Monday, 13 December 2010

Gorillaz Case Study

After the classes pitches, Emma and I decided to work together on my idea of Gorillaz '19/2000' (soulchild Remix). We will now research our chosen artist further, finding out the bands history, what genre and style the band has.

Gorillaz was created in 1998 by the British musician Damon Albarn and British cartoonist Jamie Hewlett.
Their unique selling point is the collaboration of Gorillaz music itself, along with an extensive fictional universe of a 'virtual band' of comic book characters. The story of how the virtual band came about is on one of the fan websites.
The four virtual band members consist of:


Bass Guitarist 


Guitarist and Keyboard


Drummer & Rapper


Keyboard and Lead Vocals

Their style is a composition of multiple musical genre, with a large influences including dub, hip hop, alternative rock, electronic and pop music.
'Gorillaz', the bands debut album sold over 7 million copies; They were nominated for Mercury Prize 2001, but the nomination was later withdrawn at the bands request.
'Demon Days' is the bands second album, released in 2005, went 5 times platinum in the UK, double platinum in the US, earned 5 Grammy Award nominations for 2006 and won 1 in the Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals category.
Gorillaz have also released 2 B-sides compilations and a remix album. The combined sales of 'Gorillaz' and 'Demon Days' had, by 2007, exceeded 20 million albums.
Recently released in 2010, 'Plastic Beach' is Gorillaz' latest album.

{World Exclusive interview - Gorillaz on Plastic Beach. XFM.}

Gorillaz are under the record label Parlophone, a subsidiary of EMI. Parlophone is EMI's oldest active label. In 1962, Parlophone sighned The Beatles, which soon turned Parlophone into one of the worlds most famous and prestigious record labels.

"Damon Albarn and his Britpop-era flatmate, graphic artist Jamie Hewlett's cartoon creation turned into one of the pop success stories of the year. Gorillaz slunk into the public consciousness with Clint Eastwood, a laid-back groove with an addictive nursery rhyme chorus that became a worldwide hit single. The subsequent album was a cool fusion of hip hop beats, garage rock and funky melodies. The band proceeded to play gigs from behind a curtain - the scamps! - while the album continues to sell by the Jeep-load."   - Q Review - Best of 2001

"19/2000 (Soulchild Remix) became popular after being featured in both an Ice Breakers Commercial, as well as in EA Sports' FIFA Football 2002" {wiki}

"It's sick and it's wrong and you know it, but you will love the new Gorillaz single after hearing it on the radio and will buy it and clasp it to your bosom, and only then realise that it was that capricious harlot, The Sexalicious Dance Remix, who seduced you. Damn her cruel charms! Ah well. Shrug and admit it. Yes, I confess I bumped till the break o'dawn with the curvy, brash and bouncy '19/2000 (Soulchild Remix)', enticing as the distant pinkle of an ice-cream van and sounding like Len's 'Steal My Sunshine' times ten. And I left '19/2000 (Original Mix)' sitting at the bar, sulking credibly in a slow-groove cardigan. Funny though, the more of a grumpy bastard Damon becomes, the more joyous and carefree his falsetto pogos get. Smile, you git. That thing with the remix - it didn't mean anything to us. We still love you. We won't do it again. Honest."  - Play Louder Review 

"Gorillaz have topped a list of the most popular acts on MySpace this year, ahead of the likes of Coldplay, Oasisand Lily Allen." {NME}

In the USA's Top Albums For 2001, Gorillaz' album 'Gorillaz' came 93rd.
In the Australian Top Albums For 2001, their 'Gorillaz' album came 43rd, and their single 'Clint Eastwood' came 74th.
In Austria's Top Albums for 2001, the same album came in 10th, and single 'Clint Eastwood' arrived at 15th.
Ireland had 'Clint Eastwood' at 32 in their singles chart for 2001.
This suggests the beginning of a world wide success for Gorillaz, as the year of their first album got them high rankings in the charts in various countries.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Gorillaz Fan Clubs

Fanpop is a website which holds a variety of fan bases for bands, television shows, films etc.
It has a specific fan base for Gorillaz, and provides fans a place to upload pictures, videos, chat in forums and other things, and generally interact with other fans of the band.

Me and Emma have signed up and become fans of the gorillaz page, and hope to get some feedback on our ideas and footage. 

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Coursework Pitch

I have chosen the song 19/2000 by Gorillaz, but instead of using the original song I have found a remix, which will overcome some copyright issues. The Soulchild Remix is by music producer Damien Mandis.

