Combing through the area’s best music in 2015 is a big job — there's a lot of it — and that task gets even bigger when you toss in the videos accompanying some of the best music. North Texas is rich with musical talent and with video directors helping to put the musicians' vision on tape. This year we saw ethereal visions, lighthearted takes, avant-garde visuals and brutally honest reflections of our city. Here are the best:
10. Sudie - "Heartattack"
Sudie’s video for “Heartattack” begins in a dreamy, ethereal state as she saunters through a mystical forest, but as the video and her lyrics let on, she's on a path to shedding her innocence and maturing.
9. Steve Martin and Edie Brickell - "Won't Go Back"
In the video for “Won’t Go Back,” Edie Brickell, a native of Oak Cliff, is humorously joined in an elevator by a banjo-wielding Steve Martin. As they make their ascent from where they won't return, they’re joined by a host of other random, instrument-wielding guests in a lighthearted, well-acted video that we'd only expect from a sharp comedian like Steve Martin.
8. Kaela Sinclair - "Original Sin"
“Original Sin” is a captivating song on its own thanks to Sinclair’s sultry and haunting voice, but coupled with the video's sad storyline about a man on an alcohol-fueled bender after a spat with his wife, the song is a real gut punch.
7. Blue The Misfit - "All Systems Go"
This minimalist music video features some serious local fire power in Blue, The Misfit; Slim Gravy; and Sam Lao. It keeps the viewer locked in with its best attempt at seizure-inducing light flashes and sexy cut-scenes building up to Blue’s climactic closing verse.
6. Conner Youngblood - "The Badlands"
If this dreamy, beautifully shot vision of the South Dakota badlands doesn’t make you want to take a road trip of your own with your dog, then nothing will. The stunning scenes of nature paired with Youngblood’s down-tempo piano instrumentation and his soft voice is hypnotizing.
5. Post Malone - "White Iverson"
Who doesn’t want to power slide a Rolls Royce through the desert and hit the dab while sitting atop its hood as it cruises down the road? Post Malone’s visual for his viral, breakout hit “White Iverson” is as ostentatious as a hip-hop video should be, but it’s also done with a ridiculousness that complements his playful personality.
4. The Outfit, TX - "Highs and Lows"
The Outfit, TX’s “High & Lows” is the antithesis of Post Malone’s “White Iverson.” It’s a dark, brooding track rife with jarring imagery of burning crosses, Confederate flags and reappropriated black Ku Klux Klan regalia. It’s further evidence that The Outfit, TX have carved out their own brand of hip-hop and are one of the best acts in the city.
3. Bobby Sessions - "Black Neighborhood"
Rarely does a literal visual interpretation of a song make a good music video, but in Sessions’ case it was the only way to sell his message. Sessions’ tour of Dallas streets overrun with gun stores, liquor stores and Foot Lockers offers a grim view of some of the city's black neighborhoods.
2. Leon Bridges - "Coming Home"
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the Observer's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Dallas's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
“Coming Home” kicked off Bridges’ meteoric rise to superstar status. Although the video is manicured to fit his old-soul aesthetic, it also gives viewers a behind-the-scenes look into Bridges' day as he eats at a diner, gets a haircut at a barber shop, strolls down the block on his way to the studio and, of course, admires the girl he wants to court. It’s all very charming and is one more reason we’ve fallen for Bridges in 2015.
1. Lord Byron - Digital Crucifixion film
Shortly after releasing Digital Crucifixion, Lord Byron released his VHS-collage art-house film made up of clips shot by the rapper and mashed together with random YouTube clips. There’s no linear story, and it doesn’t necessarily fall in line with any of the tracks from the album that are playing in unison, but it’s enthralling nonetheless. It’s experimental, unorthodox and worth a watch.