Machine Head – Now We Die: A Video Breakdown

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It’s been quite a roller-coaster career for Machine Head.

I can’t think of another band to go from white hot to ice cold and then somewhere around room temperature. Machine Head’s debut album Burn My Eyes received wide acclaim and was a best seller for Roadrunner Records. The sky was the limit for the band and then nu-metal happened. Or more precisely, nu-metal and music videos happened.

Many point to Machine Head’s “From This Day” video as the low-point. Robb Flynn sported liberty-spiked hair and a bizarre jumpsuit, the drummer had a cheetah dye job, the guitarist’s bizarre pseudo-eastern getup, and the bad green screen effects. Almost lost in the visual car wreck was the simplified music and rapping. The decline continued with their release of Supercharger. The cliche-filled video for “Crashing Around You” doesn’t nearly get as much flack as “From This Day,” but it deserves it. The departure from the music that made them popular and the god-awful videos really did a number on Machine Head, with jokes still hounding Flynn to this day. He probably wakes up in the middle of the night with a cold sweat, rap lyrics still in his head.

In recent years, Machine Head has managed to make a comeback and kudos to them. A lesser band would have probably folded or changed their name. While their past few albums have had varying degrees of quality and success, one must appreciate that they were able to focus on their craft and return to some prominence in the metal scene. But it wasn’t just the music that was the problem, remember? The music is better, but what about their videos?

0:05: Clowns playing violins. I get it! Hold on. Nope. Don’t get it.

0:09: Pagliacci is kvlt!

0:15: Matt Pike’s Sweaty Nipple!

0:21: Shirtless Grandpa on loan from COPS

0:26: Clowngasm. UHHHHH *honkhonk*!

0:35: Uh, video. It’s really difficult to focus on things when the shots change EVERY TWO SECONDS.

0:42: I really hope Robb Flynn’s chair has nails on the seat too.

0:53: Give me some skull. Heh heh heh. Wait, I fucked it up. Can we start over?

1:02: Ewww stinky Robb Flynn breath. Someone needs a mint!

1:12: Aw, son. Drugs’ll end ya.

1:18: A “Two-Headed Queen” goes for about $300 in the Red-Light District.

1:21: Budget constraints forced the executioner to perform in his undies.

1:31: Damn it, Robb. I just cleaned up this skull-filled pit.

1:42: What’s with the stripes? Are those old-timey prisoner clowns?

1:45: It’s good to be the queen(s).

1:51: I don’t even know why I bother cleaning around here.

1:54: You have chosen….poorly.

2:08: I understand blurring the naughty bits, but why the face?

2:12: Grandpa, pie goes in your mouth.

2:18: Alright, we’ve got 7 minutes to kill. What effects can we use to eat up time?

2:24: Hey, it’s the devil from those boxes of Red Hot Dollars!

2:38: Yeah, ghost peppers will do that to you.

2:54: I’m starting to get the feeling that Machine Head has a Slipknot fetish.

3:00: Director: Ok guys. Just stare at the camera and look angry. Give me your GRRR face! GRRRRRRR harder!

3:13: I hear you’re a butcher. Do you link your own sausages?

3:21: I was kidding before about the Slipknot fetish thing, but this seals it.

3:32: Where…where are those sparks coming from exactly?

3:38: Apparently it was two-for-one gas masks at the Army/Navy store that day.

3:50: We’ve hit peak blurred boobs everyone. Repeat: Peak blurred boobs.

3:56: Fucking drums! BYAH!

4:01: Shhhh don’t wake him up. Lil’ guy’s all tuckered out.

4:06: Who wants s’mores?!

4:09: No thanks, Robb. I’m all skulled out.

4:14: At least Kommandant finally gets some mainstream exposure.

4:18: Well that escalated quickly.

4:25: Where did all these people come from? Where’s the queen? WHERE’S GRANDPA?!

4:29: No spitting. It’s not ladylike.

4:37: I’d hate to see what these guys do to the other bands on the Heavy Metal 2000 soundtrack.

4:45: Hey… let’s poke ’em with a stick!

4:52: AHHHH! KILL IT! KILL IT WITH FIRE!

