• Thu, Jun 29, 2017
ODDITIES

10 Thoughts on the New Ska Vengers Video

Sep 18, 03:48pm

Akhil Sood dons his viewing goggles and his top hat and pops a batch of corn before sitting down to critically dissect the new Ska Vengers video. You do have the option of skipping his thoughts and viewing the video at the bottom of the page. Don't tell us we didn't warn you.
  • The video’s got this whole sepia-filtered retro vibe and shit. (Let’s hope the other observations are a little better than this one.)
  • The song is really catchy and melodic, and the main hook, where the lady sings about whiskey something, is going to get lodged in my brain for some time to come. Keeping my fingers crossed that a hangover doesn’t follow soon after.
  • Staying on the song for a little bit longer, The Ska Vengers have pulled off a bit of a coup in selecting ‘Rough and Mean’ for a video. You see, to these ears, this song is probably the only one they have that doesn’t sound identical to all their other songs.
  • The guy on the keys, the Hunter S Thompson lookalike, appears to be the happiest man on the bloody planet. He’s obviously really really excited about being in front of the camera, and his bubbly enthusiasm reminds me a little of Preity Zinta in her element.  
  • I don’t know how they did it; they probably used a really wide lens or something, but The Ska Vengers and the directorial crew somehow managed to fit all 34 band members into one shot, which is some achievement. I remember seeing them performing once on this relatively small stage, and maybe it was my mind playing tricks on me, but I could swear they had a couple of band members playing their instruments from the crowd and the bar and one stationed at the entrance gate.
  • And as for the instruments, well, they keep disappearing periodically during the video. At one point, all 34 band members are without their respective instruments, so they decide to just roam around in the frame and dance their troubles away. Maybe it was due to budgetary constraints; that’s just conjecture though. More likely, it was a narrative element to the bouncy video.
  • The thing that genuinely bothers me about The Ska Vengers is that they come across as too contrived at times; they lack some sense of organic spontaneity. Like everything’s probably been discussed in multiple accents at band meetings in air-conditioned conference halls and rehearsed meticulously before we, the audiences, see it, right from the top hats to the immaculate fitted suits to the band chemistry one sees.
  • The one thing that’s probably not planned and rehearsed is the embarrassingly accurate Rasta accent that the guy vocalist has. God, I hope it isn’t. He’s spent a considerable period of time in Jamaica in his formative years, right? Right?
  • Then again, lyrically, these guys do a great job using the reggae rhetoric and transposing a lot of those issues into a relevant Indian framework. They’re not oblivious.
  • The shot at around 3:45, with the drummer clutching his suspenders and dancing awkwardly along with the rest of the band, is my favourite. It’s like the time when the Backstreet Boys came down to India. 

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