February 2007: Opshop, Paul McLaney, Revolver, SJD, Streetwise Scarlet, Taye Williams

Torture the band (in style), vast barren mudflats, fighter pilots, cheerful gloom, and Taye entertains.
Continue reading February 2007: Opshop, Paul McLaney, Revolver, SJD, Streetwise Scarlet, Taye Williams

Autozamm “You Don’t Know Me”

2004-autozamm-you-dont-know-meIt’s the return of Autozamm and this time they’re found in an old gun emplacement, one of the ones constructed in anticipation of an enemy that never came. Never mind – Autozamm have brought their own conflict to the site.

The video starts with the band posing for a series of photos, then they start fighting. The entire video – which appears to have been shot in one continuous take – involves the band throwing choreographed punches, taking turns at beating each other up.

It’s been shot with all the punches thrown and lyrics lip-synched in a slowed down form, then adjusted in post-production to give the effect of a more urgent brawl. The thing is, none of the fighting looks real. The band members are obviously not being beaten up, and after a while it begins to look less like fighting and more like an elaborately choreographed performance art piece.

It’s like a trick. If the band members were wearing black leotards and performing on stage, most Autozamm fans wouldn’t be at all interested. But put them in jeans and t-shirts inside a bleak military setting and suddenly it’s all martial and cool.

The video also has heaps of YouTube comments from people who love the video. Particularly, there are comments from people who are fans of the editing software that let all the sped-up and slowed-down bits happen. In fact, most comments are about how technically brilliant the video is, with few comments on the song itself.

Best bit: that Mikee Autozamm is so hard that he brawls without removing his specs.

Director: Ed Davis
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… a starry night.

Bic Runga “Sway”

1997-bic-runga-swayThe better known “Sway” video is the American version aka “Love Theme From American Pie”. It’s the black and white vid where Bic mooches over a shaggy-haired hipster called Jones who works in an Italian deli. As well as using a punchier mix of the song, that video largely focuses on Bic, introducing her to the international pop world. (Director Karen Lamond, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision)

But before that, there was the locally made “Sway” video, directed by Joe Lonie. Shot in vivid colour, the video focuses on Bic playing with her band, both in a cool inner-city apartment and on stage at a bar. We also catch a glimpse of Bic frolicking on a west coast beach, shot like a home video.

Somehow Bic seems a lot older in this video than the American version. I think it’s down to her heavy makeup, bulky clothing and her older bandmates. In the other version, she’s a gamine pixie girl.

In the bar scenes, Bic and band play to a small crowd of slow-dancing couples. It feels like the end of an evening where everyone is a bit wasted and has fallen in the arms of whoever’s nearest.

In Bic Runga’s New Zealand pop career this was her third single, so it makes sense that the video would try something different from the “here’s Bic” of the previous two. But this video feels cluttered, like there are too many bit players filling up the screen. She’s still the star but is treated like one of many items of interest.

Best bit: Bic’s giant op shop jacket, the uniform of a good ’90s girl.

Director: Joe Lonie
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… the ruins of modern civilisation.