“King of The Light” is a song produced by LAPIS featuring Reuben Hudson. The song has an incredible music video which is directed, edited and filmed by Jasper Johnstone and also filmed by Bryce Tobin. Both have previously worked for RNZ and as part of the Growroom, creating The Grow Room live sessions and Profiles videos.

Akim Heinicke-Waengler aka LAPIS is a multi-disciplined artist and a producer/singer-songwriter based in Auckland, New Zealand. He is affiliated with The Growroom, YGB, Cosmic Compositions and has produced music alongside Christoph el Truento, Melodownz and Badcrop among others. He has performed in a variety of forms including live bands and performance art – ‘Sound Painting’ series w/ el Truento. His debut album ‘Third Person You’ is set to be released in Autumn/Winter 2019 on the Portland based label Fresh Selects, who roster the likes of Charlotte dos Santos, Low Leaf, MNDSGN and Iman Omari.

Reuben Hudson is a singer-songwriter, producer and actor based in Auckland, New Zealand. He has appeared in ‘Nothing Much to Do’ (2014) and ‘Lovely Little Losers’ (2014) as an actor as well as composing and performing music for the features. He has recently worked in this role accompanying live theatre performances. He is prolific writer and regularly releases music on his bandcamp.


Jasper Johnstone is a talented and diligent director affiliated with The Growroom. Working as a freelancer in the film industry for the last six years, he specialises in camera work and uses natural light to showcase his subject matter as it is. From shooting, editing, coloring and directing, he excels above and beyond wherever his eye takes him.

King of The Light

King of The Light’ tells a ‘coming of age’ story based on the personal experience of both of the artists. In the video the characters reflect on what it means to let go of childhood, cut the cords of the past and leave the comfort of home.

The video illustrates the tug-of-war between the safety of the known environment and the necessary exposure to the unknown and untamed. The lyrics reference the mythological tale of Iron John, a story which has been used to symbolize the journey of a boy into manhood. There is a struggle with the urge to return back to the womb, as did Maui, to feel the immortalizing relief of merging back into the universe.

The artists both realize that they must go into the light, overcoming existential dread and accepting the responsibilities of life. They must become self reliant and self sufficient in order to create their very own reality and move towards their most mature form. This form is captured symbolically as the archetype of the ‘king’; a sovereign and wise character, a master of himself, who will complete the circle as a father to the next generation.

Reuben Hudson introduces the ‘King of the Dark’ and highlights the suffering and challenge we must endure to complete our rite of passage. We realize that turning back represents certain death and unfulfillment of our intrinsic potential and our destiny to unfold to our natural form.

We believe this video and song deserve exposure not just because of their artistic value but also because of the valuable message that is conveyed. Our community lacks accessible and engaging information on what it means to grow up as a man in a healthy way, and what the signposts are along the way. We believe this video gives good insights into this subject matter and is conveyed in a way that can be powerfully received by the audience through the lyrics, performance and direction of the video.

Akim thoughts:

Jasper Johnston used this opportunity to really showcase his creativity and professional attitude in the directorial role. The visual concepts and photography, storyboard, editing and film work were all his, and he was able to capture something that is visually stunning and truly congruent with the content of the music and its narrative. I decided to trust him with complete freedom to execute his vision (one which I was convinced by from the moment he approached me with the idea to make the video) and it has payed off tenfold. It impressed me how professionally he put together project timelines and storyboards and executed them.

The video was shot between Point Chevalier, Sandringham and Anawhata beach, over one month.

It was an incredibly fun experience and performing alongside Reuben gave me more understanding of what we expressed in the song when we recorded it, originally in 2015.

Reuben thoughts:

The meaning of this song has changed dramatically for me since first writing my section. While Akim’s message still rings true, mine feels like a snapshot of the way my life felt at that age. I’d just moved away from home and was going through an experience that many young men go through – wanting independence but also stretching our freedom too far with a general disregard for mental/physical health and wellbeing.

I still feel the changes in my relationship with my mother. I am much more capable of independence and I almost feel as if my relationship with my mother has been torn apart by growing up. It is a tough emotion to hold. However, I still experience motherly love and that is unconditional and forever. I just need to remember to acknowledge and be present with that more often.

Jasper thoughts:

I first heard the song in August last year, I was over in Bali writing my first screenplay and brainstorming a few shoots for when I got home, I heard King of the Light and I just had it on repeat all morning coming up with concepts on how to produce some unique killer images, while subtly highlighting the meaning behind the song.

To me its about two grown boys leaving home and turning into men, going out into the real world to fend for themselves, something I could relate to heavily as I had only just left the comfortable nest of my parents house that year.

I think anyone who watches the video is going to be captivated with a sense of nostalgia, a memory of childhood, a time where everything was new and nothing was mundane.

Putting this project together for me was extremely exciting as Lapis gave me full creative control to create my vision, I was passionate about the track so I wanted to bring it to life, being a film about coming of age (my favorite movie genre) I decided to use my newly acquired vintage cinema lenses to shoot it, giving everything a soft warm feel and beautiful use of flares and color rendition.

I really enjoyed seeing this video come to life, from shooting 3 different locations, to re-editing till I got it right, all the way to coloring the different color tones as the video progressed.

Check Out The Official Music Video Here.