Ever since the dawn of MTV made the possibilities and influence of music videos seem infinite, what used to be an extra promotional tool has become a veritable art-form in itself. From Michael Jackson's innovative 'Thriller' epic to Blur's heartwarming milk carton movie for 'Coffee & TV' and MIA's more recent, controversial promo for 'Born Free', the music video has come into a life of its own. Here, we celebrate 100 of the best: how many have you seen?

10Smack My Bitch Up

Released: 1998
Director: Jonas Åkerlund
High octane depictions of sex, drug, and violence-fuelled night outs don’t come much more hyper-real than this, a classic mid-nineties shocker shot in brilliant first person perspective.
Best bit: When you realise, shock horror, that it’s actually a girl doing all the damage.

9Vidrar Vel Til Loftarasa

Released: 1999
Director: Arni & Kinski
A revolutionary video in many ways. Featuring two young boys kissing at the end of a 1950s’ football match.
Best bit: The looks of pain, confusion and anguish on the boys faces throughout.


Released: 1994
Director: Spike Jonze
Hawaii Five-O, S.W.A.T. and Starsky And Hutch all get a nod in the classic mid-90s vid. It’s precisly these kind of dress-up-and-muck-about-in-a-city vids that make us want to form a band, chuck on some aviators and make our own comic promo.
Best bit: The bits where people fall out of cars and off freeways.

7Buddy Holly

Released: 1994
Director: Spike Jonze
Thanks to what was at the time some groundbreaking editing, the slacker rock heroes make a cameo in Happy Days for a retro vid that seemed made for the song.
Best bit: The knowing winks to original cast members and when they get the Fonz dancing near the end.


Released: 1997
Director: Michel Gondry
This was one of both Gondry's and the Foo's finest moments. Chainsaws, cross-dressing, monsters and metamorphases combine for devastating effect.
Best bit: When Taylor sits up in bed and starts drumming.

Foo Fighters - 'Everlong'
Video: Foo Fighters - 'Everlong'

5All Is Full Of Love

Released: 1998
Director: Chris Cunningham
The schlock horror director made one of the most strangely beautiful promos with this clip of two robots mating. It’s one countless awards and is even on permanent display at New York’s Museum Of Modern Art.
Best bit: The wide angle shot of the first full-on cyborg kiss as the chorus kicks in.

4Black Hole Sun

Released: 1994
Director: Howard Greenhalgh
One of the classic WTF? vids, this promo's playful satire of American family life jars magnicifently with the dark subject matter of the song.
Best bit: When the happy family get dragged skywards into a black hole sun.

3Wicked Game

Released: 1989
Director: Herb Ritts
Long before hip hop culture made booty-shaking passe in music videos, music vids could be gently provocative and subtly sexual and present nudity in a classy way. This vid was just that.
Best bit: When the couple make out – which is most of it.


Released: 1995
Director: Jamie Thraves
There's a man lying down on the pavement, much to the consternation of the passersby. Everyone wants to know why he’s lying down but he can’t tell them. Enigmatic Radiohead at their finest.
Best bit: When he stands up to reveal why he’s lying there, but the subtitles cut out at the worst moment.


Released: 2002
Director: Mark Romanek
The montage of shots of Cash served a poignant purpose at the time; after Johnny’s death seven months later it became even more powerful. A fitting audiovisual epitaph.
Best bit: Those opening chords and that opening line ”I hurt myself today / to see if I still feel” – near perfection.

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