The video for "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" may only show vocalist Morrissey, but much of the magic in the song is crafted by guitar wizard Johnny Marr.
A Gen-X-er celebrating his love for music through songs, videos and lists. Peach on a beach's debut single "Beeping and Bleeping" and second single "Pizza Corner" available on streaming and YouTube. Third single/video "Before Call Display", debut album and new website coming spring 2023!
Sunday, January 31, 2021
66/100 Video - "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" - The Smiths (1987)
Saturday, January 30, 2021
67/100 Video - "Why Can't I Be You?" - The Cure (1987)
Friday, January 29, 2021
68/100 Video - "Venus" - Bananarama (1986)
A long, long time ago, more than a decade before The Spice Girls, there was Bananarama.
"Venus" by Bananarama was immediately catchy, easily among the best cover songs of the decade.
Released when I was seventeen years old, I tuned in primarily to see the three girls dance and flail about.
There appeared to be choreography for the dance moves, but the girls preferred tomfoolery.
Siobhan, the shorter blonde, was always my favourite.
Thursday, January 28, 2021
69/100 Video - "Helena Beats" - Foster the People (2011)
Tuesday, January 26, 2021
70/100 Video - "Sour Girl" - Stone Temple Pilots (1999)
There's lots to unpack here.
Giant evil Teletubbies. A gyrating Scott Weiland.
And a dark Sarah Michelle Gellar, who was a huge fan of the band. At the time, Gellar was a rising star with her TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer and movies.
The clip features little people in costumes that look like the Teletubbies, which were big at the time. Scott claimed this was just a coincidence, and that the creatures are based on a dream he had.
Apparently the teletubby thingies represent an unhealthy addiction that doesn't seem as bad as it is.
Storax Sedan (YouTube comments) offers these great insights below which seem to be spot on:
The lighting is bright and warm which signifies the band members thinking they're happy. But when the lighting gets cold and dark, Sara shows Scott that those teletubby things are truly vile, evil, that they're not a true path to happiness and that he doesn't need them anymore. Then after, when the lighting goes back to the bright and warm, Scott is shown with Sarah dancing showing that he is truly happy with her and doesn't need the teletubbies to be happy, until she leaves him. Then the lighting goes back to the cold and dark and he relapses and caves back into his addiction as he walks away with the teletubbies hands in his.
71/100 Video - "Would I Lie to You?" - Eurythmics (1985)
But most of all, the single illustrated the queen of new wave could also rock. Feisty, even. And if you watch the clip, you'll see she's a pretty good actress, too.
You may have most recently heard "Would I Lie to You?" on TV, as it's the theme song for Border Security: Canada's Front Line.
Monday, January 25, 2021
72/100 Video - "Running Up That Hill" - Kate Bush (1985)
Sunday, January 24, 2021
73/100 Video - "A Criminal Mind" - Gowan (1985)
Saturday, January 23, 2021
74/100 Video - "Summer of '69" - Bryan Adams (1985)
Friday, January 22, 2021
75/100 Video - "Sandstorm" - Darude (2000)
Then as the techno kicks in, a woman carrying a briefcase blows by the DJ down the steps, followed closely by two security guards, a man and a woman.
The rest of the video is dedicated to one helluva epic chase!
There is a plot twist at the end, but I won't spoil it for you.
Thursday, January 21, 2021
76/100 Video - "Living on Video" - Trans-X (1983)
Wednesday, January 20, 2021
77/100 Video - "L'Affaire Dumoutier (Say To Me)" – The Box (1985)
I've always enjoyed the mini-movie video of a criminal investigation and trial in rural Quebec accompanying the descriptive narration-style vocals for "L' Affaire Dumoutier (Say To Me)" by The Box.
The scene forever burned in my brain: the man walking down a country road while balancing on the white line in an apparent state of amnesia while the lyric "Walking, walking... on the tightrope of insanity walking, walking on the verge of loosing mind".
The video doubled as an after-school lesson in Québecois French with dialogue scattered throughout the clip. I even learned a few new phrases including non-culpable (not guilty).
Tuesday, January 19, 2021
78/100 Video - "Out of Touch" - Hall & Oates (1985)
In fact, I'll make the argument that "Out of Touch" is John Oates's shining moment; his backup singing and dance moves come to the forefront, including a cart wheel!
Monday, January 18, 2021
79/100 Video - "This Momentary" - Delphic (2009)
Delphic hails from the Manchester area, one of a laundry list of groups influenced by new wave in general, and New Order specifically.
The video for "This Momentary" by Delphic was shot using RED cameras giving the clip a cinematic look and feel.
Rather than focus on the past, the clips shows actual people still living in and around Chernobyl. It's very moving.
Director Dave Ma said "The aim for this video was to focus on the people still living in and around the Chernobyl area...It was about showing the humanity of the people and about capturing little moments in their lives in a composed and photographic way."
The music video was nominated for three UK Music Video Awards, including Best Cinematography and Best Editing for its shots in Chernobyl.
Sunday, January 17, 2021
80/100 Video - "Smooth Operator" - Sade (1984)
Saturday, January 16, 2021
81/100 Video - "La Isla Bonita" - Madonna (1987)
Friday, January 15, 2021
82/100 Video - "Galvanize" - The Chemical Brothers (1997)
Thursday, January 14, 2021
83/100 Video - "The New Pollution" - Beck (1996)
Wednesday, January 13, 2021
84/100 Video - "The Ghost In You" - The Psychedelic Furs (1984)
You may recall the track was featured in the romantic comedy 50 First Dates starring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore.
The chorus's cerebral lyrics "Inside you the time moves and she don't fade, the ghost in you, she don't fade" reduce the sappiness of what ultimately is an old school new wave love song...and what a lovely song it is.