Gorillaz - 19-2000
This is the video to the original song.
Gorillaz is a musical project created in 1998, which consists of 4 animated members. Completely different to mainstream music, Gorillaz creates their own frictional universe which is explored through the band's website and music video, along with other medias. The music is a collaboration between various musicians, Albarn being the only permanent musical contributor.

'Their style is a composition of multiple musical genres, with a large number of influences including : dub, hip hop, alternative rock, electronic and pop music.'   {adapted from Wiki}

Initial Ideas for 19/2000 (Soulchild Remix) Gorillaz 
Music Video
- Concept music video
  • Opening shots being at a house party, the morning after. Exposition into the lifestyle - empty alcohol bottles, cigarette packets, people asleep on the floor etc.
  • The music builds in with either alarm or his phone ringing. - Male lead sits up in bed - answers phone and brief conversation of "yeaah I'll be there.' 
  • Then following of him going out of the house, walking down the street and meets a friend
  • They then get in a car and various shots of them driving. Pick up a generator and pack up the car
  • Elliptical editing. Shots of wooded area and flash lights, sudden floodlight/strobe lighting and people dancing.
  • Male lead is behind decks, various shots of him and people around. 
  • Fades out on vinyl spinning on deck. 


The world is spinning too fast
I'm buying lead Nike shoes
To keep myself tethered
To the days I try to lose
My mama said to slow down
You should make your shoes
Stop dancing to the music
Of Gorillaz in a happy mood
Keep a mild groove on
Ba ba ba
Day dee bop
There you go!
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
There's a monkey in the jungle
Watching a vapour trail
Caught up in the conflict
Between his brain and his tail
And if time's elimination
Then we got nothing to lose
Please repeat the message
It's the music that we choose
Keep a mild groove on
Ba ba ba
Day dee bop
OK bring it down yeah we gonna break out
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
Get the cool!
Get the cool shoeshine!
Ah Ah Ah Ah
Day doo de bop

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Lip-Syncing task - Barbra Streisand

Our class as a whole chose my pitch for 'Barbra Streisand' by Duck Sauce as the lip-syncing task.
As director, I split the class up, each with different tasks to do in preparation for filming.
The song was quite repetitive in parts, so I gave Emma the task of cutting down the song by taking out long sections of parts without lip-syncing.
As she did this, the rest of the class brainstormed ideas for shots, most importantly the lip syncing shots.
We came to the decision that each of the sections where the fake Barbra spoke, one of us would be lip syncing, and George would be the male rapper. After discussing as a group, we then split up individually to do shot list for sections of the edited version of the song.
Emma had from 0.00 - 0.51
I had from 0.52 - 1.24
Wizz and George shared 1.25 - 2.09
Emmie and Megan shared 2.09 - 2.42

We spent a full day around school filming, along with a few lessons to re-shoot a few shots. I then edited the footage together and here is our final video.

Friday, 19 November 2010

Barbra Streisand Music Video Pitch

For a lip syncing task, each person of the class had to choose a song and pitch and idea to the class, with one being chosen and then given a few days to film and edit.

I chose Barbra Streisand by Duck Sauce as a music video to create, as I felt the original video is interesting with the variety of shots of people, there is different sections of lip syncing, from the repetitive 'Barbra Streisand', the shots of a fake Barbra speaking, some rapping, and other singing. The music video would be  relatively easy to shoot, especially in school, as it involves random people dancing, laughing, singing etc, which would be fairly easy to  get in a short amount of time.

I thought that the class could do the sections of the fake Barbra speaking, as then we get practise in trying to lip sync properly.
There is the opportunity to be creative with the ways in which Barbra Streisand is sung, and taking the various shots that fill up the rest of the music video.
For time reasons, it would seem easier to cut down the song, and include the majority of the lip syncing and cut out the instrumental parts.

Censored Music Videos

Robbie Williams - Rock DJ 
Directed by Vaughn Arnell

This music video was surrounded by controversy because of its explicit content (Ripping off his clothes, skin and organs)

The ending was cut by most music channels around Europe - MTV, VIVA, The Box.
Other music channels cut from Robbie dancing in his underwear to dancing as a skeleton.

Frankie Goes To Hollywood - Relax
Directed by Bernard Rose

Set in an S&M themed gay nightclub and allegedly banned by MTV and the BBC, when then prompted a second video.
However after a second video was made, the song itself was banned completely from the BBC/

Cher - If I Could Turn Back Time
Directed by Marty Callner 

Cher wears a fishnet body stocking, with a revealing black one piece body suit on top.
MTV banned the video in 1989, and later only played the video after the 9pm watershed.
A censored version was then produced, showing less explicit sexual content.

