Music Article

Matters of the 'Hurt'

EW grades four edgy new music videos -- We take a look at clips by Johnny Cash, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and more

Sigur Ros, Johnny Cash, ... | CLIP SHOW The latest from (clockwise from top left) Cash, Sigur Ros, the Raveonettes, and Red Hot Chili Peppers
CLIP SHOW The latest from (clockwise from top left) Cash, Sigur Ros, the Raveonettes, and Red Hot Chili Peppers

EW grades four edgy new music videos

JOHNNY CASH, ''HURT''
Like a brutal corrective to ''Tuesdays With Morrie,'' Cash's clip for his cover of this Nine Inch Nails song underscores the toll 71 years have taken on him. ''What have I become?'' he asks, frail and sallow. Director Mark Romanek intensifies the bitterness by contrasting the current Cash with images of him in robust middle age. The result may be morbid, but by bravely embracing aging, the singer has actually captured what may be life's ultimate cutting edge. A

SIGUR ROS, ''UNTITLED NO. 1''
The human spirit can triumph over only so much. In this haunting clip, gas-mask-wearing children in a future world frolic in toxic soot as if it were snow. But when horseplay separates a girl from her mask, reality sets in, and so does death. The plot grounds the vague music, and the down message shows genuine grit. B+

RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, ''CAN'T STOP''
The Peppers' latest video takes inspiration from artist Erwin Wurm, twisting and posing the band members into sculptures. Against a white gallery background, their limbs, heads, and torsos pop in and out of tubes, garbage pails, and tents. It's not only funny and sexy; it shows a sweet appreciation of the human form as art. A

THE RAVEONETTES, ''ATTACK OF THE GHOST RIDERS''
This duo's clip references '50s pulp fiction and its sensational subject matter: in this case, an electrocution. But it plays like an early, and crummy, music video -- probably a function of budget. You get what you pay for. C

Originally posted Mar 11, 2003 Published in issue #700 Mar 14, 2003 Order article reprints
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