Found videos from the 2000s

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Missing videos from 2003

February 2003

Dead End Beat “Nervous Bag”

Dead End Beat were basically a slightly older and wiser Breathe with a new drummer. “Nervous Bag” was their debut single.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Donald Reid “The Return”

Donald Reid is the brother of James from the Feelers. “The Return” was his debut single, though I can’t find any evidence of there having been a video made for it, though Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision has an entry for the album track “No Ordinary Day”, which isn’t on the NZOA funding list.

Evermore “Pick Yourself Up”

“Pick Yourself Up” was another track from Evermore’s “Oil & Water” EP. I’m not sure if there was actually a video made, but it’s on the list.

Hendrix Warren “Empty”

I wasn’t sure if the video for Hendrix Warren’s song “Empty” existed, but I found the online CV of a camera operator, who lists the video production amongst his work history. Well, that’s good.

Director: Ivan Slavov

Pluto “On Your Own”

Pluto have “On Your Own”, another track from their album “Pipeline Under The Ocean”.

Director: Wade Shotter
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Soda “Falling Faster Now”

According to the band’s description on Amplifier, Soda’s “Falling Faster Now” video “explores the depths of Karaoke booth kitsch”. More than Rufus Wainwright’s “California” video?

The Brunettes “Boy Racer”

A few months ago The Brunettes’ “Boy Racer” video was on YouTube, but it’s since been taken down. I watched it once back then and I remember it involved the band performing at an empty theatre, as well as their backstage preparations. I mourn the loss.

Director: Daniel Monaghan
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

April 2003

50Hz “Smooth Rhodes”

More relaxing beats from 50Hz. “Smooth Rhodes” has guest vocals from Miss La.

P-Money “Go With The Flow”

There’s a P-Money track listed called “Go with the Flow”, but I can’t find any other mention of a song by that name. As far as I can tell, there were no more videos made for tracks from P-Money’s debut album Big Things.

June 2003

Brett Sawyer “Save Me Now”

“Save Me Now” was the sixth funded video that Brett Sawyer had and – surprise, surprise – it’s also the sixth of his videos to not be online. I’m very intrigued by him now. I’d love to see just one of his videos.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Carly Binding “This Is It”

Carly Binding’s single “This Is It” reached No.12 in the charts. It’s not online, but you can see her performing the song live with Donald Reid in 2006.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Dead End Beat “Tonite We Ride”

Dead End Beat have “Tonight We Ride” – not to be confused with “We Ride Tonight” by D-Super. It’s a fairly ordinary early 2000s rock ‘n’ roll number.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Emcee Lucia “All This Time”

Emcee Lucia was the first New Zealand female MC to release a solo album. “All This Time” was the first track. She’s one of those artists who had a lot of buzz at the time, but I haven’t been able to figure out if she’s done anything lately.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

August 2003

The Bads “Don’t Go Losing”

In one database this track was listed as being by Diane Swann, one half of the Bads. “Don’t Go Losing” was the duo’s first single. I’m not actually sure if a video was made for this track. In 2003, Radio New Zealand broadcast a retrospective of Diane Swann’s music career to date. At that stage, “Don’t Go Losing” was due to be the first single released by The Bads. A profile at NZ Musician mentions that The Bads parted ways with their record company “after several videos had been shot and were poised for release”, so that might explain it.

Evermore “Hold On”

“Hold On” was a track from Evermore’s EP “My Own Way”, their last release before their debut album “Dreams” kicked off their success in Australia.

Taisha “I’ll Go”

After appearing in OMC’s video for”Land of Plenty”, R&B songstress Taisha had the country-tinged “I’ll Go”. She’s now part of the all-star cover band the Lady Killers.

Director: Ivan Slavov

October 2003

Brooke Fraser “Lifeline”

The original version of Brooke Fraser’s “Lifeline” video is not online. From memory, it involved Brooke and her band, dressed in overalls, playing a board game called Lifeline that administered electric shocks for losing moves – like a low-budget version of the Domination game from “Never Say Never Again”. And I have this idea that it ended up Brooke winning the game and her opponents being reduced to a smouldering pile of overalls.