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Product Placement in Music Video

Often artists will include product placements in their music video, which is a form of advertisement where branded products are used in context in the music video.

An example, and recent news headline, is Britney Spears' music video for 'Hold It Against Me'.
Since her last album being released in 2008, and last music video in 2009 for the song '3', it has been a while since Britney had been in the spotlight.
Her most recent video, directed by Jonas Akerlund (same director as iconic 'Smack My Bitch Up').

Coincidentally, it is the same director who made the music video for Lady Gaga, 'Telephone'. The 9 minute long video, which includes various product placements.

Virgin Mobile - A phone is snatched from a butch prison yard toughie's waistband (2:07)

Diet Coke - Cans are used as rollers in Lady Gaga's hair (2:22)

Wonder Bread & Miracle Whip - Those are the magic ingredients in sandwiches made by Gaga (6:35)

Polaroid - A camera is used to photograph Beyonce (5:45) [By the way, Gaga is Polaroid's creative director and inventor of specialty products after inking a deal with the brand in January.]

Also look out for Heartbeats Headphones (1:34), Chanel (2:17), (4:27), and Hewlett Packard (4:24).


Thursday, 4 November 2010

Fatboy Slim Case Study

Q7) Is there and leitmotifs in their videos and lyrics?
Watching a variety of music videos for Fatboy Slims work, there is a common theme in a majority of the videos, being dance. Praise You, Weapons of Choice, Rockafella Skank and Wonderful Night are 4 out of the 6 that I watched which follow either a group of people or one person dancing to the song. This signifies the genre of the music, and when the audience watch the video they feel it is an uplifting song and inspires them to dance too.
They lyrics seem to be fairly different in each song, but similar instruments and overall sound of the music is similar, with a strong beat and various instruments.

Q9) Spike Jonez directed 2 of Fatboy Slims music videos, Weapons of Choice and Praise You.
Praise You is guerrilla-video (one which does not obtain permission to use the location), filmed on a basic video camera, with only a few different angles which are cut between, the use of the camera zoom. All in an effort to create a music video which goes against the rules of video making, by avoiding luxrious settings and props, glamorous people, instead replacing with a simple concept of a group dancing and expressing themselves to the song. 

Monday, 1 November 2010

Label Profile

Gorillaz are associated with EMI, Parlophone and Virgin Records.
Even though they have different names, parlophone and virgin are subsidiaries of EMI.

EMI brief history
  • Company founded in 1897
  • Enrico Caruso is first major artist in 1902
  • Abbey Road Studios open in 1931
  • The Beatles sign in 1962
  • Pink Floyd sign in 1967
  • Queen sign in 1972
  • Spice Girls sign in 1996
  • Acquired a number of high-profile record companies in 1990 
    • Chrysalis Records
    • Virgin Music Group
    • Sparrow Records
    • Intercord
  • Acquired by Terra Firma Capital Partners in 2007
    • Several important artists walked away from EMI
      • Radiohead
      • Paul McCartney
      • The Rolling Stones
  • Citigroup (bank) took 100% ownership of EMI Group from Terra Firma
    • writing off £2.2 billion of debt, and reducing debt load by 65%.
Parlophone brief history
  • Founded in 1896 in Germany
  • British branch was formed in 1923, which became a leading jazz label.
  • Acquired in 1927 by EMI.
  • Signed The Beatles in 1962 - released the first 8 albums.
  • Became one of the world's most famous and prestigious record labels in the 60's.
Virgin Records
  • British Record Label founded by Richard Branson, Simon Draper and Nik Powell in 1972.
  • Sold to Thorn EMI in 1992. 
  • Virgin launched several subsidiaries
    • Realworld Records
    • Innocent Records
    • Point Blank Records
    • Hut Records
  • Continued signing new and established artists
      • 30 Seconds to Mars
      • Depeche Mode
      • The Rolling Stones
      • Massive Attack
      • Gorillaz.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

The Music Industry

The Big Four record labels

  • Sony BMG 
      • Britney Spears
      • Justin Timberlake
      • The Fray
  • Universal Music Group
      • 50 Cent
      • U2
      • Kanye West
  • EMI
      • The Beatles
      • Pink Floyd
      • Pet Shop Boys
  • Warner Music Group
      • The Kinks
      • Madonna
      • Oasis
These four major record labels make up around 75% of the music market or more, depending on the year.
US Music Market Shares, 2005, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
However, not every artist is signed to the central label. Each on the big fours have their own subsidiary labels; these subsidiary labels often sign their own artists and make most of their own financial decisions, however they are answerable to the 'main' company, who gives them their overall budget. 

