October 2010: Savage, Seth Haapu, Shihad, Street Chant, Supermodel, Te Pamu, The Feelers

The proto-twerk, six shirts and one pair of trousers, a dystopian stilt hut, hanging out in the Coromandel, epic proggy drag race, down at the Mount, the ol’ band is back for one last gig.

Continue reading October 2010: Savage, Seth Haapu, Shihad, Street Chant, Supermodel, Te Pamu, The Feelers

Found videos from 1999

Resting bitch face, actual cows, a red room, Catholic guilt, a scenic boat trip, forecourt drama, romantic Venice, an outdoor TV and and pre-millennium tension.
Continue reading Found videos from 1999

The Unusuals “Under the Sun”

2002-the-unusuals-under-the-sun“Under the Sun” takes the set-up of Bjork’s “Big Time Sensuality” video (artist performing the song on the back of a truck) and gives it a totally logical context – the annual Birkenhead Santa parade.

Film in the ‘hood of director Andrew Moore, along comes the band on the back of a flatbed truck. It’s probably not what the parade crowd – largely made up of small children and their parents – were expecting. And there are indeed shots of kids holding blocking their ears, trying to make all the noise go away. But there are plenty more people who are enjoying this impressive parade float, with many shots of people waving and dancing as the truck slowly makes its way up the hill. And some of the little kids are really digging it.

It’s a rather scenic location too, with wide shots showing the distant Auckland city and Sky Tower way across the harbour. Another part of the parade route offers panoramic views of the inner Waitemata Harbour. It all fits nicely with the upbeat pop-rock song. Setting itself amid a lively community event in an ordinary Auckland neighbourhood works with the song and manages to make the Santa parade a bit more thrilling than it actually is for grown-ups.

Best bit: the old guy who is really enjoying himself.

Director: Andrew Moore
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… two minutes, Tim.

Missing videos from 1999

February 1999

Bailter Space “So Am I”

“So Am I” was Bailter Space’s final NZOA-funded video from the ’90s. They took a break and showed up again in 2012.

Cabbage Bomber “You’re a Sun”

Cabbage Bomber included Mark Petersen who had previously replaced Andrew Brough in Straitjacket Fits. Their first single was “You’re A Sun”, extravagantly described by Kiwihits as “an unashamedly melodic slice of guitar pop, laden with hooks and harmonies.”

Director: Marc Swadel
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

D-Faction “Take a Little Piece”

After having all their videos online, it’s sad that D-Faction’s final video, “Take a Little Piece” isn’t around. YouTube uploader slydogmania notes the group “disbanded in late 1997 before this final single was ever released”

Head Like a Hole “Hot Sexy Lusty”

Head Like A Hole have “Hot Sexy Lusty”, another single from their sex album, Are You Gonna Kiss It Or Shoot It? Guys, in googling for this video, I saw things I wish I hadn’t seen.

Mika “Angel”

Mika, last seen in Jan Hellriegel’s “Geraldine” video, has his own single “Taniwha Angel”. Here’s a live performance.

Director: Kerry Brown
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

April 1999

Brett Sawyer “When It Happens”

Brett Sawyer has the song “When It Happens”. I’m most interested to discover that he and Pearl Runga sang New Zealand’s official millennium anthem, “I’ll Meet You There”, written by sister Bic and James Hall.

Director: Jonathan King
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Delta “Slather”

Delta! “Slather”! I saw them play a few times and I happily bought the “Slather” single. It was a fun burst of pop that should at least have enjoyed one-hit wonder success. But anyway, here’s Delta performing the song at a 2010 reunion show. Nice one.

Director: Garth Maxwell
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Ma-V-Elle “Angel”

Girl group Ma-V-Elle had lost a member (but weren’t renamed V-Elle). “Angel” was the first single from their new album as a duo. Here’s a Tangata Pasifika profile of the group enjoying their early days of success.

Strong Islanders “Shining On”

Kiwihits notes that Jonah Lomu’s cousin is in “Strong Islanders”. Their song “Shining On” is ok, but their main MC has a somewhat lacklustre delivery.

Director: Joe Lonie
Nga Taonga Sound & Vision

June 1999

Ardijah “Do To You”

There’s no shortage of Ardijah videos from the ’80s, but the ’90s are AWOL, including “Do To You”.

