Monday, September 16, 2013

Ant Music - The Perfect Ad

Since the dawn of time (some time in the 1980's, I believe) man has made music videos.  Early on the music video was seen as an ad for your band, but at some point we lost our way. Here is an artifact from those halcyon days:

Adam Ant Ant Music by Celtiemama

The video quality is absolutely terrible because everything in those days was done using 1 mm film in hand-cranked cameras, but I think you can get the idea.

The video opens with a group of bewildered young people in a club.

Who are then attacked by fake Native Americans in fake military clothes.

By the end of the attack, everyone is dancing.

So, simple enough message. There you are, not having any fun, then Adam and the Ants show up and before you know it you'll be halfway to a threeway in the bathroom. Even the song is an ad for their music. "That music's lost it's taste so try another flavor - Ant Music." And for god's sake, don't listen to non-Ant-related marketing! "It's so sad when you're young to be told you're having fun." By the time you are done finding out that you should be listening to Ant Music it's too late, you've already listened. And are dancing.

This video is the standard that all others should measure themselves against. How hard am pushing my band and album? Do I like the song more after watching the video than before watching it? Ant Music gives both of these a resounding, "Yes!"

Some sections are completely sublime. Take the guitar solo.

We inexplicably change locations to a picture of a mountain. Are we supposed to believe that the club is at a ski lodge? Is this possibly a piece of art located in the bathroom? I don't care. This is the best thing I have ever seen:

The man doesn't need to even touch the guitar to play. He just gestures at you and you hear the perfect riff. Also, the whole solo was pretty much done in a single shot, which is fun. 

Some parts of the video, unfortunately, are not perfect. One big danger in music videos is being too literal. I can see the brainstorming meeting now:
What should we show when he sings, "Unplug the jukebox"?
Why don't we have someone unplugging a jukebox?
To make it even better, we could have the plug be really big.

So, there's that. But it's hard to complain. This was just after the dawn of time so they couldn't know everything we know now. I quickly forget about this misstep when I get hypnotized by the maw of the English back-up singer.

Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night screaming about that mouth.


1 comment:

  1. I think the plug is supposed to represent the firmly entrenched cultural monolith of mainstream music. Pulling that plug out is like creating an entirely new universe so basically it's got to be so huge only God or his chosen vessel (Adam Ant) can do it.