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Research Alice Driver

Research- Alice Driver

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By Alice Driver

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Alice Driver

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Conventions of Indie Bands

- Expectations of an Indie Band- Indie Band Research- Indie Genre- Camera Angles- Styling of Video- Comparison Shoots- Theories

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What you expect to see in a music video:

Audience expectations from music videos are key elements that are the conventions of creating a good music video. It is important to know and fit the target audience expectations so they can automatically recognize the genre of music. This is why each genre of music has their own specific style. Different genres of music will have different conventions:

Main conventions a music video should


Conventions depending on the


Music Different Settings





Cut to the Beat Lip synching



StarsVarious camera shots

One still shot

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Narrative/Performance Indie Expectations

We have chosen to create and performance and Narrative music video. The band we are recording, is a indie based music video. Most expectations you see in an indie music video is a performance type of video. However we want to adapt this, and also embed a narrative suggestion. This is because we think it will be a lot more interesting to watch. Also we can create a narrative based on the lyrics of the song- which will be challenging. These are all the things that must be in concluded to create a successful video.

Stars connecting with the audience- looking into the camera whilst performing

Expect to see all of the stars- said by Richard Dyer

Narrative based on song lyrics

Seeing the band playing instruments

Various angled shots of each member of the band

Shots of the instruments

Narrative doesn’t always have to include the band members

Narrative is often played in an outside place-Park- Streets

The beat of the music is in time with the images- said by the theorist Goodwin and Carlson

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“The Turning’s” Interests and Inspirations

The Turning has lots of inspirations, but the main ones they look up to are..:

The Beatles:The Beatles are the Turnings biggest inspiration, as they are also a 4 piece English indie rock band who are the most successful band worldwide.

The Rolling Stones:Another English rock band formed in London 1962.

Jake Bugg:Jake Bugg is a British Indie/Rock and Indie/Folk musician, singer and songwriter. In most of his videos he is usually performing. This is so the artist is the main attraction and wants his fans to just see him. Jake Bugg first released his album in 2012- Two Fingers.

The Arctic Monkeys:The arctic monkeys are an English indie rock band formed in the 2002. the band consists of 4 members; Alex Turner (Lead Vocals), Jamie Cook (Lead Guitar), Nick O’Malley (Bass) and Matt Helders (Drums).They have released 3 albums which have all been successful. Also winning 3 Brit awards.

The Who: The Who are an English rock band formed in 1964. For much of their career they have been regards as one of the most important British rock acts. Along with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.

The Strokes:Another American indie rock band formed in New York City in 1998.

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For research I looked into various indie band music videos to see what elements they all have in common. One well known indie band that I found was Mumford & Sons. This group mainly only involves performance. I've gathered screen shots of the shots they use to record performance. This ranges from extreme close up shots to extreme long shots. I picked three of Mumford & Sons songs and collected images from each one.

These two shots are from their song “Hopeless Wander”. This video is filmed outside which allows their to have more interesting various angled shots. The shots in this music video are mainly close ups of the instruments. The instruments are also used for easy transitions of the band performing.

The song “I Will Wait” is more relevant to our music video because its inside and it’s a dark backstage where the band are going to perform. We will most likely be using some similar angles of the shots Mumford & Sons have used in this video. The long shot of the whole band performing is good to use in a music video because it shows the audience the band as a whole.

Indie Band Research

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Indie RockThis genre of music is mainly just about the band performing. The main singer in the band “The Stroke's” connects to the audience by looking straight at the camera. This gives an empowering look as it looks like he is telling the narrative to the audience. We tried to have a similar impact by when the singer in The Turning looks straight at the camera. I've seen in my research that a lot of Indie/Rock bands use this technique because it can have a great impact of aggression. Which is why Indie/Rock bands don’t use the narrative in their music videos.Another reason why Indie/Rock bands look straight down at the camera is to show intimidation to the audience. Gives an effect of a superior look towards the band. And as rock is meant to look ‘hard core’ this defiantly represents that.

Indie FolkIndie Folk music videos are usually based again on performance but sometimes bases their music videos on concept. One band in particular is “Modest Mouse”. This band involves random things in their video and doesn’t have a specific meaning.

Indie PopThe band “The XX” is a indie pop genre band. In their videos they tend to focus on performance and concept music videos. One video in particular which presents only concept is the song “Islands” this video is a repeated dance movement that 6 people are performing. In the middle of he dancers is the band singing. However towards the end each person is disappearing. This video doesn’t have a narrative or a reason to do this.

Indie Genres

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Born Ruffians “Needle”. The camera angle used in this shot is a medium close up of the singer performing at a live concert. For a performance video, you would have to continuously record the band playing to gather different angle shots and styles.

