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The best Instagram-made music videos

instagram plays a starring role in music videos video
Image used with permission by copyright holder

People used to debate whether music videos and MTV were rotting the brains of young people; now they’re more concerned with social networking obsessions. So it’s natural to believe that somewhere, some league of concerned parents may be having a conniption over the latest trend in music videos now that social media plays a starring role in a number of new clips. 

New York band NGHBRS recently debuted a video for their single “Hold Up Girl” that consists of a single shot of an iPhone flipping through an Instagram feed. The video is elaborate, with different clips and images shot by the band scrolling past. Drummer Jordan Schneider explained the band’s process for creating the video to Speakeasy, noting “the amount of preparation and coordination to make this happen was out of control.”  

The end results look polished and interesting, and the single shot method is reminiscent of the recent short film, Noah, which used screen capture technology to portray the breakdown of a teenage relationship over the Internet. 

NGHBRS isn’t the only band incorporating social media into their videos. Icelandic indie kings Sigur Ros debuted their “Stormur” video this past summer, a constantly updating collage of their users’ Instagram images and videos assigned the hashtag #stormur. The result is an eclectic, captivating hodgepodge that showcases fan enthusiasm. 

Nashville, Tenn.-based band Vinyl Thief recruited fans to use Instagram to make a video as well. “Faces” is filmed and edited on Instagram by a coterie of 30 devoted fans. The video isn’t especially adventurous, since it’s just snippets of one jam session in what looks like a college student’s alcohol-laden house party, but the way it was shot showcases how easy it is for musicians to use this technology. 

Adding video to Instagram upped the potential to incorporate the service into music videos, but even before Instagram had its video component, bands were constantly looking at new ways to utilize the technology. Mexico City-based band The Plastics Revolution released a video in 2012 comprised entirely of still shots from the photography app. Arturo Perez, a San Francisco area photographer, took nearly 45,000 photos and stitched nearly 2,000 into a stop motion video. 

And in 2011, back when people would laugh if you said someday the little, intimate photo sharing app would be purchased by Facebook for a whopping billion dollars, Sony displayed an impressive sense of trend forecasting when it solicited Instagram images for a music video for the song “Wetsuit” by one of the bands on its label, The Vaccines. The ensuing video features submissions from fans, who were asked to use the hashtag #vaccinesvideo to tag pictures of themselves at music festivals.

Did we miss any music videos prominently featuring Instagram? Let us know in the comments.

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Kate Knibbs
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Kate Knibbs is a writer from Chicago. She is very happy that her borderline-unhealthy Internet habits are rewarded with a…
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