Even though physicists believe the Internet only weighs as much as a strawberry, the connections we make there are as real to us as the ones we create in real life.
Here are four music videos inspired by Internet culture:
1. Hi by Hannah Diamond
Hannah Diamond is the poster child of PC Music, the underground UK Cyberpop label known for their polarizing pop anthems designed for the digital age. On “Hi”, Diamond is a self-reflective Internet pop star doing what she does best – vacantly mining the trials of an unrequited online romance. The expressionless video captures the millennial fantasy of online personas and the underwhelming, lonely realities of Internet culture. “I don’t wanna be alone in my bedroom, on the Internet, waiting for you to say hi” chirps the detached, artificially intelligent-sounding Diamond. “Hi” feels like a love letter to the Internet communication platforms of the early 2000s, like MSN Messenger and ICQ.
2. Night by John Carpenter
Probably the only non-pop star on this list is John Carpenter, the director responsible for such retro horror classics as Halloween, The Thing and The Fog. The music video for “Night” is a low budget, yet visually spectacular project, using the trend of virtual reality to showcase his dark alter-ego character driving around a city at night. He goes on to encounter spooky, moody and futuristic experiences. The music video jumps between Carpenter in real life, behind the bulky lens of the VR glasses, into him experiencing the futuristic darkness of his fantasy world. The music lends perfectly to the vibe of the video, feeling both a head of the trend and retro at the same time.
3. Famous by Charli XCX
“Famous” was the official music video for the 2015 YouTube Music Awards (which is enough reason to place it on this list). The video reflects on the distractions of the Internet as an escape for youth culture. It vilifies the drone, boring responsibilities of reality, and when our technologies die, leaving us vulnerable to the horrors of real life. It’s a clear reflection on how we all want magic-distraction, and definitely not reality. The climax of the video personifies technology as a monster of a man with a power plug in his stomach – the only source for the main character to charge her phone, and ultimately, save herself. She can’t. But it doesn’t stop her from becoming famous.
4. Deeper Understanding by Kate Bush
Originally a song from the late eighties, “Deeper Understanding” was rerecorded by Bush in 2011. The song prophesies the dependency we’ve engaged in with technology and the Internet. The video features Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid from the Harry Potter films) as an older man who loses all interest in the physical world, becoming fully dependent on an artificial intelligence software. The program appears to him as a talking pair of lips on his computer screen. He even turns to violence to keep his addiction going. It’s a dark video and not particularly well made, but it was conceptualized by the great Kate Bush and is worth a spot on the list. Check it out for yourself.
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