Shaft “Downhill Racer”

1995-shaft-downhill-racer“Downhill Racer” was a minor indie hit, all over the bFM top 10. It’s a superbly written song, with a great ’60s feeling. The video goes for a kitschy retro style, turning a nerdy bedroom fantasy into a full-on glam-rock extravaganza.

Halfway through the video we meet a gothy fellow alone in his bedroom, looking up bomb recipes on the internet. This comes complete with a brilliant screen shot of the ye olde web browser Netscape displaying a webpage called “BOMBS for FUN”. Back in the mid-’90s, the media were always going on about “bomb recipes” on the newfangled internet thing. Such innocent times.

By the way, the website in this video looks real, so I googled to see if it was still around. I couldn’t find anything, but now I’m paranoid that some authority will have been alerted to a New Zealander searching for bomb recipes.

Anyway. Back in the video, there is much excitement because it appears that a large truck is going to smash into a wendy house. And indeed it does, which we see from five different angles. I figure, if you’ve gone to the trouble of constructing a little house for a truck to smash in one take, you’re going to set up as many cameras as possible to make sure you don’t miss the vital shot. Like Demi Moore shaving her hair off in “GI Jane”.

The uploader of this video comments that the song “evokes the enigma of life as we know it”. And I think the video does that too.

Best bit: the mouse on a leash.

Director: Stuart Page
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… Frankenstein comes to Hamilton.

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