Oh, this song. Juice TV thrashed it, and loved Sommerset so much it awarded them “Special Lifetime Achievement Award for services to R.O.C.K” (whatever that signifies) at the Juice TV Awards in 2005.
Juice TV played this song so much that during my period of watching Juice too much, I started to find deep resonance in the lyrics. One empty evening in Hamilton I spied Ryan from Sommerset in Victoria Street and I told him how “Streets Don’t Close” was an awesome song, with its message of escaping a “boring town”. Well, yeah.
The video is set at the AUT gym, with Sommerset and friends playing a tense game of basketball. Ryan isn’t playing so well, with his coach yelling at him and furiously gesturing towards a play diagram.
Just when things seem to be improving on the court, along comes trouble in the form of MC OJ and Rythmn Slave (there is not a music video out there that can’t be enhanced by an Otis and Slave cameo). These tattooed badboys are there to battle the tattooed goodboys of Sommerset.
Things ramp up, and Ryan throws the ball at the goal. As the opposition pounce on him, he ball sails through the air and lands a perfect basket. Victory! I guess this means it’s MC OJ’s shout.
Despite all this action, the video feels a little bit empty. Sommerset were great live, but there’s sign of that here. And all the extras make it hard to figure out who’s in the band and who’s not. But, you know, at one point in 2002 none of that mattered to me.
Best bit: MC OJ getting so aggro towards the emo ref that Slave has to pull him off.
Next… a roadhouse pitstop.