Klaxons NSFW Videos

A couple of Best Videos Of The Week ago I mentioned how nearly every good clip that week was too long, too nude, or too violent to make it on to MTV; one was even removed from YouTube, verification wall or not. But looking back on 2009′s picks, it’s easy to notice that this year’s videos feel different from last year’s too naked for work clips. Last year Flaming Lips, Matt & Kim, Girls, and Major Lazer all featured nudity and sexuality, but it was all playful, joyous, sorta innocent. That’s true of the videos at the highest numbers. But most of this year’s are darker, more violent, and make you more uncomfortable. You only need to take a look at the Flaming Lips’ video from the hippie celebration in “Watching The Planets,” to their series of videos starring single white females being bound, tortured, and bled out, to notice the trend. Yet with the exception of maybe the M.I.A. video, none of the clips this year were created to be particularly shocking. If you thought last year’s parade of nude videos was perhaps too beautiful, then maybe this year’s violence will be too pretty. Have a look, share them with your family, post your reaction videos, etc:

Leather Hands – “Vertical Lines” (Dir. Miles Flanagan)

Here’s the pitch for this one: bouncing tits. And not a single one of them is uncovered, so this video is only not safe for your co-worker’s eyes the same way pulling up Farmville while at work isn’t. It just leads to embarrassing conversations.

Big Freedia – “Azz Everywhere” (Dir. Jordan Kinley) #nudity

Here’s a video where the artists’ statement makes all the difference. On the surface it’s a strip club video. But underneath:

… Freedia encourages the dancers at Sassy’s to shake not for the customers specifically, but rather for their own pleasure and expression. The result is evident in the cheering and support of the crowd. In these three songs money rains on the stage (a necessary part of the work these girls do) despite the fact that the girls themselves rarely acknowledge the crowd. No longer performing “for” the men and women who are visiting the club, the energy of the room transcends the practical nature of “stripping as a profession” and illustrates that what works the best when trading sexuality for sustenance is a genuine expression of sexual joy.

El Guincho – “Bombay” (Dir. Nicolás Méndez-CANADA) #nudity #footplay #cock

What I love about this video is that it feels like channel surfing. It instantly reminded me of some of Beck’s Odelay and Midnight Vultures clips, disconnected but equally compelling, puzzling, hilarious scenes. Nearly everything that makes this video NSFW is incidental; you could remove every exposed breast and still have a watchable piece. See CANADA’s recent “Invisible Light” video for another version of their disconnected style.

UNKLE – “Follow Me Down” (Dir. Warren du Preez and Nick Thornton Jones)  #nudity

Here’s one of the few explicitly tasteful explicit videos on the list, directed by Warren du Preez and Nick Thorton Jones, who made this UNKLE video something like Anton Corbijn meets Cirque Du Soleil. The pair are, unsurprisingly, well-known fashion photographers as well.

Grinderman – “Heathen Child” (Dir. John Hillcoat)  #nudity

Another video of mostly disconnected images that adds up to a hilarious piece of surrealist cheesecake. “Cheesecake” explicitly refers to the bare Grinderman butt in here. Hillcoat also directed the film adaptation of the Cormac McCarthy novel The Road.

The Flaming Lips – “The Sparrow Looks Up At The Machine” (Dir. Wayne Coyne and George Salisbury)  #nudity #grossness  #footplay

As I mentioned, Coyne and Co. seemed like they wanted to up the ante with each subsequent video. While this one doesn’t contain the nudity-per-capita of their earlier Embryonic clips, the sheer amount of blood and implied torture make this one far more upsetting.

HEALTH – “We Are Water” (Dir. Eric Wareheim)  #violence  #grossness  #wigs

HEALTH’s “We Are Water” video plays out like a bloody Red Riding Hood. Tim & Eric’s Eric Wareheim has a twisted mind.

Die Antwoord – “Evil Boy” (Dir. Rob Malpage)  #nudity?  #woodphallus  #diplo

Shocking in the way that a finger through your fly is shocking, Die Antwoord’s over-the-top shtick here is surprisingly demure in some places. We see boners but no actual penises, breasts but no nipples.

