December 2006: Falter, Hollie Smith, Kat McDowell, Midnight Youth, Miriam Clancy

A car explodes! An actual car explodes in a massive ball of flames! Also: Holly gets moody, Kat rocks Tokyo, Miriam goes skating and Midnight Youth fight the power.

Falter “Splinter”

This video is incredible. It starts with a girl warning her boyfriend to stay away from his bad-news older brother, it ends with a car exploding in a fireball. In the middle there is some quality overacting, including meaningful glances, emotional dialogue and furious rages. But the car! An actual car explodes!

Director: Scott Boswell
Nga Taonga Sound & Vision

Hollie Smith “I Will Do”

While Hollie Smith plays the song in a bar, a troubled guy wanders the streets, seemingly trying to get away from the temptations of a troubled life. It’s very atmospheric, creating a portrait of a city at night that is both menacing and comforting.

Director: Alex Sutherland
Nga Taonga Sound & Vision

Kat McDowell “Not Good For Me”

With so many music videos using Tokyo as an exotic location, it’s a welcome relief to find a video set there because it’s the artist’s hometown. Kat McDowell was born in Tokyo and raised in Auckland and performs in both English and Japanese. While this video is a fairly ordinary low-budget job, it’s just nice to see Tokyo used as a random city in a music video, rather than in a “Look at me! I’m in Japan!!!” way.

Director: Noel Evans

Midnight Youth “A New Day”

The video starts with this premise: “Music has been outlawed. Midnight Youth are taking a stand.” This means the band are playing in an old abandoned warehouse (with no sign of any innocent onlookers), while the police are there to shut them down. The head cop seems to have been based on the sheriff from the Crunchy Nut cornflakes ad, and at one point there is an attempt to lure out the band with pizza, before smoke and guns are used. Very dramatic.

Director: Scott Boswell

Miriam Clancy “Don’t Let It Get You Down”

This video is shot in a continuous take, following Miriam Clancy as she skates around a roller rink two and a half times before exiting. This isn’t the glam, sexy roller life of BeyoncĂ©’s “Blow” video. Rather, this is a dark roller suburban New Zealand roller rink, when all the other skaters are black-clad teens, like they’re down at the roller rink because there’s nothing better to do.

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