The Top 25 Music Videos of 2012, Nos. 5-1
2. Youth Lagoon, "July"
There is no other video in the world like "July," which dances around Youth Lagoon's ethereal melodies as a freak shortening of the distance between the Earth and the moon causes widespread nosebleeds and death. A couple is called from a night out only to see people they love die all around them, even as they themselves try to care for a man they believe they have killed after a fight. It's such a beautifully hopeless end of the world.
1. The Manichean, "Leopards"
Houston has a band in a class by itself with The Manichean. Justice and Cory are continuously the creators of music that simply doesn't belong on this Earth. I was avoiding their first music video like the plague. I just didn't want to see a band I admired so much possibly fail at something. I should have had faith.
"Leopards" is a spoken-word song set over a man eaten up with guilt and mental illness methodically preparing to commit hara kiri. Somewhere in the midst of this is a woman covered in blood. Every single second of it is seeped in the feelings of regret and pain, but also a hope for some sort of redemption beyond death. It's the most wonderful and terrible thing I have ever laid eyes on, and it is No. 1 for that reason.