Best Music Videos of the Week — September 16, 2023

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Mark Dixon
Monday, September 18, 2023
Image from the #1 video this week. From Greece is "Let me" by Kostas Ksilas.

Hey, we're back.

I’m tired of saying what a great week it’s been for the world of music videos. We’re in the middle of an explosion of creativity. It’s not just in AI videos, but across styles and mediums. AI just opened the door.

Now a musician can write the music, professionally record it, upload it so it can be purchased, and market it with a video. All from the comfort of their garage that was converted to a recording studio.

But it really helps to know a little about everything. Knowing yourself is a given. Expressing yourself is a little more involved. What we are seeing across the “industry” (Ugh, I hate calling it that) are new musicians who need to translate their music into visuals. AI is the tool that is making that happen.

This burst in creativity is not limited to AI — the industry is now awash with beautiful and bright colors, or conversely, dark and moody city scenes. And these are just the student music videos.

Image from Caleb Doranz's video "How To Never Stop Being Sad" by Dandelion Hands.

This week we saw video from Caleb Doranz for the song, “How To Never Stop Being Sad,” by the Dandelion Hands. As with all the videos we like around here, telling a good story makes for a good music video. Then we jet around the world to Greece and a video by Kostas Ksilas. As he says, “The song is about trying to forget the obsession after a breakup, which becomes unbearable thinking of all the good times you had together.”

Who hasn’t been there?

Image from Peter Gabriel's "Panopticom (Dark-Side Mix)" by Lamson.

There are no Peter Gabriel videos in the Top-10 this week. Regardless, his contest looms large. The video for “Panopticom (Dark-Side Mix),” produced by  Lamson, was released this week. Also released this week was “Love Can Heal (Dark-Side Mix).” A beautiful animation that is not a sci-fi world on some strange planet.

As we cruise toward October, we are finding many regular contributors in our weekly queue. This week we saw another production by Optimoos. He entered another contest by submitting a video to “Breathe,” by Pink Floyd. Their 50th Anniversary of The Dark Side of The Moon animated video contest will close on November 30th. When I spoke to Optimoos, he pointed in the direction of a couple other music videos he made. One is for a new cover of an old classic (personal favorite) “A Horse with No Name,” by Dirtwire. The other is “Mauvais pied,” by Alba. Both show style and creativity and no space scenes. In this video we go from a country hoedown to a 1960s Parisian esthetic.

Image from “A Horse with No Name,” by Dirtwire by Optimoos

This week also featured a couple of self-important record label types bashing the music video as a waste of time. Meanwhile, the real waste of time was happening — MTV had their music video awards. Nothing original or artistic here. Sheesh! MTV stopped being MTV decades ago. Give it up. These performers don't need the exposure and this show is hackneyed and trivial. Mostly, I think they know what they is a lie, they just don't like the competition.

Come to TikiKiti, where you’ll discover that the music video is very much alive. It’s more vibrant and creative than ever. Just not as flamboyant.

And now the countdown begins —

10. Starting out our Top-10 is Myk Eff and his "Ambient Piano No 1." Mike tagged this video for us to see some time ago. But, do to some work on our website we missed it. So here it is now. And, making it into the Top-10. Mike Eff does consistently creative and beautiful work. I'm sure we will be seeing more of his work soon.

9. From California, here is "On & On," by T will & LijahFreeBandz. I found myself smiling all the way through this video. It's easy to see these guys had a great time making it. It sure was a lot of fun to watch.

8. We've been following Embodied Studios for some time. Lately they have made some amazing videos. They know how to tell a story. Here is Teddy Swims and "Lose Control.”

7. Here's the first of two Pink Floyd videos in this week’s Top-10. Coming from Optimoos, here is "Breathe." This is part of the 50th Anniversary of the release of Dark Side of The Moon.

6. From musician and video producer Realecta, here is the video to one of his own songs, "Ritual." The setting is as dramatic as the music. I can't figure out where is filmed. Maybe someone can tell me.

5. From Finland, we’ve seen Nuutti Kataja in the Top-10 before. Here he brings us the second Pink Floyd this week. Here is "Wish You Were Here.”

4. From the very creative — and focused mind — of Dope Music Video comes this brilliant animation set to Jimi Hendrix's, "All Along the Watchtower." He has developed his character animations in a quality not seen around here before. Here is "Part 1: Rise of a Legend." (Part two didn't quite make the Top-10 but we will post it right after this so they can be watched back-to-back.)

Here's the second part of this series from AI video ninja, Dope Music Video. This is "Part 2: Shredder's Dimension X," set to "Purple Haze" by Jimi Hendrix.

3. The camera work on this video from Caleb Doranz is jaw-droppingly good. Add to this the editing and you have a compelling production. In every instance, he made a difficult subject approachable. The essence of good storytelling. Here's "How To Never Stop Being Sad" by Dandelion Hands.

2. Who remembers Boney M? How about disco from the 70s? Well, Andrew Gajer sure does. Another fun story with an absolutely spot-on production. Here's "Rasputin," by Boney M.

1. The Greek Island of Corfu is where we go next — with this video and song by Kostas Ksilas — the #1 song in our Top-10 for the week. I ran the lyrics through Google Translate but the results were, uh, not satisfactory. But you don't need to have this translated to understand what it’s all about. The music is a sad love song — the video a beautiful dream of the past. Says Kostas, "The song is about trying to forget the obsession after a brake up, which becomes unbearable thinking of all the good times you had together." The video looks as we are riding through a watercolor painting — or inside a dream. Here is "Let me" by Kostas Ksilas.

That’s it for last week. We can all expect this week to be the knock-down and drag-out for the #1 video next Saturday. Stay tuned.

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