5:06: Uh… you guys want to help him down or something? He’s clearly still alive.

5:10: At least cartoon Devil is having a blast.

5:23: I will die laughing if they just start whacking them like pinatas.

5:37: Can someone get her a phone book to stand on or something?

5:51: It would be far more subtle to just hit the camera with a giant crucifix. Cheaper too.

6:02: Quick, get his wallet!

6:12: NOW WEDGIE.

6:25: Good thing they spent all that time and money on that sundial prop thingy.

6:38: Aw forget it. Clean it yourself!

6:45: Remind me never to invite Machine Head to a campfire.

6:49: Hey hey hey

6:59: Oh hai, “Closer” by Nine Inch Nails

Well that certainly was a music video. All seven minutes of it. With a nod to W‘s recent Think Tank article about music videos, was it money well spent? Is a new fan going to sit through all seven minutes of that and then decide they like the band? Was it worth the time, effort and money? Would they have been better off with a cheap lyrics video or just uploading the song with some pictures of the album and where to buy it? I can’t really say, but it was worth seeing Robb Flynn drool all over himself.

  • VV.

    Thanks for the nod, hombre!

  • Tyree Wears Trailer Pants
  • JamesGrimm

    eeehhhhh….. very puerile….

  • meh…i’ve never had any caring emotions for this group. just nothing…..a void of feelings

    Plus this Rob guy is a total fucking corporate tool.

    I’ll just go back to the House of Low Culture album i was listening to prior to this stinkbomb.

  • YourLogicIsFlushed

    I just don’t see the point in music videos like this. Just weirdo random scenes that have nothing to do with anything. 90% of music videos shouldn’t happen. I think the last music video I watched and actually thought was worthwhile was this one. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-eT-KpT1vQ

    • MoshOff

      YES I BE A NEWFINNLANDER

      • I hear the void is strong there.

        • MoshOff

          Not because of PtH, but it apparently is pretty harsh.

          • newfoundland/newfinnland? Who can never be sure.

          • MoshOff

            I miss Kroll Show, I hope it starts soon.

          • now that is entirely too much tuna!

          • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

            Newfinland? Why? Isn’t one imaginary land enough?

          • Death

            The Oldfinland is way too racist. We need to make a new, better one!

          • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

            Only if there is even less interaction between neighbours (possible?) And otherwise more hateful

          • Death

            Less racism, more overall hate. Everyone lives seperated from other people. Everyone leads their own individualistic life. No social interaction, nothing.

          • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

            I’d tell you how much I lo…like you. But I don’t wanna ruin this magical, hateful moment

          • Death

            You ruined it, you damn sugar man!

          • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

            *is sorry**fu*
            *a poor attempt at making amends*

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            I love social interaction though! Finland needs to become Funland from what you tell me about it.

          • see: Bizarro-NewFinland

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            I like Bizarro-NewFinland. They probably enjoy happy music from bands like Triumph and Journey and not sad music from bands like Shining or other suicidal black metal bands.

          • Death

            No fun! Never that! Only hate and depression are allowed! Love is for the weak!

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            Love is good though. We all love you here Death!

          • Death

            I hate everyone and everyone hates me.

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            No we don’t. We all love you. Come on Death, come to the lifeloving side. We have smoked gouda cheese and Oreos!

          • Death

            Oreos taste like shit.

          • FUCK YOU, DEATH

          • Death

            I can sense anger. My job is done. Hate for everyone!

          • PREPARE TO BE RAPED BY BIZARRO-NEWFINLAND BARNEY (refresh)

          • Death

            Which Barney?

          • Bizarro-Newfinland, where it doesn’t snow and there are rainbows every day.

          • Death

            That would be horrible. You’re a twisted fuck!

          • Thank you.

          • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

            *pukes* *twice*

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            I like that. Do they play happy music from bands like Styx and Foreigner there?

          • They only play the theme song to Barney & Friends, and the Finnish National Anthem played on Kazoos and Xylophones.

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            Damnit, I thought there would be some arena rock and maybe some 80’s pop played there as well as songs like the Barney song.

