Pop Playground
Stylus Videodrome



those at the Pop Playground headquarters refuse to believe it, but image is actually just as important as the songwriting. Just ask Trevor Horn. In accordance, we take a quick look at some of the prominent music videos every now and then and report on them. We call it the Pop Playground Videodrome. Enjoy.

Kevin Lyttle – Turn Me On
Lyttle does little to deflect Andrew Unterberger’s “dancehall lite” criticism here. Singing in the middle of a large crowd of friends and eventually intercut with scantily clad peacock-inspired dancers, Lyttle does the same thing that the dancehall newcomers of the past few years have done in their first videos. Luckily, it doesn’t much matter (much like it didn’t for Sean Paul or Elephant Man), because unlike Unterberger’s claim it’s a top notch song. Substance over style, anyone?
[Todd Burns]

Lil’ Scrappy feat. Lil’ Jon - No Problem
It’s quite clever to have a music video based off a popular movie. I mean, that way you don’t have to think up any original concept. Just do what they do in two hours within five minutes instead. This time around the movie is Training Day, Lil’ Jon is Denzel, and Snoop Dogg is still the guy getting pushed out of his wheelchair. While I’m sure I don’t have to tell you what happens, be sure to watch it anyway to see the screwed and chopped scene (the longest screwed scene since Erykah Badu’s “Love of My Life”) after Jon convinces Scrappy to sip some syrup from his hip flask.
[John Brandt]

Blink 182 – Down
Ever since they’ve stopped getting naked (and stopped letting others get naked), Blink videos have been exercises in the new-found “maturity” for the band. Luckily, they still know how to “party” by going to a random party where a guy gets chased by cops and then narrowly escapes them by car. It’s a boring chase for a boring band (are they the new Green Day?). Decent song though.
[Todd Burns]

Belle and Sebastian - Wrapped Up In Books
Belle and Sebastian’s lyrical muse could best be described as “cute girls with cute haircuts often have hidden, yet cute, depths”. This video features two cute girls (one a lot cuter than the other) showing they have hidden depths by being over-excitable in well-lit university town bookstore, laughing at book covers with words like “lick” and “virginities” on them. The video progresses as Stuart wears a hat, possibly in an attempt to mack one of the girls, whilst Sarah seems completely unaware that they’ve started filming, and stares at one of the walls. Hipsters are obliquely mocked. It’s a Belle and Sebastian video.
[Dom Passantino]

Kanye West – Jesus Walks
I’m getting the mtv.com version here, which I’ve yet to figure out the differences from the MTV version BUT it’s still probably better than any video I’ve seen in a long while. The plot? Jesus walks around and lets loose with some miracles and Kanye goes to church and starts sermonizing (you have to listen now ‘cuz he’s behind the pulpit, y’see). The cinematography of a washed-out (ambiguity) black and white (right and wrong) takes care of the authenticity issue and then it ends with a “Thank You” on the screen. Repent.
[Todd Burns]

R. Kelly – U Saved Me
He is illiterate. And he’s a genius far greater than you or I. R. praises God in a different way than Kanye here, sitting himself in a chair with a few props and telling us exactly how he was saved. A rapt crowd lets us know that it’s emotional. Props include: phone, hand phone, shopping cart, “Hope” hat and my heart (melting all the way through).
[Todd Burns]



By: Stylus Staff
Published on: 2004-06-30
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