Nga Taonga Sound & Vision

Ma-V-Elle “Never Say Goodbye”

Ominous foreshadowing! “Never Say Goodbye” was Ma-V-Elle’s penultimate funded video.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Trip To The Moon “Sexual Healing”

The final NZOA-funded video for Trip to the Moon is their cover of “Sexual Healing”, a duet by Bobbylon and the ethereally voiced Rachel Weatherly. NZ Herald reviewer Russell Baillie dramatically described it as having “all the charm of a lavish STD-treatment jingle”.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

August 1999

3 The Hard Way “Front Back Side”

Well, I dunno. This song is on the list of videos that were completed, but I can’t find any sign of a 3 The Hard Way single called “Front Back Side”, or indeed any releases from this time. But there might have been some shuffling – there’s a 3 The Hard Way video for their 2004 single “Girls”. It’s set in the same sexy club world as “It’s On (Move to This”), only it’s so much cheesier.

Bike “Gaze”

Bike’s final NZOA-funded single is “Gaze”, which also appeared on the “Scarfies” soundtrack.

Brett Sawyer “Where We Wanna Be”

“Where We Wanna Be” is Brett Sawyer’s ode to his partner for sticking out a decade in Britain with him.

Delta “The Baddest”

Delta’s second single was “The Baddest”. It’s ok, but it’s not “Slather”. Here’s a live performance from their 2010 reunion gig.

Fiona McDonald “Wish I Was a Man”

Fiona McDonald gets dirty and grungy with “Wish I Was A Man”.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Moizna “Summer Goodbye”

Moizna’s final NZ On Air-funded video is aptly titled “Summer Goodbye”, a sweet tale of a break-up.

Satellite Spies “Please Never Leave”

Satellite Spies apparently had a song called “Please Never Leave”, but it’s ungooglable.

TrueBliss “Freedom”

TrueBliss’s third single was a cover of the Wham song “Freedom”. I’ve found an 2001 Australian documentary about the “Popstars” phenomena that shows a short clip from “Freedom” at 8:01. It features the group dressed in red, white and blue costumes, performing on stage in front of thousands of screaming fans.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

October 1999

DNE “Be There”

DNE was a “cyber collaboration” between Aly Cook and David Horizon – their name for the now commonplace practice of online collaboration. Their old bio at Amplifier promised a fabulous web experience with “CLUBDNE interactive”, and directed viewers to NZmusic.com to watch their video for “Be There”. Sadly all is but a cyber memory now.

Greg Johnson “Beautiful Storm”

Greg Johnson gets drench in meteorological metaphors with the upbeat “Beautiful Storm”. Nga Taonga describes the video as, “Greg Johnson tours an Asian city and sings “Beautiful Storm” to camera as the surroundings move rapidly around him.”

Director: Bernadine Lim
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Ma-V-Elle “Don’t Be So Shy”

Ma-V-Elle have “Don’t Be So Shy”, described by the Kiwi Hit Disk as a “cool slice of original, soulful pop”. It’s the final Ma-V-Elle track funded by NZOA. The duo was to eventually disband, with Lavina ending up in the Australian Idol final 12 in 2006, among other achievements.

December 1999

Ardijah “Way Around You”

I’m pretty used to Ardijah videos not being online, and indeed “Way Around You” isn’t available.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Breathe “Sick & Tired”

“Sick & Tired” is another track from Breathe’s second album, the one that seemed really big at the time, but has now faded into history.

Fiona McDonald “Bury Me”

Described in a review I found on a vintage website as a “edgy, emotionally charged” song, “Bury Me” is another single from Fiona McDonald.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Garageland “Good Luck”

Garageland have the blusey “Good Luck”, another track off their second album “Do What You Want”.

The D4 “Come On!”

Another early track from The D4. “Come On!” is an typical piece of energetic rock. Here’s a fan video, setting the song to clips of rally cars sliding around corners.

Director: Alex Johnson
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

The Exponents “Big World Out Your Window”

“Big World Out Your Window” was the final Exponents track funded by NZOA. It was a single off their 1999 album “Hello, Love You, Goodbye”, a half-studio, half-live collection. There’s no sign of the “Window” vid, but I do know it was filmed on Mt Eden.

