Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images Nine days after the deadly tornado that touched…
- Posted by Shelley White
10. 'Blinded by the Lights,' The Streets
Mike Skinner brilliantly depicts the misery of being way too inebriated at a crappy wedding and combines it with the creeping paranoia of wondering where your girlfriend and best friend could have gotten to. Meanwhile, the aforementioned loved ones are busy shtupping in the coat check. As Skinner gets progressively more mashed, the menacing music underscores his growing suspicion, without him ever realizing he's actually right on the money. He joins a fellow lad for a toot in the bathroom while his lady and best bud are getting down in the next stall. It's a searing tale of the cuckolded.
9. 'My Favourite Game,' The Cardigans
Scandinavian sweetheart Nina Persson goes off the rails while bemoaning the loss of her beloved. The blond and benign-looking 'Lovefool' takes to the highway in a beat-up convertible, puts a rock on the gas pedal and goes on a dangerous joyride. She blows through stop signs, impassively leaving a trail of car crashes in her wake. The video was shocking when it first came out in 1998 and director Jonas Akerlund made several different cuts to try and appease MTV UK, which wouldn't air the video. This version has a final sight gag that takes the teeth out of her suicide run, but just a bit.
8. 'Cry Me a River,'Justin Timberlake
JT released this video in 2002 as an audacious kiss-off to his former main squeeze Britney Spears, who had apparently cheated on him (if you believe the rumours). Looking creepier than he ever really ought to, Timberlake breaks into his former love nest to take a little revenge. A saucy brunette with a Britney-esque back tattoo joins him on the bed for some naughty videotaped payback. Then the Britney doppelganger strolls in and Timberlake plays the stalker, shadowing her for a smell of those famous blond extensions and a peek in the shower. Though JT revisited the cheating theme with 'What Comes Around... Goes Around,' he never aired his dirty laundry like this again.
7. 'Who's Gonna Save My Soul,' Gnarls Barkley
The video opens on a classic breakup scene. The dumpee listens attentively, then proceeds to (literally) tear out his heart and give it to his ex, saying, "It's actually yours now. I'll never get over you, and every girl I meet will be meticulously compared to you, and unfortunately none of them will be able to measure up to the memory of what we had." Then the heart sprouts legs, grabs a piece of broccoli and, shedding gore all over the table, sings of his despair. This strikingly original, funny and poignant video was directed by Chris Milk (who also did Audioslave's awesome 'Doesn't Remind Me' video and Kanye West's 'All Falls Down').
6.'Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?,' She & Him
The ever-adorable Zooey Deschanel plays blushing bride, all smiles and winks and cartoon birdies. If you listen to the lyrics, it's a coy come-on, but then our heroine falls to her death and the video becomes a playful battleground filled with flying axes, gushing animated blood and jaunty little phantoms. Sure, the message seems to be marriage = death. But it's just too cute to be truly bitter.
5. 'If I Were a Boy,' Beyoncé
It's certainly not the first time Beyoncé has sung about a jerky guy -- there was 'Irreplaceable' and that very cool backwards video for 'Me Myself and I' -- but this artfully shot black-and-white clip is quite subtle for the usually flashy and fierce Ms. Knowles. Beyoncé plays a confident policewoman, flirting and partying with the guys while her long-suffering man picks out jewelry and waits at home. But then there's a clever turnabout, and the reality of the situation is revealed. Of course, it's more than a little tempting to imagine she was directing this at her hubby Jay-Z. Oh, to be a fly on the wall during those marital spats!
4. 'Vidrar,' Sigur Rós
These Icelandic innovators have created some of the most arresting music videos in the history of the art form, and this one is no exception. The video depicts the burgeoning love between two young boys who appear to live in a small (and intolerant) town. The film opens on the two boys sitting on a dock, one playing with dolls. His father angrily throws them into the water. What follows is a kind and touching gesture, an impulsive kiss on the soccer field and the ensuing fear and anger from their horrified families and townsfolk. As the audience, we doubt there will be any happy resolution here.
3. 'Nothing Compares 2 U,' Sinéad O'Connor
It's the classic song about pining away for someone who just doesn't want you anymore: "It's been seven hours and 15 days/Since you took your love away." This Prince-penned masterpiece was covered by O'Connor in 1990 and became an instant smash. And the video became the enduring image of the Irish songstress -- her pale, tear-stained face and huge expressive eyes stare down the camera with naked emotion.
2. 'Maps,' Yeah Yeah Yeahs
On the face of it, nothing much really happens in this video. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs simply perform on a stage in front of a smattering of seated crew members. But when Karen O, bathed in garish coloured light, starts entreating, "Wait, they don't love you like I love you," it's raw and real and genuinely touching. I always imagined it was a plea to the lover she was losing to the road. Indeed, Karen O has said that the tears were real, a response to the fact that her then-boyfriend, Angus Andrew of the Liars, had failed to show up to the video shoot. The impassive and blank-faced spectators only add to the depths of her misery.
1. 'Hurt,' Johnny Cash
Who would have ever predicted that Johnny Cash covering Nine Inch Nails could be so devastating? After seeing the Johnny Cash version, Trent Reznor said of his song, "It's not mine anymore." And rightly so. Though the original Trent Reznor version was powerful, it had the whiff of wallowing in sadness as a pose. This song and video is the antithesis of that. Intercut with footage of him as a young and vibrant star, the Man In Black looks frail and vulnerable at the end of his life. Although it's not specifically about romantic love, this is an intimate portrait of pain and loss and regret. It's made all the more powerful in hindsight by the image of his wife June Carter Cash looking on sadly from behind as he sings, "Everyone I know goes away in the end." June passed away the following year and Johnny died a mere four months later.