The Feelers “World Away”

1999-the-feelers-world-awayHere’s a video in a nutshell: the Feelers perform the song “World Away” live in Helen Young Studio while a camera crew film them. And that’s it.

It’s a curious thing. The concept seems like it should be fairly interesting at a bare minimum, but it’s strangely dull. There’s no magic, no buzz, no showbiz. It’s literally just four guys in a recording studio performing a song.

I think the set-up is part of the problem. It’s a band and a film crew crammed into a recording studio. Everyone has to stay in their own space to avoid messing up the playing or the recording. So the Feelers are rooted to the spot, daring not to move too much. The camera crew is likewise hiding in corners or sliding back and forth on a dolly track.

Whatever you think about the music of the Feelers, they usually make pretty entertaining music videos. But the “World Away” video feels like it’s gone to great lengths to show us a side of the rock experience that bands don’t normally make public. It’s the dull routine of recording a song in a studio. There’s none of the vibrant live energy we saw in their “Pull the Strings” video. It’s kind of boring.

But here’s the funny thing. This song reached number nine in the pop charts, making it one of the Feelers most successful singles. Perhaps this video shows a side of the band that very much appeals to its fans.

Best bit: the random arty out-of-focus camera shots.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

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