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The video for “Window in the Skies,” one of the two new, Rick Rubin-produced songs on U2’s recent singles compilation, U218 Singles, is mesmerizing, repeat-watchable, and very Rock Snobbish. (Click on the screen-grab below to watch.) Compiled by director Gary Koepke, it uses dozens of archival clips of performances by famous musicians, editing them together so that–for a second or two, anyway–it looks like each musician is lip-synching to Bono’s vocal.

It’s a fun video, with appearances by, among others, Frank Zappa, the young Keith Richards, Bjork, Keith Moon, Nat King Cole, Nina Simone, Frank Sinatra, Jack White, Morrissey, Iggy Pop, the Ramones, Beck, Elvis, Ella Fitzgerald, and Louis Armstrong. But equally interesting is who is not present. No Beatles? U2 probably wanted them in there but couldn’t get clearance from the ever-proprietary Neil Aspinall at Apple. And one can’t help but notice how very… exquisite the director and band have been in their choices. If only there could have been one or two nerdy, unfashionable figures to keep the video from being so tasteful–say, Glenn Tilbrook from Squeeze, or Boz Scaggs or somebody.

December 22, 2006 More Rock Snobbery »

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