It’s hard to believe that it’s been nearly FIFTY years since The Monkees burst onto the scene, fully formed, as if out of the skull of Zeus himself.  In that time, the manufactured nature of the group has become the norm, their focus on creating a musical “brand” has become the pathway to success, and the music video phenomenon they pioneered spawned first a network and then an entire programming genre.  (Ironically, said network is not so much with the music any longer, but progress, as always, marches on.)  Putting images to music wasn’t a new idea, even in 1966, but the near-seamless integration of the visual and aural forms made for a whole new world of experiences, which in turn begs a query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) reminds you that our last number is a combination of two pieces of music so utterly different in construction and mood that they set each other off perfectly. Musically and dramatically, we have here a picture of the struggle between the profane and the sacred, asking: What’s the most perfect synthesis of music and images you’ve ever encountered?

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

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  1. June 23, 2013 at 12:02 pm — Reply

    Baraka. The jarring juxtaposition of the beautiful and serene images in nature with the bleakness of the urban jungle combined with the pitch-perfect music and complete lack of narration made this one of the most powerful visual experiences of my life. It has its issues, but still absolutely the only choice I have for this question.

  2. June 23, 2013 at 1:16 pm — Reply

    For me, it was Rob Zombie’s Hellbilly Deluxe tour back in ’98. It was equal parts watching the band and a stage show, with a really elaborate set constructed and lots of background “characters” (ranging from costumed monsters and robots to scantily clad goth dancers and so on). For certain songs, there were even characters fitting to the theme of the song (such as “Living Dead Girl”). It was just so far beyond what you normally get out of a concert, even those that use pyrotechnics and flashy visuals.

    And that doesn’t even include the cheerleader stripper that Monster Magnet had dancing around to “Space Lord” as part of the opening act (that part doesn’t have anything to do with the QOTD, I just like mentioning it).

  3. Neckbeard
    June 23, 2013 at 1:40 pm — Reply

    As a long time snowboarder I recommend “The Art of Flight.” It’s a pseudo-doc about pro-boarder Travis Rice trying to find the most epic places to ride. The soundtrack totally compliments the hi-def imagery of folks hucking themselves off mountains.

  4. SmarkingOut Adam
    June 23, 2013 at 4:07 pm — Reply

    Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog. Musically, many of the songs are really, really good, but the lyrics and what is going on in the story on screen is so zany and crazy, yet it all works so well.

  5. Hirimno
    June 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm — Reply

    I would have to agree. and also, heck yeah! love this thing. the two best parts are the duet and the one about how he finally has a reason to kill Captain Hammer.

    • SmarkingOut Adam
      June 23, 2013 at 6:53 pm — Reply

      Brand New Day is amazing!

  6. June 23, 2013 at 5:11 pm — Reply

    This documentary called ‘What about me?’
    It’s of music and philosophy and is utterly magical. I’d have more words but it’s 4 am

  7. June 23, 2013 at 7:10 pm — Reply

    I’m partial to the video album that Eurythmics made with Sophie Muller for their album Savage. It’s an amazing pairing.

  8. Oldcomicfan
    June 23, 2013 at 7:37 pm — Reply

    The school festival episode of “And Yet the Town Moves” – the inserted song is hilarious, and also the music matches the animation perfectly, so you know it was animated to the actual song. I’ve never seen a musical number done better in an animated show.

  9. AllenBT
    June 23, 2013 at 7:37 pm — Reply

    Yellow Submarine!

  10. June 23, 2013 at 7:42 pm — Reply

    The opening intro to Final Fantasy 8! It absolutely perfect and from that moment your hooked into the game!

  11. Gehrigan
    June 24, 2013 at 12:50 am — Reply

    “Once more with feeling” for Buffy season 6. The characters’ emotions are so expertly and heart-rendingly displayed, especially the twist about Buffy’s existence post-death.

  12. June 24, 2013 at 10:00 am — Reply

    pink floyds the wall

  13. Andrew
    June 24, 2013 at 2:07 pm — Reply

    The first teasers for “Man of Steel” with the LOTR music and voiceovers by Jor-El or Pa Kent.

  14. Shush
    June 24, 2013 at 9:25 pm — Reply

    Fantasia. Visually interpreting music with animation was the whole point of Fantasia.

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