Augustino “Into The Grain”

2001-augustino-into-the-grainI love this video so much. In fact, if someone told me I had to stop 5000 Ways today, I’d almost be ok with that. “Into the Grain” is little over two and a half minutes long, but it feels like every shot in the film is the right thing in the right place.

The video begins with a door, the NZ On Air logo rotating on a door hanger. Eagle-eyed readers will noticed that this is where I got the above header image from. Inside we find Sean from Augustino sitting on a chair in an otherwise empty room. It’s decorated with shagpile carpet and a grotesque rococo-style wallpaper. The camera slowly pans in on him, but it feel like hesitant pan, as if it’s afraid to get too close. After the first stanza Sean stops lip-synching and turns to the left. He notices that the wallpaper pattern is writing. Trippy as.

The chorus switches to Augustino rocking out in a small room. It looks like they’re in a rundown house, a contrast from the room of weird. For the next verse we’re back with Sean in the freaky room. It continues to be freaky and then it’s really annoying because a fly walks across your screen. You go to swat it away but suddenly realise it’s part of the music video. Well, you think, that was a neat trick.

Back to the chorus and this time we see the band graffitiing a room in the rundown house. It’s the worst graffiti ever, just random scribbles. I mean, a 13-year-old kid from the suburbs could tag up a wall with greater style than that.

Again we join Sean as he continues to stare down the camera. But suddenly flies start crawling out of his mouth, and the image starts to shake and warp. It wasn’t just one trick fly – they’re everywhere! It’s like the video has become too intense and is breaking apart from the pressure.

What’s the perfect antidote to an intense situation? Why, a coffee break. We join the band in the kitchen of the old house, having a sped-up coffee break. But this is not enough to stem the chaos. Sean bravely swats away the increasing numbers of flies that are pestering him, and soon the screen becomes crowded with the pests.

The video was directed by Augustino drummer Wade Shotter. As well as having really strong usuals, the video also has a great sense of rhythm. “Into the Grain” is a manic, slightly ridiculous song about getting out of it on drugs, but the video takes that to a whole ‘nother level.

Best bit: the warping wallpaper, the merest hint of the craziness to follow.

Director: Wade Shotter

Next… step inside a world of fantasy.

5 thoughts on “Augustino “Into The Grain””

  1. good work on getting through the first 10 years Robyn.
    Are you saying that 42% of the videos funded by NZ on air are unavailable to be easily viewed? ie of 822 videos funded and completed only 474 are in current circulation?

    1. That’s about it, yes. Of the missing ones, some are in the Film Archive and some have disappeared from copyright takedowns from overzealous record companies. There are also weird things like how Annie Crummer’s entire videography was on, until one day it all went away. NZ On Screen is good at tracking down missing gems. The rest of the videos are, I suspect, hiding in cardboard boxes under beds and in garages around New Zealand.

  2. Hi Robyn, re your comment: “Also, NZ On Air have for some time required all funded videos to be lodged with the Film Archive, so the mistakes of the past aren’t being repeated.”

    NZ On Air had a voluntary requirement in its funding contract for lodging videos with the Film Archive – if they requested the video (hence the large gaps), and that only changed to being made compulsory in March 2012. So it has not been a requirement for some time, its only very recent.

    It’s disappointing that such a huge chunk of public money went into making these videos with no consideration of archiving them for future generations, and only focusing on getting them in front of the current generation, as is NZOA’s agenda. The number of great local videos that I half remember and will never see again depresses me.

    1. Ah, I knew the change had happened, I just wasn’t sure how long it had been in place. Thanks for clarifying.

      It is indeed disappointing that so many videos are missing. It breaks my heart when there’s a particularly significant video not online anywhere. I make suggestions to NZ On Screen, and they’ve been really good at tracking down some oldies. But, well, if a video isn’t available anywhere, it can’t be digitised.

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