(Third Man Records)
Video is two things: a horrible band name to Google, and the next great post-punk group. The Austin-based band is one of those groups where more “serious” sites and blogs will spin long dissertations on why the band is lame/changing the game/merely OK. Hell, I can see a lot of sites in two years claiming that they discovered the band. Ignore any long-winded descriptions of Video; this band is the real deal and a Hell of a lot of fun. It’s no surprise that the band is signed to Jack White’s Third Man Records, as there is a definite garage rock bend to Video’s gothy post-punk sound, even if that doesn’t make any sense. Jack surely was attracted to the energy, the vibrancy and immediacy of Video, and the band perfectly encapsulates that with the excellent The Entertainers. Above all, this is one entertaining record, but it’s clear these songs will be much better live than on record (though it sounds fantastic to these ears).
The band classifies its sound as “hate wave”, and while the lyrics paint an aggressive picture with reds and blacks, the music is always focused on momentum and melody. Oftentimes this creates a lovely sort of dissonance that allows even the darkest lyrics to be pleasing. It’s also a nice nod to darkwave, which clearly had an influence on Video. If there’s an ill to speak of the Austin group, it’s that the front half of the album is so boisterous, so fun that the more relaxed second half seems tame by comparison. Resist that urge. This album is full of head-bobbin’, toe-tappin’ tunes that recall a whole wash of decades and sounds. Video is clearly a band to watch (pun intended). (Nicholas senior)