Saturday, December 15, 2007

Some videos

Poni Hoax, "Antibodies": I'm always a sucker for a good dance music video that actually features, you know, dancing, and while it's possible to go too far with the "Praise You"/OK Go self-conscious amateurishness thing, this hits the sweet spot with dancing that's both goofy and pretty goddamn slick. It doesn't hurt that the song is one of the best disco tracks to come out this year.

Leonard Cohen, "First We Take Manhattan" (you'll have to watch this one on Youtube since Leonard is an ornery old cuss and doesn't allow embedding): This track was my introduction to Leonard Cohen as a teenager and I was heartbroken to find out it was pretty much a one-off aberration. I've come around to "Famous Blue Raincoat" and "Tower of Song" and so on, but this is and will always be my favorite Cohen.

Chaz Jankel, "Number One": An ex-member of Ian Dury's Blockheads (and Dury's co-writer on many of his best songs), Jankel had a long and fruitful solo career making dance music, most famously "Ai No Corrida" (a huge hit for Quincy Jones) and this track (featured in Real Genius). There's a new compilation of his work out on Tirk that's worth its weight in gold.

Joe Jackson, "Steppin' Out": I remain convinced that Joe Jackson's move toward respectability and "sophistication" was a mistake except for this one song, which is perfect. Not "very good" or "best of his career" or whatever, I mean literally perfect in every way. The rest of Night & Day I can take or leave but this is a song I think I am physically incapable of getting tired of.

Hot Chip, "Ready for the Floor": in which Hot Chip and director Nima Nourizadeh dare DC/Warners to sue them. Seriously though, it's great- Nourizadeh directed Hot Chip's "Over and Over" clip, and here he kind of expands on the style of that video and gets a serious Batman fixation out of his system. Be warned that Youtube's compression strips most of the bass right out of the song, doing it a serious disservice.

Paul Haig, "Running Away": The former frontman for Josef K (and Rhythm of Life) brings us the most arch, fey and stiff Sly Stone cover in human history, and this is by no means a bad thing. The video has a kind of dreary Britishized Great Gatsby meets Chariots of Fire thing going on that really works for some reason.


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