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12.16.14: The Last VJ’s Top 5 Music Videos of the Week

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Welcome to The Last VJ, music fans! It’s a merry-go-round this week. We’ve got everything from puppets and cartoons to bloody biker spectacles. Oh, and the lords of all piano metal finally make a video that will knock your socks off. Turn these up.

Butch Walker, “Bed on Fire”

Let’s start off this week with something both bloody and pretty. Magdalena Wonsinska and Snake bring us a cinematic biker take on Butch Walker’s new single. The song itself is a solid piece of genius, full of the aching emptiness that always made Chris Isaak so much fun to listen to.

The video follows a group of bikers who may or may not be some sort of demons. It’s hard to get a grip, as shots of pleasant times spent together quickly devolve into mayhem and murder. I watched it three times in a row and I’m still not entirely sure what exactly was going on, but every second appropriately burns.

InLegend, “King of Apathy”

Finally! I have been completely in love with InLegend from the moment I found out about their piano metal brilliance. I just never talk about them because, well, they don’t put out good music videos. Great songs, but when it came to cinematic they just lack vision.

Until now. Teaming up with the painter, sculptor, and performance artist Olivier de Sagazan the band weaves a tale of a world leader mindlessly conforming to the needs of an apathetic populace. Through a clever use of various plasters and paints, he continually and desperately reshapes his face in an attempt to conform. Finally, he is left broken, bashing his skull into the wall behind him. It’s a terrifying, fascinating video of the kind that’s never been done before.


Enter Shikari, “Slipshod”

I always knew Enter Shikari as this deeply political group of heathens, so “Slipshod” caught me totally by surprise. It’s an animated adventure where the band basically pisses all over a snooty restaurant, demanding to see the manager, complaining, and ultimately blowing it up. It’s such an unexpected bit of petty vulgarity that you can’t help but laugh. I never knew these guys could be so damned funny!


SHEL, “Sleigh Ride”

Every single aspect of this video is adorable beyond all calculations. The four sisters that make up SHEL have wanted to do a silhouette puppet video for ages, and finally decided that their cover of Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride” was the perfect opportunity. So they made a bunch of eggnog and got busy with scissors until they produced this heartwarming little adventure story that would give our own Joel Orr a run for his money. Christmas just got a little more awesome.


Tori Vasquez, “Wear You Thin”

I think it’s a testament to Vasquez as an artist that she can tell a story while largely immobile on the floor. “Wear You thin” is a damned clever video. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen such a great and perfect metaphor for hopeless despair. Slowly she’s overtaken by stand after strand of yarn, becoming completely tied up in the bright colored material. Sometimes she struggles, and other times she seems to almost be leaning into it. That’s what makes the metaphor so haunting. Misery is comfortable, and even sad and strangled as she is the yarn is warm and home. Truly it’s an insidious little show.


Jef has a new story, a tale of mad robot nurses and a man of miracles called “Sleepers, Wake!” available now. You can also connect with him on Facebook.