Semi Lemon Kola always had a bit of a Red Hot Chili Peppers sound, and indeed it’s there even when they’re tackling a ballad. “Play Dumb” has that same serious Anthony Keidis ballad voice happening, complete with compressed vocals.
The video attempts a World War II theme, but it’s not quite an authentic period drama. In this World War II, glamorous women are also high-ranking military officials.
A non-military glamorous woman puts a record on the stereogram for a couple of officers, while up in the sky some aerial combat takes place. Any attempt at realism is dropped with the use of wobbly models for the aerial shots.
After a terrible crash, a soldier gets some badly applied bandages on his face, reminiscent of Metallica’s “One” video, only not as haunting.
But who is the enemy these brave soliders are fighting? Perhaps there is a clue in the lyrics – “I’m my own worst enemy. The only one I blame is myself.” Oh, it’s not Nazis they’re fighting; it’s the super-ego!
The video ends in more aerial combat, cuminating with a cheerful pilot who appears to drop a nuclear bomb on the Beehive. It’s not entirely clear why he does this, though it’s probably something to do with the government getting everyone down.
I dunno. New rule for music video production: stay away from the army surplus store.
Best bit: the glamourous lady plays the “Oceana Roll” record, a song that predates World War I. Get with it, grandma.
Director: Steve Morrison
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision
Next… a giant jar of Vaseline and a view.