The accompanying visual for south London-based house producer GRADES’ latest earworm fuses three individual expert talents into one veritable trifecta of greatness in their action-packed video for “Kings.” With direction by Taichi Kimura, animation by Rapparu and a dance battle won by pint-sized lionheart Laika Takasu, their collaboration assumes the title of decade favorite (right behind Is Tropical’s “The Greeks”). I wish I’d had the forethought to conjure up a laser cannon Megaman arm to see me through all of that after-school captivity.
Citing the ingenious teen body-horror-gross-out influences of cartoonist Charles Burns, director Josh Forbes (soon to helm the similar in theme Contracted: Phase II) carves a path through the hazy halls of arguably the most spine-chilling location of all time, high school. And for two ill-starred adolescents with matching dysmorphia his lighter take on oddity-heavy romance unravels in the span of just one day. Moscow’s acclaimed new wave-y trio Pompeya have actually only been to Pasadena once, so what you see and hear stems from a collective, glorified mind’s eye. To gain better perspective on the real-deal emotional tone of the place, consider other classic films shot in the area. like Beethoven or Teen Wolf.
Moments after I administer his vet-prescribed meds, my cat develops a faraway look in his eye and I have to wonder if (and hope that) the side effects are in any way similar to the mystical trip our leading feline takes in the video for Mastodon’s latest. The Atlanta-based prog metallers wisely teamed up with of-repute directors/artists Skinner, Video Rahim and creature FX whiz Shane Morton to bring the fantastical, ultraviolet lit world to life. Also of note: a portion of the proceeds will be donated to The Humane Society and Skye the stoner tabby is a purrfessional actor who was in no way harmed in the making of this treat.