The video was a bit darker and yet goofier than the song required, so director Joe Lonie filmed a new video, this time with Brooke walking through scenic landscapes (with a typical Lonie twist).

Director: Joe Lonie
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision – New Zealand version
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision – international version

Paselode “C’Mon Hallelujah”

Paselode were a rock band from Wellington. I saw them live few times in 2003 and they were always entertaining. Their songs were always about a minute too long and had one person too many playing on the track (they were a five-piece band but felt like an unwieldy ska band). “C’Mon Hallelujah” was their lone NZ On Air funded single. The band broke up shortly after, but not before the Simmonds Brothers told the band’s tumultuous story in the animated short film “The Paselode Story”.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

December 2003

There are no missing videos from December 2003!


This month’s consolation video is the super chill “Dawnskate-88” by The Video Kid, a side project by Black Seeds and Flight of the Conchords dude Bret McKenzie. This non-NZOA-funded video shows Bret and pals having a skate down the streets of Mt Victoria, then along a deserted Lambton Quay. It’s so Wellington.

Rubicon “Energy Levels”

2003-rubicon-energy-levelsOooh, Rubicon get serious. “Energy Levels” is a downbeat grungy number, with vocals by bassist Jon Corker. It’s a change from the frenetic energy of the band’s Paul Reid-fronted numbers.

“My energy levels are making me slower,” he sings. Whatever, sonny-jim. Just wait till you’re older and you start to look forward to staying in. But then he sings “My energy levels: made of clover,” which is the worst lyric ever. Unless he is like a cow who has eaten too much clover and is suffering from bloat. In that case, he should try that lady yoghurt that Lorraine Downes promotes.

The video starts by focuses on Jon’s serious rock face, but it’s not until the chorus kicks off (Pixies/Nirvana style) that he really gets to work with some quality eyeball acting. He has a good brooding style – again, a refreshing change from the usual Rubican fun ball.

The band are performing in some sort of bunker, surrounding by big concrete walls, lit by a distant strobe with a bit of smoke. It’s perfectly good standard rock video, but why?

It’s strange for Rubicon to have suddenly turned into this rather different band. “Energy Levels” was the seventh video taken from their “Primary” album and it’s hard to guess what they were trying to do with this. Was it a stab in a more mature direction? Or a hint of the eventual departure of Corker and guitarist Gene Bennet?

Best bit: the happy pop face returns at 1:25.

Director: Gareth Edwards

Next… getting up early.

Pine “Days on End”

2003-pine-days-on-end“Days on End” was shot in one take, but it doesn’t feel like a typically gimmicky “one-take wonder”. The video was shot in New York City and focuses on band members walking the city streets, but it isn’t a simple walk around the block.

Instead the band cover vast distances, catching taxis to take them around the city. When we see Aaron and Stephen lip-syncing, the video is slowed down, given a dreamy feeling. But in between verses the action speeds up with the group zipping around the streets, so fast it’s impossible to keep track of their journey.

It’s a chilled-out, lazy song, and the video is just as relaxed. The potentially exotic setting of New York hasn’t been allowed to dominate the video. This isn’t a band who are bursting with excitement at being in the Big Apple. It’s just some people hanging out in a city.

Best bit: the sped-up journey slows down for a little while to feature a couple of old ladies hobbling along the footpath.

Note: The first 1:23 of this video is bars and tone, which is very unpleasant.

Director: Richard Bell

Next… put your serious face on.

Opshop “Nothing Can Wait”

2003-opshop-nothing-can-waitAfter an earlier incarnation called GST, Jason Kerrison and pals became Opshop and kicked off with “Nothing Can Wait”. As the band’s bio states, in 2003 they won a New Zealand music radio competition that helped give them a break.

The “Nothing Can Wait” video is filmed in the band’s home town of Christchurch. Sometimes it’s obvious, like when we see the busy cranes of Lyttelton or the Moorhouse Ave overbridge, other times they could be on any street in any New Zealand town.

