Even though MTV doesn’t really play them anymore, music videos have had a strong resurgence these past few years thanks primarily to services like YouTube and Vimeo. In addition to monetizing their visual content, artists have been able to reach and therefore gain more fans through a medium thought to have killed the radio star.
It has also led to some huge leaps in technology as seen in Chairlift’s incredible video for “Met Before”. Director Jordan Fish and his team essentially allowed the viewer to choose their own adventure (remember those books?) and create a new experience each time they watched it. Elsewhere, Romain Gavras continued to showcase how he can make a music video into a mini-movie with his epic clips for M.I.A. (again) and Kanye West and Jay-Z. And hats off to Greg Brunkalla and kid-of-the-year Dante Hoagland for showing us all how Danny Brown got that gap in his teeth.
But it wasn’t all flashiness and explosions that caught our eye. One of the best videos of the year, Lushlife’s “Magnolia”, cost no more than $80 to produce while rap troll Krispy Kreme probably spent half of that doing front flips and crouching on tree branches in “Haters Wanna Be Me”. And we have to imagine that Willis Earl Beal spent more time than money animating and directing his emotional video for “Evening’s Kiss”.
Click below to begin viewing the best music videos of the year. Peep our picks for best album art of 2012 here.