Devendra Banhart – “Foolin” (Dir. Isaiah Seret)   #violence   #grossness  #nudity  #footplay

Maybe parts of this video was done for shock value. But really, when society can’t yet accept an interracial gay May-December BDSM relationship full of loving foot massage and befingering, society’s the sick one. Isaiah Seret has also directed videos for Edward Sharpe and Gogol Bordello, as well as a Banhart album promo called “Feet,” if feet was the most appealing part of “Foolin” for you.

Yuck – “Rubber” (Dir. Michael Reich)  #nudity #grossness  #glandfluid

This is one of my favorite videos out this year. So many NSFW videos combine sex and violence to attract and repulse you, but I love that this video uses something else (check the hashtags) to mess with what you find sexy and alluring. Yuck is one of the 15 Breakout Bands of 2011, according to the BBC. It probably really helps that they play this video on MTV UK — I couldn’t imagine how this video would do on MTV here. I learned that from video star Ariela Marin’s blog. There you can read about making this video (you so rarely hear from the people actually in these videos), and see her modeling portfolio. There are lots of nudes.

M.I.A. – “Born Free” (Dir. Romain Gavras)  #nudity  #violence  #grossness  #explodingchildren

This heavy-handed “banned from YouTube” by Youtube UMG no onevideo is still more laughable than shocking and thought-provoking, even if the /\/\/\Y/\ is better than you first thought. Watching it again, it seems a shame that the press around the video (and M.I.A. was partially responsible for it) was about censorship and YouTube and video violence more than about genocide and government-sponsored violence.

Klaxons – “Twin Flames” (Dir. Saam Farahmand) #nudity #grossness #glandfluid

Though there’s no violence and no extreme nudity in this video, it was the most shocking of the year for me. Part of it is the stark background, and the blank faces of the orgy’s participants. But mostly it’s because of the connected bodies. On one hand it looks something like The Human Centipede. But it also makes me think of Genesis P-Orridge’s Pandrogeny Project, which seems like a much more positive association — you have to give up describing the sex in this video as gay or straight or multiple or masturbatory.

Comments (14)
  1. Two years of NSFW videos! Clearly this is more than a trend, and with MTV preoccupied with broadcasting Jersey Shore (something that is far more offensive than anything here), I can’t wait for one of the premium cable channels to pick this up and start airing videos. I’m thinking Cinemax. 11:30 on a Friday night. Double Feature: Emmanuelle and Alternative Nation? It was only a matter of time before these worlds collided.

    • (one of them needs to pick up our ol boy Matt Pinfield and recreate the glory days of 120 Minutes…actually, this would be a perfect move for sudden hip ‘player’ TBS wouldn’t it?)

  2. No. 13, Mayday Parade – Kids in Love.

  3. No. 14, King Fantastic – Why? Where? What?

  4. where is Huoratron – Corporate Occult? and i think USA boys of HEALTH is more NSFW

  5. You guys neglected to mention Hey Champ’s “Neverest.” Dolphin boobs. Enough Said.

  6. not to be one of those “why isn’t my favorite video on this list of videos selected by someone who isn’t me?” people (i’m about to be one of those people, though):

    Where’s the EARL video? That was both the best and most shocking video I saw all year.

  7. Was Electric Six – Body Shot from 2009? If not, honorable mention.

  8. Am I the only one who will immediately click on something if it’s NSFW?

  9. Xiu Xiu – Dear God, I Hate Myself was pretty NSFW.

  10. i’m sure someone has suggested this, but Yeasayer’s “Ambling Alp” was missing! Naked chicks rolling down hills?

  11. Didn’t watch the others yet, besides that ol MIA video but w/that Klaxxons video, all i can think is “well at least they’ll have something to be ‘remembered’ by…when they implode in 2 years into infamy.” :) The uk tries SO hard to try to love those guys, it’s sad, it’s just not there. IF they’d reshuffle the band and actually find A singer…then there’d be a chance, that high/low dual singer bullshit is just ‘bollocks’ haha.

  12. El Guincho vid is awesome

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