The band are on a street because they’re playing an impromptu gig in the middle of a road. Traffic from both directions is builds up around them. But rather than causing an impromptu street party or some “Everybody Hurts” traffic jam self-reflection, the disruption just causes anger and confusion – a pretty realistic reaction.

Conveniently enough, the surrounding vehicles are all very photogenic, including a big yellow truck and a dinky old blue car. The truck driver is angry and yells in Jason’s face, but most of the other drivers are just curious to see what’s going on. Hey, free concert!

Being set in Christchurch, the video has a few moment of “oh…”. The glorious day-to-night panoramic shot of the city skyline is now like a memorial of all the city’s many demolished buildings, including the Grand Chancellor Hotel.

Back back on the ground, the band are having fun being dorks, rocking out in the middle of the road. It’s a good introduction to the world of Opshop.

Best bit: Jason’s in-your-face attitude to the angry truck driver.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… getting across town.

Michelle Kazor “Crowded Room”

2003-michelle-kazor-crowded-roomExpat American Michelle Kazor had enjoyed a lot of radio success with her debut single “In This Life” and a web search shows remnants of breathless PR about her. But it was not to last. “Crowded Room” was her second and final single and video.

The song has a very radio sound to it, a pleasant rock infused number. The video is centred around a truck. But it’s not just any truck. It’s a magical truck.

At the truck depot, Michelle finds the truck full of mannequins, including a horse – and we get a shot of the mannequin company’s logo. But beyond the mannequins she discovers a mini performance area. Oh, how unusual!

Behind the wheel, Michelle heads off into the countryside, picking up all the freaks and rogues she happens to find by the side of the road, including a drummer, a transvestite, and a comedy Mexican. All these people filed into the TARDIS-like truck and become the audience as she performs on the truck stage – the crowded room.

The video doesn’t quite work for me because it’s mixing a pretty straight MOR music video concept with some wacky zany madcap lolz. I think the video was attempting to do the old freaky friends thing, but suffers from a shortage of decent freaky friends.

Best bit: the horse mannequin making another appearance in a paddock.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Director: Ivan Slavov

Next… there’s gonna be a roadblock.

King Kapisi featuring Che Fu “U Can’t Resist Us”

2003-king-kapisi-u-cant-resist-usA giant crown-shaped cloud overs above the setting of this hip hop video: it’s a farm. It’s not the first time a New Zealand hip hop video has used this unconventional location. In 2000 Dark Tower’s “You Beauty” threw out the symbolic hip hop rulebook and filmed on a farm.

But while King Kapisi, Che Fu and friends have just as much fun down on the farm, their rural adventure is more focused and more… sheepy. Directed by Chris Graham, the video makes bold use of the landscape and the photogenic farm life.

The video starts with King Kapisi burst out of the middle of a flock of sheep (who have a much happier life than the sheep in the Skeptics’ notorious “AFFCO” video), leading to a livestock auction taken by former All Black Michael Jones. The video is full of cameos, with Inga Tuigamala, Imon Starr (of Rhombus), Oscar Kightley (recently seen in the Ill Semantics “Watching You” video), Nathan Rarere, director Chris Graham, and the late great Peter Fatialofa.

The auction over, King Kapisi hurls around some nunchakus made from jandals, before joining Che and Imon in the woolshed for some shearing. There’s a surreal break in the middle of the song where the three talk in shrill-voiced Kiwispeak on a smoko. “Oh, fair suck of sav, man,” says Che.

And there’s more fun to be had. Che and Kapisi go for a hoon on a tractor with a booming sound system, then as night comes, the younger dudes go on an eel hunt.

Artists go to so much effort trying to make Auckland seem so much more gritty and urban than it actually is. It’s really refreshing to see a video that happily abandons that world and goes in the opposite direction – a day in the countryside.

Best bit: Che Fu flouting the “No lying in wool bins” sign.

Director: Chris Graham
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… it’s a bloody big truck.

