Saturday, April 10, 2010

Video Kids

They're really trying, but it's hard to approximate the gravitas of Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush when you're 7 years old:

ha, ha, moving on...

Jared Leto is definitely not a kid, but his band 30 Seconds to Mars has a HUGE teen/tween following. I never quite got the appeal until I saw this video, which seems to be both an homage to 70s/80s "gang of kids" movies (ET, The Lost Boys, Solarbabies, The Goonies, The Warriors, etc.) and a sincere rally anthem for alt/emo/critical mass youth (does that cross section even exist?). Despite it's obvious demographic targeting and heart-on-sleeve emoting, the video still genuinely engaged me. The sap is thick but the sentiment of creating one's own community of outsiders remains oddly (sadly?) resonant. I also appreciated the director's clear research and mastery of the aforementioned film genre and the photographic influence of the Scott Brothers in it's orange sunrise/dusk aesthetic.

Lil Wayne's video for "Drop the World" also implies a rally cry of sorts, although it could also be interpreted as nihilistic end of youth called forth by his will and the power of his rhyhme skills. Either way, Lil Wayne's youth differ from Leto's in that they are a) all guys and b) either "thugs" or aggro skaters. It's also interesting that Leto's community is devised as escapist while Wayne's is destructive. Is that a cultural/class distinction?

It seems like such a long time ago that I was "committed" to a band. That is such a wonderful part of the teenage process: your band/singer is your identity. Commitment at that (albeit absurd) level speaks to an idealism and belief that generally only kids can hold. I miss that.

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