29 November 2011

Who framed Willy Moon



baby girl who's playing seek
all them things that you do to me

what I got to oh so near
things you do to send me there


"What the hell was that?" were my precise thoughts as I finished watching this video. For the performer, the song and the music video each appear other-wordly. Is it because the song, delivered on 21st century keyboards and urban beats, at the same time resonates with early 1950s Motown? Or is it due to the rockabilly singer who arrives onto the stage more a Toon than a man?
I'm referring here to the cartoon characters generally (and Jessica Rabbit specifically) starring alongside Bob Hoskins in 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit'. (If you are not familiar with the velvety stage performance by Jessica Rabbit, press here.)
Note how the performer comes up and departs as in a cartoon. Watch him being shot at by the instruments at 1:11. "Hit me now," he invites and the shooting ensues. "Enough," he commands moments later, and the shooting ceases.
Around this time, the song and the lyrics intensify, bringing before you the blue velvet stages of David Lynch. 'Dance music dark enough to block the sun at high noon", as some reviewers described it.

hey pretty baby it's me and you
I'll be your house and only you (...)

hey when the people comes around
just kick me down in a hole in the ground

The moonish 'toonish performer is Willy Moon (21), an indie songwriter and singer from New Zealand, who bought a one-way ticket to London when 18. Part in Berlin and part in London is where he wrote and recorded 'I Wanna Be Your Man', his debut single.
“It took a long time to record because I’m doing it all on my own and I had to work out how to use the recording software,” he explained.
Made on a budget of £150, this minimalistic music video stands out: it's simple, inventive, playful (if a bit eerie), surprising and completely blended with the style of the performer and the mood of the song.
And it's nice and short, just like they used to make 'em.
An unexpected pleasure, this find.

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