Today, in overachievement, The Used dropped three new videos at once!
If you’re a fan of The Used, then your day just got way better. The Utah screamers have released not one, not two, but three videos today! What did we do to deserve such good luck!?
Actually, based on these videos, it doesn’t seem like we’ve been that good at all. Like “Iddy Biddy,” the first video released from their Ocean Of The Sky EP, a gritty, castigating collection of horror movie scenes and war news reels, “The Ocean Of The Sky” marks a return to The Used’s penchant for grim, striking imagery. “Quixotica” and “Thought Criminal” only get weirder. But it’s The Used — what did you expect, puppy dogs and ice cream?
Watch The Used’s “Quixotica,” “Thought Criminal,” and “The Ocean Of The Sky” videos after the jump.
A decidedly slowed-down number by the metal-core heroes’ standards, “The Ocean Of The Sky”’s grinding buzz saw guitar line is blended with the clatter of a film reel, which shows home movie projector-quality images of swirling oceans, enormous whales, maps of far-off lands, shipbuilding, and armies preparing for war. “I’ve never felt so far from home, and I like it,” Burt McCracken sings as warships sail in formation and horrifying sea creatures skulk the ocean floor. “Never been so left alone for so long.”
And that’s all before things get really weird.
“Quixotica” is a lot less subtle in its underlying metaphor of political dissatisfaction, as it hammers the point (and the guitar line) home in brutal fashion. “We are being lied to,” reads the text crawl across the screen, which is intercut with footage of bikini-clad dancers at spring break, prevaricating lawmakers, and animals being led to slaughter while rapid-fire drums explode. It’s a lot more of what we expect from The Used: tightly wound verses that explode into a hooky chorus tattered up by the dirt of evocative, dark lyrical imagery. “Home is where the heart lies,” Burt sings, and we’re pretttttyyy sure that’s not meant to come off in the warm and fuzzy sense — unless we’re completely misreading the idea of juxtaposing nuclear bombs, porn, and burning crosses.
Birth, death, religion, sex, violence…. That’s kind of a lot of ground to cover all in one video. What, The Used didn’t have time to critique the authoritarian state as well? No worries, because that comes up in the next video for “Thought Criminal,” which also sticks to the grainy home video and spliced-together news footage concept. This time, however, the video bounces between protesters being corralled and beaten by police, starving children, Middle Eastern militants, medieval torture scenes, the Berlin Wall, Hitler, Kim Jong-un, and more and more explosions. “I thought I knew everything,” McCracken sings in the slowly building ballad. “I thought I knew what it meant to me / Turns out I don’t know anything, just know enough to keep my head/ and just play dead.”
So, why all the doom and gloom? “Nearly everyone has experienced a situation where they were treated differently due to personal individualism,” Burt told us about his band’s new material. “One of the many reasons for making these videos is to encourage exactly that: individualism. We believe in a world where everyone leads and no one follows. No matter what our beliefs may be, we feel it is important to talk about what is going on in the world and actually Give A S***. Enjoy.” Hm. Thanks?
Y’know, we’re used to coming away from The Used songs feeling pretty bummed out, but this is the next level. Thanks a lot, dudes.
Photo credit: Hopeless Records