The Bravery “An Honest Mistake” is another indie/rock band. Their camera angles are more diverse and they show different angles to present a mood of the genre. They use low angles to create a mood of the band. This low angle shows that they are superior from everyone else. In a rock band this is often the case, the camera try's to give of an aggressive dark mood. So making the band have a high status gives off this impression.

Indie Band Music Videos- Camera angles and shots

The Foals “My Number” this another Indie/Rock band , their music video contains a live performance of them in front of hundreds of people. The video also shows what people are doing during the performance. They would have used multiple cameras in the audience so there would be various shots of them. This would have been done by giving some of the audience members a chance to record themselves.

Jake Bugg “Broken” this video is of a casual setting of Jake preforming in a pub. This video also has a slight narrative. This is about everyone in this video acting very alone referring to the song name “Broken”

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In conclusion I've found out in this research that if we want to stick with the indie band genre of how their music video is set out. We will have to use various camera angles and shots. This is mainly used in indie bands because of the performance based video. This is done for the audience to see the band. In this research I've found that they don’t use narrative or concept and there main music video idea is performance. This research has helped us deicide what sort of angles we are going to use. Which are: Low angles, high angles, mid shots, long shots, extreme close ups, worms eye view ect. From this research we have more of an idea of how we are going to set up the performance stage and costumes. However in our production are going to add a performance part of the video to make the video more exciting and so it fits with the lyrics of the song.

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This is a low angle shot of the drummers foot tapping on the ground. It is a similar shot from the band “The Strokes” in their music video “Reptilla”. This shot is good because the audience can tell that this is how the drummer keeps in time with the music. Having different types of close up shots of the band playing instruments makes the audience find the music video more interesting,

This is a close up shot of the main singer. This is effective because a lot of indie bands show close ups of the singer so its more personal to the audience. The audience would want to see this because one of the main reasons why people watch music videos is to see the artist perform. And so they expect to see the band individually performing. Mumford and Sons

The Strokes

This is a medium shot of the guitarist playing, I like this shot because there is no distractions around. All the audience can see is the instrument, I think this makes the viewer more connected to the video. This shot is a popular shot which indie bands use in their music videos.

Jake Bugg

Comparison between The Turning Shoot and other indie bands

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Comparison between The Turning Shoot and other indie bands

This is a long shot of the whole band standing in a line performing. I like this shot because its different and the viewers can see the whole band at the same level. Another similarity is that the background isn't too complex. The background is quite plain so there is nothing distracting the band.

The framing of these two shots are very similar, due to the low angle of the drummer playing. It’s a clear shot and having multiple shots, gives the viewer a more interest in the video.

The XX

I really like this shot because it’s full body shot of the band playing. I also really liked the lighting in this shot as its quite dim but however shows everyone performing. The framing of the band is similar to the band on the right, in terms of how there positioning.

The Bravery

Mumford and Sons

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Theories we have included

Richard Dyer:Star TheoryThe terms “pop performer” and “pop star” have become the same meaning over time. However in terms of media, they are not the same thing. The study of stars as media texts/components of media texts demands that the distinction be made between those who are simply known for performing pop music an those who are known for being a pop stars who have identity or persona which is not restricted solely to their musicianship.We can relate to this theory in our production. This is due to the performance side of the video, the band member Louis. He has a low key attitude, and we think this comes off when he is performing in the video.

Andrew Goodwin:This theory is based on moving images in time with the beat of the music. At the beginning of our production, we used this clearly. When we see the first part of the footsteps. The music is in time with the beat as the footsteps touch the ground. This worked really effectively as it kept everything in time and made it a lot more efficient.

Levi Strauss:Playing on the concept that narratives are arranged around the conflict of Binary Opposites. For example:- Good vs Evil- Boy vs Girl- Peace vs War-Young vs Old- Man vs Nature- Strong vs WeakOur production can relate to this opposite conflicts, however we have chosen the concept of Dream vs Reality. This related back to the song lyrics and name “Painful Art Of Dreaming” and so it shows a clear link. The song is about an individual who bumps into a girl and dreams a perfect life with her, when actually the whole time he realizes it’s just a dream and not really reality.

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Digipak Research- Front Cover research- Font Cover Edits- Digipak Layout research- Digipak, Poster & Music video links- Comparison Albums

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High contrast of black and white, this affects the audience because we don’t see their full faces.

In these 3 album covers of the Beatles, they all share similar things; they hide their identity by not showing a clear shot each of their faces.

We only see half of the left side of their faces from the light.

This album cover they show color into the photo. The colors in this stand out, the blue sky looks saturated compared to everything else.

Outside shoot

Studio shoot

Half face, hiding identity

Smart clothing

Bold lettering, stands out against the red album

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Close up shot of member looking into the camera to address the audience

Band performing High contrast of black and white. We can see the whole of the band

Casual smart clothing

Audience get the chance to see photos of the band during a performance- more personal

Bold title , doesn’t take up too much of the photograph.

