How Many Videos?! Why Popstars Are Making Music Videos Interesting Again

16 November 2015, 17:31 | Updated: 8 May 2017, 17:09

troye lana billie
Woodrow Whyte

By Woodrow Whyte

Justin Bieber is just the latest in a long line of musicians turning to film.

There's been a trend lately for popstars to indulge themselves in music videos in ever more artsy, creative ways. Justin Bieber joined the club over the weekend with 13 new videos for each track on Purpose, his latest album, released on Friday. 

Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and Lana Del Rey have all used videos as a centrepiece to album campaigns in recent years. It's an interesting proposition born out of two mutually-beneficial desires.

The first is a desire to flex their artistic muscles. The lofty egos of pop artists, who struggle to gain plaudits from critics of 'real music', often just want to make something that is taken seriously. That's usually where things go wrong, cue lots of black and white footage, long, boring self-aggrandizing monologues, doe-eyed stares to camera and enough pouting to attract a fleet of fishing boats on the chase for trout.

The second desire is pure marketing. If you release a series of videos, a short film, or just a lengthy video for one track, it creates a buzz around the release, with websites falling over themselves to get clicks from fans, and artists gaining more exposure to their music, particularly album tracks, which may have been passed over when the initial album dropped.

Justin has taken a slightly different route from others and focused purely on dance. We assume Justin must be the toast of the LA modern dance community after employing most of them for these 13 videos. It's a nice idea, well-executed, and avoids a lot (not all) of the cliches that litter similar projects. You can watch all of the videos here.

Clichés aren't entirely a bad thing though, in fact they can be kinda funny, as some of the following videos will attest.  We've got a round up of some of the more expansive video projects by pop artists lately, including the poignant Blue Neighborhood Trilogy by our fave Troye Sivan, a completely OTT video from Lady Gaga, and an older classic from Green Day, because we can. This should keep you busy for the evening. 

1) Lana Del Rey - Tropico

2) Lady Gaga - "G.U.Y."

3) Rihanna - "Bitch Better Have My Money"

4) Troye Sivan - Blue Neighbour Trilogy

5) Green Day - "Jesus Of Suburbia"

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