Betchadupa “Sleepy News”

2001-betchadupa-sleepy-news“Sleepy News” was the first single off Betchadupa’s second album “The Alphabetchadupa”. It’s also notable as being the first appearance of Liam Finn’s beard, Che Guevara-style wisps that gave little hint of the bushy Department-of-Conversation-worker-style facial hair he was to sport in later years.

Director Greg Page has fun with the old “torture the band” format. Shot in bold black and white, the video begins with Liam alone in a grimy room, playing his guitar while standing on tiptoes. It turns out Liam is attached to a wire harness which is slightly pulling him off the ground. And it surely means we’re going to get some Peter Pan antics later.

We also see Liam and the rest of the band in the same room, only this time they’re being drenched in water. And interestingly enough, all the guitars are shown as being plugged in. When Liam sings, “I’m dead and you killed me,” perhaps he’s refering to a mass electricution. Everyone knows that electricty and water don’t mix.

Solo Liam also gets to go for a bit of a twirl on his harness. The room is dimly lit and other members of the band wander over in ghostly layers and muck around while Liam spins.

“Sleepy News” is a fierce song – tense and grungy. The video adds to that and captures their performance energy. And who doesn’t love a good wet hair flick?

Best bit: Liam’s hat, boringly obeying the laws of gravity.

There’s no embeddable version of the video, but you can watch a good quality version over at Greg Page’s director portfolio at Fish ‘n’ Clips.

Director: Greg Page
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

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