Small titling but stands out against the white background

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I’ve researched indie genre music bands Digipak/CD covers. Most of them contains high contrast black and white photographs. I've found out that a lot of bands hide their identity so it is not shown to the audience. This gives the impression that indie bands main important is the music itself and not the image they are portraying.

For my draft Digipak I have experimented with this convention and have edited a black and white photograph as the CD cover. I've found out in most bands they have black and white photographs and so we want to stick with this theme.

The 1975

The Turning

The Strokes Two Door Cinema Club

Artic Monkeys

This photograph is going to be the digipak’s main cover. We chose this photo because of the framing and the expressions their faces. I liked it because they're all looking directly at the camera which gives a intimidating look addressing the audience. Also the photo is not too serious. I’ve edited this black and white and changed the contrast of the photo.

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CD slot

Song Titles

Portrait of someone, who is not in the band (Hidden identity). However he looks directly into the camera addressing the audience.

The cigarettes; symbolizes the bands personality or a clear message of what the album is about. - Smoking- Drugs- Young stereotypes


Information on the album and the production company. This may include how the album was made.

Black and white theme colors. Color is not needed because there is nothing specific to show which is in color

Production company information is put in small writing as it is not important and they do not want it over powering anything

Band name

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It doesn’t use any writing apart from the artists name, this makes the album look very simple yet eye catching as it’s a bold font being used.

His facial expression gives the audience a clue about what his personality is like. He doesn’t seem too bothered which can relate to him as an artist- he doesn’t give too much away.

The artist is not directly looking into the camera, this shows he is not giving a direct address to anyone. His facial expression may also

link to the songs in the album. Most of this album is about him being a young teenager drinking and smoking.

The colour of this album has only used the shade sepia, making it look different to other coloured albums. This contrasts the artist as a person, as he is a young performer and is using an old sepia themed colour.

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The track list is placed in the corner of the top left hand side. This is not so bold, as the singer takes up most of the cover.

The photo has been taken at a medium low angle shot. This shows that he's a very dominate character. he looks down onto the camera. This shows that this album is mainly just about him and could be more personal about his life.

The artist is wearing casual normal clothing just like in his video . This is done to show more about his personality- that he is normal and doesn’t need to try so hard.

Record company logo

Bar code


The background of this back cover is a shot from a street. Which links to the video that he has made- most of them are in a street

Publishing information and credits

All of the writing and logos are placed on the left side of the album. Whilst the other side is of a clear balanced shot of the street where we see a distant figure in the back.

Another main object that is featured in his videos, is his guitar. This links to the his performance videos, as he is always playing.

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How does the music video and Digipak/Advert link together?

This video is set on the streetJake Bugg “Two Fingers”

This video shows the audience Jake playing guitar throughout the video. Jake Bugg “Lighting Bolt”

This video links to the album as it has a black and white colour scheme

Jake Bugg “What Doesn’t Kill You”

In this video Jake Bugg is playing guitar up against a brick wall, just like the album cover that has a brick wall in the background.Jake Bugg “Trouble Town”

These are a few of the music videos that are apart of Jake Buggs album. They all share similar features and all link to one an other.

Black and White

Brick Wall

Casual clothing

CD CoverPoster

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In both the video and poster, they are wearing simple and casual clothing. this identifies the band by showing their personality through this aspect.

The Brick wall background shows another link between the video, as the photo of the band is against a brick wall too

This photograph was taken outside which links to our video slightly because the narrative part is filmed outside.

The poster and digipak includes a clear shot of each person in the band, from the video shoot. Showing there identity to the audience

How the video links to the Advert and Digipak:

CD Cover


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Razorlight are an English indie rock band formed in 2002. From my research I have came across this band to see certain aspects that they might have which we can include into our music video.

We can most relate to this band because they have certain features that we have used for our products. - Yellow features- Black and White

Their music single “Golden Touch” links to our digipak as we have also used a main dominate color- Yellow. We picked the color yellow because this secondary color stands out the most and looks better against the black and white.

We were inspired to create a similar color theme to this band because we liked how their was a vibrant and dominate color which makes it stand out a lot more. Especially for our digipak- this was the main product that had to stand out. We have included similar features of this indie band example, to help make our digipak fit the indie band criteria.

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Another main comparison to The Turning’s digipak, is their main inspiration- The Beatles.We tried to relate our digipak as much as we would to share a similarity of The Beatles cd covers. Picking out The Beatles features, we tried to recreate a photo to match each album. All of the digipak’s share at least one recognizable similarity to our one.

We didn’t want to have a photograph where the band look too serious. We liked the one where it was natural and fun. Although this Beatles cover isn't a humorous photo, I still think they're not taking it too seriously.

Both of these covers are set out outside

In this photo the staging of both bands it set out in a similar way- all standing in a line

In both of these covers, they are dressed similarly Smart/casual clothing