Formerly of the band Jester, Johnny Barker was a few years away from his debut as Shortland Street nurse Joey Henderson, who would turn out to be the evil Ferndale Strangler. When he wasn’t strangling, Barker was the frontman of Nephew. This was their only song to have NZOA funding.
The song “Starshingle” (that’s “star shingle”, not “stars hingle”) is has an indie ’90s Pixies inspired sound. The video puts the trio in the middle of something like a community hall. The camera never really engages with the band. Nephew are either shot in extreme close-up or from a distance, with the camera swirling around. It looks more like they let their made film a rehearsal, than a planned music video shoot.
The video that’s been uploaded to YouTube looks like it’s been filmed off a laptop screen – that old trick from the 48Hours film competition that teams use when they can’t export the completed laptop. Understandable in a furious film-making competition, but most unexpected to see on a band’s video.
“Starshingle” is a strong song, but the video seems to exist outside it. There’s the band and there’s the song but neither really feel connected.
In the end, the song wins and the video loses. Or like YouTube commenter Melted Ice Cream says:
love this band,
they should reform,
90s are cool again.
Best bit: the polished wooden floor of the hall.
Next… it’s a trap!