Milwaukee music videos are experiencing a renaissance. Local musicians and area videographers are joining forces to create stunning visuals with inventive concepts that are set to outstanding songs. More Milwaukee-made videos are being released than ever, and many of them are some combination of dazzling, hilarious, powerful, and unique. As a result, sometimes too many quality videos are released in such a short span of time to allow us to write individualized posts. Thus, here’s the first—of what could potentially be many—Milwaukee music video round-ups. Spend some time with five new visuals from a variety of Milwaukee bands (and one tangentially Milwaukee-related band) and bask in the rapid improvement of local film.
The Eradicator — “I’m A Squash Man”
The Eradicator is a punk project based on a masked, squash racket-wielding Kids In The Hall character by the same name. Okay, so it’s technically a Chicago band, but there are Milwaukee members involved as well. On Tuesday, New Noise Magazine premiered The Eradicator’s declarative new single “I’m A Squash Man.” In the video for the song off the band’s forthcoming self-titled album, The Eradicator runs through Portland screaming about all the sports he hates as he interrupts the inferior games of strangers. So yeah, a Chicago band’s video that was shot in Portland isn’t exactly the best way to start a Milwaukee music round-up, but it’s just very good.
Liam O’Brien’s Faithless Followers — “Ten Thousand”
Yesterday, Breaking & Entering debuted a video for a 2015 song by Liam O’Brien’s Faithless Followers. The “Ten Thousand” video features the eponymous O’Brien, whose unmistakable voice some may recognize from Holy Sheboygan!, leading eight of his Faithless Followers in a live take of an emotional journey that’s hammered home by Erik Klosterman’s “soundscape and visuals” and the trademark raw, roving shooting style of director Cheston Van Huss.
Listening Party — “My Old Self”
Milwaukee folk rock trio, Listening Party, literally just uploaded the lovelorn new video for “My Old Self.” The entire Bobby Schmidt-shot and -directed piece occurs in a Milwaukee art gallery. It’s one part Lars And The Real Girl, another part “Take On Me” music video, and all good. You can hear Listening Party play the song live at the Aura Music Series at Milwaukee Athletic Club on Friday, August 25.
Paper Holland — “Jazzy Jeff”
It’s been more than a year since Paper Holland released their long-awaited (and well worth it) follow-up EP, Fast Food. The band is ready to focus on new material, but before they did so, they decided to say farewell to Fast Food with a hilarious video for “Jazz.” (It’s actually “Jazzy Jeff” but they probably changed it for YouTube licensing reasons or whatever.) The Mason Berkshire-shot work features ComedySportz veteran and viral Old Milwaukee beer-passer Tim Higgins playing the role of a disgruntled director, who bosses the band around with winning results.
Sex Scenes — “Plastered”
Last weekend, Milwaukee’s own Sex Scenes premiered a video for “Plastered,” from the Swallow EP the band released back in June. The video debuted on The Bozho, who succinctly sums up the video’s lo-fi debauchery better than we ever could:
“In the video for ‘Plastered,’ the Brew City punkers do their name quite literally, centering the clip on a grainy VHS porno. However, all the loving, touching and squeezing quickly devolves into violent, druggy chaos, accented by quick-cutting and epileptic video effects. And then the cops show up.”
Maybe wait until after work to watch this one.