Various - Triple JHottest 100 DVD Volume 15
Mon 26th May, 2008 in Music Reviews
When you watch the Triple J Hottest 100 DVD Volume 15, it is immediately apparent where the inspiration for the new J Award category of Best Australian Video derived. With 42 notable clips from 2007 totalling over two hours of material, there seems to be more thought and creativity expended in making music videos than some Hollywood movies. Combined with exceedingly large budgets, the majority of these videos employ dazzling visual effects or some deep storyline.
In addition, there is also a large quantity of dance songs resonating with listeners including the Chemical Brothers with their aquatic dance party, The Salmon Dance, and The Presets’ colony of clones in My People . That’s not to mention the Midnight Juggernauts, Digitalism and a slew of tracks featuring their fair share of synthesiser in the mix.
Muse begin the show with their poll toping, Knights Of Cydonia. This is set in the Old West and incorporates: sex scenes, fighting in a saloon and townspeople witnessing a public hanging prevented by a narrow escape. And all accompanied by the obligatory band members performing intermittently. The cast also features a samurai, girl on a unicorn and some aliens. Basically, just as the song is brimming with layers, elements, melodies and instruments; so are the visual components in this clip. And this sets the scene for the assortment of complex and varied videos that follow.
Silverchair are next with Straight Lines, which no doubt everyone has watched. For those that haven’t, this involves the band running and performing in the flashing lights of Young Modern Station. These lights are replicated in the subsequent live video, Daft Punk’s Harder Better Faster Stronger. With the duo’s mandatory outfits, this combines with the beamed lights to provide an extraterrestrial quality.
Kings Of Leon and Foo Fighters offer the most prosaic and typical rock clips with On Call and The Pretender, respectively. Both share the clichÃƒÂ©d rock band performing – a little disappointing for The Fooies, given the originality of their previous clips. After all, the video for this song is the same as the All My Life one, differentiated only by the fact that this clip is gate-crashed by a SWAT team.
There are also some quirky clips, especially with Architecture In Helsinki’s Muppet adventure in Heart It Races. Then again, this is to be expected from this loveable bunch of eccentrics and their pop music. Meanwhile, The Wombats’ cheeky Let’s Dance To Joy Division reminds me of Blur’s older music videos.
Personally, some of the best clips are also the simpler ones with Tegan and Sarah performing to a homogenous crowd that alters in pattern and becomes more diverse. Moreover, Bluejuice preach their music to the confused onlookers in Pitt Street Mall – hallelujah!
Some cardboard cut-outs also prove popular in this set of videos as they are used in The Panics’ anthem, Don’t Fight It and Josh Pyke’s golden, Lines On Palms. Regina Spektor hints at Joni Mitchell with Samson and is accompanied by some absolutely gorgeous animation and other intricate, handmade paper crafts. Borrowing from a similar period is Kasabian and their part animation, part psychedelic video, Shoot The Runner.
The extras include a programmable jukebox (just like a small-scale version of Rage) and highlights from the broadcast include interviews with four of the top five artists. Unfortunately, not all of the radio segments translate perfectly to your television and this is partially because during the interviews with the musicians – and in Daniel Johns’ one, in particular – the crowd makes too much noise and drones out what is being said. While you can listen to it, it can get annoying.
Plus, there is too much padding that precedes the announcement of Muse at number one. While I understand that this was done to create suspense – because they do this every year – and this year the poll-topper was a little unexpected, I’m sure we would have all appreciated some more interview questions with Dominic Howard, the group’s drummer, rather than the lame general questions like are you Robbie Williams or Elton John.
In conclusion, the compilation contains nearly half the songs from the countdown and features acts from a multitude of genres that are typical of the station’s playlist. This release does differ a little from the CD compilations in terms of contents, but this was most likely done to ensure that the best videos from the poll were used. So with the volume of material to choose from, there is no doubt you will be visually stimulated to the point of fixation on these elaborate videos.