what not to do: music videos

    • Posted by: Joe Puglisi

    WNTD is your guide to all things music, video, and unfathomably wrong.

    Today's WHAT NOT TO DO: The Blue Butterfly Effects.

    Hey nerds. We have a video submission from New Nobility, in what appears to be an international band from Germany, or Australia? Or maybe from America. Honestly after a two minute Google search I gave up. No wait, it's Australia. OK. New Nobility, according to their very plain Myspace (another WNTD for another day) has this to say:

    "'New Nobility' has taken the indie charts by storm across the globe with Galactic from their newest album BLUE BUTTERFLY (REVOLUTION)"

    Sure. I feel taken by storm across the globe already. If you listen to the song, it is not a bad song! It is kind of catchy. We will excuse the lyrics for now. And if the band had a better production budget and a major label, this song would probably be on the radio (in 1983) or the Stereogum or something. But it is 2010, and they do not have a better budget, clearly, because this video looks like something I made on my 1999 iMac using some duct tape and my babysitter as an extra.

    "Blue Butterfly":

    Wowzas. The Butterfly revolution is not going well, you guys, especially if it contains those hand signals. I'm pretty sure SNL could not make a funnier parody video of this music video. It fires ON ALL CYLINDERS. Let's review some of the mistakes, which all probably overlap and combine to form Voltron, destroyer of credibility.

    1. High budget concept, low budget camera/post-production: It looks pretty bad. Motorcycle riding, large amounts of effects, all come off as hilariously pastiche when viewed through the lens of poor production.

    2.Unflattering still shots of hot babe + zoom = disaster. Still photos in a music video need to serve a larger purpose, whether meta or other. Not only that, but if you use a bad shot of your "hot babe" (and she is looking good in some motion shots!), you render her completely useless as a device in your story (whatever the hell it is), which brings me to:

    3.Tell a story, visually impress (or both) or we get bored. In this video, they opt for the visuals, but DAYUM. Those effects look like my little cousin got into my Apple Photobooth and played around with it for five minutes. Everyone knows the music video needs to be a little self-aware of its stupidity.

    4.Instrument playing must be balls-to-the-wall. Going to play an instrument? Don't look like you'd rather be sailing.

    5.Frame your shots? I mean, there isn't one shot I wouldn't contest as too wide, too empty, too full, or too stupid.

    6.Sound Sync. As if the popping out from behind a tree and looking like you just left a bag of dogsh*t under the neighbors lawnmower WASN'T ENOUGH, but the sound has to be off? COME ON!

    Seriously, if I have to see one more zoom of a still photo of that chick on a motorcycle, I'm going to lose my marble collection. And what's up with the lightning? Half the video looks like a Windows 95 screensaver.

    I'm done. Don't do this.

    Joe Puglisi is fully aware that he himself has probably done some things he shouldn't have done.

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