What do Beyoncé, Leon Bridges, Coldplay, Jamie xx, and OK Go have in common? Each artist/band will face the music and battle it out for the coveted golden record for Best Music Video at the 59th Annual Grammy Awards. While all of these very different videos have their unique reasons for being nominated we are here to break down each video and pick which video we think will reign supreme this Grammy season:
“Formation” combines a hard hitting song with striking visuals to create an impactful video layered in political messaging. Although you will see the Beyoncé’s typical and impressive dance moves, her video incorporates controversial topics surrounding black identity in America, including police brutality, southern blackness, female empowerment, and financial stability. “Formation” is Beyoncé rally call to her fans to open their eyes and unite and shows us an edgier side of the queen who has already made her mark at this year’s award show.
Leon Bridges- River
Leon Bridges explores the anguish of human despair and spreads the message of resiliency in “River”. Throughout the video we see different storylines of struggle and pain transform into images of hope and healing, based around the events of the uprising in Baltimore. “River” has a biblical undertone using the purifying and restoring nature of water to wash away the pain of the past and inspire new beginnings. Bridges’s video creates an emotional connection stronger than any of the other nominees.
Coldplay- Up & Up
Coldplay takes you on a surreal adventure in “Up & Up”. This visual marvel creates a sense of childlike magic with images of turtles flying through the subway, race cars driving on Saturn, and a volcano erupting with popcorn. Even though there may not be a specific storyline to follow, Coldplay’s high-quality holographic effects and 3D visuals are by far the most imaginative in the category.
Jamie xx- Gosh
“Gosh” by Jamie xx, directed by Romain Gavras, brilliantly utilizes aerial camera angles that capture the compelling yet abstract story of a Chinese army of children following their black albino leader. The combination of exquisite production quality and a cast of over 400 actors creates an epic illusion, remarkably without the use of CGI or 3D effects. Romain Gavras’ cinematic mastery of “Gosh” makes it more than a music video, but rather a short film for viewers to enjoy.
OK Go- Upside Down & Inside Out
OK Go are the masters of the shareable music video and continued to push the limits of what is possible as they took to the sky to film “Upside Down & Inside Out”. The music video was recorded in a zero-gravity plane and was captured in their signature one-take style. The perfectly timed choreography creates a sense of planned madness that instantly captures the viewer’s attention.
Each nominated video is well crafted and creative in its own right, however, there can only be one winner. You might have to wait until Sunday to see who the Recording Academy votes in, but in the meantime and after careful consideration (and plenty of coffee) our pick for the Best Music Video Grammy goes to (**drum roll**): OK Go! The intricacy and ingenious behind “Upside Down & Inside Out” is well crafted and attention-grabbing, taking the idea of thinking outside-of-the-box to all new heights.
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