"In essence, a Big Four label is a corporation that manages several smaller businesses." {Heather McDonald}

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Guns & Roses Music Videos

Sweet Child 'O Mine

Post modern - deconstructionism, the video highlights the making of the video by having cameras in shot and seeing the cameras action then the shot that it took.

This music video opens with an extreme close up of a dog infront of drums with the Guns & Roses symbol on.
Opening before the song starts, diegetic sound is included of the set up - camera crew and others working amongst the band.
Mise-en-scene - leather, tattoos, cigarettes hanging out of mouth = conventional for G&Rs
Cuts between black & white and colour - attracts the viewers.
Dutch angles and behind the scenes footage.
The drum kit allows a great variety of shots, high/low angle, longshot/closeup/ hands, feet, vibrations, symbols etc.
It seems that the venue isn't very significant, as the focus is to be on the band interacting and performing. Band logo is the backdrop which can sometimes be seen in shots.

Paradise City

Not straight into the performance, this video opens with before the concert, an empty arena, band warming up and in black and white. Colour kicks in with Axell Rose singing. 
Time lapse of audience entering and filling up the arena. Dutch angle in all sorts of shots. Cut aways to them throughout their world tour, denoting their success as a band and global tour. 
Shots of drama with the security guards and crowd signify the type of genre.
Heavy Metal Rock bands conventionally focus on their lead singer throughout the music video, however as G&R's have become so big, Slash becomes more established for his talents, and more shots of him are included, which in effect makes it look like a music video with more focus on the band rather than just lead singer.
Editing is cut to the guitar riff as opposed to the drum beat. The track is a recorded version, rather than the live track that matches the footage; this can be because it would take a lot of time to match the sound of each shot perfectly together, and the quality is better for the studio recorded version.


An example of performance music video, set up in a studio. The song is acoustic rather than the heavy metal it usually is from Guns N Roses. 
Mixes with some narrative. - Shows the rock and roll live style - loads of girls but not really showing much interest in them individually. Includes a shot of Axell Rose watching the band on TV - welcome to the jungle video, and doesn't look impressed.
Still includes similar mise en scene as other videos, with cigarettes and clothing.
Shots panning the room including the different band members playing their instuments, quite slow editing to match the pace of the song.


Genre: Heavy Metal

Results from brainstorming the common things we would see in a Heavy Metal music video
  • Live performance - Extreme close ups of instruments, pans of crowds, close up of band members, following of lead singer.
  • Singer point of view shots
  • Crane shots - for high angles of crowd and band.
  • Fast editing - cuts to the beat of the song
  • Jump cuts
  • Narrative - following the band behind the scenes, could include actors/actresses in lyric narrative.
  • Heavy lighting - strobe lights
  • Special effects - fire, lightening
  • Mise en scene - clothing and style such as tattoos, long hair, black, leather etc.

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Weekly homework: video 3 and 5

RJD2 - Work it Out

A music video following one man through a city square, who is on crutches but the interesting way is how he moves. With a smooth motion which matches the song, this music is designed to be inspiring to an audience by showing the unordinary.   The man was born with a degenerative hip condition and has adapted to a different way of dancing with his crutches and use of skateboards. With limited use of editing, there is no sense of cutting to the beat of the song, however the video matches with the motions. Tracking is used to show different angles of the male as he makes his journey.

RJD2 - Let There Be Horns

A narrative video, taking inspiration from the name of the song and featuring a central protagonist of a bull, or similar animal with horns. The opening includes mise en scene with text showing the artist and song title. I think that this video is the type of video that can be easily achieved by ourselves in our own music video. Showing a real life situation of the bull going to work, but the costume gives an interesting aspect to the video. Like a short film, this video deals with issues of the characters struggle with stress of the daily life, by having to take pills to calm himself down. A wide variety of shots has been used in the separate scenes of this music video, which keeps the audience interested and is very effective alongside the song. Editing of cutting to the beat is used, with keeps the song synced with the video. 

