The Best Video Of The Year Blows

I'm sorry, Beyoncé. Kanye West's little outburst at the VMAs this week is - by far - the most interesting thing about the "Single Ladies" video. Since when is 3 women dancing over an alternately white and grey background "Video Of The Year" material? In fact, none of this year's "Best Video" nominees are memorable beyond a few seconds after watching.

Come on, MTV! Don't you remember when videos were interesting? Well I do. This is not in any way a "best videos of all time" or even a "most interesting videos of all time" list, this is just a few videos that came to mind when I thought back on some music videos that never violated the cardinal rule of television: don't be boring.

  • Nine Inch Nails - "Closer"
    I could only find the TV edit, but those "Scene Missing" cards make the whole thing all the weirder.

  • Menomena - "Evil Bee"
    Creepy, beautiful, and a great complement to a great song.

  • Bjork - "Bachelorette"
    Michel Gondry takes us down the rabbit hole of recursion in this fantastic video. Just one of many ridiculous and amazing Bjork videos (most have which have been pulled from YouTube - nice marketing, record label!).

  • Fatboy Slim - "Weapon Of Choice"
    If you're going to make a video that's just dancing, it better either involve treadmills or Christopher Walken.

And, when you're ready to stop having fun and be bored:

Do you have a favorite video? Let me know and link it up in the comments.


Friday Playlist: A Nice Chilly Day

photo by flickr user sniggulyIt's another beautiful chilly day here in DC, and I'd like to say that these songs are all somehow relevant to that. But I ran out of time to make that playlist, so here's some stuff I've been listening to this week.


  1. "Eden Was A Garden" - Roman Candle
    I think emusic recommended these guys to me. Nice alt-country rock from North Carolina. The whole album's pretty decent.

  2. "The Strums" - The Dodos
    I was very excited to hear about a new Dodos album coming out, their last one was fantastic. This one is great, too. This song in particular reminds me of George Harrison. And yes, it's in the same key as track 1 from this playlist. Go figure.

  3. "Senorita" - The Low Anthem
    Another emusic download. This month they gave all their members 50 free downloads, no doubt as an apology for their shitty new pricing models. This is from their album "What The Crow Brings," a very pretty folk/country/roots album.

  4. "Infinity" - The xx
    Allmusic describes this band as an "atmospheric English indie pop quartet." That sounds about right. Their album is pretty quiet, but there's some nice stuff going on if you listen for it (I like the drum machine noises in this song, for example).

  5. "Even Jesus Couldn't Love You" - Lord Cut-Glass
    Another recommendation from my brother. This is a great and weird album of musically upbeat songs with bizarre lyrics. Sample: "your dreams are spent like next month's rent/on cocaine, pills, and [some word I can't make out]." Toss-up between this song and "Big Time Teddy" for favorite song so far.

  6. "Seven" - Fever Ray
    I like The Knife plenty, so it stands to reason I should like this side project, but other than this track, I pretty much hate this album. So there.

  7. "Stealing Time from the Faulty Plan" - Phish
    I didn't go see them on their latest tour, but I heard several shows, and they actually weren't bad. And I firmly believe this is their best studio effort to date. The production is solid, the band sounds focused but relaxed at the same time, and the sound is nice and big. I love the line "got a blank space where my mind should be" on this song - typical Phish, but they still make it work after all these years.

  8. "Om Nashi Me" - Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros
    Believe me, I would love to say that these guys are just over-hyped dirty hippies. But actually, they're really talented and their freak-folk (actually I prefer my brother's term "acid campfire" for this) album "Up From Below" is fantastic. This song is a little weirder than the rest of it, but it also cheers me up every time I listen to it, especially the chanting and horns at the end.
That's all for today, folks. What are you listening to? Tell me in the comments.


Friday Playlist: End Of Summer

This week we in the DC area saw some beautiful weather, temperatures in the 70s, nice breezes, and an overall sense of a season on the way out. Of course, we in the DC area are smart enough to know that this is all a horrible trick and summer will most likely be back for another few months of horribly high temperatures and unbearable humidity. But still, it was a nice week, weather-wise, and so I dedicate today's playlist to the end of summer, whenever it really comes. Enjoy!

I'm a bit crunched for time, so these descriptions will be brief - I'm pretty sure no one reads them anyway.

  1. "Kiss With A Fist" - Florence & The Machine
    Fun British bluesy lady-pop in the vein of Amy Winehouse, et al. A great summer song about sadomasochism (or something).

  2. "I'm Watching You" - Jay Reatard
    Despite his bizarre name and horrible countenance, this dude can write a catchy pop hook. I dare you not to bop your head along to this one.

  3. "Skeletons" - Tiny Masters Of Today
    This band is comprised of a 15- and 13-year-old brother/sister duo from Brooklyn. Despite that nausea-inducing bio, their album is still pretty great. My brother thinks they could be the next Fiery Furnaces. I tend to agree.

  4. "French Navy" - Camera Obscura
    Their new album is just fantastic. Phil Spector would be proud if he wasn't busy fending for himself in prison.

  5. "Ghost Life" - Bowerbirds
    A nice transition-to-autumn song. If you like this, good news! The whole album sounds like it.

  6. "Sans Soleil" - Miike Snow
    Swedish singer/songwriter teams with pop production team (they've written/produced for Madonna, Britney, J-Lo, Kiley Minogue, and others) to create my favorite album of the summer. It was hard to pick a track from this album, they're all pretty damn great.

  7. "There Is No Sun" - Jay Reatard
    This album is so catchy I had to include 2 tracks. So sue me.

  8. "The Mountain" - Heartless Bastards
    Unfortunately, this opening track is the best one on this Ohio band's new album, but that doesn't mean it's not a fantastic song. Although to my ears, it's basically the exact same song as Interpol's "Untitled."

  9. "Untitled" - Interpol
    See #8 above. Included for comparison purposes.
What are you listening to nowadays? What great albums have come out lately that I should be listening to? Please let me know in the comments!