THE PLEATED DREAMS PLAYLIST
The 90s has washed up again these past few years – check those plaid shirts tied around our waists, the chokers, platforms, high-waisted mom jeans, neon, and Dr. Martins. Fashion as of late has been informed all the way from 90s grunge to 90s pop. Most of us that are the biggest proponents of the style redux that is ‘so 90s’ were never actually old enough to have any sort of fashion sense at the time (‘cause we were still in diapers). The fact that we never lived it, didn’t stop us from leeching our inspirations from music and movies from that era; and we did a good job of picking the really cream stuff (I mean, we didn’t make the scrunchie or fanny pack mistake this time around). The fashion was undeniably dope, and that is why we are counting down the ten best fashionably 90s music videos.
Get ready to d/l these greats:
10) I’m too sexy – Right Said Fred
Mesh and pleated leather and high-cut leopard bikinis on a catwalk. He-he-hello! It’s pure pop chart trash, and it's just as hilarious now as it was when it first came out. I love how they shamelessly air guitar (though they can actually play, having performed with the rock trinity – Dylan, Bowie, and Jaggar – before forming the band). Although obviously making fun of the fashion industry, we can’t help but delight in making fun of Fred fashion.
9) Supermodel (you better work) – Girl Ru Paul
This song is pure fun (an unexpected chart success at the height of grunge’s popularity). I don’t know one person that can resist the dancing devotion that these classic demands. Of course, now that you’ve heard this song you must also listen to the entire 1993 Supermodel album (released by Geffen) – ‘cause more Ru Paul, drag amazing-ness. Perfect getting-ready-for-a-night-out music. SASHAY. CHANTE.
8) Pump up the Jam – Technotronic
I think it’s the general nonchalance of the lead singer as she dances wearing a fanny pack that really makes this one a winner for me. I can’t get enough of those desktop backgrounds (er, I mean… that green screen work).
7) Mr. Vain – Culture Beat
A vain male in a bucket hat, getting ready at his vanity for a pirate dance party. A love triangle. Voluminous hair. Soft lighting. Introspection in the rain. This one has all the potential to make for an amazing drama. No?
6) Wholehearted – Extreme
Have you ever seen a greater ratio of silky hair, to bike shorts, to football jerseys and guitars in your life? Shot in black and white to emphasis the acoustic nature of the song, this is a fun stripped-down number that really showcases the Extreme boys had “gritty” “raw” “soulful” talent. (Really?) And then there was Nuno (lead guitar). Oh, dreamy cornrowed Nuno.
5) Girls and Boys – Blur
Don’t you love how artists just used to show up to their video shoots in sportswear and jeans? I mean, Damon Albarn’s Fila zip-up … remember Fila?) This song is a killer and the showcasing of 90s beachwear throughout (old footage from European package holidays) is hilarious perfection.
4) In bloom – Nirvana
Right now we’re obsessed with the 90s, but in the 90s they were obsessed with the 50s (a vibe that also informed Weezer’s “Buddy Holly” video). I also wanted to show Nirvana in their anti-grunge look, because obviously grunge has to be on this list – and doesn’t Kurt look so awesome in black frames? And the baby doll dresses are a thing that I have to mention at some point, so like… two birds.
3) Dreams – Cranberries
This song was actually a good song before it made us think of the Irish board of trade and tourism. Dolores is an Alterna muse in mocha lip liner, and fully earring’ ed lobes. Slow-motion, to guitar verve to singing with your eyes closed, can we say, perfection? This is actually the second version of three music videos that were produced for this song (one and three), but I think this version best captures the dreaminess of the song (and you know, that mushroom cut looks darling on Dolores).
2) California Love – 2Pac feat. Dr. Dre
This video actually had two versions, but the Thunderdome-inspired Hype Williams version is the only one for me. The leather, and the hair. Amazing. (Imagine breaking in a new pair of raws in that desert?) CAN… YOU… DIG IT?
1) Babies – Pulp
Of all-time favorite videos, this is pretty up there. There were so many videos shot like this – kit set up, the band playing in front of a minimalist white background – I can’t even count them. Of all those, this is the best for me. Because it is so anti-music video in its concept – thus, so adorably, weirdly, geniusly, angsty in every perfectly 90s way. (Also, so adverbs!) And the velvet suit jacket Jarvis is rocking with no shirt? PULP 4 ever.
NOTE: Some of you might be upset that “Vogue” by Madonna doesn’t appear but I’d like to think that that one was too obvious. Also, almost making this list was Courtney Love’s slip dress but again, my apologies… I just couldn’t fit them all!