Music videos can transport you to a different place or time. Sometimes, they can even change your mind or affect you for days on end. I love watching music videos because of the stories they can tell. Sometimes, they can even add to the music and make you fall in love with a song even more. I will have honorable mentions listed toward the end, WatchMojo style (if you’ve ever seen those videos). No rap is included in this list.
10. “Popular Song” by MIKA ft. Ariana Grande
The chorus to “Popular Song” is a remixed version of the song “Popular” from Wicked, an amazing Broadway musical. Wicked is the story of the Wicked Witch of the West and the Good Witch in Oz and how they came to be. “Popular Song” follows how popular people in the past that lived off popularity, now aren’t living the best life. Instead of dealing with popularity, it’s better to be who you are and strive toward future goals.
This music video is really fun to watch as MIKA and Ariana Grande work together to plan a party for their “popular” classmates. This music video accompanies the lyrics and sound really well and it helps strengthen the message. The ending is adorable to the music video as MIKA realizes that he destroyed young Ariana Grande’s castle and he turns to stone. The makeup and the costume design is also really fun and adds to the affect.
9. “Break Free” by Ariana Grande FT. Zedd
This song is about being free to do whatever you want and not to be held back by whatever is holding you back. Ariana sings about how it’s her path to “break free because she can’t resist it no more.” This goes off on how she can’t resist who she wants to be and her goal to get there.
The music video has a space theme as Ariana takes you to outer space. She frees people from cages then moves on to having to save herself. The video ends with Zedd and Ariana Grande partying with all the people she saved on a spaceship headed off into the galaxy. This video is very spunky and is also a delight to watch. While I usually am picky about CGI, the CGI is a cherry on top of the music video because of how well it is incorporated and used. This music video is definitely a fun one to watch on repeat and it’s another great example of how music videos should be done.
8. “Love You Like A Love Song” by Selena Gomez
What a cute music video and song. Basically, the song starts with talking about how every love song has been sung and basically this is another one. Then this song goes into how Selena Gomez loves this guy “like a love song” and how he isn’t like any other record she owns. She wants to keep putting the song on repeat and listening to it.
This music video is really great because of the costumes and the story that follows. It starts with a person singing another one of her songs, “Naturally” pretty badly. Then, she gets up on the stage and belts “Love You Like A Love Song”. Her costumes are really pretty in all her music videos but these costumes are probably some of her best.
7. “I Just Can’t Get Enough” by Black Eyed Peas
My sister and I use to love the Black Eyed Peas that whenever they released a new song, we would memorize it so quickly. “I Just Can’t Get Enough” is probably my favorite song from them.
While the music video is simple, the message at the beginning and the message of the song is why I included it on the list. All the lyrics are well written and all of their voices come together in a beautiful way. This is one of the Black Eyed Peas best songs and I really miss receiving new music from them.
6. “…Ready For It?” by Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift is know for releasing love songs about breakups, ups and downs about life, and etc. This music video has a little bit of old Taylor and the new Taylor as she introduces her new album “Reputation”. “…Ready For It?” is one of her better new songs as it introduces the world to the new Taylor.
I chose this song not because of the meaning but because of how amazing the music video is. The movement of the music video pairs well with the tempo of the song as she walks around an alley to this cage where “Taylor” is. The Taylor in the cage has magical powers that impress dark Taylor, only until dark Taylor magically messes with the other Taylor. The cinematography is also taken very well as in the end, dark Taylor is shown with the glowing blue eyes as the other Taylor. Overall, the story moves well along and leaves viewers a chance to interpret what just happened.
5. “Mr. Toot” by Ylvis
This is the world’s most catchiest song and one of my favorite songs currently. The beat is so catchy that you wish that a Mr. Toot existed in real life. The song follows the journey of a man named Mr. Toot as he is famous around Istanbul for his instrument, the toot. Mr. Toot gets very caught up and money hungry that he reinvents himself and gets run out of town.
The music video does not disappoint with the song. The cinematography is amazing, the tempo is amazing, and this is one of the best music videos to watch if you’re feeling down. In the end of the music video, it doesn’t disappoint, because they end up crowning another Mr. Toot and dancing to the the toot’s music. (And yes, it is made from the people who brought you “What Does the Fox Say?”
4. “Laura Palmer” by Bastille
While I’ve never seen Twin Peaks, this has been one of my favorite Bastille songs because of the lyrics and because of the melody of the song. This song follows the events of the Twin Peaks show and how Laura Palmer lived her life.
Bastille music videos are some of the most entertaining music videos to watch. There is always such great thought and attention put into the music videos that help to support their music. While I don’t know if the music video follows Twin Peaks, I love the story that is told throughout the music video. I also love the old video camera filter usage in multiple parts. Watch out though when watching, a dog does interrupt the music video and scares you with barking for about five seconds.
3. “I’m A Mess” by Bebe Rexa
I didn’t know this song existed and I’m sad I didn’t until the Victoria Secret Fashion Show. It’s a really great song and I can relate to this song for school sometimes. Everything will be alright no matter what they say, life is going to be great. This is a good song to work out to or even to just listen to on a normal basis.
The music video is well put together and the choreography is spectacular. My favorite part of the video is when they all have the flashlights and the patients are dancing around Bebe. While this music video doesn’t really have a story, the movement of the music video flows nicely, the costumes look gorgeous, and the cinematography is awesome.
2. “Hey Look Ma, I Made It” by Panic! At the Disco
Just like “I’m A Mess”, I didn’t know this song existed until recently until psychology class. In psychology, we had to make our own albums and one of my friends put this song in their album. I was interested after she played the song, so I looked up more about it. And oh boy, it’s a lot to digest that I might talk about the meaning of this song by itself and the music video more in detail. So look out for that if you are interested.
Basically, Brendon Urie leaves home, becomes a puppet for his record label and falls into the harshness of life by starting drugs and other acts. He toward the end performs for an audience of puppets as his actual self. Then, he turns back into a puppet and gets thrown out by his record label. This music video has haunted me for a few weeks now as I feel bad for artists and the life some of them fall into.
Viewer discretion is advised.
And before I talk about the number 1 music video, I want to mention three honorable mentions for great music videos.
“of the Night” by Bastille
Viewer discretion is advised.
“Crossfire” by stephen
“RUNAWAY” by half⋅alive
And without further ado, the number one music video…
1. “Aawake at Night” by Half⋅Alive
half⋅alive is a group I just recently found and I’m in love with all 6 of their songs. They are a new band and they are going to soon release their EP Now, Not Yet. I couldn’t be more excited to see where a band is headed. All of their songs and music videos paint such vivid pictures. “aawake at night” is the first one I found and the dancing in the music video is new and exciting. I love how they’ve carried out dancing into all of their videos now such as “still feel”, “arrow” and the one up above, “RUNAWAY” .
If you’re looking for new music or want to try a fun dance, definitely look into half⋅alive. Warning, there are flashing lights in this music video for anyone who could be sensitive to strobe or any sort of flashing lights.