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A peek at the 2011 Sammies Outstanding Music Video nominees

Vote for your favorite Sammies-nominated local music video now at
Winners for Outstanding Music Video and Outstanding Music Video Director will be announced at the free 20th-annual SN&R Block Party and Music Awards on Saturday, October 1, on 20th Street (between J and K streets; 5 to 10 p.m.; find out more at and

When it comes to the up-and-down romance that is music and the Internet, one of the fruits is how democratic music-video-making has become over the past years. This is convenient on so many levels; we hear MTV doesn’t really play videos, and hasn’t for a long time, and we also need to waste time at work watching cool stuff. Enter the 2011 Sammies nominees for Outstanding Music Video. These 10 short flicks are on par with anything Katy Perry regurgitated over the past year, and more. Read about them here, viddy the screen grabs and enjoy the real deals at SN&R’s Sound Advice blog (shortcut:

Appetite, “Tussy”

directed by Sean Stout

This is a classic, well-executed “mishmash vid.” And it does the job: The online viewer is but a proverbial “click away” from tuning out, but this unconventional indie jam’s quick-hit scenes and uproarious flashes stave off wayward Internets navigation. The vid’s dazzling, goofy-eye opening sequence no doubt hooks ’em in.

C-Plus, “Do What You Want (Gone)”

directed by Erick Lee

Filmmaker Lee is a local and gets kudos for this vid’s uptempo energy, which introduces the uninitiated to the local hip-hop talent that is C-Plus. he cruises through Chinatown—minus points for filming in San Fran and not Sacto, albeit sharp and exciting location shooting—and boasts a nice wardrobe of rims and kicks. Bonus points, too, for C-Plus repping 916 with a Lurk Hard sweater.

Death Grips, “Guillotine”

directed by Flatlander

This entire video takes place in the passenger seat of a car. And I dig that Ride, Death Grips’ emcee, wears his seat belt while rapping on this minimal, industrial-feeling bass music bruiser. And, at more than 225,000 views on YouTube, the vid’s simple charm apparently is quite magnetic—and also proof that unique artistic visions still can garner mass appeal.

Ganglians, “Jungle”

directed by Pete Dee

Dee isn’t a local, but the street-scene characterization in this Ganglians jangler truly captures Midtown’s janky appeal despite being a cartoonlike characterization. And, as a friend noted, who wouldn’t want to live inside that pizza box! It’s also another testament to simple pacing instead of fast-cutting, brain-melting edits.

Nome Nomadd, “Vicious”

direct by Jae Synth

This more-than-8-minute jam is like the “We Are the World” of the 916 hip-hop scene—but a bit longer, a bit more sinister and sans Huey Lewis. Anyway, director Jae Synth has arguably been more prolific than any video maker in Sac or beyond in 2011. Dude has something to prove, we guess; he’s doing it.

Pregnant, “Whiff of Father”

directed by Cinema Caldera

Everyone involved hails from Placerville, a burg of a different feather where it seems that it’s OK to tote your newborn daughter out to the woods and make her watch as you light her first doll house on fire. OK, we’re joking: This is a touching, superbly crafted vid, made extra memorable by musician Daniel Trudeau’s odd, fun hop-dancing.

Raleigh Moncrief, “Let’s Take a Walk”

directed by Robby Moncrieff and Sean Stout

This entire video follows a Sacramento dude as he texts on his iPhone and walks the streets through Midtown and all the way to Old Sac. And we’re so glad somebody finally made a “text-and-walk gone bad” scenario flick—and prouder that it happened right here in town. Perhaps this could be re-cut into a public-service announcement?

Simpl3Jack, “Lizard Wash”

directed by Alfred Hernandez

This is the second video off of Simpl3Jack’s self-titled debut. What impresses us most about this teenaged trio’s punk vid is the Pee-Wee’s Playhouse look—but in a desert. Weird animals jumping out. Retro signage. We almost half expected Chairy to turn up.

Sister Crayon, “I’m Still The Same Person”

directed by Abram Pineda-Fischer

This black-and-white narrative boasts top cinematography and a pretty strange storyline. At first, we thought we were watching Lost Highway, but in slow-mo. And then it stayed on the confusing train: Who’s that girl with the stick? Why is Sister Crayon in hospital beds in some techno den? Now, after 10 views, we’ve figured it out (spoiler alert): Everyone dies at the end!

Zach Hill, “The Sacto Smile”

directed by Sean Stout

We think everyone should watch this first thing when they get up in the morning. A quick recap: Nihilist 20-something goes on Midtown rampage, steals Trans-Am, spits in faces, torches the place, goes native—then gets a speeding ticket. Not to be cliché, but the liveliness and aggression of this vid will put a Sacto smile on your mug.