Wellington City Libraries

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Grayson Gilmour


Decade(s) active:

On our catalogue:

Our Wellington Music collection is currently unavailable on our catalogue due to the Central Library closure. We're working on options for making it available again and as soon as it is, we'll update this site.

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Wellington multi-instrumentalist Grayson Gilmour has been channelling his existential musings into song since the early Y2Ks. He leads a threefold life as solo artist, film composer & ‘So So Modern’ synth-dude, attempting to balance an introverted, extroverted, contemplative, hedonistic & ecstatic type of musical schizophrenia… or just his general over-enthusiasm.

Hailing from the murky swamps of Palmerston North, Grayson Gilmour began his solo recordings at the tender age of 16, with the 2002 release of ‘Abstract Arrival’, following it up with ‘Behind Locked Doors’, at age 18. His 2nd effort generated major interest on a national scale, with glowing reviews in various publications & great bNet radio play, despite Grayson never playing any solo shows to support these albums as he was too busy playing in other bands, such as the highly regarded ‘So So Modern’.

Grayson Gilmour long awaited follow up to critically-acclaimed 2010 album ‘No Constellation’ was ‘Infinite Life’ released in early 2014 via Flying Nun. The first single, ‘Minus Times Infinity’ featured guest vocals from Claire Duncan (‘Dear Time’s Waste’). The song came complete with a video that has been included in the prestigious BBC Music Video Festival. Set in an Australian forest, the clip features Gilmour fighting and being torn apart by a dinosaur. The intense (but also, kind of hilarious) gore is subdued by the fact that director Jessie Taylor-Smith (who has directed videos for ‘Pond’ and ‘Dear Time’s Waste’) opted to meticulously hand-paint the colour into every frame (akin to the work of early 20th Century film makers Georges Méliès and Lumière brothers, according to the press release), lending a fairy-tale air to the whole thing. Check it out below and head over here to download ‘Infinite Life’.

So So Shining Star – NZ Musician, 2010 (Vol:15, No:4)

Nick Bollinger samples ‘You Sleep, We Creep’…

Disasteradio vs Grayson Gilmour – NZ Musician, 2010 (Vol:15, No:9)

2010 interview on the release of ‘No Constellation’…

Indefinitely Talented – NZ Musician, 2014 (Vol:18, No:2)

Cover image

Grayson Gilmour Rip It Up article
Click to read a larger version

So So Modern band member Grayson Gilmour has a certain fascination with the whimsical exuberance of youth, or – as he describes it- ‘teenhood.’ On No Constellation, a record he describes as his, “fifth or sixth solo album,” Gilmour has created a decidedly cinematic indie rock sound world of wonder, magic and intrigue, a world which feels very much born of rich imagination. This makes sense because, while growing up in Palmerston North, music was Gilmour’s way out. “Music was such a big part of my teenhood,” he reflects. “In a way for me, it was escapism from small town New Zealand. I was listening to heaps of CDs from bands overseas, and going, ‘wow, they make such good records. I want to make records too,’ essentially – and I guess I just take that sort of view writing music nowadays too.” Having played piano since age five, Gilmour is fluent in all kinds of instruments (“guitar, drums, bass, whatever I could get my hands on”), and voice, which just might be his biggest weapon. He’s been releasing solo albums since he was in sixth and seventh form and has toured the world with his other band, So So Modern. The experience of travelling through music has afforded Gilmour the space to develop as an artist, and let his imagination run rampant. “When you’re on the road, you’re always displaced from any sort of sense of home or location or anything like that,” he states. “So, l guess you start perceiving things in a different light, and it gives way for a lot of new musical ideas to come up.” Based in Wellington, Gilmour divides his time between live performance, recording, music tutoring, working at a record store and sourcing sound . Having attracted the attention of Roger Shepherd’s newly rejuvenated Flying Nun Records for the release of No Constellation, Gilmour is definitely at an interesting point. “I guess I try not to-think about the historical significance of what being released on Flying Nun might mean, and just hope people will like No Constellation for what it is’, he concludes.”

Grayson talks about Music Publishing in this 2011 interview…

Janina Nicoll speaks to Wellington based composer and producer Grayson Gilmour ahead of his Wellington City Gallery performance under the alias ‘Siamese’.

Live at The Transmission – Grayson’s second ever live solo performance – recorded at Bar Bodega, Wellington on 6 May 2006.

Live set from ‘Infinite Life’ in the Music 101 studio…

Grayson won the 2015 APRA Silver Scrolls Award for ‘Best Original Music in a Feature Film’ for his work on Consent: The Louise Nicholas Story.

Heroine; Thief; We Believe; God; Lose the Battle, Win the War from the soundtrack to the film ‘Consent: the Louise Nicholas story’ – Grayson Gilmour (various instruments), Charley Davenport (cello), Tristan Carter (vln)

Palmerston North musician wins silver scroll – Stuff, September 18 2015.

The section featuring Grayson begins around 3 hours in…

Cover sourced from Bandcamp.
Bio/Profile adapted from Amplifer.co.nz, Bandcamp & Bigflipthemassive.
Interviews/Live sessions courtesy of RNZ.
‘Who’s Next’ profile sourced from Rip It Up, No. 335 June-July 2000. Used with permission.

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