Death Cab for Cutie - Directions
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Death Cab for Cutie presents: Directions, an innovative anthology of 11 short films inspired by each song on the band's acclaimed album Plans. Every song was directed by a different director and includes 2 bonus videos of unreleased songs. The unprecedented collection came about as the brainchild of otaku-house, the production company owned and run by childhood friends Nick Harmer, bassist for Death Cab for Cutie, and video director Aaron Stewart-Ahn. They saw the opportunity to enlist a variety of talented young artists to each make a short film set to a Death Cab song, without the constraints of the traditional music video- no arbitrary performance footage, the band themselves would not appear in the films. The ultimate goal was to create a series of small films that worked together as both individual pieces of art and as a unified whole. Track Listings: Marching Bands of Manhattan, Soul Meets Body, Summer Skin, Different Names for the Same Thing, I Will Follow You Into the Dark, Your Heart Is An Empty Room, Someday You Will Be Loved, Crooked Teeth, What Sarah Said, Brothers on a Hotel Bed, Stable Song, Talking like Turnstiles.
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This is a great project, and one you should purchase, to both enjoy the videos and support the concept.
I did not know much about Death Cab for Cutie, but had a couple of their songs from CMJ Magazine, and I liked them enough. Then I saw a press-report about Death Cab's upcoming project, to let separate different directors create their separate visions of each and every song on their new album Plans. In the end, some wondered if the whole would stand together. I think it has, as Death Cab's music was direction enough to the directors, but you will need to see them all together to judge for yourself. I love music videos, especially the more creative ones, so I thought that this, music even aside, could be great fun.
They released 1 a week, and each Monday during that time, I visited their website, enjoying, even looking forward to Monday! It was with the video for "Summer Skin" that I concluded, this is art, and told all my friends. I have purchased the album, and grown to love the music seperately. The music and videos are deliberate art, which is sometimes hard to find, and even harder to find as well executed as this.
For you Death Cab for Cutie fans, of course you will buy this. For you art and video enthusiasts, and even you industry wonks, check this out. It was a great idea, brilliantly pulled off, and definitely earned a sale from me.
Each director places his or her individual stamp on the song that she chose to film. The videos range from simple animation, to narrative exposition, to advant garde surrealism. Highlights include the animated Crooked Teeth, the multi camera Soul Meets Body, and the simple pen and ink drawing of I will Follow you into the Dark. This is the type of project that more bands need to attempt.
The standard definition DVD contains a wealth of material including the original videos, director statements and idea treatments, animatics and more. If you have any interest in the band or its music this is well worth the small investment.
Note that these videos were made from fan-submitted pitches for music videos, and are not the official music videos. From what I've gathered, a contest was held some time ago for best pitch for each song (apparently, there was only one entry for Soul Meets Body). My vote for the best video in the entire collection goes to Crooked Teeth, which is by itself worth the purchase price.
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