          • Nope. And their Barney has corpse paint, except the corpse paint is rainbow-colored, and he helps children not listen to black metal.

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            I like this Barney much better than the real one.

          • Well, he’s way more rapey than the real one. One downside of New-Finland.

          • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

            Damnit. I thought that New-Finland would be free of crime and evil and be a happy place for all. I still like the idea of an exact opposite of Finland though.

  • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

    Meh. I mean I really wanna but… njah!

    • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

      I’m sorry. I really tried to say something coherent, but nothing else seemed to sum up my feelings about this.

  • This song is just so fucking…meh. And that video is like every metal video stereotype played out in one. I hate this band.

    • who album is meh. i gave it like two honest listens. Once again Machine Head is on the low end of of their sine-wave career!

      • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

        They have one album that as a whole is good. So don’t color me surprised

        • Burn My Eyes IMO. The rest is shit including the beloved songless The Blackening.

          • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

            Locust is the only album I can listen to cover to cover anytime and not think it’s a waste of time.

            Even BME had a few very, very bad songs.

          • I don’t know how I managed to find BME on vinyl but I did. Almost nobody was cutting records when that album came out.

            It’s the only MH album I own. I don’t even have any of the others as 1s and 0s on a hard drive haha.

          • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

            I must admit I’ve never owned any of their albums.

          • And you’re none the worse for not having any. I only spin BME about once a year. These days I can take it or leave it. It’s not THAT great, like Metallica’s eighties output, where they can’t do anything to spoil it for you.

          • Simon PhoenixKing

            I like The Blackening but every time I try to listen to any MH album straight through I get annoyed by Flynn’s tough guy posturing and by the 5th or so song I just switch to another thrash band like Onslaught or something.

          • I wanted to like The Blackening but the songs went nowhere and bored me. The cover of Hallowed Be Thy Name on the special edition was the best song. They actually did a good job with that.

          • Bucket ‘o Blood

            Beautiful Mourning is the only (non-cover) tune that feels like it has a consice direction. Everything else is either noodling for days (Halo, Slanderous), actually a Dream Theater song in disguise (A Farewell to Arms), or just dull (Aesthetics of Hate, Wolves).

          • Agreed.

          • Simon PhoenixKing

            Sad part is the best song on Locust was their cover of Rush’s Witch Hunt. Maybe MH should just stick to covers ha ha.

          • Yeah, I’ve always given Robb props for his vocal style and ability. He just needs somebody to write songs for him. If he had been the vocalist of Vio-Lence back in the day that band would have actually been pretty good.

    • Tyree Wears Trailer Pants
      • She is sooo sexy

        • Tyree Wears Trailer Pants

          Agreed.

          Rooney Mara >>>>>>>>>

          • mmmmmmm would kidnap/10

          • MoshOff

            Actually Kate Mara >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Rooney Mara in my book.

            If you don’t believe me go watch House of Cards… MY LORD.

          • Tyree Wears Trailer Pants

            I do like me some House of Cards and Kate Mara too.

          • #teamedward #stayedward #void

            I have seen House of Cards and I do agree that Kate is >>>> but I have to say Rooney > Kate.

          • Tyree Wears Trailer Pants

            BOOM!

          • Kim Jong Un Pardons A Turkey

            KERBLOOWEY!!!!

          • POW!

          • damn dude! smoke sesh..

          • Trailerpants ov Steele

            Noomi Rapace>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Rooney Mara.

          • while i wouldn’t use as many of those…
            Noomi Rapace in Prometheus >>

          • Tyree Wears Trailer Pants

            Oh yeah! The orginal.

          • Edward, Goat Ov Void

            Man, I like Noomi Rapace but I just dunno if I can cosign this.

          • damn dude! smoke sesh.

      • Nordling Beerhands Karhu

        You know, if I was a suspicious man I might think you and Rob are not the best of friends.

      • Death

        Is Rob yet another musician who has wronged you?

    • Thank you! I completely agree with all of this.

    • Clowns playing violins? Check. Spit dribble? Check. The little demon guy from that other video? Check.

      • Kim Jong Un Pardons A Turkey

        Angry constipated look? Double check!

