The NME recently launched NMEVideo, and to celebrate, the mag did a massive list of the 100 greatest music videos of all time. It’s definitely an NME-centric list all right. Radiohead are on here, and so are the Verve, the Horrors and the xx (?). But the NME gets one thing right: They didn’t honor something like “Sledgehammer” since that shit is old, and it’s been at the top of these lists about 400 times before*. They skewed defiantly younger, picking young acts, and putting a few weeks old Kanye West video on here.
But here’s what the NME got wrong: “Just” isn’t even the best Radiohead video. That’s “Karma Police.” There is no way a list should honor Chris Isaak and Soundgarden in the top five, in any context. The xx have not made a great video (yet). Neither have the Horrors, Vampire Weekend, Klaxons, Janelle Monae, or Hot Chip. M.I.A.’s “Born Free” video isn’t even any good. The idea of honoring any White Stripes video that isn’t “Fell In Love With A Girl” is patently stupid. Same goes for any OutKast video that isn’t “B.O.B.” or any Nirvana video that isn’t “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” I could go on and on.
But here’s where I agree: Perhaps no video has had a more positive impact on the artist than Johnny Cash’s “Hurt.” That’s below. It made the dude’s age and impact seem important, and highlighted that dude was not long for this world so we should honor him while he was still upright. Good pick NME. Too bad I can’t say that for the rest of the list.
*- What no one ever mentions is that the “Shock the Monkey” video is actually way better. This is something my parents have told me about 567 times. The first time was at my baptism. Thank you mom and dad!