Monday, 27 September 2010

Weekly homework: video 2 and 3

Jack Johnson - Hope


A performance video, which is different to the common performance, in which it isn't a live performance on stage, but instead in a house, with a few people with instruments and Jack Johnson singing and playing his guitar.
The filming seems to be done on a hand held camera, which gives a documentry, realistic feel to the music video, rather it being heavily planned, the shots seem to have been taken on the spot, with camera zoom sometimes replacing close up cuts.
Shot length is quite long, which matches the music, as it isn't a fast paced heavy beat, but instead a much more chilled out song, and the cuts tend not to change specifically to the beat. 
The choice of black and white simplifies the music video, and creates the music to be the main focus. It also gives a much more arty style to the video, as it simply the band playing the song.

Friendly Fires - Kiss of Life

(unable to embed)

With this video, Friendly Fires have gone for another performance type video, with instead of them being in a gig situation, they are located in a foreign country, possibly Africa, with 3 band members and a line of what looks like a mixture of cultural people, with gold masks covering their face and in bright tribal clothing, with bongo drums. The video consists of a variety of shots of the band members and the people, close ups, long shots, low angles, slow motion, etc. The editing cuts to the beat change.
Even though the video isn't directly linked to the lyrics of the song, I think it suits the musical side, with the bongo drums and cowbells, the idea of culture and in a desert location works well.

Friday, 24 September 2010

Favourite Videos & The Consumption of Music Video

Here is a selection of some of my own personal favourite music videos:

I like the simplicity of this video based around the drummer. I think it has some really good shot variation, cutting from long shots to close ups of people and the drum kit. It's a mixture between concept and performance, showing the intensity of the drummer throughout the song. Another video from the Arctic Monkeys is also a favourite.

'When The Sun Goes Down' is a more narrative music video for Arctic Monkeys, following a female character, relating the video to the song and its lyrics. I like the way the video is filmed, showing the story of a couple, in what seems a quite social realism film genre. It has the look of a trailer, with the song as a soundtrack as opposed to a music video, which is against the common conventions of an indie rock music video, which is mainly performance with some concept or narrative to it.

Axwell - I Found U, is another favourite video of mine. A music video for the dance genre, which opposes common conventions of half naked girls dancing infront of camera, and instead is a music video which takes a basic idea of the love of dancing, which suits the song for its beat and its lyrics.

I really like some of the editing and cuts to the beat in the video for The Source Ft. Candi Station - You've Got The Love. The variety of shots, from close up, to long shots to extreme close ups works nicely in the black and white music video.

The consumption of music video 

has changed over the years, from a time in which top of the pops was the main consumption of music on television before the 80's, to MTV launching in the 80s [see post: The videos that changed the 80's]. Now it is more uncommon for a band not to create a music video to promote their singles, as there are various ways in which music videos are consumed. 
Through television, MTV and a vast increase in Music Channels are available on satellite television, showing different genres of music, from The Box being a selection of recent releases and top hits, to Kerrang, a magazine and television channel that dedicates itself to the heavy metal and rock genre. 

The ever advancing technologies of the internet also provide a base for music videos. From YouTube, possibly the largest online collection of various videos. YouTube allows people to find official music videos, remakes of music videos as well as peoples own creations.   
Other websites such as Yahoo and, which make it easy to find official music videos online have increased the audience for music videos, as it is possible to search for the videos the viewer wants to watch, rather than have the television channel decide what videos are being played.
The internet is not only available on computers, but on mobile phones, on Ipods, Ipads, and other similar devices, making it almost available at any time. 

This wide consumption of online music videos also makes it much easier for viral marketing. 
Through word of mouth, fans of similar genres, or artists can discuss and link to music videos over the internet; through forums or social networks. Therefore a band can gain valuable free marketing through uploading their music videos onto the internet, and letting the fan base spread the video and song. 

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Heavy Metal: Sub Genres

Sub Genres of Heavy Metal

  • Grunge
  • Death
  • Punk
  • Hardcore
  • Christian
  • Grindcore - Sludge
  • Rap Metal - Nu
  • Thrash
  • Black
  • Shred
  • Doom
  • Noisecore
  • Progressive
  • Glam/Hair
  • Speed
  • Power
  • Soft
  • Funk
  • Skateboard
  • Pirate

  • Kerrang
  • Metal Hammer
Fanzines (mini magazines - small publication)
E-zines (web based - no cost of print and production)
'-> All help the ever increasing amount of sub genres, which can form from a certain city, create a 'scene' of people who are fans of small sub genres. They are aimed at younger people, who are wanting to discover something new.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Weekly homework

 The XX - VCR

Bloc Party - So Here We Are

Bloc Party - mvSO HERE WE ARE

Codes and Conventions - Queen - Original and Remixed

Another One Bites The Dust was originally released in 1980, and in 2006 was remixed by The Miami Project. Both songs have a video to accompany, but both of different styles.

