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Genre Characteristics of Pop Punk Music Videos

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Ashleigh Townshend

on 26 April 2016

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Transcript of Genre Characteristics of Pop Punk Music Videos

5 Seconds of Summer
Blink-182
History of the Pop Punk genre and Music Videos
McBusted
Pop punk is the fusion music genre which combines elements of punk rock and pop music to varying degrees. The genre of pop punk emerged in the 1970's in areas such as the US, England, Australia and Canada. Pop punk mainly thrived in California and the record labels adopted a do it yourself attitude and approach to releasing music. Bands such as Green Day were beginning to sell millions of albums in the 1990's, they were also able to receive extensive radio coverage and television airplay; by 1994 pop-punk was growing within mainstream society. The peak of the pop-punk genre was in the late 1990's and was exemplified with the 1999 release of Blink-182's album
Enema of the State.
Over the years there have been many pop-punk bands that have been able to dominate on the UK and the US charts, these include;
Green Day
5 Seconds Of Summer
All Time Low
Panic! At The Disco
Wheatus
Blink-182
McBusted
Paramore
Hey Violet
Modern-day Pop Punk Bands
Genre Characteristics of Pop Punk Music Videos
The typical instruments that are used in the pop punk genre are electric guitar, bass guitar and drums. Other instruments are used occasionally.
All Time Low
Alien Ant Farm
Avril Lavinge
She's Kinda Hot
She Looks So Perfect
Don't Stop
Time-Bomb
Dear Maria, Count Me In
Weightless
All The Small Things
Movies
Smooth Criminal
Girlfriend
Air Guitar
It is common in pop punk music videos for there to be lots of extreme close ups of the bands playing their instruments
It is also common for some of the instruments to have eyecatching patterns on for the audience to notice
In this music video there are a lot of close up shots of the lead singer as he is singing in the chorus
It seems that they are performing to a crowd, which is common in 5 Seconds of Summer's videos, also Alien Ant Farm, McBusted and Blink-182
Like in the 'She's Kinda Hot' music video there are many close ups of the instruments that are being used. However, there are no extreme, eyecatching patterns on the instruments, this may be because 'She Looks So Perfect' is the band's first professionally produced music video
Close ups are very common in this music video, especially focusing on the members as they are singing
How the singer is holding the microphone with his right hand is identical to a shot in 'She's Kinda Hot' music video
This shot shows the typical formation in a pop punk music video from a band; the drummer is allows at the back whereas the guitarists and the lead singer are at the front, as the focus is mainly on them
This shot also represents the band playing their instruments as it is a close up of him and his guitar
Like in 'She's Kinda Hot' and 'She Looks So Perfect', the lead singer once agan holds the microphone in a certain way with his right hand
The formation in both 'She Looks So Perfect' and 'Don't Stop' are the same, with the drummer at the back, the lead guitarist and singer in the middle at the front and then the oher guitarist and bassist either side of the lead singer. Unlike 'She's Kinda Hot' these two performances were not in front of a crowd, which could connote that the band just wanted to show their skills off the to audience of the music video
It seems that pop-punk bands usually stage their music videos so that they are performing on the roof of a building. Another music video which is like this is All Time Low's single 'Time-Bomb'
The common costumes for 5 Seconds of Summer to wear in their music videos are black skinny jeans that are ripped at the knees and tank tops or tshirts which also have some rips in
Similar to the music video 'Don't Stop' by 5 Seconds of Summer, the formation of All Time Low in 'Time-Bomb' is exactly the same with the drummer at the back and the guitarists at the front
This clip highlights that in some pop-punk videos, when there is a fast tempo or drum beat then quick cuts which allows the audience to know that there are different elements to the band, for example the drums, bass, electric guitar and the vocalist. Quick cuts also make the video more appealing to a younger audience as it is common for teenagers to enjoy action and movement in a music video
This close up shot of the guitarist playing is very common at the start of many pop punk music videos. It is not only used in 'Time-Bomb' but also 'She Looks So Perfect', 'Air Guitar' and 'Decode'
It seems that in this music video of All Time Low's they try to wear very similar clothing as they are all wearing black t-shirts and black skinny jeans. This could connote unity within the band as they have to work altogether to produce the music they have written.
Unlike in 'Time-Bomb' All Time Low opted to have this as one of the first shots of the music video, instead of one of them playing their instruments. This is due to the lyrics being sung straight away and not having an introduction through any instrumentation
Also, unlike the other music videos I have already analysed, the members of All Time Low dressed into costumes to imitate other people, this could be due to a low budget as All Time Low are not as popular as some of the other bands I have analysed, such as Green Day, 5 Seconds of Summer and Paramore. Another music video which has done this is 'Girlfriend' by Avril Lavinge as she imitates herself, a girl who likes a boy and the boy's girlfriend.
