“On the Run” was OMC’s third single and last NZOA-funded video. It was the lowest charting OMC single in New Zealand (#30), but it charted in the UK (#56) and the Netherlands (#98). It’s a far cry from the glory days of “How Bizarre”, but it’s certainly not bad going.
The song is a moody track with a disco funk bass and some fab 1960s guitar tremolo, while Pauly raps and sings about being on the run, a simultaneous blend of pop star and badass.
After an introduction with a Betty Draper-ish, we meet Pauly, hiding out in a dark motel room, his face cast with shadows from venetian blinds. We also see him in a colourful room, sometimes playing his guitar, wearing a silver jacket at a press conference, and wearing a 1960s leisure suit as he is spun around on a rotating wall.
Betty also makes an appearance in these locations, but never at the same time as Pauly. She’s in the company of a sinister-looking man who seems to be keeping her prisoner. If she knows anything about Pauly’s whereabouts, she’s not snitching.
There’s no conclusion, no hint that this drama will be resolved. The video ends with a pause on Pauly and then a fade to black.
In his book How Bizarre, Simon Grigg notes that the video shoot was masterminded by the Australian record company. He describes the video as, “excessively glitzy, and devoid of anything resembling personality – Pauly’s or anyone else’s. It completely missed what it was that made Pauly stand out from the international mire.”
Best bit: Pauly banging out some instro guitar – a perfect way to pass the time when laying low.
Director: Mark Hartley
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision
It would be nice if the OMC videography ended here, but there was also “I Love LA”, an irony-free cover of the heavily ironic Randy Newman song, recorded for the “Mr Bean” movie soundtrack. Simon Grigg notes: “The embarrassing video, in a Hollywood pool, cost more than every video and recording made by Pauly to date, combined. An almighty flop, a terrible record, and a career killer. Its on my label but I disowned it before release.” View with caution.
Next… outrageous sexy ’90s party.