It’s very easy to compare “If You Love Savage” with “Mareko (Here to Stay)”. Both are solo singles by members of the Deceptikonz, and both are about reinforcing the personal brand of the singer. “Here to Stay” was a weak song and its video was so determined to push Mareko’s name that it ended up not being much fun at all.
Two years later, “If You Love Savage” seems to have learned a lesson or two from “Here To Stay”. The song is an upbeat, super catchy, highly danceable number. Even though it’s all about Savage (and being a fan of him), the song is so good that it makes perfect sense. And Savage has earned it, with the number one hits “Swing” and the non-funded “Moonshine”. At this stage, yeah, Savage is allowed to celebrate his successes.
The video is shot in South Auckland, filmed in high-contrast black and white so everything looks cool and cinematic. Savage wanders around the Otara markets with a posse of boys and/or the Deceptikonz. This boys’ zone is far removed from the girly world of “Swing”.
The South Auckland locations visited in “If You Love Savage” are very popular ones for music videos (I’ve counted eight videos so far that feature the Otara markets), but the bold black and white footage gives it a different tone. Other bands manage to slip around the markets unnoticed, but Savage is a force of nature who draws the attention of the shoppers.
There’s no sense that this has all been faked for a music video. The crowd of kids surrounding Savage don’t need to be prompted to get them to adore their idol. And when Savage signs an autograph outside the local Pizza Hut, that’s just how big he is.
Director: Sophie Findlay
Nga Taonga Sound & Vision
Next… the multipurpose garden shed.