Washing Away’s “Even The Score” Music Video Out Now

The girlfriend’s spinning bottle takes aim at multiple guys’s hearts, letting them fall and shatter in this video twist on spin-the-bottle. 

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“Even the Score” is the first track off Washing Away’s Part Three – EP (2016), with lyrics about a cheating girlfriend now looking to seduce an ex-boyfriend.  The video’s theme is a take on the youthful game of spin-the-bottle, with much different results. The props and scenes are limited to what I could do alone. Here’s how it worked.

I needed five bottles of soda, floss, pink sponges, a nickel, tape, and card stock. I cut five hearts out of the sponges and tied four of them up with floss. The floss was a sample from the dentist. The fifth heart got shoved in an emptied soda bottle. The empty one is the spinner, but it is tough to keep a bottle spinning in one place. A nickel taped to the bottom stabilized it for the camera (the other coins didn’t work as well). I taped up the other four strips of floss to my cabinets to hold up the full bottles in a lose knot with the heart around the top. I used soda instead of beer to keep a sense of innocence and youth. The bottles balanced on the edge of my kitchen counter on slips of card stock taped underneath so I could stealthily pull them off. I used a sheet as a backdrop and put couch cushions and blanket on the floor so the bottles wouldn’t break until I was ready to film them.

I hope you enjoy it. You can click on “CC” in the video to see the lyrics.

For further viewing, check out my YouTube Channel or other Washing Away posts. Feel free to  e-mail suggestions for other music videos you’d like to see. And if you like these posts, consider buying my music.

Video Appreciation – Thao & The Get Down Stay Down’s "Astonished Man"

This groove- and beat-oriented song about tracking down the singer’s lost father is given a new perspective with a mock B movie horror video.

“Astonished Man” is the lead-off track from A Man Alive (2016), the fourth album from Thao & the Get Down Stay Down (2003 – ).  The song (and album) is about her relationship with her estranged father.  The vocal groove and sharp beat drive the song. Repeated words and phrases emphasize the rhythm with the cracking drums. The simple guitar riffs and buzzing synth bass further emphasize the rhythms. The guitar is mostly choppy, but does include some swirling effects in the background. The music builds and breaks down and builds again. Throughout the song, auxiliary instruments add more texture to the song. There’s a shaker, tambourine and a cowbell-like sound from the percussion. Violins add to the atmosphere and intensity along with layered vocals.

The video creates a different kind of atmosphere, a seeming of murderous pursuit.  It’s setting is the stage of a horror film, complete with eerie lighting, fog, skulls, stained glass, and dramatic camera movement to set the scene. The video highlights weapons like an ice hook, ax, chainsaw, butchers knife, switch blade, and tenderizer mallet suddenly casting shadows in the lightning or breaking through walls and doors. Thao sings to the camera alone, in parts with a prop knife in her head and covered in fake blood. She even appears headless on the floor, though the camera reveals her attached body underneath.

For further viewing, check out Thao & The Get Down Stay Down’s video for “Holy Roller” or more Video Appreciation posts. Feel free to  e-mail suggestions for other music videos you’d like to see covered. And if you like these posts, consider buying my music.

Click “Continue reading’ to see the lyrics.  Continue reading “Video Appreciation – Thao & The Get Down Stay Down’s "Astonished Man"”

Video Appreciation – Beach Houses’ "Wishes"

The band creates a dreamlike atmosphere for a stadium performance with lip-syncing, dancing, spraying, martial arts, fireworks, and horses.

“Wishes” is the third single from Beach House‘s (2004 – present) fourth album, Bloom (2012). Eric Wareheim, of Tim and Eric, directed and has a cameo in the video. It begins with a synthesizer’s bright chord’s swell, followed by electronic drums and a descending keyboard pattern. An older man emerging from a the stadium’s horse-embellished curtain. He sings to the crowd, but the vocals are a woman’s, low and drawn out. The crowd watches motionless.

Next, a guitar comes in to compliment the keyboard. Combatants with ball nets hanging from their waists are on the sideline. Martial artists spray water in their mouths. Then, three cheerleaders run through a horse-embellished banner on the field and do a routine as the coach sings on. The crowd begins cheering. Horse masks begin appearing in the crowd.

