Thursday, 12 September 2013

11. Genre Research 2: Music Videos from the Pop Genre

The video opens showing us the band instrumentally playing the beginning of their song in a stereotypical band set up. They are based on the top of a building overlooking a city at either sunrise or sunset. The lighting is low key and we cannot see the bands faces immediately which makes them seem mysterious and interesting. The camerawork is very simple: a long shot and the editing is very slow paced at this point, however this could change at the video progresses.

As I guessed, the video progresses and the editing speeds up. We also begin to see a range of camera shots including, long shots, mid shots and close ups. This makes the video more aesthetically pleasing for the audience. Furthermore, the mise en scene develops in the video and the setting is revealed: a dark and dingy flat in a tower block, also we get to see how the band members are dressed, which is how I expected and adheres to the genre of alternative rock: dark skinny clothing and messy hair.

Location change is very conventional for any music video and this is what we begin to see here as the band members go from being in a bedroom into being in a bar. The cinematography in the video is very clever because it slides from shot to shot rather than cutting and because the band are in a domestic environment it seems as if we are 'looking through the keyhole' and getting an insight into their lives. The fact that the video flicks between being in black and white and in colour makes it more interesting for the audience.

As the video begins to draw to a close, we are shown for longer periods of time the band lip syncing, gesturing, dancing and playing their instruments. This gives the audience a clear idea about the band and their image/the genre they are trying to portray. The clothes that they wear when performing are either black or very dark colours and give connotations of sadness, betrayal and link with the lyrics they are singing about. Furthermore, this is the final position that we see the band in therefore it is made the most memorable and gives the clearest representation of alternative rock music.

This is the opening for the 'Pompeii' video by Bastille. We immediately see an extreme long shot of one of the band members standing on the top of a large wall or building. They are in the middle of what seems like it should be a busy place but he is standing and staring into space before the music even starts. After about 10 seconds, the video cuts to a close up of his face and the name of the song and band appear on screen. This is a very good way to remind the audience of the band and they are already begin to establish themselves before the song even starts.

As the music starts we begin to understand the narrative that is being portrayed. We see the man look over across into the city but he is in a derelict building, which emphasises the idea of being alone. The cinematography begins to vary from this point onwards and we see long shots, extreme long shots, over the shoulder shots and close ups. Furthermore, we also notice that the editing isn't as fast paced as, for example, a pop music video and this could be because of the speed of the song and the more laid back mood that it has.

It is a bit unusual that everywhere this man goes is empty when he is visiting places that are usually filled with people. This conveys a eerie and scary mood. However, we begin to understand why is in such a panic to get away from all these places (which we are able to tell from the fast paced editing) when we see the two women look up at him in the arcade. The fact that the women are alive but it seems like they are not actually within their bodies could be a reflection of the lyric: 'If you close your eyes, does it almost feel like nothing changed at all'.

Location change is vital in order to make a music video both gripping and interesting and this video manages to show this brilliantly. However, what makes it even better is that they decide to flick between day and night to show how threatening the location looks at night and how normal it looks during the day. The costume that the man is wearing is very simple and doesn't draw any immediate attention, which adheres to the genre of video that has been created.

According to Goodwin's theory, Charlie Brown by Coldplay would be an illustration video because there isn't actually a clear concept or narrative that runs through to create meaning. However, something we do notice is the extreme close ups of actions being made by the people in the video (such as opening windows and putting on shoes) alongside the immediate fast paced editing which lets us know the song is going to be upbeat and the video exciting for the audience to watch. This video matches very well to the Mylo Xyloto album cover where this song originated from. 

45 seconds into the video is when the artist appears for the first time, this could have been confusing for the audience. Furthermore, the mise en scene is always gripping and interesting because of the setting of the music video (which is a nightclub, full of people and colour) which is consistently cross cut between a concept that we are not yet aware of as the audience. Unusually, the lyrics are not the main focus for the video and it is more about the music behind the lyrics which is constantly made to be the main focus.

This part of the video is very important for the audience because it is what it has been building up too. We wonder as the audience where the girl with the curly hair is heading for the first two minutes of the video and when it is finally revealed it is as if the audience can  relax and be at ease with the situation. Furthermore, the setting for the video is not exactly conventional of the genre but it works really well. Again, the costume that the band and characters are wearing do not draw immediate attention, but still manage to show their personalities. Finally, I think it is a good representation of an alternative rock music video.

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