Down in Splendour

Straitjacket Fits, Music Video, 1990

Director Andrew Dominik captures the dreamy essence of this early 90s gem superbly, while adding a slightly sinister edge (check out a sneering Shayne Carter). The use of colour over black and white, superimposed imagery (and "mouth cam") makes for a liquid delight. "Join the slide ..." Dominik went on to direct acclaimed features Chopper based on notorious Aussie crim Mark "Chopper" Read, starring Eric Bana; and The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford, and Killing Them Softly, both starring Brad Pitt.

Cat Inna Can

Straitjacket Fits, Music Video, 1993

This is one of four videos directed by Kiwi-born Andrew Dominik for band Straitjacket Fits. The brooding, disdainful 'Cat Inna Can' was the first single from the the Fits' third album, Blow, recorded in LA after the departure of guitarist Andrew Brough. The meowing guitars are matched with circling, swooping camerawork, in a video shot in a Sydney warehouse and cooling tower. Dominik went on to direct acclaimed crime films Chopper, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, and Killing Them Softly — the latter two starring Brad Pitt.

Juice

Headless Chickens, Music Video, 1994

Co-written by lead singer Fiona McDonald, 'Juice' celebrates the days when she watched morning music shows as a child. Alongside scenes of children playing outside, things take a more sinister turn indoors, with one particularly nightmarish sequence showing her younger self restrained in a dentist’s chair. 'Juice' was released paired with Chickens song 'Choppers', and won Single of the Year at the 1994 NZ Music Awards. It was originally recorded by McDonald’s other band, Strawpeople, under the title 'Dreamchild'. It featured on 1994 Strawpeople album Broadcast.

Done

Straitjacket Fits, Music Video, 1992

The first single from the final Straitjacket Fits album features a typically oblique Shayne Carter lyric hinting at despair and defiance  possibly touching on the departure of founding member Andrew Brough. The overcast lyrical content and lurching, hard edged guitars find their match in this black and white video from director Andrew Dominik, which shrouds the band in studio shadows. Dominik went on to direct lauded films Chopper, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, and Killing Them Softly (the latter two starring Brad Pitt).

If I Were You

Straitjacket Fits, Music Video, 1994

From Straitjacket Fits’ third and final album Blow, ‘If I Were You’ keeps its hand on the sonic brake, while providing contrast with the melodic sounds of recently departed bandmember Andrew Brough. Director Andrew Dominik’s moody music video accents Shayne Carter’s niggly ‘agony uncle’ lyrical advice via fireworks, watery prism effects and lip close-ups. The Fits’ final single made APRA’s Top 100 Kiwi song list. Dominik went on to direct Chopper, Killing Them Softly and acclaimed Nick Cave documentary One More Time with Feeling.