Tunes on the TV – 3

In thoroughly Christmas fashion we continue with our incessant list compiling. This time things have taken more of an urban route, though there’s still plenty of beauty to contrast with these rugged edges.

We’ve got hustlers, the grim realities of modern life, a moral panic, and video insight into the timber trade, all lined up and ready for you to view. But then there’s also a plethora of great animation here too- from racing cars to stories about sad little bears. Sound like an interesting combination of things? Well, we certainly hope so; after all, all the clips we’ve put together below caught our eye in a veritable sea of peers.

Enough with the babble, onto more pressing matters. Music videos are powerful, throwaway, self indulgent, representative, innovative and pointless all at the same time. So let’s relish in this often-unsung medium one more time, and enjoy the following visual delights.

Leftfield Afrika Shox / Directed by Chris Cunningham

This caused something of a miniature reaction at the time, and the possible reasons for someone to take offence are numerous. We just love it for the “do you need a hand” wisecrack, which we’d wager to be one of the funniest lines in any music video. Those who disagree, speak up now.

Aphex Twin Windowlicker Free / Directed by Chris Cunningham

This is arguably Cunningham’s finest moment, and certainly represents Richard James at his most danceable and, dare it be said, accessible. Epic in length, and enormously funny, it’s a sideswipe at the conventions of bling hip hop production; equal parts horrific, surreal and compelling. 

Quasimoto Bullyshit / Directed by James Reitano

In some ways you could be forgiven for thinking this is somewhat disturbing, such are the hallucinatory visuals throughout. It disorientates you pretty quickly, and from then on it’s a little uncomfortable to watch. It’s also a great tune, and a polished final product, meaning top marks from us.

Royksopp Poor Leno / Directed by Sam Arthur

Finally we know what this song is all about, or maybe not. With a deft hand for animation Arthur invokes images of classic childrens’ cartoons as the story of little Leno is recounted. Trapped inside the zoo he dreams of his natural habitat where he can take part in winter sports and generally have some fun.

Coldcut & Hexstatic Timber / Directed by Stuart Warren-Hill

Hi, we’re Coldcut and Hexstatic, and we’ve made this tune that’s got loads of noises that sound like saws and other log-related machinery.”  “Ah, great, I just happen to have a load of archive footage featuring people who work in the timber industry, want to make a video?” And the rest, as the say, is history.

Amon Tobin Verbal / Directed by Alexander Rutterford

One for animation fans, or people with a penchant for racing games. It’s difficult to find much of a link between the music and video here; as those who have heard the track before will probably agree, it doesn’t immediately invoke images of driving. But it works, and looks mighty fine while doing it.

D-Mob We Call It Acieed / Directed by Marek Budzynski

It’s strange to think that, given the clips that would follow in associated genres, quite how controversial this ode to the UK’s last youth revolution was. But still, the year is 1988, young people across the country are getting into an unfamiliar culture and then this pops up. Cue immediate demonisation.

Daft Punk Da Funk / Directed by Spike Jonze

An outright classic if ever there was one. It’s not so much about the music, as the low volume of this short’s soundtrack goes to show. Big City Nights is the kind of video that makes you wonder why more aren’t made like this, as we follow our rather odd looking protagonist around an evening in New York.

Also in this series

Tunes on the TV – 2

Tunes on the TV