Saturday, 3 September 2011

"Red Hot Chili Peppers - Soul To Squeeze" Deconstruction

Artist: Red Hot Chili Peppers
Song Title: Soul To Squeeze
Year: 1993
Director: Kevin Kerslake
Genre: Funk Rock

This video, shot entirely in black and white, is a concept video that doesn't feature any standard full band performance scene. The idea of the video is a stereotypical circus that features the band members as part of the circus community. Throughout the video circus performance acts are being carried out in front of the camera, such as a man moving around on just his hands, someone being dropped upside down in a barrel of water, tied up with chains, and also an inter-textual reference to the film "Coneheads", with a cone head appearing as the circus's Human Cannonball. The video has the vocalist, drummer and bassist performing in solo scenes (the guitarist had quit before the video shoot), the vocalist performs in a number of different scenarios; with a Medusa style 'hair of snakes' on his head, outside holding the lights seen at the start of the video, lying down in the back of one of the caravans, being towed along and outside in the day around the performers. Whereas the bassist and drummer only have a couple performance scene each, with the bassist mainly sitting in the doorway of one of the caravans, and the drummer playing a single snare drum outside. To fit in with the travelling circus theme, the drummer and bassist are both using instruments that are not electrical, and are easy to transport, (Flea uses an acoustic bass, rather than his standard electric).

There is no standard music video narrative involved in this video, as most shots are linked with the concept of different circus acts, however the lyrics do somewhat relate to the video, such as "I've got a bad disease, from my brain is where I bleed..." being sung while the vocalist is wearing his "hair of snakes" and "where I go I, just don't know" over the top of footage of the cone head wandering around the circus looking depressed and kicking up dirt. From 2:56 to 3:18 there are several occasions where the shot changes are in time with the aggressive drums, which adds more impact to the video.

Link to music video, as it can't be embedded

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