The Halloween Video Playlist, Part 3: Goldfrapp, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Robbie Williams

Posted on October 23, 2015, 10:32 am
3 mins


Throughout the month, we’ll highlight music videos that tread into darker territory, sometimes unexpectedly. Perhaps needless to say…assume that they are all NSFW. See part 1. See part 2.

These videos are all about the party, but have a horror twist to them. Nothing is genuinely scary, and to escape censorship the gore is replaced with glittery proxies in the first two. The last one…not so much.

Goldfrapp – “Alive,” directed by Geremy Jasper and Georgie Greville/Legs

The peppy song “Alive” doesn’t call for any specific vision, but I doubt that for most of us it brings to mind a subterranean jazzercise lair in which men dressed as death metal stereotypes and women dressed as extras for Xanadu pair off and dance around a neon pentagram. The concept seemed a match for directors Geremy Jasper and Georgie Greville, though. You can read an interview with the directors on Pitchfork, which illuminates a little about the process here, but mostly you should just bask in the noir-and-neon glory of Alison Goldfrapp unleashing her spandexed, vampiric minions on the salacious metalheads. It’s oddly satisfying.

Goldfrapp – Alive from LEGS MEDIA on Vimeo.

Yeah Yeah Yeahs – “Heads Will Roll,” directed by Richard Ayoade

From vampires to werewolves: “Heads Will Roll” may have slightly darker lyrical content, so a director couldn’t be blamed for wanting to go a little literal with it, but Richard Ayoade went full bloodbath with this one. The body count is high and includes the band itself, but the squeamish need not fear, as the decapitations and dismemberments reveal that we’re all just full of red glitter and confetti. Festive!

Robbie Williams – “Rock DJ,” directed by Vaughan Arnell

From dismemberment to flaying: “Rock DJ” is definitely near the top of the list of “The Biggest WTF Moments in Music Video History.” Sure, the lyrics are pretty generic, if not nonsensical, so something a little eye-catching and improvisational is in order. Sure, some of us have pictured Robbie Williams hacked into the pieces while standing in the meat aisle at the grocery store and being subjected to “Angels” for the thousandth time. It’s only natural. But we are left to puzzle at how director Vaughan Arnell decided to go with the concept “roller rink in a tiny, underground bunker becomes lusty bloodbath when the one guy is so hungry for attention that he strips down, flays himself and starts bombarding them with pieces of his own flesh.” Not that I’m complaining, but…paging Dr. Freud.

T.s. Flock is a writer and arts critic based in Seattle and co-founder of Vanguard Seattle.