Talking Heads Tuesday: Video Rewind

Every Tuesday in January, The Barn will offer another feature about the incredible music and career of Talking Heads.

2010 was an incredible year for the music video.  From the Spike Jonze deliciousness of LCD Soundsystem's "Drunk Girls" and his secret film project with Arcade Fire to wonderful tongue-in-cheek rave-ups like The Black Keys' "Tighten Up" and Cee-lo Green's "Fuck You", cinematic production values and Oscar worthy effects were everywhere.

But let's hearken back to the days when high concept and some nifty control room innovation sufficed to break down boundaries and elevate incredible music into the visual realm.  In the 1980's videos looked like videos, not blockbuster films and Talking Heads found themselves at the forefront of defining where the medium could go.

The video for "Once In A Liftetime" comes across like an exposed nerve, all sweaty and tense and raw.  David Byrne's choreographer had him look at videos of epilepsy suffers to perfect his moves on this one.

David Byrne takes the director's chair for "Road To Nowhere", displaying some of the same visual sensibility that was on display in his 1986 feature debut True Stories.

"Burning Down The House" set unpredictable, wild and often jarring visuals to the infectious dance beats.  Would leave you scratching your head if you weren't busy dancing so hard.

Talking Heads - Burning Down The House (rUmPeLsTiLtSkIn)

rUmPeLsTiLtSkIn | Myspace Video

Inspired by a childhood friend who used to drop acid behind the Yoo-hoo factory in Baltimore, "And She Was" is a pastiche of images, photograph, animation, patterns and movement that is just abstract enough to evoke the song's subject matter, but stylized enough to act as a harbinger of sorts to the world of music video that would emerge 20 years later.


Which brings us to today.  Literally today, when Chris and Tina will perform as Tom Tom club on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" to kick off the 30 year anniversary of Genius of Live.

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