Let me start by saying that I did a ton of research on The Mars Volta before their new (and apparently their last) album, “Noctourniquet” was released last Tuesday. I have total respect for Omar Rodrigues-Lopez, and I generally appreciate some of their older work, so I figured I should be excited about the new album. After I finally got a first listen on Tuesday morning, I found myself sort of bewildered by what I had just heard. I proceeded to read a couple of online reviews (which I usually try not to do until I form my own opinion.) To my surprise, for the most part, all of these reviews were extremely positive! What?? How could this be? I took another listen. Yeah, nope. I found it overwhelming, confusing, angry, and in many cases lacking any sort of cohesiveness or melody. One song literally hurt my ears (and not in a blasting-my-headphones-because-it’s-so-freaking-good kind of way.) By all means, I respect progressive and experimental rock, but this is a whole other level. If you’re into that kind of thing, definitely check it out; but I was disappointed, to say the least.
And, as many of you may already know, Chad Smith of the Chili Peppers announced about a month ago that John Frusciante will not be attending their induction into the Rock Hall of Fame on April 14. He quoted him as saying, “I’m just not really comfortable with that, but good luck and thanks for inviting me.” I realize I need to respect his decision (plus, how can you stay mad at that face???) but my heart is a little bit broken.
With all that being said, I definitely need a little cheering up from the music world. And what could better cheer me up than…
MAKING FUN OF REALLY CHEESY MUSIC VIDEOS!
As we all know, there was a lot of confusion going on in the 80s… Women wore scrunchies in public, and men wore very small shorts.
But something that we should definitely be thankful for was the rise of the music video – The awesomely weird, cheesy, awkward music videos that, even today, bring so much joy to our lives. Music videos from the 80s are, therefore, excused from scrutiny, as I see them as almost experimental (but funny, nonetheless). Bad music videos from later, more technologically advanced times, however, have zero excuse. And so we watch, and we laugh.
Here are some of the best of the worst:
Oh George… I love you, and we miss you so much, but what the hell is this? You’re in a dark house, the fire’s raging, your dog’s there. All of the furniture and animal heads are moving with the music. Cute, right? (But pay special attention around the 1:57 mark. It’ll blow your mind.)
This is actually just an excerpt from the movie “Tommy”, the rock opera, which I absolutely loved when I was little. I have to hand it to The Who – They were definitely my gateway into the world of classic rock. I would obsessively listen to this cassette I had of all of the songs after seeing it on Broadway with my dad when I was 7. I rediscovered the movie version relatively recently, and even though it’s not technically a music video, I couldn’t not put it on here. People spraying pesticides in an open field, forest bombs, beach cartwheels?! And the special effects when he’s running at the very end are truly groundbreaking.
What. The. Fuck.
Shots of an iconic Tina Turner in her famous chain dress, interspersed with scenes from the film Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, which stared the lovely Mel Gibson. This song was actually nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Original Song, and received a 1986 Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance – proving that music video humor, like a fine wine, only gets better with age.
Mel Gibson, the face of a hero.
I’m sorry, guys. You know I love you with all of my heart, and this is actually a great song, but… this video. Acrobatic mimes swing dancing, and flying cartoon skeletons. I’m just not really sure where you were going with this. The animation kind of reminds me of something I would’ve seen on Nickelodeon in the early 90s. And poor Chad on the cowbell – Here come the Will Ferrell jokes (as if he didn’t get it bad enough already.) At least Anthony’s body is redonkulous.
My only question while watching this video was, “How was he not embarrassed?”
Journey, and the most dramatic performance at a dock warehouse the world ever saw.
They were really excited about using a green screen, revolutionizing fake fire backdrops. Freddie Mercury… so sweaty.
I put this one up, not so much for the video itself, but as an ode to my childhood. This song was a huge hit when I was in 6th grade, when all of the eleven year old kids would recite the poetic lyrics sung by human-sized monkeys.
So put your hands down my pants and I’ll bet you’ll feel nuts
Yes I’m Siskel, yes I’m Ebert, and you’re getting two thumbs up
It brings a single, glistening tear to my eye.
This video is about a professor who’s in love with/borderline stalks his blind female student. He even prank calls her at 3:39. But whatever he’s doing, it’s obviously working, since all along she’s been working on a sculpture of his head. Aw.
And that’s all for now. I have to say I feel much better, but I do apologize in advance for being the reason why any of the above songs are now drilled into the deepest corner of your brain. Good luck with that, and have a nice day! 🙂