SXSW was a music festival first, so there’s lots of love for the music video format. In addition to the music video screening, this year featured a Have Your Music Videos Critiqued by Andrew WK panel and screenings of the feature-length Girl Walk // All Day Girl Talk music video.
SXSW’s selected music videos featured a mix of techniques and ideas, from men who cry to disco ball-head ballerinas to doing a guitar (that last one is NSFW). Many of the directors were on hand to answer questions after the screening. Most delightful were the anecdotes, like the twenty-four straight hours (and fainting session) required to create Gotye “Somebody That I Used To Know” or the run and gun antics of CHRISTEENE “African Mayonnaise” (“It usually takes security at least three minutes to show up, and the song is three minutes long, so we were able to get what we needed”).
I may sound like a broken record, but I can’t emphasize enough how different it is watching these videos in a theater with a giant screen, powerful sound system, and no distracting laptop or browser windows around. For example, Matt Devine’s Son of Kick “Playing the Villain” was a perfect way to close out the screening. You’re stuck in the dark, a bit exhausted after watching twenty-one videos back to back. The music is LOUD, you have no idea how much time is left in the video, and you’re watching these trapped kids crumble apart with no idea how far it will go. It was brilliant.
The SXSW Best Music Video award went to DANIELS for their escalator ride gone horribly wrong in Battles “My Machine”. The dynamic duo were also in the running for an MTVu Woodie, whose awards ceremony is held in Austin during SXSW. Natasha Pincus’s video for Gotye “Somebody That I Used To Know” and Keith Schofield’s Duck Sauce “Big Bad Wolf” were also doubly recognized, though Schofield’s brilliant face-crotch video ran in SXSW’s Midnight Short Competition instead of the Music Video block. Other nominees included Fleur & Manu’s M83 “Midnight City” and Kyle Frere’s Major Lazer “Original Don”. The eventual Woodie Winner (and cock blocker of a DANIELS double header) was none other than Drew Barrymore for her celebrity-tastic Warriors-inspired music video for Best Coast “Our Deal”.
Check out all the SXSW Music Videos below. A couple of them are NSFW, and have been marked as such.
The Good The Bad “030”
Directed by Jeppe Kolstrup
Little Tybee “Boxcar Fair”
Directed by Brock Scott and Tom Haney
Hyperpotamus “De Camino”
Directed by Lucas Borras
Yuksek “ALWAYS ON THE RUN”
Directed by Skinny
Casey Veggies “Euphoria II”
Directed by John Bollozos
Directed by Marieke Verbiesen
Directed by Churl Gwon
Hooray For Earth “True Loves”
Directed by Young Replicant
Herman Dune “Tell Me Something I Don’t Know”
Directed by Toben Seymour
CHRISTEENE “African Mayonnaise”
Directed by PJ Raval
Whomadewho “Every Minute Alone”
Directed by William Stahl
Alexander “A Million Years”
Directed by Benjamin Kutsko
Cults “You Know What I Mean”
Directed by Kevin Lin
Kina Grannis “In Your Arms”
Directed by Greg Jardin
Gotye (Feat. Kimbra) “Somebody That I Used To Know”
Directed by Natasha Pincus
Interview at Music Video Theory
Directed by Céline Desrumaux
Ganesh Rao “Empyrean”
Directed by Ganesh Rao
When Saints Go Machine “Parix”
Directed by Daniel Kragh-Jacobsen
Son of Kick “Playing the Villain”
Directed by Matt Devine (Glue Society)