Monday, August 16, 2010

The Power of Visuals

Something I've been thinking about lately is how great music videos can make you like a song you otherwise wouldn't pay attention to. After all, the best music videos extract parts of the song and enhance your listening experience of them.

I have to say, one of the most mediocre musical experiences to be completely augmented by visualization would have to be The Chemical Brothers. They have a history of great visuals and have worked with amazing directors, including Oscar winners Michel Gondry and Spike Jonze.

While I find some of their music quite good, I feel like the best experiences I've had with them have been accompanied by visuals. They released a new album, Further, this past June, and the complete album was accompanied by an almost seamless visual track that blew my mind. The best part is that there's actually a "Behind the Scenes" video on there too, and I got to see that the processes used by the directors were mostly executed in production rather than post. I not only LOVE directors who reveal their secrets, but I love directors who don't rely solely on post-production effects to get their point across. Maybe that's because I would like to be more like that myself.

Anyway, here's a couple excerpts from my favorite parts of the complete video. I highly suggest you get your hands on it, pop it in a projector, and turn off all the lights.

The quality is a bit pixelated, all the more reason to pick this up and view it at home. The backgrounds were actually made of paint swirled in between glass that they filmed on a light board... Lately I've been super into silhouettes so I obviously love this.

This video has a similar effect that I'm quite fond of.

Escape Velocity
Also one of my top choices. I LOVE simple projections on a face. Also, I argued with a friend about whether the figures in the later half of the video were motion capture or if they simply filmed people with lights on them. I was correct, and psyched that there was no motion capture involved! I want the next party I throw to look like this video....

Anyway, enjoy, and stay bored.

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