Ok! You can officially ignore MTV. Aside from vintage Pizza Hut commercials, YouTube has become the newest, best, most badass way to show off one of two things: your music with lyrics set in scrolling Comic Sans or your music under some cool, never-before-seen animator / puppeteer's work.
Back in May, Josh Ritter, who played a pretty stellar performance at the Granada, released a new marionette- and puppet-based music video for his song "The Curse," which Ritter lover Fuel For Friends posted. It's really, really cool. For the sake of lists, and pointing out music videos that made us secretly cry and then deny it when somebody sees us, here are the ten coolest indie music videos that star not one single human (after the jump!).
10. Neko Case - "People Got a Lotta Nerve"
2D construction-paper animation works well with the metamorphosis/please-stop-hunting motif going on in this catchy tune.
Animated by lead Robin Pecknold's brother Sean, this music video features some beautiful claymation and practical effects.
8. The Low Anthem - "Charlie Darwin"
Stop-motion puppetry achieves this look for "Oh My God Charlie Darwin." It's all about the cellophane water.
Deserves a spot on ANY music video list simply for being animation by way of embroidery.
One of the most shockingly strange, unreal claymation music videos ever.
Also animated by Sean Pecknold, this one is more Tron than White Winter Hymnal--and is just as trippy.
This video technically involved people, but used not one camera. The effect was achieved by "3D plotting technologies collected information about the shapes and relative distances of objects. The video was created entirely with visualizations of that data," as the official YouTube video states.
Though you may think, "This looks like a college short film," we say it works with the music damn well.
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2. Arcade Fire - Neighborhood #3 (Power Out) What's cooler than combining 3D animation and steampunk?
The singer and animator are one in the same for this rated-R cartoon.