Early standard bearers for the Flying Nun label, The Clean ended their first incarnation with this abrasive, rollicking, darkly-humoured take on the aging process (featuring backing vocals from Chris Knox and some Robert Scott trumpet). Ronnie van Hout, who designed much of the label's early artwork, turned his hand at directing for this clip. Without a budget, he utilised the Christchurch service lanes and aging inner city buildings which housed so many of the local music industry's bars, clubs and rehearsal rooms (and a succession of early Flying Nun offices).
An eco-anthem lurks at the heart of this infectious, upbeat Minuit number. To accompany it, director Sally Tran conjures up a claustrophobic world where people are trapped inside a decaying building (actually Spookers haunted house at Karaka), and flowers and outdoor pursuits are the stuff of museum displays. Lead vocalist Ruth Carr (complete with bird make-up) and her dancers run this way and that, but there seems to be no escape. The song plays out with Carr singing to herself because she decided no-one else would write a song with her name in it.
Don McGlashan has never been scared to use Kiwi place names in his songs, including on this classic debut single by The Mutton Birds. Inspired by a man glimpsed from the bus one day — a resident of the fabled “halfway house, halfway down Dominion Road” — McGlashan spins a tale of redemption on one of Auckland’s busiest arterial routes. The colour footage (showing glimpses of forgotten shops, and a less multicultural streetscape than today) is by cinematographer Leon Narbey. An alternative video for the song was shot inside an old armoury building in London.