Video Vault, Episode 38: Portishead Week – To Kill A Dead Man

In honor of RJ Wheaton’s 33 1/3 on Portishead’s Dummy as well as the 20th anniversary of the album, we bring you the fourth and final installment of Portishead Week. To close out this week on Portishead, design, and film, it only makes sense to include the short film that the band made with director Alexander Hemming. The film provided footage for the video for “Sour Times”, and stills for the covers of singles “Numb”, “Sour Times”, “Glory Box”, and Dummy itself. But first: John Barry’s theme for the 1965…

Portishead Week – Day 2: From Film

In honor of RJ Wheaton’s 33 1/3 on Portishead’s Dummy as well as the 20th anniversary of the album, we bring you the second installment of Portishead Week. I wrote yesterday about the visual aesthetic that seemed so bold when Portishead’s debut album Dummy was released 20 years ago this week. That aesthetic was obviously richly influenced by film: stills from the band’s short film To Kill a Dead Man appeared on the covers of Dummy and its supporting singles “Numb”, “Sour Times”, and “Glory Box”; and its noirish overtones…

Portishead Week – Day 1: Visuals

In honor of RJ Wheaton’s 33 1/3 on Portishead’s Dummy as well as the 20th anniversary of the album, we bring you the first installment of Portishead Week. Portishead’s debut album Dummy turns 20 this week. In spite of some influences worn very heavily on its sleeve — hip-hop’s production method and turntablism; dub’s studio aesthetic; even English new wave — for many listeners Dummy seemed to come out of nowhere in 1994. And just as the album’s palette was widely imitated in the wave of ‘trip-hop’ releases that followed,…