ACL 2017 ~ The Year’s 10 Best Music Videos

Google “Best Music Videos 2017” and you’ll find a lot of love for Kendrick, Jay-Z and Björk.  But where does one go to find the instrumental stuff?  We’re on Vimeo daily, looking for the finest visuals, which we collect here for your viewing pleasure.  On this page, you’ll find flying, leaping, dancing, woodcutting, and animation.  There’s love, loss and even murder.  The tempos range from the slow to the swift, the images from the beautiful to the bizarre.  A few have been featured in our reviews, but many are new discoveries.  And now, please enjoy our selection of The Year’s 10 Best Music Videos!

High Aura’d ~ Black Grasshopper
Music by High Aura’d
Film by Jeremy Bible
The amazing high-definition imagery was taken over Ohio, and represents a teaser for Jeremy Bible’s upcoming Human Savagery.  It also makes a perfect entry point to High Aura’s warm, fingerpicking No River Long Enough Doesn’t Contain a Bend (Debacle Records).  Viewers may just make a simultaneous surrender to the song and the sights.

Toposcape
Music:  “Midnight” by Caravan Palace
Google Earth Edit:  Adnaan Jiwa
Toposcape was also filmed about the earth, but the song and video are polar opposites to those above.  The video contains over 4000 Google images sequenced and edited as a backdrop to a jazzy, upbeat dance track.  A personal pleasure is the similarity of the crop circles to a set of vinyl records.

You’re my music in this silence
Director:  Erick Flores Garnelo
Music:  the blakship, “You are my music in this silence”
Only posted a few days ago, this video went straight to the front of the pack.  “You’re my music in this silence” relays a lot about silence, stillness, isolation and concentration.  Sometimes we are alone in a crowd; other times we are full when no one else is around.  Some of the techniques used here are new to us, and the editing is seamless.  It’s a late-year triumph.

SOLO feat. Mimi Elashiry ~ Oyster
Director: Jesse Heath
Starring: Mimi Elashiry
Wardrobe Stylist: Nikki Grattan
Original Score Composition, Production & Mix: Alex Parish / Adolescent
Editor: Nick Rondeau @Arcade Edit
Colorist: Greg Reece @The Mill
Re-Recording Mixer: Ben Freer @Eleven Sound
Sound Designer: Alex Parish / Adolescent
Sound Designer: Ben Freer @Eleven Sound
Tijuana Line Producer: Federico Fernandez Guerra
PA: Adin Taylor
Location Sound Recordings by: Nestor Aguilar
Music Assistant Engineer: Duncan Fuller
Music Master Engineer: Chris Mounter
Recorded at Strongroom, London
While watching, some may recall Don Hedley’s song, “All She Wants to Do Is Dance.”  But what to do when conditions are hard and studios are scarce?  Mimi Elashiry simply chooses another backdrop.  The video reflects its local community and is a testament to artistic dedication.

Luca D’Alberto ~ Wait for Me
Director: Jem Talbot
Production Company: Pinzutu Films
The images are simple, and yet surreal.  Multiple stories are shared, some straightforward and others enigmatic.  It’s all about hands, from tender hold to fevered clutch and finally to surrendered drop.  The forward-leaning trajectory of the music makes a perfect companion.

Ad | Lacoste | Timeless
Music:  Max Richter, “November”
Director : Seb Edwards
Agency : BETC
Prod. : Wanda
Superviseur VFX: Stéphane Allender
Producteur VFX: Christophe Huchet, Xavier Questel
Lead CG (Paris) : Vincent Coni
Equipe 3D : Adam Tinning, André Monteiro, Jonathan Carrier, Olivier Lukaszczyk
Flame: Stéphane Allender, Angus Wilson
Coordination VFX: Nicolas Huguet
Datalab: Chloé Charrier, Nicolas Daniel, Pauline Royo, Jonathan Cayssials
The only ad in this year’s batch, “Timeless” makes a huge impact in less than 90 seconds.  This may not sell a lot of alligator shirts, but it definitely sells the idea of love at first sight.  But would you be willing to run across a moving train for an outside chance of finding a soulmate?

Com Truise ~ Propagation
Directed By: Will Joines & Karrie Crouse
Written By: Karrie Crouse & Will Joines
Starring: Trieste Kelly Dunn
With: Stephen O’Reilly
Cinematographer: Zoë White
Producer: Jonathan Figueroa
Colorist: Josh Bohoskey / The Mill NY
The spookiest selection on this year’s list introduces a Stepford Wife who is also eerily reminiscent of Ava from Ex Machina.  Those familiar with Tom King’s take on The Vision may find this a worthy twin.  Is this really what husbands want of their wives?  And what might their wives want in return?

WoodSwimmer (Bedtimes Music Video)
Director:  Brett Foxwell
Edit & Music:  Conor Grebel 
Typography:  Rowan Ogden
Who knew wood could flow like water?  In the hands of Brett Foxwell, it does.  He describes the work as a “tedious process,” but the results are sublime.  “WoodSwimmer” is the year’s most distinctive video, a viral sensation that justifies the time spent in production.

Max Cooper & Tom Hodge ~ Symmetry
Director:  Kevin McGloughlin
The first of two videos on our list from Max Cooper’s audio-visual Emergence project, “Symmetry” is the video we wanted to see way back when all we had was a still.  If videos could be friends, this one would probably hang out with “Toposcape” above, sharing its love of swift editing and a hyperactive pace.  The song and video are perfectly synched, and inspire immediate repeat views.

Max Cooper ~ Order from Chaos
Director:  Maxime Causeret
The rare video that both improves and enhances its source material, “Order from Chaos” amplifies the connection with rain and growth, while providing a wealth of color and movement.  The edit (half the length of the original track) retains all of the distinctive features with none of the repetition.

Richard Allen

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