I can remember pretty clearly in the eighties, my dad moaning on about how the quality of the music no longer mattered and that people liked songs now because of their videos and that this was the end of civilization as we know it.
If his proclamation was/is true I don’t care. But I don’t think it is, at least not in the 2020s. I think sometimes people like a video but not the accompanying song; sometimes people like a song but not its video; and sometimes people like both. I fall into all these categories and they are all good.
But I have a fourth category and it’s the point of this post (my father on was just a nostalgic preamble). I call this category the ‘epic meld’ and it contains songs and videos that are PERFECT for each other, that are melded together and in being so become something truly epic. They are where the image is present in the sound and the sound is present in the music – the two components are inextricably linked, gloriously unified, the whole is greater that the some of its parts… that kind of thing.
Epic melds are not necessarily constructed of the most impressive or popular or award-winning songs or videos. Nor are they made of my personal favourite songs or videos. When these things are considered separately there are plenty of others I like more. Also there are lots of songs and videos that make sense and go together really well but ultimately for me, fail as epic melds. Their music-bit and video-bit are too easy to comprehend as standalone entities.
In an epic meld, even when you are presented with only one aspect – the visual or aural – the other one is there as an invisible presence. In every possible universe their atoms are entangled.
Epic melds are very rare. I only have three in my collection (so far) and here they are. I’m not going to talk about them separately. There is nothing more I can say.
Pretty sweet cover - https://youtu.be/aGCA0Sejw_U
Fascinating backstage look at developing the dancing - https://youtu.be/d7OhiXVv_VE
I think lots of people agree with me about this one. In fact there exists a completely gripping and lovely three-part Take on me epic meld documentary -
Part 1 the song - https://youtu.be/wlTHJJX7QVU
Part 2 the video - https://youtu.be/HIA-LPmEpVo
Part 3 the legacy - https://youtu.be/7Lho0_9-V-8
Favourite quote (Magne Turuholm the keyboard player) "It reminded us of the good life...American kids with sun in their hair, looking like the happiest people on the planet and we thought 'that's not us. we are dark Nowegian troubled souls. we can't do that'.
It occurs to me that this post follows on nicely from this Text-image entanglement one.