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High Five: Dougal Wilson Explores the Wonderful World of Music Videos

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The director at Blink gives us a bonus sixth pick as he celebrates some of his favourite music video projects to come out in recent times

High Five: Dougal Wilson Explores the Wonderful World of Music Videos

I started being a director by directing music videos. They’re still one of my favourite mediums. However, I haven’t done one for ages, so felt a little unqualified to say what the best five are from the last 12 months. So here’s five recent-ish music videos that just appealed to me personally in various ways...



Axel Boman (ft. Man Tear & Inre Frid) - 'Out Sailing'

Director: Adam Chitayat

One of the lovely things about the music video format is the way images and sound can combine to create something greater than the component parts. This video is a lovely example of that, and a terrific display of ingenuity and resourcefulness in the face of the Covid-19 lockdown and (presumably) budget restrictions. I was also delighted to see the inclusion of one of may favourite places - the National Museum of Scotland.



Jean-Michel Blais - 'Passepied'

Director: Adrian Villagomez

Music videos are also very effective at creating glimpses into lives or worlds that don’t need to be fully explained, but where the viewer fills in the blanks and creates the rest of the story. This is a beautiful and unsettling video, wonderfully crafted, cast and choreographed.  



Jonathan Personne - 'à présent'

Production: Radish House Pictures
Directors: Mathieu Larone and Henry McClellan

I wanted to include an animated video - and this is a beguiling example. While feeling contemporary and original, it also reminded me of classic early 2D animation like Oskar Fischinger, but combined with the mysterious dark folklore narrative of someone like Yuri Nordstein.



American Football - 'Fade Into You'


I love videos with simple ideas you can summarise in a sentence. This is one of those, but it’s so simple that it’s also very subtle, and you might not get the idea straight away. But when you do, it’s fun to watch the while thing again and spot all the connections. I say ‘fun’, but the video is also pretty sad, and seems to be saying a lot about loneliness...but it’s also very beautiful.



Channel 4 - 'Don’t Hug Me I'm Scared'

Production: Blink Industries
Directors: Joe Pelling x Becky Sloan x Baker Terry


Ok, this isn’t technically a music video, but it’s got fantastic songs set to filmed images - and it’s brilliant, so I’m including it. There is so much innovation, detail and humour in 'Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared' that the overall effect can almost be overwhelming. One of my favourite elements is the use of songs with the incredible mixed media animation techniques and puppetry. These are some of my favourite songs from the series - but best to watch the whole episodes for context: 'Core Values Song' (17’25” - 18’25” in the Death episode); 'Memories Song' (20’38” - 22’50” in the Death episode); 'Transport Song' (5’40” - 7’50”  in the Transport episode); and 'Electracey’s Song' (2’35” - 5’40” in the Electricity episode)



ToveLo - 'No-One Dies from Love'

Director: ALASKA

Honourable mention! Five videos really was a tricky number to whittle down to - so hopefully LBB can let me include this. Given that music videos can often plumb the depths of moodiness and despair, I really wanted to include something happy, joyful and energetic. This is also beautifully crafted and scripted, with fantastic costume and production design. Although the ending is still a bit sad, sorry...

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Categories: Music video, Short Films and Music Videos

Blink / Blinkink, Wed, 16 Nov 2022 12:30:04 GMT