Synth bass, drums, and background vocals fills out the music. The martial artists take the field and do flips, spinning kicks, poi ball spinning.  The crowd cheers intensely.  They dance while spraying water (even mimicking urination), before tearing away each others pants and their own jacket as the cheerleaders gawk.

The music builds to a guitar solo. One cheerleader spins a guandao, security chases a painted streaker across the field, and the guys spins nunchucks and   a double-sided light saber. Another cheerleader dances with shimmering translucent wings.

After the solo, the music changes. It drops out from behind the singer for a moment, then kicks back in with a showering keyboard line and drums. Fireworks explode each time the music comes back in and the winged dancer keeps twirling, her wings enveloping her.

The music repeats the beginning of the song, but builds quickly. Two cheerleaders escort the singer to a horse, while the other and martial artist place flowers at his feet and another guy does flips into a step up to the horse. The singer finishes off the song and all are applauding, even using signs. The horse rears up as fireworks explode in the background to the end.

For further viewing, check out Beach House’s video for “Heart of Chambers” or more Video Appreciation posts. Feel free to  e-mail suggestions for other music videos you’d like to see covered. And if you like these posts, consider buying my music.

Video appreciation posts this year highlight and seek female musicians to inspire diversity in our music playing and listening pursuits.

Click ‘Continue reading’ to see the lyrics.

Continue reading “Video Appreciation – Beach Houses’ "Wishes"”

Video Appreciation – Pale Honey’s "Youth"

Swedish female rock duo let their hair fly loose in this high-contrast black and white video that highlights the quite verses and loud choruses of a simply cool single.

Pale Honey’s debut full-length album, Pale Honey (2015), popped up on iTunes’ Indie section in May. Their bouncy beats, simple riffs, and smooth vocals made it the best on the list. Their video for “Youth” shows off their music’s best qualities – it’s just generally good, minimalist rock. The video is stark black and white with the two women playing music and playing around. The band is in black and their instruments are white. The house is pretty empty except for an upright piano ornamented with a globe, but you’ll also see a lot of the amp and guitar.

The singer may shift in and out of focus as she murmurs the lyrics, but you can’t miss her hair. Their shiny locks were the highlight of the video. In almost every scene they’ve got hair in their face, are flipping it around, or just letting it fall all over – unbound, it just goes everywhere. This could totally be a hair care product commercial, but I’m glad it’s not. It’s just an attractive, straightforward music video.

For further viewing, check out Pale Honey’s video for “Fish” or more Video Appreciation posts. Feel free to e-mail me suggestions for other music videos you’d like to see covered. And if you like these posts, consider buying my music to support Write to Remember.

Video appreciation posts this year highlight and seek female musicians to inspire diversity in our music playing and listening pursuits.

Click ‘Continue reading’ to see the lyrics. Continue reading “Video Appreciation – Pale Honey’s "Youth"”

Video Appreciation – Bjork's "Family"

Video brings cover art to life as a dark landscape is filled with vivid color and a wounded heart is mended bringing renewal for the singer.

For her ninth solo studio album, Vulnicura‘s (2015), Björk (1965 – ) is bent over backward on stone with a large open wound in her chest.  The music is a two-and-half-minute segment from “Family,” starting about three minutes in and closing with an modified ending that fades out faster than the album version. It opens with panning staccato strings and disjointed singing. Dissonant vocal harmony and booming, shaking percussion later add to the chaos.  Slowly, the music calms as strings rise and change key.  They create a swirling sound of sustained and quickly bowed strings. The music resolves with multiple vocal lines in a sort of call and response backed by deeper notes countering the high floating strings.

The video begins equally chaotically – the viewer sees a close-up view in quick cuts, zooming and spinning over the dark, shiny model of Björk on the stone.  Flashing light accent the percussion. As the music changes, color is added to the landscape and her wound begins to gush purple.  Björk replaces her model self under the purple.  Yellow strands dance as she coaxes them out of her clothes and begins sewing up her wound.  It slowly closes as the threads pull together with pearls and embroidery.  With the wound closed, yellow strands emerge from the ground, cocooning her and the rock.  The strands fall and she emerges in a yellow dress and walks away.

