Headless Chickens “George”

1994-headless-chickens-georgeWhen Fiona McDonald was announced as one of the judges on NZ Idol and hoardes of teens commented online that they’d never heard of her, this is what I pointed them to. The Headless Chicken’s only number one single, and indeed the first number one for a Flying Nun artist.

It’s a dark song, a reminder of how awful and self-destructive relationships can get. And when compared to the band’s more lively earlier videos, it’s a sign of how far the Fiona-era Chickens came in such a short period, and how the group didn’t have much further to go.

The video is equally dark. Fiona, never afraid to not be pretty in a video, is filmed with harsh uplighting, giving her a similar shawdow moustache to Che Fu in Supergroove’s “Can’t Get Enough” video.

A tattoed man creeps towards the camera, an old man offers a birthday cake iced with “George”, other band members stare at the camera, making it clear that they too know of the terrible thing that has happened.

I love that a song like this can make it to number one in New Zealand. Everything is OK.

Best bit: Old George holding his cake, standing by an open fridge door.



Directors: Marcus Ringrose, Gideon Keith
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… the sailor boys return to their old neighbourhood.

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