The original is a performance video, but unlike the common performance video, it does not include any shots of the audience, and it is not know if there is an audience present. Instead the focus is all on the band, and following one of the conventions of a performance video, the lead singer, Freddie Mercury is featured the most.
Their clothing style is mixed, with Freddie wearing a bright yellow vest top and tight jeans, and the guitarist wearing a denim shirt, and another guitarist wearing a leather jacket, the band seems to do their own thing as opposed to matching each other.
Heavy use of lighting is used on the stage, which blacks out where the audience would be, and highlights the band members. The stage itself has a podium on which the drummer is placed at the top, and the other band members are situated around him.

Queen vs The Miami Project - Another One Bites The Dust

This version is a remixed to a faster beat, and the video works well as its a narrative music video, following two young kids who battle with a group of older dancers, first time losing, then going off and practising, then beating them in the end. It is important for this type of video to cut to the beat, as it makes the dancing look better and more in sync with the song. A variety of shot types is used, from close-ups to long-shots, low angles and dutch angles. The location is in an inner city, run down buildings, city block flats and what could be an underground club.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Codes and Conventions: Genre - Rock

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Snow

They are an American Funk Rock band and can also be described under the genres of Rap Rock and Alternative Rock

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Snow

The music video is performance based, however the first shot, which conventionally in music videos would be the lead singer, is of fans, simply smiling into the camera. With the first half being the warming up, in black and white, with cut away shots to the fans who are waiting to watch the show. This gives insight into the audience of the band, with style, age, gender, and overall shows a wide range of people being the fans of The Red Hot Chili Peppers, which could be done purposely, so when anyone watches the video, they feel that they can be included too.  The black and white gives quite a stripped down and simple feel to the video, as though its them naturally. Shots of close ups of the band members and the instruments, different angles and long shots showing an empty arena, showing that its a warm up rather than the actual gig, and then it cuts to colour at the climax of the drum build up, and the arena is full with fans, with close ups of their hands and cheering, cut away to individual shots of the band playing. As the fast pace of the music drops back down, the shots of couples and singular fans are shown again, this time in colour. 
The general feeling of this music video is that the band really care about their fans, as individuals.

Codes and Conventions: Genre - Electronic

David Guetta feat. Kid Cudi - Memories
David Guetta is a french house producer, singer and DJ.  Kid Cudi is an American rapper, singer and actor.

David Guetta - Kid Cudi - Memories (Featuring Kid Cudi)

Common with most music videos, and especially within the Electronic genre, the editing matches the beat change in the music, which can build tension to the the drop of a song and make it flow better.
The video is a mixture of performance and cameo, with David Guetta DJing throughout the video, and Kid Cudi singing the lyrics and traveling through different scenes in the video. But as well as having the two artists, the video includes reflections of women who would be filming them, who are naked with one word lyrics such as 'Hey' covering parts of their body. This sometimes isn't noticable at first, but can be seen now and again. Including females with little clothing is a common convention in this genre, as the music is dance music, to gather a male audience they use areas of the male gaze theory and have women with little clothing dancing.
Scenes of the club with the two performing can sell the song, and make fans want to go see them live.

Deadmau5  - I Remember (Edit)

is a Canadian progressive house and electro house producer. The video was directed by Colin O'Toole, and shot in Manchester

Deadmau5 & Kaskade - I Remember (Edit)

There are different versions of this video, and extended, which is a short film with the song within, and the edit version which is the main music video, with short clips of the film and the 10 commandments of being a raver over the top of the song.
The video is narrative, with actors finding a location in which to have a rave, with another actor, Stephen Graham, telling the 10 commandments to his real life younger brother, and telling the story of his past and the illegal raves he used to have. Alongside that story, there is a couple who are followed throughout the music video, and can be seen at the rave. Close-ups and pans of the rave, cut to the beat of the song and building up tension to the drop in the music.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Codes and Conventions: Genre - Pop

Ke$ha - Tik Tok
 Classed as Electro-pop and dance-pop, Kesha is an American pop singer, rapper and songwriter.


