The Official Central Track Staff List.

The more we think about it, the more we really must admit that 2014 was a better than usual one for the North Texas music scene.

Our first big hint to that effect? The fact that, unlike in years past, when we listed our 50 favorite songs of the year, we struggled to pare this year's list down to just the top 100.

Likewise, it's been a pretty exceptional year, visually speaking, for the North Texas music scene: This year's crop of music videos weren't just a bunch of low-budget, performance-based clips or simple, attach-a-GoPro-to-the-closest-object videos; over the course of the past 12 months, area artists went above and beyond with custom animation and elaborate stop-motion shots in addition to the more-customary special effects, costumes and choreography.

Granted, some pulled off these devices better than others. To that end, here are our picks for the 20 music videos that best put these elements better than anyone else. Aside from just being among our favorite clips of the year, each of the following is worth the watch — and, for that matter, a superlative to call its own. — Cory Graves

Award: Best Scooby-Doo Rip-Off
Artist: Mystery Skulls
Song: “Ghost”
Animator: Ben Mangum

Award: Best Special Effects
Artist: War Party
Song: “Every Day I Bite The Hook”
Director: Jerod Costa

Award: Best Appropriation of the Saved by the Bell Title Sequence
Artist: Blue, the Misfit
Song: “Alive”
Director: Jeremy Biggers

Award: Best Collage
Artist: Air Review
Song: “Young”
Director: MirRuido

Award: Best Stop-Motion
Artist: Danny Diamonds
Song: “Hot Summer”
Directors: Daniel Rodrigue and Catherine Downes

Award: Most Polarizing Dance Moves
Artist: St. Vincent
Song: “Birth in Reverse”
Director: Willo Perron

Award: Creepiest Use of a Musician's Sister In A Starring Role
Artist: Son of Stan
Songs: “Loseyomind”
Director: Kilby Rodell and Max Loeb

Award: Least Creepy Use of a Musician's Sister In A Starring Role
Artist: Sarah Jaffe
Song: “Leaving the Planet”
Directors: Melanie Smith and Des Smith

Award: Best “Hair” and Makeup
Artist: Old 97's
Song: “Let's Get Drunk and Get It On”
Director: Chris Suchorsky

Award: Highest-Paid Actors
Artist: Dirk Nowitzki, Monta Ellis and Chandler Parsons
Song: “Can't Be Stopped”
Director: The Well Creative

Award: Best Use of Found Footage
Artist: Oil Boom
Song: “The Sneak Tip”
Director: Sara Mosier

Award: Most Drunk Actors
Artist: The Phuss
Song: “I Don't Feel Good”
Director: Jonathan Finley

Award: Most Socially Significant
Artist: Buffalo Black
Song: “War Paint”
Director: Kevin Kagema

Award: Best Fight Sequence
Artist: Layer Cake
Song: “Nothing West”
Director: Eric Michener

Award: Best Choreography
Artist: Ronnie Heart
Song: “Tasty Destination”
Director: Chip Tompkins

Award: Best Death Sequence Involving Tortillas
Artist: The O's
Song: “Outlaw”
Director: Jason Whitbeck

Award: Best Live-Action Robot Video
Artist: Home by Hovercraft
Song: “Lie in Your Bed”
Director: Jaime Castaneda

Award: Best Animated Robot Video
Artist: Ishi
Song: “Emotional Hard Drive”
Animator/Director: Chase Gillman

Award: Best Use of A Buried VHS Tape
Artist: Lord Byron
Song: “BY”
Director: Christian Vasquez

Award: Biggest Source of Fake Toll-Free Phone Numbers
Artist: Eat Avery's Bones
Song: “Proboner”
Directors: Matt Burgess and Robert Scheer

Cover image via WikiCommons.

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