Off The Rails: A Music Video Review

Welcome to the first edition of Off the Rails. This is a new weekly series written about all the weird, wacky, and downright cool music videos we’ve all seen swimming around the internet. We’ve all checked up on our favorite songs to see if they have a video only to be insanely surprised by what we find. Let me give a couple of examples.

1.”Dangerous”–Big Data ft. Joywave

This song is pretty good. The video for this song is a different story. I’ll start with a question; do you like the T.V. show Mad Men, but wish it were way more bloody? Then this is for you. We open up on a woman running in a new pair of shoes, in what seems like an ad for Big Data Shoes. Then it quickly changes to what looks to be a test group of prisoners wearing the shoes while two researchers see how they interact (weird right? Just wait). One of the prisoners then head-butts another with such force it sprays blood all over one of the men observing them. Naturally, this makes the pair of researchers approve the shoes, and the next scene opens on the pitch meeting for the ad seen at the start of the video. The two hopeful young men pitching their advertisement show a montage of women running in Big Data shoes with captioned “sexually breathing.” This begins to put their clients to sleep, so to spice things up, the woman then start running around town and brutally head-butting to death random people, then bathing in their blood. As all ads end, the two women meet up and murder a man together, and make out covered in his blood. Of course, the ad execs think its an amazing idea. The men nailed it, an impromptu celebration erupts in the boardroom–champagne and all.

2.”FloriDada”–Animal Collective

If you’re like my friends and me, then you might have heard of a band called Animal Collective. Characteristically, Animal Collective is known for their weird music videos, but today I’d only like to focus on one (trust me I can write about a ton of them). “FloriDada” is a mix of sexual themes and bright colors–you know, Florida things. Basically there is no storyline for this so I’ll try to sum it up quickly and to the point. Basically this whole video consists of these two figures resembling a male and female in compromising positions while the state of Florida swings back and forth like a man’s junk, and the planets roll around the solar system. At one point, the figures are in a bed surrounded by floating candles, doing gymnastics, and then lo and behold, they are both pregnant with bright fluorescent children. Good for them, right?

3.”Thinkin Bout You”–Frank Ocean

I know that everyone has heard of Frank Ocean by this point, and most of the people I know can sing this song when it comes on the radio (WIUX 99.1 LP Bloomington). This gorgeous song’s strange accompanying video starts with a pioneer man dragging his wife on a stretcher. It is obvious that she’s in pain, and this image is overlaid with some Native Americans performing rituals in a tepee. It then skips to a little boy at a hospital bedside of who is presumably his mother. A nurse is telling the boy the story of the pioneer man. The frontier narrative continues as the man ends up confronted by the Native Americans who dragged the woman into their hut. Something crashes out of the sky in the distance. The man grabs a horse and rides off to find the glowing white orb that crashed. While he’s doing this, the Native Americans tend to the wife’s wounds. The man brings the orb back to the hut and passes out. The orb rolls into the woman’s hand and she miraculously is revived. We return to the boy looking over his mom in the hospital. How odd is that?