Director: Andrew Moore

Instead…

Here’s a video from the world of non-NZOA funding. Director Marc Swadel made the “Crystal Chain” video for Flying Nun group The Subliminals for “300 bucks and one re-used 100 foot reel of 16mm film”. As a NZ On Screen commenter notes, 100ft of film is only two minutes, 45 seconds. The solution? “A lot of repeats, keying over footage with footage, and other lo fi tricks”. It’s a moody delight.

Director: Marc Swadel
Nga Taonga Sound & Vision

Peter Stuyvesant Hitlist “Ode to K Road”

1998-peter-stuyvesant-k-roadThe Peter Stuyvesant Hitlist were known for their comedy loungey live styles, but they tone it right down for their second single, “Ode To K Road”. The video, made by Andrew Moore, Steve Sinkovich and Stuart Page, consists of sped-up footage of K Road, mostly with members of the band just standing around.

I lived on K Road around this time, so the video is a nice bit of nostalgia. When Karangahape Road appears in music videos, it’s normally at night, but “Ode to K Road” also happens at day time, with the very ordinary sunlit goings-on of the street.

It’s a reminder of K Road of the late ’90s, before Starbucks came, Rendalls closed and the adult shops disappeared. Back when it was all a bit shabby and the street was full of more weird shops than cool shops. (My favourite weird shop was the plastics shop that never every depreciated their prices, so there was a crappy old spice rack full of a long discontinued spice brand still selling for $39.95. As if.) Back when K Road has multiple second-hand record shops that wanted to eat all my money.

The song has a bittersweet tone and that feeling seeps through to the footage. It’s a reminder that K Road never really feels like it’s radically changed until the past is compared with the present. While there are plenty of familiar businesses (Rasoi, Leo O’Malley and, er, Dick Smith), the video is packed full of the ghosts of K Road past.

Best bit: the glistening metal facade of Al’s Diner.

Director: Andrew Moore
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… a scientific experiment gone wrong.

Voom “Beth”

1998-voom-bethThis is a lovely song. It makes people cry with its heartfelt experience of having a loved one move to Australia. The video, directed by Andrew Moore, is simple and gentle but has a fun, surreal setting.

The video opens with Buzz filmed in golden close-up, but we soon see him find a strange ring lying in a field. This ring has a power (and if I’d actually seen Lord of the Rings I’d make a specific reference here) – the power of flight. Can it take him to his trans-Tasman sweetie? No, but it’s still cool.

A pyjama-clad buzz flies amongst the clouds and ducks, which promoted YouTube commenter Anna to proclaim “I DONT KNOW HOW THIS CAN GET ANYMORE RIDICULOUS !! A MAN FLYING THROUGH THE AIR AND SINGING, WT ACTUALL FUCK!”

Sucked through a black hole into the centre of the earth, Buzz finds himself in a strange subterranean cave, where the palm of his hand sings and his bandmates appear in the form of a policeman and a prisoner. The three have an earnest conversation, before buzz takes off into space and is reunited with his guitar.

The end of the song – where the man’s voice flies through the air, like a duck – is a glorious explosion of colour and light and OMG-rool-trippy-as visuals. It’s probably not enough to make a girl come back from Australia, but it’ll help ease the pain for the boy.

Best bit: the cop and crim expanding from little to normal.

Director: Andrew Moore
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… low-tech virtual reality love.

The Stereo Bus “Be A Girl”

1997-the-stereo-bus-be-a-girl“Be A Girl” takes us into a teenage girl’s bedroom where we find a forlorn Dave Yetton. The room is decked out with posters John Lennon, Bee Gees, the Eurythmics and David Bowie. I was going to say this doesn’t look like the bedroom of a ’90s teenage girl, but maybe it is. Maybe she not listening to cool bands like Vercua Salt or the Smashing Pumpkins and is instead holed up in her bedroom, listening to pop classics, sad that no one else gets her.

The beginning of the video features a lot of Dave lazing about on the single bed, his only friend a little doll. It’s all very bright, colourful and feminine, even though the song and Dave’s long face is dragging things down.

About halfway through we meet the rest of the band hanging out in a field by the sea, looking all quirky, just like something out of a JPSE video. I’m less convinced by these scenes. They seem a little tacked on, but maybe this is a fantasy of the girl.