In this music video there are quite a few low angle camera shots, this could possibly bring the audience to feel like they are watching the performance as a member of a crowd, similar to a concert
This music video does not follow the same setting as the other videos as the band are not performing on the roof of a building, but in a bar instead
In this music video by Alien Ant Farm, the members combine their performance into dressing as some famous film characters and 'take the mickey' out of them, for example Ghostbusters, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, The Karate Kid and Edward Scissorhands.
Even though it is not as obvious as the other music video, the drummer has been situated at the back of the band's formation in the performance sections, which is the main similarity throughout most pop punk music videos
There is an element of a concert in this music video as the band are performing to the audience of the film they were going to be watching
This performance set which is in this music video is similar to another 5 Seconds of Summer music video 'Good Girls' as the band is higher than the audience, as they are on a make shift stage
The band formation is again followed through in the same style, which could be a convention for pop punk music videos
Due to this being a cover of the popular Michael Jackson song, the band would have needed to possibly reference him, so they decided to use the dance move that Jackson included in his music video for this cover version
There are more cultural references to Micheal Jackson here as he's famous for wearing a silver glove and also he had a pet chimpanzee, named Bubbles, both in which Alien Ant Farm have included in this music video
Just like other videos in this genre, namely 'She Looks So Perfect', 'Time-Bomb' and 'Movies', the band are positioned in the formation with the lead vocalist at the front, the other guitarists next to him and then the drummer at the back
The writing which comes on screen in this music video, is very similar to the writing which is similar to the cartoons which are added to 5 Seconds of Summer's music video 'She's Kinda Hot'
In this music video, Avril Lavinge acts as two characters, which is very similar to All Time Low's music video 'Dear Maria, Count Me In', this allows the audience to know that there are two opposites that are fighting against one another for the same thing, in All Time Low's music video it was a girl, whereas it is a boy in Avril Lavinge's music video
I have realised that in pop punk music videos, the close up shot of the guitar being played is very commonly used. This allows the musician's ability to play be shown as the camera has focused on their instrument when there is no lyrics being sung.
Due to Avril Lavinge being a solo artist she does not need to have her guitarists in line with her, like the typical formation of a pop punk band. Instead they are more in line with the drummer at the back of the music video.
Instead of just having the performance element in this music video, with the typical pop punk band formation for videos and the crowd around them, Blink-182 have decided to make parodies out of pop bands and contemporary pop videos. The pop bands include N-Sync, Backstreet Boys and 98 Degrees, with parodies of Britney Spears and also Christina Aguilera in the video as well.
In this clip of 'Air Guitar' there is a cultural reference to Michael Jacksion as they call him 'MJ' in the clip and also one of the members of the band is doing Jackson's signiture move of the moonwalk. It seems that Michael Jackson is referred to quite a few times within the music videos I have analysed as there are references to him in Alien Ant Farm's video of 'Smooth Criminal'
To show the unity within the band in this music video they all, apart from the drummer jump in time, on the beat. This is common in pop punk music videos, that the guitarists jump around to the beat of the music, but most of the time it is not at the same time with their fellow band members.
In this music video, to allow the band to make the footage relevant and relatable to the lyrics, the editing allowed the band's instruments to 'disappear' briefly to make them look like they are ones playing air guitars and drums, however the editing also allowed their bodies to disappear so it looked like it was only a set of clothes playing the instruments
What can be adopted by our group for our own music video?
Out of all the conventions of the pop punk genre that I have researched, I believe that the easiest ones to adopt by the group are the close ups of the instruments being played or of the band member's faces as they are singing. The quick cuts which are used in the music video for 5 Seconds Of Summer's song 'She Kinda Hot' could also be adopted as long as we had enough footage from filming to allow so many shots to happen in a short matter of time, like the professionally edited music video.

However, there could be a couple of limitations when considering the use of the pop punk genre conventions. For example, in a couple of the music videos like 'Don't Stop' and 'Time-Bomb' the band are performing on top of a high rise building, due to living in a small city, high rise buildings are not very common and we would be unable to obtain any access to one to allow us to film similar shots to the music videos. Also, the large crowd which is included in many of the music videos, especially the performance scenes would be hard to gather together, as many people would possibly not want to partake in the filming for us, this could be that they are busy on the day we film, or that they just don't want to be filmed in general.
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