In the video for “Dirty Little Secret” by the All-American Rejects, various people hold up postcards describing their secrets. Reading the secrets is alternately disturbing and heartbreaking, and it draws a strong emotional response from me. (I said I’d mention the Rejects in every post this week; did you think I wouldn’t back that up?)
In Man On Earth’s “All We Want”, they have something similar going on, where different people have sent in short videos expressing what they want. A few are disturbing and many are heartbreaking, but also a lot of them are really touching, and as the video starts with the spinning globe filled with light, it gives the sense of our connectedness, as humans living on Earth.
In trying to describe Man On Earth, I think the best thing may be to say that there is a gentle passion to them, and yet that sounds like some kind of an entendre, which is not my intent. There is a depth and purpose and caring in the music, but it is not aggressive or in-your-face. It is gentle.
I listened to an interview with a radio station, and when asked to describe themselves, they said “Eclectic experimental rock based music with a commercial accessibility.” I can buy that. They listed influences as Muse and U2. Possibly, though I don’t think they really sound like either of them. Resemblance is tricky though. In some of their slower passages they remind me of Depeche Mode (when Depeche Mode is being slow).
In Man On Earth’s livelier passages, they remind me of Boys Like Girls, except more high-minded. However, if the band named Boys Like Girls focuses on romantic relationships and attraction, and the band called Man On Earth focuses more on the global nature of our relationships and humanity, well, there is a certain symmetry to that.
I’d say a good introduction to the band would be to go to their Youtube channel and play the Music Videos list. This is only six videos, but fairly well done. They do have other music videos on the channel, as well as the interview I mentioned, and tour updates, but these six videos are a decent sampling, and again, all fairly well constructed. I enjoy “All We Want” both as a song and as a video, but in general they do interesting things with the videos, which works well as I feel there is often a kind of cinematic quality to the songs. Their least exciting of the six is “I’d Be Good For You”, but I really like the song.
The other video I should especially call out is “Come In Closer”. This is an animated video made by two 19 year old college students who contacted the band saying they wanted to do it. First of all, what an honor that something you created inspires others to create. Also, the video is curious, dreamlike thing. There is not a complete unity of the style of the animation, but it is really interesting and often gorgeous.
Man On Earth’s music is available through iTunes and Big Cartel. They are also pretty good about posting tour dates, though I found their home page hard to read. You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter. And yes, I know about them because they followed me on Twitter.