Analysis of To Kill A King video

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1. Analysis of ‘To Kill A King - Behind The Scenes of Funeral (Ralph’s Singalong Sessions)’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEBrcdzHTPg (0:00-4:00) 2. The first few…
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  • 1. Analysis of ‘To Kill A King - Behind The Scenes of Funeral (Ralph’s Singalong Sessions)’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEBrcdzHTPg (0:00-4:00)
  • 2. The first few shots of the video are close-ups of particular items that help to set the scene. Firstly, the To Kill A King logo on a piece of equipment, and then on their drum kit, telling the audience that this is who the video is of/about. There is then a shot of ‘Funeral – Mass Band’ written on a piece of paper, which will later become clear to the viewer to mean that the video they’re filming is a mass band version of the To Kill A King track ‘Funeral’. There is also a close-up of a card with the name of the venue in which the video is being recorded. The start of the track in question begins at the start of the video too.
  • 3. There is a shot from the top of a set of stairs looking down, showing people (musicians) walking up the stairs. The lighting and pictures hanging on the wall suggest that they’re in a pub of some sort. After this shot there is an over the shoulder shot showing the lead singer of the band, Ralph, who seems to be giving instructions to some others. Behind him you can see a few people with brass instruments and it’s the first moment where you start to see how many people are there. There is no speech through this, the track continues playing.
  • 4. The song fades into the background and there is a mid-shot of Ralph and Ian in an interview scenario at the outside of the venue, beginning to explain what it is exactly that they’re filming. In this way the members of the band act almost as commentators to the viewers which is often the case in such ‘behind the scenes’ videos. The clip alternates between another shot of the stairs, and then back to this shot of Ralph and Ian.
  • 5. The song changes from the studio recording to a live version, which is then shown as it happens, through a close-up of Ralph. You can hear lots of people singing and get the community feel that the group are trying to get across. This clip is only fairly short, and acts as a taster of what is happening before the next shot in which Ian starts to explain what is happening. For this clip the song goes back to the studio recording.
  • 6. After Ian says “we thought we’d get loads of other musicians, loads of other bands along” there is fittingly a close-up of Ralph which zooms out to show a bunch of these musicians playing and singing along with the band.
  • 7. After this Ralph and Ian list some of the musicians that are there on the day, and a shot of each of these is show as they are mentioned. The shots are fairly natural ones of them, not as if they’ve posed for the purpose of this video, and also it’s clear that everybody there is having a lot of fun on the day.
  • 8. After showing a few people particularly, there is first a shot of Ralph and Ian talking, and then one which pans around showing the amount of musicians there, and also the array of instruments is noticeable.
  • 9. Ralph explains that the musicians there are people that they’ve met through doing music and they thought it’d be nice for them to all play a song together, and the studio version of the track continues to play in the background. There are then a few shots of some of these musicians in the venue between recording.. again, the shots are casual and you can tell it is behind the scenes, and not a staged video.
  • 10. Once again the song changes from the studio recording to the track being performed live, firstly shown through an over the shoulder shot where the main focus is Ralph as the lead singer of To Kill A King, but with many of the other musicians around him. After this shot there is a close-up of one of the musicians taking part in the singalong, and then this pans sideways to some more of the musicians. There is then another shot of Ralph and a few of the musicians around him still singing the same part of the song.
  • 11. The live version of the song continues in the background as Ralph and Ian are shown once again and Ralph explains how the song is relevant to the video that they’re filming considering the lyric “I must make more friends”. This shot is followed by relevant shots of a couple of members of the band hugging other musicians which reiterates the feeling that the band give that they’ve got lots of friends through their mutual love of music.
  • 12. There is an over the shoulder shot showing some of the musicians playing - fly on the wall again. There is then a mid-long shot of four musicians practicing for when they record. They all seem happy and supportive towards each other, have a unity/friendship through music - positive representation. No song for either of these shots, instead the diegetic sound of the instruments being played.
  • 13. The music carries on using a sound bridge to the next shot, and fades. There is a mid shot of the band’s bassist explaining what is happening to the group of musicians. Fact he he isn’t looking directly at the camera emphasises that its a documentary and not set up. He’s holding his bass guitar and in terms of mise en scene this puts emphasis on the focus of the clip. When he mentions the guitarist, there is a shot of him, and the same for the drummer. Such shots help the audience to further understand the clip. He jokes that they’ll “call that the drop” - being comical is good and representatives him/the band in a positive light.
  • 14. “When we drop - communally” - subtle mention of the fact that that particular group of musicians is like a community brought together by music. Similarly to on the previous slide where shots of the guitarist/drummer were shown when they were mentioned, a shot of Ralph handing out the “written out part” is used when the bassist mentions this to everyone. Through this scene there is no music in the background, leaving the focus is on what he is talking about.
  • 15. After the bassist says “Let’s give it a go!” there are shots of a host of the different musicians there on the day, that can be seen and heard anticipating the start of recording, asking one another if they’re ready etc. There is still no track playing in the background for this part of the clip - the focus will be on the song when they start performing. There are over the shoulder shots emphasising that it is behind the scenes and not part of it.
  • 16. The focus is about to be on the drummer as he opens the song, and there is a shot of him talking. He has to raise his voice over the other musicians, again clear it’s not staged. There is a shot of him giving the thumbs up as he’s ready, which is taken over the cymbal - quite aesthetically interesting. Focused on the cymbal but as the camera moves closer to him, the focus changes gradually. In a sort of response shot Ralph is shown responding that he’s ready too. Again this is taken from an interesting angle.
  • 17. You can clearly hear “Ready?!” and then there is a close-up shot of the guitarist’s feet, as he presses something on an effects pedal. The camera then pans upwards to a low angle shot showing him playing the guitar. The low angle often makes things seem superior and this could be seen to be the case with this shot as at this point in the song the guitarist of the band is the most prominent amongst all the other musicians there.
  • 18. This shot of Ralph is used again, and is this time focused particularly on the microphone, such close-ups of musical equipment are very common within music documentaries, I have found. The audio on this shot is the start of the performance - the guitar riff. There is a shot of another person filming, making it clear that this video itself is behind the scenes as a shot of a camera would otherwise probably be avoided. A shot from behind some of the other musicians shows Ian playing guitar, and he makes a mistake, to which they all have a laugh about - they’re not taking themselves too seriously which is good.
  • 19. A close-up shot of a microphone which is focused on this zooms outwards and blurs, whilst the guitar riff starts again in the background. This shot almost gives the audience the perspective of the musicians themselves. Similar to before, but recorded closer to Ian, there is a shot of him playing the opening riff once more. The person recording for the actual video (not the behind the scenes) is clearly visible.
  • 20. As the drummer starts playing, there is a shot of him, and he is heard counting the other musicians in. After this moment the music picks up and there is a mixture of voices, clapping and string as well as the drums and guitar. Shots of those performing are used and there is a lot of focus on the communion of them all and the sheer number of them.
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