    • TrickleDownTacoRiff

      i felt like rob yelled at me the entire time i listened to this album…

  • I think I was ruined on Machinegunhead because I recall first paying attention to them during that shitty numetal phase. Sadly, I dont think they’ve done much to redeem themselves. I’ll *flush* this easily, even if none of you turds will.

  • VV.

    I didn’t like this album as much as Locust or Blackening, but I didn’t dislike it.

    • Further Down the Metal Hole

      Stop saying what I want to say!

      • VV.

        Maybe you spoke through me like a ventriloquist.

        • Death

          Possibly. Is his hand up your butt?

    • Mr. Bojangles Team FapALot

      You get your first Bojangles like in a very long time, congrats.

      Now pat my head. No, not the one on my neck.

  • JWG

    Something completely different. It’s not ‘new’ nor is it actually new to me, but I just bought these two albums on Bandcamp and figured I’d share:

    https://bloodharvestrecords.bandcamp.com/album/evil-antichrist-hordes-7ep

    https://bloodharvestrecords.bandcamp.com/album/a-call-from-beyond-the-grave-12lp-cd

    Minimal flushes. Though not as good as Allfather or Horde of Anachron were (connection: his stage name keeps changing, but it’s the same vocalist in all three), I’m looking forward to more.

    • CT-12

      Right after hearing this I had to buy it, thanks for the rec!

    • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

      Probably the one album I have gotten from Bandcamp that was zero flushes is the new Swallowing Bile album. That stuff transports you directly into the mouth of madness and the heart of darkness.

  • Stockhausen

    These are a lot of fun to read without watching the video. I usually do, but Machine Head…eh. I’d rather read the hilarious commentary and wonder. Sorry W, I know they are your absolute favorite band of all bands and time.

    • VV.

      You know this isn’t true. Clearly, that is not one of that limited number of things you know.

      • Death

        I’m still waiting for the full list of those things.

        • Bucket ‘o Blood

          Its mostly just the locations of all the WMDs in the world.

    • Just watch any hard rock/metal video from the 90s and you have the above video covered.

      • Janitor Jim Dvggan’s Trailer P

        SMOHLG can create rainbows with his hands.

        #SMOHLGFax

  • Further Down the Metal Hole

    Liked the song (just about my favourite off the new album, maybe even THE), thought the video was utterly forgetful.

  • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

    Videos in 2014, need I say more? Especially Machine Head.

  • King Shit of Fuck Mountain
    • Howard Dean

      When it’s cooooooold… and when it’s daaaaaaaark… the freezing moon can obsess yooooooooooooouuu.

  • Guest

    My feelings on Rob are best summarized by this photo of Ahmed Johnson slamming John Mellencvnt into the ground. Just pretend that Rob is Mellencvnt and let his body hit the floor.

    • Kim Jong Un Pardons A Turkey

      Here’s a little story about Jack and Dianne, two American kids just getting bodyslammed.

  • nbm02ss

    Anyone have any memories associated with a band(s) that has nothing to do with their music, but the memory itself that’s tied to that band makes you loathe the shit out of them?

    I had to chaperone my sister and her friend to a Slipknot, Machine Head, Coal Chamber, show in Oklahoma City in ’99 and spent the whole thing mean mugging thirsty nappy headed fucks in JNCOs and fishnet shirts, on top of simply not wanting to be there to begin with. The pains of growing up as an older brother.

    • Kim Jong Un Pardons A Turkey

      First time I ever heard them was also the first time I ever drank or smoked up (back in ’96). Even high and drunk for the first time ever, it was still pretty meh………..

  • 7 minutes Machine Head, really? Maybe lighten up on all the obligatory solos and you might be able to get the song down to a more reasonable 4-5 minutes. Too bad there’s a couple good riffs/parts in there but the overall length of the song just sucks the air out of it.

  • Simon PhoenixKing

    Machine Head would be much better without Robb Flynn. And if they didn’t try to be Heathen or Exodus with breakdowns and REALLY ANGRY SPOKEN WORD SECTIONS.

    I’m only half joking about the second sentence.

  • CyberneticOrganism