Over the past few days, a whole host of notable music videos have surfaced. In addition to an achingly beautiful clip from Japanese Breakfast (courtesy of the inimitable House of Nod team), Teleman, Night School, gobbinjr, Deerhoof, Vallens, Operator Music Band, Pinkwash, Hinds, Shabazz Palaces, Boogarins, and Moderat all came through with compelling clips while Okkervil River offered up a tantalizing glimpse at their forthcoming record, Away. For sheer energetic force, though, none of the above clips could contend with Woahnows’ delightful “Mess”.
The trio’s latest video uses a grainy VHS aesthetic to its advantage, nicely underscoring the band’s oddball personality. “Mess” is a jaunty ride through one of the year’s best basement pop songs, with the accompanying clip, endearingly, not providing much more than a series of shots that show the band mimicking their way through the song. What’s essential to “Mess” is also the functioning crux of what makes Woahnows such a compelling act in the first place: they’re just out having fun.
Too frequently bands get lost in the guise of performance and it starts inhabiting itself in every facet of their appearance. Woahnows don’t seem anywhere close to falling into that trap. “Mess” is one of the loosest, most carefree clips that anyone’s released this year, effortlessly establishing and maintaining a sense of genuine joy. From the hazy, low-budget green screen effects to the half-dancing, “Mess” stealthily avoids subjecting itself to any looming pressures; Woahnows are making music for the sake of making music. That the clip for “Mess” falls in line with that ethos as much as it does is more than enough reason for celebration.