Flasher – “Material” Video

DC punk trio Flasher’s new video for “Material,” off their debut album Constant Image, isn’t really a music video at all. Instead it’s a nightmarish Dadaist collage of YouTube content.

We begin in a Music Video-y white soundscape, with the invisible band green-screened out, as guitars hang in mid-air. Standard, medium-interesting video fodder. But when the band begins to jam, the video confusingly stalls and zooms out to reveal a browser window, and you realize you’re watching through the eyes of an invisible viewer who is clicking huffily at the play button. They lazily click through video after video starring the band: a viral dance tutorial, a karaoke game show, a lip dub, a women’s self-defense demo, a low-budget student film, a music vlog speculating if Flasher are Illuminati members, a pimple popper video, and more. The final chapter, a BTS “Flasher fails!” reel, presents a last gory twist.

Directed by Nick Roney, it’s a brilliantly executed kitchen sink satire — image culture, virality, late capitalism, and the likes — and a meticulous deconstruction of the bowels of YouTube. But it’s a hilarious and playful video, grappling with the more grotesque aspects of our society just as Constant Image does. You also just have to admire the labor that went into the approximate ten mini-videos stuffed into the 3.5 minute creation.

Please, please watch it, below:

Constant Image is out now on Domino Records.