Under the Bed - The Video
Watch it now!
In the brand new video for his latest release, Under the Bed, John Dog goes on a whirlwind tour of TV news shows through the ages. Complimenting the song’s theme of running away from 21st century information overload, the video wrings a few good laughs out of how the way we consume news has changed, particularly in recent years.
“Spoofing newsreaders is a grand old tradition, almost as old as the form itself,” says Dog. “Something that struck me while making the video though is how little the format changed right up to the early 2000s. It’s only recently, with social media, YouTube and podcasts have we seen real alternatives to the Guy in A Suit Reading Stuff Down The Camera format - which, of course, still remains.”
In keeping with the information firehose that is 2022 news provision, the video for Under the Bed is colourful, impatient, restless. Its goofy, breathless dash from the 1930s to now includes references to US TV legends such as Walter Cronkite and Dick Cavett; the creepy dullness of 1980s Irish TV news; an Elon Musk-like figure blazing up on a podcast; and an off-brand TED talk to close the show. And today being today, the clip is punctuated by “ads” (which you can’t skip.)
“We did our best to reference actual footage,” Dog explains. “For the most part, each clip is based on real, old news broadcasts. Like 1940s CBS bulletins or the US moon landing coverage in 1969 or the quiet, faintly oppressed-feeling bulletins on Irish TV when I was a kid. As the video goes on though, we make more and more…um…deviations from the research, and that’s where it gets fun.”
Want to find out more about the song? Just keep scrolling!
Brief: Under The Bed is a fast and funny flight through the mind of a doomscroller, an alt-rockabilly anthem for the too-online, and/or a three-minute musical comedy about hiding from the latest apparent apocalypse.
Under the Bed - The Song
Cover artwork by J. Taggart (2022)
Under the Bed is a fast and funny account of a compulsive doom-scroller who is possibly – well, definitely – suffering from a touch of information fatigue.
Says Dog: “I think it’s common enough to feel a bit besieged by news these days. This song is a kind of goofy, extreme fantasy about taking a break from the information firehose.”
Reflecting today’s hysteria-as-baseline reportage, Under the Bed is a frenetic blend of sounds and styles plucked from all points on the pop history timeline. These might include a classic Tin Pan Alley vocal intro that’s Ella Fitzgerald by way of Moondog; a guitar line lifted straight from Scotty Moore, the legendary picker in The King’s first band; or the kind of FX colour you might find lying around in Raymond Scott’s laboratory.
“Musically, I tried to keep this one stripped down for the most part,” Dog explains, “but with bursts of colour to keep things a little unsettling. And hopefully funny – humour in the arrangement of a song is an underused tool in pop.”
The lyric, meanwhile, bounces around in a similarly ADHD fashion, referencing the likes of Twitter and cute kitten videos while also finding room for Judge Dredd, Back to the Future and Doctor Who.
“I actually wrote the song a few years ago and worried it may not age well. Luckily for me - maybe less so for the world! - information overload does still seem to be a thing. I could be wrong, but the idea of making some kind of pillow-fort to escape the headlines still seems pretty relevant – and pretty appealing!”
Under The Bed is streaming now on all good platforms and available to buy on Bandcamp