While Björk’s extensive video collection is all worth viewing, check out  two other videos from Vulnicura, “Lionsong” and “Black Lake,” or more Video Appreciation posts. Please e-mail me suggestions for other music videos, too. And if you value Write to Remember, consider buying my music.

Click ‘Continue reading’ to see the lyrics. Continue reading “Video Appreciation – Bjork's "Family"”

Video Appreciation – Sleater-Kinney's "A New Wave"

Crossover animated video has appeal for fans of the band and show, creating a colorful rebellion of shredding guitars and youthful dancing. 

“A New Wave” is the second single from Sleater-Kinney‘s (1994 – ) eighth album, No Cities to Love (2015). This upbeat anthem has a lot of attitude and guitar licks.  The lyrics about making one’s own way harmonize triumphantly in the choruses, while the drums and guitars shred away in the bridge.

However, their collaboration with Bob’s Burgers is what made me take a peek at the video. It starts with Tina popping Sleater-Kinney’s CD in her pink boombox.The band suddenly appears playing in her room (horse figures and posters are all over).  The camera throbs on the snare beat.  Tina starts dancing, then Gene and Louise join in.  The room fades out leaving the kids and band with a background of colorful changing patterns. In the second verse, the viewer just sees the singers face and mouth, before seeing Tina dance from inside her mouth. Louise punches the air  to emphasize the guitar picking.  As soon as  the bridge kicks in, the color patterns ripple over everyone and highlighting the instruments.  The ceiling in the restaurant is bouncing and dropping debris on Bob’s head as he cooks.  At the end, the kids are dancing lined up with the band.  The background turns yellow and the camera zooms out showing the guitar and microphone chords creating a horizon line, and the scene goes white with black outlines.

Check out Sleater-Kinney’s videos form “No Cities to Love” (2015) and “Jumpers” (2006), or more Video Appreciation posts. Please e-mail me suggestions for other music videos, too. And if you value Write to Remember, consider buying my music.

Click ‘Continue reading’ to see the lyrics. Continue reading “Video Appreciation – Sleater-Kinney's "A New Wave"”

Video Appreciation – Santigold's "Disparate Youth"

The singer takes a tropical journey to an island of wild boys, illustrating lyrics about making her own way and living life to the fullest.

“Disparate Youth” is Santigold‘s (1976 – ) third single from her second album, Master of My Make-Believe (2012). The dub-influenced electronic music was produced by Ricky Blaze and includes guitarwork by Yeah Yeah Yeahs‘ Nick Zinner. The introduction kicks off with a bright synthesizer arpeggio, before a syncopated bass line and intricate drumming brings the song into full swing. The snare cracks and the guitar shreds to give the song some edge.  Additional synthesizer, echoing piano, and background vocals add layers throughout the song.

The video opens with dreamlike introduction, reversed footage of white confetti snowing on Santi in bed before she opens wide her pupil-less eyes.  The viewer is then transported to a tropical land with animals and wild boys in white paint and a desolate whitewashed village.  Santi appears, riding a motorcycle along the shore toward the village.  She is wearing many rings including a large globe on her left hand.  She reaches a dock to board a boat that will take her to the boys’ island.  One spots her with binoculars and runs to get others. When she reaches the shore, they lead her to two boys sitting on a makeshift throne under an old tree. These boys lift their head though their eyes are closed.  She extends her hand with the globe ring as they open their pupil-less eyes.  The globe opens and we see fireworks in their faces. After the explosion, it is now dark and the boys sing along with the ending of the song.

Check out Santigold’s videos “Kicking Down Doors,” “The Keepers”, or more Video Appreciation posts. Please e-mail me suggestions for other music videos, too. And if you value Write to Remember, consider buying my music.

Click ‘Continue Reading’ to see the lyrics. Continue reading “Video Appreciation – Santigold's "Disparate Youth"”