I really like this song. It’s very fragile and raw, looking at female weakness in a similar way that JPSE’s song “Flex” look at the male. So I feel like the video hasn’t quite captured the essence of the song. But yet there’s a lot of charm in the video, with the lonely girl/man, alone her in bedroom, being a girl.

Best bit: Dave’s mutual wave with the doll.

Director: Andrew Moore
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Bonus! Here’s the Stereo Bus playing the song live on Ice TV, including particularly pleasing close-ups of the arpeggio guitar work.

Next… a strong jawline.

The Stereo Bus “Don’t Open Your Eyes”

1997-the-stereo-bus-dont-open-your-eyesFour years after the last JPS Experience video, Dave Yetton returns with a new band, and curiously enough, the video for “Don’t Open Your Eyes” feels like an old JPS Experience vid.

Directed by Andrew Moore, the video follows a lone spaceman exploring a barren yellow-tinged environment (played by Bethells Beach). It’s very similar, in fact, to the look of David Kilgour’s “Beached” video from 1994. But while the “Beached” spaceman wanders about on the bleak, sinister planet, the Stereo Bus spaceman is having a bit more fun. For a start, he’s wearing gumboots.

The spaceman staggers about the alien world and eventually hits a golf ball, as that is what spacemen do. The golf ball takes us to Dave Yetton standing in front of a wall covered with silver foil, again very reminiscent of JPSE videos.

Dave seems to be in some sort of control room, with quickly cut glimpses of switches, lights. Combined with the bright colours and shots of Dave’s eyes, it feels like a homage to “2001: A Space Odyssey”. There’s also a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it shot helpfully captioned “Illuminati. Secret US Government Installation Security Camera Film”.

Eventually the camera calms down and we can make sense of Dave’s new surroundings. His control room is full of crazy music electronics – reel-to-reel tape recorders, speakers and monitors. And next to that, Dave hangs an electric sign reading “The Stereo Bus”. It has arrived.

Best bit: Dave holds an object that looks like a giant tin foil donut.

Director: Andrew Moore
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… chillin’ with Jordan.

The Exponents “One In A Lifetime”

1997-the-exponents-one-in-a-lifetimeJordan Luck takes to the mean streets of downtown Auckland for a solo promo. Starting from a stark inner-city apartment, he heads down to the vacinity of Albert Street, including a brief visit to the remains of dirty old Finance Plaza.

The Andrew Moore-directed video takes Jordan down to Queen Street, outside the picturesque facade of the old BNZ building, back to Albert Street for the lit-up trees outside the Stamford Plaza, down to the wharves for some pretty reflections, then finally up to K Road to be amongst the punks and Christians.

I appreciate this video more on a personal level. It was shot in the very first year I moved up to Auckland, when I spent a lot of time mooching around these very streets. I like that it exists as a record of Auckland in 1997, just one man and the city streets.

Best bit: the reminder that in the ’90s, sometimes downtown Auckland was really quiet and empty at night.

Director: Andrew Moore
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… fear of the carnies.

Loves Ugly Children “Sixpack”

1996-loves-ugly-children-six-packHey everyone, Loves Ugly Children are having a party. Starting the party prep nice and early, Simon jumps out of bed and has barely made it out of the bathroom before the suasage rolls are thrown in the oven. It’s going to be epic.

He gets on the phone and invites all his friends along. Kids, this is what people did in the days before Facebook. He even invites a person in a horse costume. Totally off the hook. (How off the hook was it? Director Andrew Moore says “This shoot was mental. Ended in an epic party scene that resulted in them having to dye their living room carpet another, darker colour.”)

Party prep continues, but I can’t help feel there haven’t been enough invites. Fortunately a young Mormon comes door-knocking. Simon drags him inside, yells at him for a bit and soon enough the young Mormon is helping out with the party prep.

The balloons are out and the party people have arrived. Things are cooking. Everyone’s having a good time – the Mormon, the horse, a kung fu guy, a girl in a cheongsam dress, a sheik, a devil – everything your momma warned you about.

The song is a fun punky love song and director Andrew Moore captures the manic energy of the song. It’s a crazy party as a metaphor for love. And that’s just fine with me.

Best bit: NZ On Screen have also noticed this – the pineapple hedgehog is brilliant.



Director: Andrew Moore
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… it’s NZ Music month!