It has been almost three decades since the music video first started killing radio stars. In less exciting news, it's been nearly 20 years since MTV started booting true music television in favor of stunningly artistic episodes of "The Real World."
Music videos have become an established art form, but it would be somewhat difficult to make the same argument for reality television. It's just a shame that most innovative and entertaining videos are far too often overshadowed by the videos of today's hits. MTV continuously features the glitter-covered garbage that glamorizes pop stars in order to keep listeners from seeing through the poor quality of the unoriginal hogwash they are peddling.
What are the greatest music videos you've either forgotten all about or never got to see in the first place? Forget the painfully boring awards shows, let's skip the red carpet and make this short and sweet. Here are a few to get you started, in no particular order.
The Avalanches – "Frontier Psychiatrist"
Imagine if a nursing home decided to put on a talent show and some careless nurse accidentally mixed up everyone's medications on the night of the performance. That's the general idea of this bizarre rap video.
The White Stripes - "Fell in Love with a Girl"
Lots of people loved Legos as a kid, but apparently Jack White and Michel Gondry never outgrew their childhood fondness for these colored plastic bricks. This stop-motion animated video succeeds by combining coolest toys of kindergarten with rock stars.
Sigur Rós – "Gobbledigook"
In the club, dancing naked would be sleazy. Somehow, when you're skipping and twirling in the nude through Scandinavian forests, it seems delightfully innocent.
Toni Basil – "Mickey"
You'll probably recognize this song because of Kirsten Dunst's rendition over the credits of classic cheerleading film Bring It On, but the original video takes cheering someplace else. It's downright goofy: Basil jumps around on stage and performs awkward leaps and twirls in the air. Best of all, the featured cheerleaders deviate from stereotypes and really look like real people.
Arcade Fire – "The Suburbs"
Sometimes the Grammys get it right and recognize a band with true talent. Even though it was their album that won recognition, this music video is not to be overlooked. Directed by Spike Jonze, this dystopian vision of the future shown through suburban kids riding bikes manages to break your heart in less than six minutes.
She & Him – "Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?"
It's easy to mistake Zooey Deschanel for Katy Perry at first glance in this darkly whimsical video, but don't let the resemblance trick you. The song begins playing to Deschanel's syrupy smile and cartoon birds fluttering in the air. Watch out though, things are about to get a bit bloodier.
Missy Elliot – "Work It"
This brazenly provocative song manages to combine surreal and sexy in the best way possible. The video pushes the envelope even further by throwing in the cutest little girl to ever break-dance in pigtails.
Kevin Devine – "I Could Be With Anyone"
Kevin Devine pokes fun at Bright Eyes singer Connor Oberst for his "The First Day of My Life" music video by creating his own rendition. Watch both versions: Oberst's will put a sappy grin on your face and Devine's will crack you up.