Midway through Korn's new "Y'all Want a Single" video, the words "The record company wanted us to change this video — we didn't" flash on the screen. It's not a joke.
"They locked us out of our own editing booth," singer Jonathan Davis said at Thursday's announcement of the Projekt Revolution Tour in Hollywood (see "Linkin Park Taking Snoop, Korn On Projekt Revolution Tour"). "It's been crazy, the [uproar caused by] this video. That's what we like to do, though. We got to go up there and put our ass on the line for artists."
"Y'all Want a Single," the second release from Korn's recent Take a Look in the Mirror, is an angst-fueled, expletive-riddled protest against the record industry (see "Korn's Attempt To Not Write A Single Backfires"). The video is even harsher.
"It's gonna cause a big stir in the music business, period, because it's basically a video about us destroying a record store, and all this different verbiage comes up talking about how really corrupt the music industry is," Davis said. "We're just asking for it with this video, and it's pretty amazing. We're really excited about it."
Epic Records, Korn's label, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The first words flashed during the video are "Music Monopoly?," followed by "One corporation owns the 5 major video channels in the U.S." and the question "Is that OK?"
Statistics follow — "Last year, the big 5 record labels sold about $25 billion of music" and "90% of releases on a major label do not make a profit" — before it takes a stab at glossy videos, noting, "Britney Spears' last video cost $1,000,000," followed by "This Korn video cost $150,000" and, a few seconds later, "You have now seen $48,000 worth of video."
Later, amid more record-store thrashing and footage of Davis singing, the video claims: "The music 'industry' releases 100 songs per week," "Only 4 songs are added to the average radio 'playlist' each week" and "Hit songs on Top 40 are often repeated over 100 times per week." Then it asks, "Is that all you want to hear?"
It goes on to point out "Two radio conglomerates control 42% of listeners," "90% of all singles get to the 'hook' within 20 seconds" and "98 % of all #1 singles are less than 3 minutes and 30 seconds long" — "Does this seem like a formula to you?"
Andrews Jenkins, a director best know for Adidas and Budweiser commercials, shot the video at a record store in Los Angeles that was, fittingly, going out of business.
Korn fans and the staff of the store joined in for the melee, which in the end found more than 20,000 CDs and display cases destroyed by the crowbar-wielding band. All that and it only cost $150,000.