Friday, 21 December 2012

2012 Scene Awards - Video of the Year

Jack White, Sixteen Saltines.

Boys and girls, welcome to the third annual Scene Awards! Until the end of the year, we'll be handing out awards to our favourite acts of 2012 in the following categories; Video of the Year, Australian Artist of the Year, EP of the Year, Best New Artist, Group of the Year, Man of the Year, Woman of the Year and Album of the Year. It's just like the Grammys, but not as boring. It's just like the ARIA Awards, but slightly more relevant. It's the 2012 Scene Awards... and they start now!


Sixteen Saltines
by Jack White
Director: AG Rojas

I loved this clip when I first saw it in April this year. I loved the imagery, the nasty kids, the blueberry milkshake face, the ceiling sandwiches, the post-apocalyptic suburbia, the impromptu mid-air dancing, the gas mask, the face tattoo and I loved Jack White tied up with rope. Oh Jack. Oh sigh. I loved the mis-match of film types and I loved the abruptness of image upon image. When I watch it now? I still love it, I love it all. I especially love the bits I didn’t notice the first time around, like the severed finger hopscotch, but I’ll let you discover the rest for yourself. Directed by a guy (who has great things ahead of him if he keeps making clips like this one) AG Rojas understood the need for a sharp song needing a sharp clip and mostly leaving Jack White out of a Jack White clip was a brave move, but one that paid off. The image of Jack writhing around the back of a car is more than enough because really, we all know we’re spending a couple of minutes wishing we were runaway kids, smoking, drinking and destroying things. Yes? Oh, sorry, is that just me? (Jo Michelmore)

by P!nk
Director: Floria Sigismondi

How do you make a nice enough but easily forgettable track a memorable one? You head out to the desert, throw some paint bombs around and have the Golden Boyz choreograph a performance that won't let you look away. I mean that in a good way... not like the train-wreck 'can't look away' variation. The contemporary dance by P!nk and Colt Prattes is passionate, violent and so unconventional for a pop music video that you can't help loving it. Credit has to be given where credit is due and P!nk more than deserves a butt-load of it for pushing herself further and further to deliver memorable performances for her fans. And she chokeslammed a dude through a table. What a badass. (Matt Bond)       

You Should Consider Having Sex With A Bearded Man
by The Beards
Directors/Producers: Nima Nabili Rad and Daniel Principe

You knew I was going to say that, right? This film clip takes us on a journey, the journey of a woman on the prowl for a deliciously hairy fellow. Why don’t we call the woman Katie? We see Katie getting ready for a night on the town – washing her face, going to the toilet, agonising over what to wear and over indulging in Passion Pop. Katie heads out to see her favourite band – The Beards. She drinks a lot, picks fights with non-beardy folk, but then the sly seductress manages to lock eyes with the lead singer. I think you all know what’s happens next. Let’s just say that Katie more than considered it. Yes, she had a beard all over her mammary glands. This film clip ticks all the boxes for me. Okay, so there are only two boxes – funny and beards. But that’s beside the point. It’s my pick for video of the year! (Katie Langley)

Bad Girls
by M.I.A
Director: Romain Gavras

When you think of the best music videos, you think of clips that enhance the overall experience of listening to one of your favourite songs. They don't detract from the quality of the music and they don't become the star attraction, making you forget about what you're actually listening to. The best music videos sell the song to you; they take the themes of the track and amplify them, they provide imagery that burns into your mind along with the song itself and they literally make you go, "wow." Like WOW. M.I.A's 'Bad Girls' clip is one of the best music videos I've ever seen. Romain Gavras (who directed the mind-blowing/ranga hatin' video for 'Born Free) and M.I.A throw so many 'wow' moments at you, it's hard to believe they fitted so many amazing ideas into four minutes. From the first moment M.I.A appears in the desert with the fire burning in the background you know you're about to watch something cooler than cool. Flashy outfits, drifting drag races, horse vs car, the stunt driving, a see through GLOW-IN-THE-DARK car (!) and my absolute favourite moment - M.I.A casually sitting on top of the car filing her nails. Oh, I'm sorry, I should repeat that. She is sitting on top of the car filing her nails and singing along like it's something you just do everyday!! Seriously?! Freaking. Wow. (Matt Bond)

Hey Jane
by Spiritualized
Director: AG Rojas

Music video clips can be an interesting beast. Much like music itself, they can be throw away promotion and pure record selling advertisement, or they can be statements, political views and life changing imagery. Much like music itself, while I love the pretty pictures of candy coated promotion, sometimes a clip comes along that I can’t help but adore, because it’s thought provoking imagery changes the way I look at the world.
When Spiritualized released this clip, directed by AG Rojas (a name you’ll want to remember) in the beginning of 2012, it was always bound to cause some controversy. The story of a transgender parent raising their child in a harsh world, all the interesting topics are covered; race, sexuality, substance abuse, prostitution, children and violence, among others. This is less like a music clip and more like a short film with a soundtrack and even though it’s a little over ten minutes long, it’s a clip that I have watched time and time again. While Jason Pierce is singing “Hey Jane where you going today?” over a wall of crunchy guitar sounds, the story of ‘Frida’ plays out in a hopeful yet tragic way and each and every time I see it the final scene makes me gasp, it’s etched into my memory and it pulls at my heartstrings.

Maybe there’s a reason they don’t play clips like these on commercial pay-to-view TV channels all the time. Maybe clips like this are too close to the sad truth and the bitter pill of reality that the general public don’t want to swallow. Just remember, next time you see a Lana Del Rey clip full of beautiful pictures and expensive looking cheap clothing, with faces full of makeup and hair products as far as the eye can see, this is where her marketing team got their ideas from and this is the life that Lana fans aren’t generally willing to see.

Much like music itself, when clips like this are made I take a deep breath and know there’s hope in the world, because as long as clips, or more precisely art, like this is being made, I know music has the ability to make people think and I can’t ask for more than that. (Jo Michelmore)

by The Medics
Director: Lucas Thyer

The Medics have spent the last year and a bit releasing videos that just blow everything else from Australia out of the water. 'Beggars' in 2011 was great, 'Slow Burn' later in 2012 was fantastic, but it's 'Griffin' that is really the perfect clip. The story of the video tells the story in the song without slapping you in the face and saying, "get it?" Just watch it and you'll be very impressed with how good a music video from a new, independent band can be. I'd watch a full movie of this. Someone make it. (Matt Bond)  


Runner-Up: Spiritualized - Hey Jane 

2011 Winner:
'Lonely Boy' by The Black Keys
Runner-Up: 'Somebody That I Used To Know' by Gotye ft. Kimbra

2010 Winner:
'Islands' by The xx


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