The Strokes: Taken For A Fool

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Posted August 9, 2011 by J Matthew Cobb in HiDef
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Sure, the song rocks. The video simply sucks.

If you’ve read all the press on The Strokes’ journey to Angles, you really can smell an unprecedented meltdown awaiting around the corner. No one wants to see it happen, but that’s what happens with good bands. They burn out and they break up and then they comeback, sometimes stronger than before. Despite all the curve balls Julian Casbalancas, Albert Hammond, Jr. and the rest of the band has catapulted at the publicity behind their latest album Angles, it’s a decent album and there’s a good chunk of tracks that feels nicely when placed against “Reptilia” and “The Way It Is.” ‘Under Cover Of Darkness” was the perfect choice for a lead single, and the companion video helped The Strokes cope with the critics’ soon-coming attacks on the album. But the music video for “Taken For a Fool” sets out to make The Strokes look like a fool. Maybe this was the intent: To be part of the joke. But the video looks like a bad joke.

The ego-menacing Casablancas steals all the camera time, while the band strums to the beats and guitar lines in the background on what looks like a vomit-plagued merry-go-round. Remember that scene in Saturday Night Fever when John Travolta spins his dance partner in the dizzying 360° rounds? Well, it’s kinda like that. Just add some LED-looking psychedelic-like concert lighting to the background and some of those That 70’s Show segue montages and that’s what you’re stuck with. Clearly The Strokes could have tried a little bit harder than this. And I’m not going to explain why Casabalancas is hugging up on bandmate Albert Hammond, Jr. like that at the end. We all are “taken for a fool” on this round. Let’s hope the next concept video for…”Gratisfaction” will bring us some much needed relief.

J MATTHEW COBB


About the Author

J Matthew Cobb

Managing editor of HiFi Magazine


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