Pretty Much Every Music Video Ever
October 28, 2008 2 Comments
“Waaah, MTV doesn’t show music videos anymore.” Well, that’s because channels that only show music videos get terrible ratings, while insipid reality fare aimed at tweens is so popular that people like us can pick cast members from “The Hills” out of a lineup without ever having seen the actual show.
But you know what, folks? This is the 21st century. Who needs a music video network when you can just have a website featuring every video made in the MTV era!
At long last, the MTV name is being associated with music videos again, because the “music” channel has gone and put its entire archive of music videos online, all embeddable and in high quality. It’s like Hulu for music videos, only with less ads (for now). And it’s awesome.
The site’s still very young, but just poking around shows the amazing amount of content on there. There aren’t just music videos on here, but also songs played on shows like VH1 Storytellers and MTV Unplugged.
Just from my surface exploration, it includes pretty much everything, from old acts to new, major label acts to indies. Go, go now!
Here are a few recommended starting points, trailheads of jam if you will:
Blur – Coffee and TV. A delightful, hilarious, touching narrative about a milk carton.
The Pharcyde – Drop. One of Spike Jonze’s greatest hits. The whole thing was shot in reverse.
Beyonce – Single Ladies. Everybody be loving these dance moves!!!
Aphex Twin – Windowlicker. A really, really bizarre Chris Cunningham video that could definitely give you nightmares.
White Stripes – Fell in Love With a Girl. Michel Gondry’s LEGO masterpiece.
Yung Joc – It’s Goin’ Down. So many enjoyable elements to this video…the chorus urging us to meet Yung Joc at the mall…the really dumb dance move his posse does…the sports cars we really hope this dude didn’t spend his money on…the rundown house party we’re supposed to aspire to be invited to. Wow.
Fiona Apple – Criminal. Also known as “Sleazy: The Musical.”
Outkast – Hey Ya. One of the best songs of the decade – one of the best videos of the decade. The stereotypes of each musician are amusingly on point.
Johnny Cash – Hurt. Here’s a tissue, you may need it to wipe away the tears…or the drool. Depending on your temperament.
Michael Jackson – Black or White [Long Version]. Every last wondrous moment of a video that was a prime-time event when first released. Macauley Culkin blasts George Wendt into the stratosphere with one killer chord; Michael gets down with dancers from all over the world; “cutting-edge” pastiches of global landmarks; LOTS of little kids; the morphing sequence by which all others will always be judged (sup, Tyra); all culminating in the astonishing segment where a panther turns into Michael who then grabs his crotch disturbingly and smashes the shit out of an innocent parked car. In retrospect, the beginning of the end of his career…
[If you’re looking for a less obvious MJ pick, how about Liberian Girl. Truly amazing 80s cameo fiesta. Be sure to stick around to see Guttenberg and Ackroyd roll in on Harleys.]
The only drawback is that some older videos didn’t make it in here. So for those of you hoping to watch high quality streams of 70s classics like REO Speedwagon’s “Keep On Loving You” or Talking Heads’ “Crosseyed and Painless,” looks like you’re gonna have to stick to Youtube for now.
UPDATE: After WordPress somehow thwarted him from commenting, trusty source Nils Coq au Vin, Esq. emailed us a further hit list of must-see vids.
Malajube – Montréal -40°C
Air – Kelly Watch the Stars
Bjork – Human Behavior
Daft Punk – Around the World
Bone Thugs-N-Harmony – Crossroads
Elton John – Trains Don’t Stop There Anymore
Missy Elliott – Work It
Arcade Fire – Neighborhood #2 (Laïka)
MGMT – Time to Pretend