Given the way the current Presidential Administration is finding a new way to slap itself in the face with its own dick at least once a day, time seems to be moving at an accelerated clip lately. And so it’s easy to forget that the Grammy Awards happened during this week. But they did, and so let’s take a minute, once more, for Beyoncé’s performance, which translated the sublime power of the hour-long Lemonade movie into live theater in ways I didn’t think possible. In the days after, people spent more time talking about awards snubs than performances, which makes sense. But that performance was really something, and it deserves to be remembered. This week’s picks are below.
5. Rae Sremmurd – “Swang” (Dir. MAX)
For the past 35 years or so, music videos have pretty much existed as delivery systems for the sort of gloriously dumb images we see in this video. I love it. Look at those old white people go!
4. D.R.A.M. – “Cute” (Dir. Nathan Smith)
A fun video that glosses over a tragic truth: If we were all forced to compete with Muppet versions of ourselves, none of us would ever get laid again.
3. The Weeknd – “Reminder” (Dir. Kid Studio)
Fun thing about this video: It’s pretty much a standard-issue big-budget rap video, with the fancy cars and the helicopters and the celebrity cameos. Except it’s shot like a Swedish psychological thriller. I keep waiting for YG to snatch Abel Tesfaye up and lock him in a basement dungeon.
2. PWR BTTM – “Big Beautiful Day” (Dir. Christopher Good)
The thing about the best punk videos — and I’m thinking of things like Rancid’s “Ruby Soho” here — is that they can wordlessly convey the sense of belonging that you might feel when you find the scene that works for you. This one works like that, and it does it from a distinctly queer sensibility, which is important and valuable and also fun.
1. The Lemon Twigs – “I Wanna Prove To You” (Dir. Nick Roney)
Between this and Young Thug’s “Wyclef Jean,” we have entered the era of the deeply meta music video. This is an amazing development. It took a music video director to make Being John Malkovich, and now, 18 years later, we’re getting music-video versions of Being John Malkovich on the regular.