Pop Art Toasters “What Am I Going To Do”

1994-pop-art-toasters-what-am-i-going-to-doThe Pop Art Toasters were a group formed by Martin Phillipps and friends, including David Kilgour, and they recorded an album of ’60s psychedelic pop covers. This caused a tear in the delicate fabric of the space-time continuum by the fact that Martin Phillipps has formed a band of entirely new people and not called it the Chills.

The video is very simple, with the band playing the song in Dunedin’s old Excelsior hotel, with a similar feeling to the Verlaine’s “Death and the Maiden” video. Martin and David are both wearing sunglasses, which is permissible if you are performing a song inside a house.

At first glance, the video feels like a bit of a shambles, but on closer viewing it’s clear that everything is quite deliberate and the bits of overexposed footage and weird camera moves are indeed all part of the plan.

Best bit: Martin’s rose-tinted spectacles.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… there goes the neighbourhood.

The Mutton Birds “Heater”

1994-the-mutton-birds-heaterThis is the genius of the Mutton Birds – their lone number one single was a song about a heater. Not in a “baby, my love will keep u warm like a heater”, but literally about a heater, an electric heater (the elements were made of wire and clay).

The video perfectly captures the sinister tone of the lyrics, with Don McGlashan playing the heater-buyer Frank, and stop motion used to bring life to the sentient heater.

Frank takes his newly purchased heater home, where his concerned parents (including Marge from “Shortland Street” as his mum) furrow their brows with concern.

The band’s performance takes second place to the adventures of Frank, perhaps indicative of the larger budget the Mutton Birds had after signing with Virgin for their second album.

Would anyone write a song like this about an energy efficient heat pump?

Best bit: Mum is concerned when Frank doesn’t want an egg.



Director: Fane Flaws
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… pop through rose-tinted specs.