one sentence; this is “Smells Like Teen Spirit” for the Age of Trump. I’d program my alarm clock to play it every morning if I could figure out how.
2. Vita and the Woolf — “Feline”
Okay, you’re going to have to commit to this one because for half of its runtime it’s just Jennifer Pague in a car wash. A well shot, vaguely ominous carwash, but a carwash nonetheless. After that though, things get extremely colorful and weird as a psychedelic cornucopia of hues and paints fly through the scenes like someone had murdered Rainbow Brite in the middle of a hurricane. My favorite shot by far is Pague in the car after someone has thrown various paints on it. Outside it’s bright and beautiful, but inside, it merely blocks out the light and leaves her in darkness. That was beautiful.
1. Danny Dymond — “Disco Mannequin”
Not since Goldfrapp’s “Alive” has anyone crafted so perfectly ridiculous a gothic dance video. I honestly wonder if Numbers remodeling their bathroom someone opened a gothic space-time vortex and dumped an alternate universe version of Provision out into an alley somewhere to dance with drag queens. I’m not knocking this video. I swear I’m not. It makes me remember being an interpretive goth gogo dancer in my twenties, and I can’t help but love it for all its completely cheesy glory.