Simple music videos mean more

I’ve had a weird tendency to like extremely simplistic music videos. One of my favorite music videos is a Replacements song in which the entire music video just shows a speaker booming out the song while a man sits and listens, only to break the speaker at the end of the song in anger.

I don’t mean simplistic in the sense that the entire video just shows the band playing. In fact, I could really care less about seeing a band in the video (few music videos are more boring than a Rancid music video). There are deeper statements in the simple music videos I like. Like, the Replacements for instance, loved displeasing the crowd and their fans. They weren’t especially the types that loved to be loved. With their major label debut and the rising of MTV, the Replacements released a video of basically absolutely nothing. It was awesome and I wish I was alive to witness it’s debut.

Just recently, Against Me! released their new video for the single, “I Was a Teenage Anarchist.” The entire video consists of one scene, featuring lead singer Tom Gabel running and being beaten by a cop in slow-motion. The video has very little substanance to it, but somehow it delves much deeper. As I watched the video, I remembered an interview I read with Tom Gabel about the time he was arrested and beaten by police when he was 15 in Naples, Florida. The simple nature of the video suddenly has a much more profound note to it. In the end, Gable is shoved into a police car with blood showing around his smiling lips. This is the kind of music video that I love.