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[[caption-width-right:268:Our hero, hard at work.]]
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''The Cat Piano'' is a short animated film (running about eight minutes) about a [[BigAppleSauce New York]]-style city inhabited by anthropomorphic cats. The narration, written by Eddie White in the style of 1950s beat poetry and read by Music/NickCave, describes the plight of a lonely writer who falls in love with a beautiful singer. The mass abduction of all the singing cats and the resulting mass hysteria causes the town to fall apart. After struggling with despair, the writer sets out to rescue his beloved.

It can be watched in its entirety [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uj4RBmU-PIo here]].
* AluminiumChristmasTrees[=/=]BasedOnATrueStory: Sort of. Descriptions, drafts and suggestions on what to use the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat_Piano cat piano]] for has appeared many times in different records, but there is no evidence that it has ever been built.
* AlwaysNight: Or perhaps this is because of the blue tone...
* ArtShift: The cats suddenly stop being anthropomorphic [[spoiler:when they attack the mad human in the lighthouse]].
* BagOfKidnapping: [[spoiler:The piano player is seen carrying one over his shoulder after the poet realizes that his love interest has become the human's final victim.]]
* BigBeautifulWoman: One such she-cat can be seen briefly near the beginning as a background character in a dancing crowd.
* BilingualBonus: During the verse where the poet narrates the torment of the imprisoned cats, the word "cat piano" is recited four times in German, French, Japanese and Chinese as a sort of MadnessMantra.
* CastOfSnowflakes: Even background characters have unique designs
* CatConcerto: This anthropomorphic variation has them as 1950s lounge singers and beat poets.
* CityWithNoName
* ColdBloodedTorture: [[spoiler: A [[HumansAreBastards human]] drives nails into cats' tails to make them scream.]]
* ColorCodedForYourConvenience: Dark shades of "night" blue represent the cats and their city, while an ominous red wash colors the human and his lighthouse.
* DisneyVillainDeath: [[spoiler:"...He [the human] stumbled, fell through the window screaming into the indigo waters below."]]
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: The NiceGuy who saves the fascinating singer from a sadistic sociopath shows clear references to ''Film/BlueVelvet''.
* DrivenToSuicide: At one point, the protagonist mimics the act of shooting himself. ''"Snap."''
* EarnYourHappyEnding
* EverythingIsAnInstrument: As the title hints.
* {{Expy}}: According to the film's website's blog, they owe a little something to the character ComicBook/{{Blacksad}}, for the cat poet's design. If you squint a little, you can see a bit of the resemblance there. Especially when you see him smoking a cigarette and could come off as a skinnier version of said character--minus the fur color and the detective part.
* FilmNoir: 95% pure FilmNoir.
* TheFifties: The aesthetic is largely derived from FilmNoir and stars a {{Beatnik}} cat.
* [[FunnyBackgroundEvent Not So Funny Background Event]]: One scene had the narrator poetically telling "There was a hole in my heart and everything fell out of it...", while the background animation features another cat getting messily stabbed in the heart during a brawl.
* FurryConfusion: Drawings of non-anthro cats appear in the diagram of the cat piano.
* FurryFemaleMane: In effect for the most part, but also inverted a few times.
* HeyItsThatVoice: [[NickCave Nick Cave]] provides the voice of main character and narrator.
* HiddenInPlainSight: [[spoiler: The lighthouse, which is the highest and most noticeable of buildings in the entire city, stands isolated on a small island in the bight and serves the mad human as a hideout. At first, when the kidnappings start, the light goes out, and when the piano starts playing, a red light goes on instead. This is when the poet takes action and storms the lighthouse with a mob of citizens. Nevertheless, the trope is justified as the tower is heavily symbolical rather than anything else.]]
* HumansAreBastards
* InstrumentOfMurder
* MatureAnimalStory
* NamelessNarrative
* NarrativePoem: He is recording the events, and he narrates the whole thing as he types it.
* OminousPipeOrgan: [[spoiler: Made of cats.]]
* PettingZooPeople: Everyone but the [[spoiler:human piano player]].
* PrivateEyeMonologue: Averted. Although this is a FilmNoir, the narrator is neither a private detective nor does he narrate in an appropriate "Private Eye" manner. He narrates an epic beat poem.
* RedFilterOfDoom: In the climax of course. The fact it's justified by the lighthouse is anyone's guess.
* SlidingScaleOfShinyVersusGritty: The female singer is pure white with green eyes and glows visibly in the blue-toned atmosphere.
* TorchesAndPitchforks: [[spoiler: The mob of angered cat citizens that is led by the writer to the lighthouse. This is, however, notably done without torches or pitchforks to keep the gritty atmosphere. Instead, the cats pounce at the mad human and claw him violently before he manages to fall out a window to his death]].
* [[YouGottaHaveBlueHair You Gotta Have Blue Fur]]: Possibly. It's a little hard to tell when ''everything'' is blue.