There’s way too much heartbreak, just enough glitchiness and gallons of blood in this week’s video roundup
With the advent of high-speed internet, we’re living in a bit of a golden age for the music video – but we’re also reaching a point where you see at least one of the bloody things every time you open your eyes.
The question is, how do you know which videos are stone cold classics and which are just dust in the wind of the World Wide Web?
As usual, we’re here to help! We’ve rounded up the most notable clips from the last seven days from the far-flung recesses of the internet.
Check them out after the drop.
Torn Hawk - Die Swimming In The Sea HereDirected by Torn Hawk
This is another masterclass in what Torn Hawk (aka Luke Wyatt) calls “video mulching”, a TH-invented way of “anti-sheening” video by feeding it through VHS and back again, smudging its Photoshop shine along the way.
In this video, Wyatt himself stars as an earnest motivational speaker as a piano intro tinkles, then things get exponentially strange and self-referential as he tracks down mentions of himself on the internet that glitch and pulse away from the tide of post-rock that comes next, then a winged figure flies over an other-worldly village set into a mountainside.
Weird, touching, and totally Torn Hawk.
Mykki Blanco - High School Never Ends (ft. Woodkid)Directed by Matt Lambert
Mykki Blanco’s new video is a terrible, bloody, beautiful thing. Blanco has been embracing a lush, cinematic tone for his videos of late, and this is an extension of that mini-movie format, but while the video for Coke White, Starlight took on a non-linear structure, the gritty narrative for these visuals ruthlessly drive the story from a harmonious opening, to a bloodied, vengeful end.
Filmed in rural Germany, Blanco and director Matt Lambert say the film is a comment on the ongoing refugee crisis in Europe. “It never once overtly comments on orientation or race, but only ideas of ‘us’ and ‘them,'” says Lambert – but, adds Blanco, “I had once thought Europe was my safe haven from American white supremacy, and how wrong I became.”
Hinds - EasyDirected by John Strong
Easy, Hinds explain, is about “the worst moment in the universe during a relationship cause you love him but he doesn’t anymore. And being in bed with him is giving him nightmares. And you are the hangover in his mornings, and the homework during the day and the pain in his arse. so when you reach that point you can’t help but self destruct. There is just nothing you can do, it’s too late to take it easy.”
Hinds represent this feeling of just-before-you-get-dumped suffocation with a series of faces – mascara-streaked, rotting, smothered in spaghetti, covered in graffiti, and vomiting – and they’re all wincingly recognisable stages of grieving a relationship gone sour.
Cate Le Bon - Love Is Not LoveDirected by Phil Collins
“Love is not love,” sings Cate Le Bon, “when it’s a coathanger”. A slightly nonsensical remark when stated alone perhaps, but when Le Bon intones the statement in her trademark deadpan, it sounds completely trustworthy.
In the video for Love is Not Love, Cate continues this thoughtful tone into her expression, not even cracking a smile when her colourful friends are cartwheeling and hula-ing around her. It affords a quirky atmosphere, while maintaining the song’s ultimate love-sickness.
Mitski - HappyDirected by Maegan Houang
This is accidentally the most heartbreaking video roundup of all-time. Oops.
Carrying on the theme of heartsick death and despair, Mitski’s Happy, from the forthcoming Puberty 2, tells the story of a cheating husband and his distraught, angry wife. I won’t ruin the twist, but there’s blood on everyone’s hands by the end.
Danny L Harle - Ashes of Love ft. Caroline PolachekVideo by Sam Rolfes
PC Music’s Danny L Harle has recruited Chairlift’s vocalist, Caroline Polachek for this peppy little number which, quite suitably, combines the two main themes of this roundup so far: heartbreak, and the glitch.
As Polachek trills about burning her love to the ground on a screen in the background, her badly rendered 3D avatar boogies down in a cascade of pink liquid. It’s quite chaotic, so don’t watch if you’re feeling stressed.