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Making a music video for a dance track is a weird thing
Looking good in front of a camera was never a priority to your early Calvin Harris's or Diplo's. Before they had millions of social media followers to feed, nobody expected to them to make superb music videos. But that’s fine, right? Dance music isn’t meant to be heard through a screen. Visuals only become
important when an expensive light show is the cherry on the top of your big night out.
I mean, honestly, who really gives a shit about what happens when you’re listening to a song on YouTube?
We’ve been happily leaving great music videos up to pop stars for years, letting DJs be the ones behind closed doors, making music in the dark. We've relied on the occasional cake-related incident or a Deadmau5 Twitter fight to get a fix of DJ’s behaving badly.
However, the release of a horrifying new EDM music video makes for the type of viewing that will turn the stomach of anyone who found "Blurred Lines" worrying.
Released by German producer Tujamo and featuring Spanish DJ, Danny Avila, "Cream" is a thankless, stabbing electro-house track with enough predictable drops and dips to render it borderline boring. It comes with a music video made by men who think with their dicks and who probably struggle to go five minutes without looking in their boxers to check that "it's still there".
Controversial with no reward, it features barely clothed women rubbing whipped cream over their breasts. It’s not Art House Erotica made for a dance music loving audience - it’s a thinly veiled attempt at re-making "Blurred Lines" for the worst parts of the internet. The result is uncomfortable and the most disastrously sexist music video dance music has ever seen.
Gross misogyny aside, "Cream" throws up a curious problem. The community supposedly at the receiving end of videos like this are supposed to be bound by Peace, Love, Unity and Respect. They exchange bracelets to show friendship and take empathy inducing drugs and frequent music festivals that look more like adult Disneylands than serious music events.
How can a fanbase like this take kindly to videos that degrade the core values of the EDM community?
Its reception on YouTube is mixed: some commentators make snide comments about Spinnin’ Records (who put out the track) being a sub division of PornHub, and there are enough inevitably crude postings to declare both the song and the video a failure. Fans of the music call out the track’s poor quality and the fact the video is a poor mimic of the track that killed Robin Thicke’s career.
With Skrillex and Diplo featured in the New York Times and films like We Are Your Friends proving that EDM isn’t just found in the clubs anymore, the line between what is pop culture and what is pop music is itself blurring, and people are forgetting what makes music like this popular.
To repeat the forever rehashed phrase "with great power comes great responsibility"; EDM must remain responsible. It must not pick up the traits of dodgy pop music by copying its very worst parts, and it must not confuse what generates traffic with what is successful or tasteful. Shame on anybody who does.
The bottom line? EDM videos should never become an excuse for gross people to check whether their dicks are still working.