Saturday, February 28, 2009


Artist: Sebastian Teller
Song: “Divine”
Rating: B

Robert Moog must’ve had quite a future planned out when he introduced to the world a keyboard machine that made warm electronic hums. Surely he must’ve realized he would become the figure in the history of music; these were sounds man had previously been unable to create.

Okay, so maybe my understanding of the instrument (backed only by Wikipedia) is flawed, but the point I’m stretching to make is as such: synthesizers have had an irrevocable effect on music. The synthesizer became a bridge between popular music and the largely unexplored world of computer music. I have only recently given much thought to the subject until my recent infatuation with Animal Collective blossomed. Just as they are stepping past capabilities and traditional boundaries of song construction and while they’re still bound to some rules of melody, I guess.

But this is really isn’t anything like that; this is a throwback song/video. While there’s a significant chunk of throwback synth ballads that are simply ostentatious, the right kind of artist can access just the right aspects without looking out of place.

Here we have the sex-tacious Sebastian Teller in his white suit, bygone Rush shades and (faux?) full beard. In this video, he’s having fun and as a modern man, I don’t really detest him as much as I want to be him He looks like he’s got some cash and he’s even got a pretty girl in bed with him at one point. The song, somewhat kitschy in its on respect, is superbly presented in this video. It’s not overdone. The joke is not forced down and maybe it’s even easy to digest. I respect that.

And the surfing shot… I think Sebastian can get away with putting it in her for comedic effect, but he’s absolutely the last guy ever that can get away with this.

Friday, February 27, 2009


Artist: White Zombie
Song: “More Human Than Human”
Rating: C-

Leave it to Rob Zombie and his former gang to attempt a disturbing interplay of archival amusement park/Halloween footage (taken from Mr. Zombie’s better days) and the typical jamming band scene. You’d expect this kind of video listening to a song like “More Human Than Human.” You can, seemingly forever and always, expect this kind of aesthetic from an artist like Rob Zombie: scratchy grindhouse horror that leans with both arms against the 1970’s. Same as it ever was, same as it ever is.

The best part of this video is the robot astronaut, which I find to be slightly unsettling. I really can’t put my finger as to why. That’s how you know it’s scary.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

It's about funky, smelly people

Artist: Del The Funkee Homosapien
Song: “If You Must”
Rating: D-

I don’t know if Del’s trying out for the Plain-Faced Respectable Video Channel or what’s going on in this video but there’s one thing that it establishes within 30 seconds: this video is horrible.
It’s a combination of boring and confusing while being one of those infuriating videos that “kind of” sets up a story but everyone just runs around and acts wacky and nothing gets established and everyone goes home disappointed, realizing they weren’t being creative, just childish and subsequently shallow.

Del’s lips don’t even come close to synchronizing with the lyrics. Del’s geek posse shows off some “retro-rad” break dancing moves from 1995 (this video dropped in 2000 for the historians out there, so yeah my insult sticks). The only bit of this whole thing that appeals to me at all is the plaster monstrosity that drops in at the halfway mark. I laughed at the sight of that thing and you will too.

I guess my biggest problem with this video is the simple fact that SO MUCH COULD’VE BEEN DONE AND SO MUCH WAS WASTED. You drop some great rhymes, but drop a couple of dollars and get someone who graduated from junior high to put together all future videos.

FAKE UPDATE: Oh, you got some college super-senior's project? Almost there Del.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Recessed Memories

Artist: Pavement
Song: “Major Leagues”
Rating: B+

When I think about the end of the summer, I think about miniature golf and guitar and the hammy mug of Steven Malkmus! It’s a recipe for a Pavement coordinated an ideal bummer smoothie here. The stock footage invokes nostalgia, a common ailiment in Americans over the age of 16 these days. But hell, isn’t that what Malkmus is singing about? Bring on the Major Leagues! The big time! The next step. Growing up is inevitable so why not just accept it with a goofy grin- you are still allowed to be goofy and joke about what an asshole your boss/partner/probation officer is. I guess I didn’t give this video an A because I m a little uncomfortable at the sight of rock-humping. Yeah, I understand that he’s just being goofy Stephen, trying to climb up a flat rock but it’s really not working for this pompous manchild.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Click Here to be Cool

Artist: Animal Collective
Song: “My Girls”
Rating: B

Pleasantly colorful, even with the hackneyed iPod commercial tendencies, the first video for Animal Collective’s recent instant-classic Merriweather Post Pavilion is a pleasant example of the aural translated into the visual.

Aquatics abound! Mood ring landscapes! And those next-gen Rolling Stones’ lips…it’s a well-packaged serving of eye candy. It’s a must-watch on any stoner’s “To Do While High” list, following a listening session of the album itself.

There’s a great deal of talk on how this band will influence the next decade in music, and I believe it. There really never has been a band like Animal Collective, and there really isn’t anything like their music out now. And yet as transcendental as it may be, I appreciate this music for the simplicity exercised in it’s meaning: They just want four walls and adobe slats for their “girls”, their daughters. This a band of dads, remember.

So I suppose I should say I should be happy with the fairly simple concept of this video, but what we see here pales in comparison to the images conjured behind closed eyes during a simple listening session. I know that as an “indie” band, Animal Collective will never see the kinds of financial resources necessary for ahead-of-the-curve directors to play out the canvases of their hyper-minds on video.

Don’t get me wrong; a dance-party on the edge of the universe is cool. It's just not “A” material.