Kesha's music video links in with her music, and features her in the narrative, suggesting a Cameo video. With a wide variety of shot types, from close-ups of the artist as well as mise-en-scene objects which link with the lyrics, the video is what you could imagine it would be if you only listened to the song, without being too creative and doing anything different but narrative based on the artist and lyrics. 
Editing is synced with the beat of the music, which makes it flow better together rather than being off beat. 

Ellie Goulding - Starry Eyed

An English singer-songwriter and guitarist, under the genres of Indie Pop, Electro-pop and Synth-pop

Ellie Goulding - Starry Eyed

This video features mainly the artist singing, with high editing in fast crossover effects, which is cut to the beat of the music. Dancers also feature in the music video, where a lot of editing is also used to create a sense of blurring of time.

Codes and Conventions: Genre - Indie

Paolo Nutini - Last Request

a singer songwriter from Scotland, Paolo is categorized under genres such as Indie, Pop Rock and Folk

Paolo Nutini - Last Request

The music video follows the Cameo style, in which the band/artist is in the narrative, but doesn't perform, although it isn't as obvious as other examples. I figured it was Cameo rather than Performance, as he sings, yet does not play any instruments, and follows the narrative part of the music video. 
 I feel the video could have two messages, either Paolo Nutini has gone through a break up, which is suggested through the lyrics, and is feeling the isolation of not being with the person in the situations that he is in in the music video. With the opening scene being centered on a close up of his face, then moving out to reveal the setting, with couples on either side of him, this emphasises his lonliness and links to the lyrics of the song. 
Another meaning could be the situations within the music video are of past memories of the artist and the person the song is about, with the people in these scenes being quite blurry, and features not easy to make out, this suggests that Paolo is reminissing, and revisiting the memories and linking in with the lyrics, wishing that they could go back there.

The video consists of close-ups of the artist, a montage of shots from scenes which together suggest a collection of memories. No instruments are seen within the music video, which suggests the music video was made to focus more on the lyrics and meaning of the song. 

The Strokes - Reptilia

Originating from America, they can be described as Indie Rock, Alternative Rock and Post-Punk Revival

The Strokes - Reptilia

Reptilia can be categorised as a Performance music video, focusing mainly on the band playing their instruments. Extreme close-ups of microphones, guitars and drum kits. Almost always the hand is included in the frame, showing the playing of the instruments. A sequence of close-ups of the band members faces show fans what the band look like, and gives an insight to their style.
Editing fits in with the music, with jump shots syncing with the beat of the song, this can emphasise the song, and builds up tension in the viewers. 4-way split screen shows the different band members roles at the same time, and creates a different shot to the previous single screens.
Mise en Scene is basic, with majority of the frame been taken up by instruments or faces, which doesn't distract the viewers.

Friendly Fires - Skeleton Boy
Friendly Fires - Skeleton Boy

The video to Friendly Fires Skeleton Boy, features just the band playing, surrounded by black backdrops, wearing fully black body suits with just their faces on show. Snow-like powder falls all around the band whilst they play, and gradually as the video progresses, the white powders stick to the body in the lines of bones on their body, linking with the Skeleton theme. Even though the instruments cannot be seen, the actions of the members show the playing, which suggests it being a Performance based video. With different shot types and angles, such as close ups and birds eye views, the video to Friendly Fires can be classed as more creative than others in the genre.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Music Videos

Music videos can be categorised into different groups, these are:

Performance: Band/artist playing

Narrative: Includes story, commonly linking with lyrics

Mixture: Both performance and narrative

Cameo: Band/Artist features in narrative but doesn't perform

Animation: Digitally / Stop Frame

Music videos are short, so in order to get the most out of the time a lot of camera work has to be included.
From close ups to crane shots, tracking and low angles. Fast editing is common amongst a lot of music genres in their videos, jump cuts and editing to match the music can make the video much better quality.

Mise en scene varies in the different genres, from extreme use of costume and props, to the simple mise en scene of instruments and lighting.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

The Videos That Shaped The 80's

On Sky Arts, a documentary type program reliving the memories of the music video directors and the bands, talking about the influential beginning of the music video era. I have noted down some of the quotes throughout the program

  "It's Harder to come up with something original now, back in the 80's it was all original!" Trevor Horn - The Buggles

"Nobody really knew what it was supposed to do, but the possibilities were endless." Kevin Godley

Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen, Directed by Bruce Gowers
'Bohemian Rhapsody' is widely regarded the visual extraviganda that kick started the music video revolution

 "For our generation, Bohemian Rhapsody, was hugely important, firstly it was number one for weeks and weeks, and we all got to see it because we didnt have any music channels back then, and not really until the 80's, and that had a big impact the first time you'd seen a band make an effort for a song"  Nick Rhodes - Duran Duran

 "When it came out, people were really talking about it, it had broken a mould and challenged everybody to come up and suprise everybody, both musically and in video" Steve Barron

"We did quickly realise the power of the video because it was on top of the pops week after week after week" - Roger Taylor - Queen .

