Category Archives: Uncategorized

Why music videos are great, or: Scissors Sisters – Invisible Light

I have an up-and-down sorta relationship with the Scissors Sisters. Less because I like some stuff of them and then some other not so much, rather me forgetting about them, rediscovering them, thinking “they are the greatest band evah” and then forgetting again. So recently I re-stumbled upon the gloriousness that is “Invisible Light” from their album “Night Work”. And I really love love love the video which made me actually like the song. Wanna know why? Sure you do!

Yeah, this is the clean version – go and watch the dirty one.

#1 So conflicted

I am really conflicted about the question if I find the video sexist and classist or actually subverting sexist and classist constructions. Ultimately, if that even makes sense, I think it is kind of both? And that is why I love it? Cause, ambiguity, y’all? The author is dead, it’s all in your head. It certainly is a music video that is open for your reading.

#2 Narratatat

I just like the fact that the video can be both this grand narrative and at the same time not. All the bits and pieces can (and are probably supposed to) make the story, but at the same time it can also only be a disjointed mindfuck and be enjoyed as such. Wikipedia teaches me that the video draws inspiration from the nightmares of Mia Farrow in “Rosemary’s Baby” (great movie!) and of Catherine Deneuve in “Belle De Jour” (never seen it, sorriez!).

And there are three small scenes that I love in particular:

#3 Cleopatra, coming atcha

The scene with the Egyptian goddess (the Elizabeth Taylor version of Cleopatra, thanks Wikipedia) taking the gold nugget out of the girl’s hand and “screaming” a beam of light in her face at the 2:32 mark. Love. That. Scene.

#4 Grab dat ass

The scene at the 2:02 mark where our protagonist woman stands there watching the handyman chop the wood and then she grabs her own ass in those skin-tight white equestrian pants. Not that I have ever done it, but “girl, I know what you are trying to say here”.

#5 To the grave

Love the short glimpse on our protagonist lady carrying the coffin along a stretch of beautiful greenery at the 1:44 mark. In equal parts because the nature is beautiful, it’s very Jesus-y in its way and because it is sort of fucked up.

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Why music videos are great, or: Solange – Losing you

Time to delve into the depth of the wonderfulness of music videos again. Especially since I am absolutely infatuated with the song and the video lately. So without further ado I give you: Beyoncé’s little sister! Yeah, that’s right, honey, Solange Knowles is my topic of choice today. Granted, her career has been burning a little less bright than that of her older sister, but that don’t mean that girl cannot do right, right?
So let us take a look at a video that put her on a lot more people’s radars in 2012: Losing You.

#1 – The song

Let’s start with an obvious reason: I love the song. But, and that is what is so great about the video, I wouldn’t really have noticed the song if it weren’t for the video. But because I liked the video so much, I actually listened to the song, and now I love it and of course that makes me love the video even more, period.

#2 – The setting

I really like where the scenes of the video are taking place, in front of that tailor’s container-shop, inside a small barely furnished living room, on the seats of a stadium… Perfect. Probably because many of the settings – especially the scene in the little bus – take me back to my trip to Kenya in 2006 and the scenes that I encountered in Kibera, the slum-area of Nairobi. Plus, squeezing all the people into a small bus – very Matatu. The thing is, these settings are often associated with poverty and misery, but there is also infinite beauty in them, I think this video does a marvellous job of showing that.

#3 – The styling

Underlining the beauty of the setting is the fantastic styling of this video. The suits, the colors, the accessories, the hair, even down to the make-up – the styling in this video is just impeccable and I wish I had one of those bold-colored well-tailored suits to call it my own.

#4 – The dance moves

I love the beat of the song, and I love how all of Solange’s dance moves pick it up so effortlessly. I really especially dig the dance moves in front of the container towards the beginning of minute 3. The energy the dance exudes is incredible while still totally being in tune with the subdued nature of the whole song. It is just another layer of fantastic that has been put on top of the gorgeousness that is that video and I cannot help but shake my shoulders Solange-style now.
Also: the casualness with which she drops in and out of choreography. Love.

#5 – The category

What the hell is “the category?” Well, let me tell y’all, I love the video so much because it also reminds me of another video that I totally love and would have done an extra post on if it wouldn’t have fit so amazingly into this one: Janet Jackson’s ‘Got ‘til it’s gone.’ What the two videos share is not only being produced for awesome songs and two black female singers, but of course they share their celebration of black culture. In a very stylized way, mind you. I am fully aware of the fantasy-land quality of what is being depicted here, but nonetheless I appreciate the celebration of the positivity that is to be found within the black community. A sense of solidarity, a nod towards the history that influenced black culture and defined many of its styles, a sense of origin, of depicting places and areas that bear meaning for identification. Take it with a grain of salt though, I am not a black man, and I am unsure of how my appreciation of these videos resonate with black people and how easy I fall into the trap of buying romanticized versions of harsher realities here. Having said that, I still love both videos wholeheartedly, so here is Miss Janet:

“I’m not the one you should be making your enemy”

Breaking the Fast

Just a quick and incredibly random post about what my breakfast looks like these mornings. Because you desperately wanted to know. I know.

Of course I really just want to show off my recent purchases.
The plate is a recent thrift shop find, unfortunately without the matching cup, but instead I bought this new IKEA cup that is hollow to keep the hot coffee hot while the outside (there is no handle) stays cool. The glass bowl comes from a set of four and is also a recent thrift shop purchase. And yes, the phase is blue, the mood not.