Tuesday, January 12, 2021
85/100 Video - "Planet Claire" – The B52s (1979)
From the opening alien synth notes of "Planet Claire", The B52s remind us on this early single that they are gifts from another galaxy.
Monday, January 11, 2021
86/100 Video - "Separate Ways" - Journey (1983)
Shot on a wharf in New Orleans, the video features the band members in your face with awkwardly close close-up shots.
"Separate Ways" by Journey is one intense tune. It was written during a turbulent time for the band as two members were going through divorces during the middle of a tour.
Sunday, January 10, 2021
87/100 Video - "A View to a Kill" - Duran Duran (1985)
A band known for its hooks and looks, "A View to a Kill" by Duran Duran was just another grand video to add to its growing repertoire
Recorded as the theme for the James Bond film of the same name, the clip is stylish and slick, featuring the boys playing roles as spies and assassins while lurking around the Eiffel Tour.
I love the low budget 80's cheese of the clip, especially the "flying camera getting shot out of the sky" effect.
And at the end of the video, Le Bon does a parody of James Bond, smarmily introducing himself as "Bon. Simon Le Bon."
According to Wikipedia, Duran Duran was chosen to do the song after bassist John Taylor a lifelong Bond fan, approached producer Albert Broccoli at a party, and somewhat drunkenly asked "When are you going to get someone decent to do one of your theme songs?
"A View to a Kill" was the last song recorded by the original five-member lineup until the band reunited in 2001.
Saturday, January 9, 2021
88/100 Video - "Crystal" – New Order (2001)
New Order had been dormant for almost a decade, its members off doing solo projects since they had split up circa 1993.
Thursday, January 7, 2021
89/100 Video - "Buffalo Stance" - Neneh Cherry (1988)
The video for "Buffalo Stance" by Neneh Cherry oozes energy and flow, colour and motion.
Wednesday, January 6, 2021
90/100 Video - "Push It" - Garbage (1998)
91/100 Video - "Whip It" - Devo (1981)
Shape it up
Try to detect it
It's not too late
To whip it
Whip it good
Tuesday, January 5, 2021
92/100 Video - "Mama" - Genesis (1983)
If we judge his work solely based on the mid-80s era, it's easy to forget that Phil Collins had a bit of a dark side.
And "Mama" by Genesis may be the trippiest single Phil Collins has ever produced.
Shot in black and white, the video is on the creepy end of the spectrum. Dark and powerful. But also beautiful and poetic.
The song's slow menacing buildup is spectacular and Phil's vocals are among his finest.
And Phil is downright terrifying when does his little laugh grunts, as the camera shifts perspective and slides his huge mug closeup, staring, glaring back at us.
The song itself is about a young man obsessed with a prostitute who is not interested in him. Based on a book Phil Collins had read called The Moon's A Balloon, by David Niven, in which a young man falls in love with an older prostitute who does not return his affections.
Monday, January 4, 2021
93/100 Video - "Torture" – The Jacksons (1984)
"Torture" by The Jacksons isn't just a music video. It's also a mini horror movie.
It's so bad, it's good.
Musically, the brothers remind us that there was a lot of talent in the family tree to go around.
But all the brothers didn't make it into the video. MJ had other commitments and Jermaine refused.
Although MJ sings a verse, he doesn't appear in the clip. Edit: there's a wax mannequin of him instead.
Now the video itself is a delicious slice of 80s swagger.
The overuse of cheesy special effects and tropes typically reserved for science-fiction and fantasy movies reflects one helluva budget.
The eye in the middle of the hand. The elaborate costumes. The dancing babe. Giant spiders. Demonic symbolism.
For the grand finale, a group of dancing skeletons steal the show. There's even a moonwalking skeleton.
Sunday, January 3, 2021
94/100 Video - "Yellow" – Coldplay (2000)
The original concept for the video "Yellow" by Coldplay was a party involving the entire band, however the funeral of the drummer's mother was held on the day of the video shoot. So, instead of all four members appearing, just singer Chris Martin went to the shoot.
There were apparently a ton of extras kicking around, but Chris grabbed the cameraman and said "let’s just walk down the beach".
The video was shot on a windy, drizzly day on an empty beach in Dorset, England, and shows Chris walking along the shoreline singing to the camera. The clip was taken in one continuous shot, and in slow motion.
The final clip ended up becoming a poignant alternative, and somehow even works better than the original plan.
Saturday, January 2, 2021
95/100 Video - "500 Up" – Sloan (1992)
Early Sloan songs from their debut album are often forgotten, sometimes lost with the success of albums that followed.
In "500 Up", the guys sound and look like they're having such a blast, showing us hints of what to come in the years ahead: alternating vocals, amazing harmonies, tight playing.
A summer tune about baseball, boys and girls, the band shots are complimented by clips of a yellow chick dressed in a track suit riding a pink convertible.
I love the breezy innocence of the video with its minimal budget, apparently filmed in the backstreets of New York City. At times the facades of several buildings (I swear I see Park Victoria Apartments in there) remind me of their and my old stomping grounds in Halifax.
Friday, January 1, 2021
96/100 Video - "New Year's Day" - U2 (1983)
While in junior high I tuned into ASN's Atlantic Canada's Choice on Saturday evenings lying down two feet away from the TV.I recall watching the video for "New Year's Day" in a trance, captivated by this new group riding on horses and playing in an open field, in the middle of winter.
This is the song that introduced Ireland's U2 to most of us in North America.
The early U2 sound exuded fire and soul: the Edge's signature 'chugga-chugga' guitar and Bono's passionate vocals are alive and well here.
Bono convinces us when delivering the chilling "I will be with you again" and "I will begin again" lyrics.
That piano riff that weaves in and out is pure magic.