Music Video Of The Week – ‘Romantic Dreams’ – Deftones

Produced by Brett Novak

Music :

While I’m not the biggest Deftones fan, actually I barely listen to any of their stuff, I must admit that this song grew on me. On the other hand, I am and always have
been a big progressive/alternative music fan but I’ve learnt to understand that not everyone’s ear is accustomed to such tonal qualities, tempo changes and harmonic changes. But this track definitely hits home. With a very simplistic but very efficient main riff, the ‘less is more’ type of approach works every single bit. And with layers of octave chords droning in the background, the tension just builds up to the point where the lyrics sing ‘tonight the stage is yours’ and a powerful riff full of drive comes in and grasps the listener. The modal change into the chorus is also great at releasing the tension and the low-end on the guitars just makes it really hard not to pull a jazz face of approval to. The soaring vocals full of reverb and delay make it all the more epic and work all too well to make this chorus as catchy as could be. It needs to be said that Rich Costey and Eric Isip did an absolutely phenomenal job at mixing the whole album, Koi No Yokan, Deftones’ seventh studio album. They have managed to squeeze out every little bit of guts and tonal qualities that the tracks had to offer.

Video :

Even though none of the members of the band appear or perform in the video, it’s got Deftones written all over it. Instead of having as corny of a concept as a band performing to their own song, or a cheesy storyline, they asked world-renowned professional skateboarder Jason Park to shoot a reel around night-time L.A. Other professional skater, Brett Novak shot the footage following Park around the city’s most infamous concrete landmarks and backdrops. He produced the music video with the goal in mind to convey the band members’ passion for skating. The video was premiered by RedBull.com and frontman Chino Moreno tells them in an article that “When we started this record cycle, we decided that we didn’t want to make any videos whatsoever. They’re not much fun to make and they usually turn out pretty corny. But this was an idea that we were interested in because we’re all very keen skateboarders and we like the idea of marrying one of our songs to someone as talented as Jason Park.” And even though the band members aren’t shown directly in the video, their presence can be pointed out on billboards in the background of Park’s skating.

In my opinion what truly makes the video is the level of creativity that Park displays around the streets. You see him landing sweet tricks that aren’t ‘in the books’ and it really shows that he’s having a good time. You can also hear the noises and clunks that the deck makes against the concrete when he lands tricks or power slides over sidewalks. You can also see Park bail out of tricks and have pretty big falls and that, is to me, what makes a decent skate edit. Novak also did a really good job at editing the video, using slow-motion and trick landings to emphasise upbeats and downbeats respectively. It gives the video a more artistic feel.

Music Video Of The Week – John Mayer – ‘Where The Light Is’ – Live in L.A.

Michael McDonald – Executive producer

Lindha Narvaez – Producer

Danny Clinch – Director

Chris Zimmer – Production Supervisor

Vance Burberry – Cinematography

Music:

This week’s music video segment is focused on John Mayer. He is better known for his pop/corny/cheesy songwriting skills and the broad audience of listeners generally think they got him all figured out from the start. One thing I can assure you, is that by the end of this show you will have seen a brand new facet of the artist you’d probably never thought you’d see. Mayer is just out right phenomenal in this performance. The show consists of three acts : John Mayer acoustic, John Mayer trio, and the John Ensemble. With this approach he is able to showcase the full spectrum of his musical abilities. The opening act is him interpreting some of his famous acoustic songs from some earlier days. You find songs such as Free Fallin’, Stop this Train, Daughters, Neon, and In Your Atmosphere. The second act features Mayer, Pino Paladino (world-class bassist), and Steve Jordan on drums (Steve also helped Mayer produce some of his studio work); and no one grooves quite like Jordan. The set-list for this act is more blues-jazz oriented, with covers of Hendrix (a flawless rendition of Bold As Love if it weren’t for the overly corny interlude) as well as Mayer originals. There his Stevie Ray Vaughan-esque playing blended with BB. King and Albert King licks just ooze out of the man’s fingertips. From single line hooks, to wah-powered rapid fire licks and phased out triplet double-stop runs, he covers it all. It is almost unreal the tone this guy gets. And I’m going to have to be honest; this show is probably the reason why I got a Fender Strat. This part of the show will definitely hit home for the blues aficionado. In the third act, Mayer showcases his songwriting forte and directs a 10+ man ensemble. The big band plays songs from Mayer’s Continuum mainly, but also Room for Squares. And again, his tone, feel and interpretation are without comparison. The band exchanges solos on I Don’t Need No Doctor and show-off a funk/jazz end of their repertoire. The final song to close off the ceremony is I’m Gonna Find Another You, a Mayer take on a jazz/blues standard. In other words a blues/jazz song about yet another failed relationship. But regardless, Mayer solos through the chords as an introduction and the man’s playing is just as impressive in jazz as it is in blues. This performance just goes to show how much of an accomplished singer-songwriter, musician and guitarist John Mayer is.

Video:

The opening and ending credits see John Mayer on a hill that overhangs the city of Los Angeles, sat on a stool, with an amp set-up and a guitar in his hands. The scenery is just an taster as to what is to come in terms of cinematographic composition. The picture is there to match the quality of the playing, that’s for sure! With travelling panoramic shots, close-up sequences, you get a really good grasp on the dynamic interplay between members and the vibe Mayer was aiming for. The colour palette chosen for the lighting matches the changes in camera angles and the vibe of the performance tremendously. During the trio performance, Mayer, Paladino and Jordan are all dressed to the nines in fancy black suits and ties; bringing back the authentic feel of early blues days. You also get great insights on Mayer’s personality on and off stage; the camera crew follows him around as he prepares for the show, between sets and through off days. And the spectator really gets to see how much of a kick he gets out of being a performing and recording artist. But we also get to see the downside of fame where paparazzi take the fun out of it. But the main point that he is trying to get across is that this performance is about highlighting his talent as a well-rounded musician and to change people’s preconceived opinion that they ‘have seen the whole reveal‘.

A definite recommendation if you’re into guitar-playing, blues in general or even just plain and simple GOOD live music.