Gramsci & Anika Moa “Don’t”

2003-gramsci-anika-moa-dontNeither Paul McLaney (aka Gramsci) nor Anika Moa feature in this video. Instead it’s a partially animated adventure involve a woman walking on a tightrope, a man holding the rope tight, and a sweeping panorama.

According the profile at Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision, the “Don’t” video was filmed in an old church, using blue tarpaulins for a DIY chroma-key background (that didn’t even work properly), with the actress playing the showgirl doing all her tightrope walking on the floor.

The background is an animated fantasy version of Wellington, tall buildings, the wide harbour but also unfamiliar snow-capped peaks. As the camera swoops around the tightrope walker, the landscape changes. NZ On Screen also notes that the background was created from still images taken by director Ed Davis.

The background and highwire drama changes and intensifies with the song, an uneasy duet. The tightrope walker does flips and tricks which – even though it’s all fake – still create a splendid tension.

And with all that tension set up, it seems inevitable that the tightrope walker would fall. She does, whooshing through an ever-changing landscape, into the arms of the man who was holding her rope. Well, that’s a happy ending.

“Don’t” won best video at the 2003 New Zealand Music Video Awards.

Best bit: the artistic balancing, impressive even on the flat.

Director: Ed Davis
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… wake up, sheep and people.

Dimmer “Getting What You Give”

2003-dimmer-getting-what-you-giveA door opens and a man walks in. It’s a computer generated man, walking with a funky slouch, as designed by Dimmer’s drummer Gary Sullivan. The figure is soon joined by identical others, and in single-file they lumber through an ever-changing landscape, past water, flowers, a burning country manor and into a desolate city.

It’s a slow-moving video, hooked on the funk grooves of the song. The video ain’t in no big hurry either. The second half of the video shows the super chilled-out clones taking the subway to the airport.

There are hints of something sinister happening. The city streets are, after all, otherwise deserted, surrounded by barbed-wire-armoured buildings. When the clones go down into the subway, we see it from the perspective of CCTV footage and there’s a lingering shot looking at an inquisitive camera.

I’m at a point where I’m trying to figure if there’s something deeper to the video than the general sense of unease. Is the airport symbolic in a post-9/11 context? I dunno. Well, the video was nominated for best music video at the 2004 New Zealand Music Awards.

Best bit: the garden of flowers, that killer combo of pretty and sinister.

Director: Gary Sullivan
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… a tightrope walk.

Blindspott “Phlex”

2003-blindspott-phlex“Phlex” is Blindspott’s highest charting single. It reached number three, only kept off the top spot by the double whammy of Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard’s American Idol singles (and then chased well away by the almighty “Ignition Remix” the next week).

The “Phlex” video is also significant because – so far in the 5000 Ways adventure – it has the first appearance of the graffiti-style NZ On Air logo, the first major reworking of the original late ’80s logo.

In contrast to the band’s angry dude music of previous singles, “Phlex” has a positive message and is a slower, more subdued song. The video sees the band hanging out at a dude flat, with camouflage duvets, gig poster decor and turntables in the kitchen. There’s even a guy shaving his hair, a full decade before Lorde’s friends did the same in “Royals”.

The camera slowly pans from left to right in every show, giving the feeling that we’re witnesses an ordinary slice of life in the Blindspott house. Lead singer Damien spends much of the video sitting against a wall with the silhouette of a laughing cartoon character right next to his head. It’s distracting, like the cartoon character is laughing at Blindspott for being so serious.

But the video is generally just the band sitting around in the dude flat, all with blank expressions on their faces. No one looks like they’re having a great time, but they don’t look all that miserable either.

The video ends with a graffiti artist painting a giant “Phlex” on the lounge room wall (he’s wearing a respirator, the others in the room aren’t; breathe deep, guys) and this seems symbolic of the way hip hop culture was becoming more mainstream. Here’s a rock ballad (with a bit of turntablism) and it seems like the most natural complement to have some graffiti in there too.

Best bit: the face freshening in the bathroom – most invigorating.

Director: Greg Page
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Next… send in the clones.