"when your given a track and someone says make a video, sometimes its absolutely  dead easy and it comes to you like that, other times you fiddle around for a week and you can't think of anything" David Mallet 

Video Killed the Radio Star - The Buggles, Directed by Russell Mulcahy 


We felt something about video but I don't think we were aware then that it was going to be as huge as it did become, the thing that actually kick started the video era was emergence MTV" Kevin Godley

"'Video Killed The Radio Star' opened up MTV, and no one realised the impact that this would have." Russell Mulcahy

 Vienna - Ultravox, Directed by Russell Mulchay

"A lot of my videos try to tell a little story, i wanted it to have a very noirish mystery about it." - Russell Mulchay, Director

"'Ultravox - Vienna' changed the landscape of what was possible for a band to do, you didn't actually have to play your instruments on screen, you could be an actor on it" Gary Kemp, Spandau Ballet

"The joys of making a music video in that era was that you just did it, there was no commisioning editor, there was noone you had to explain it to and no one you had to write the idea down to, and then no focus group twho would then have a meeting about the idea, you just turned up and did it" David Mallet

"There was that period in the 80s when we made those videos where there was a freedom, a visual freedom." Russell Mulchay, Director

Making of Elton Johns, I'm Still Standing "At that point I realised you can be creative on the spot if you have to be" Russell Mulchay

Queen - I Want To Break Free

"It was the most fun of any video we ever made." - Roger Taylor - Queen
"I laughed for 3 days straight, we all were, we were just histerical" David Mallet
 "it was a measure of the thinking at MTV, that they thought it was discraseful and didnt show it and banned it." Roger Taylor - Queen

Billie Jean - Michael Jackson, Directed by Steve Barron
"I saw enough to see that this was something phenomenal"
"Then we heard that MTV wouldn't play it, because he was black. There was a very difficult 3-4 weeks" negotiation with the head of CBS who was really going to go to the supreme court and get MTV to reverse this decision." Steve Barron, Director

Rockit - Herbie Hancock, Directed by Kevin Godley


"nobody had done anything quite like what they did with Rockit" Herbie Hancock
"I saw an artist who made these extraordinary neumatic robots, a few weeks later we got this track from Herbie Hancock, and it was a natural pairing, that sounded like this looked." Kevin Godley
"The big problem back then was getting a black artist on MTV, because it was a big issue back then" Kevin Godley
They put us on low rotation, and after a week or two we were put on heavy rotation, skipping out medium. we had the most MTV awards that year, the year of the first MTV awards." Herbie Hancock

Cry - Godley & Creme, Directed by Godley & Creme


 "In like cry we didnt want to be in it at all... we just felt like it was a kind of song that anybody could sing, and it turned out to be correct, and we're just in there with everybody else."
"Soft wipe, allows you to get from one face to another using a shape that opens up, what happens is it reveals a part of the incoming of the face over the out-coming face"
"It wasn't new technology, I think it was just because we were using faces, makes it seem more magical" 
 - All Kevin Godley

Dancing in the Street - Mick Jagger & David Bowie, Directed by David Mallet 
Filmed in one 24 hour session, with the aim to premier it at Live Aid to an estimated global audience of 40 million.
 "We literally made something up as we went along"
"There was one scene which is definitely Davids (Bowie), one scene I can look at now and know that it was mine, and a whole lot of other scenes which were sheer desperation" 
- All David Mullet

"Earlier on I think it was much easier because you had such a small budget you just had to get it done." Nick Rhodes - Duran Duran

Close To Me - The Cure, Directed by Tim Pope

"I got this idea of wanting to shoot it all in this very very confined space to give that feeling to the song. - a wardrobe"
"what was interesting was, i think the video completed the song, we then which is very rare to do these days, which is remix the song to fit the video... So in a way the video had an influence on the song itself" Tim Pope

"A great video definitely helped a song at that point, but if you didn't have a great song, you could have a fantastic video and it really wouldn't make a lot of difference." Nick Rhodes - Duran Duran