Shocking Pinks


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The Shocking Pinks hail from Christchurch and at one time featured ex-members of bands such as ‘The Brunettes’ and ‘Solaa’. These days however founding member Nick Harte has kept the name but gone it alone in Wellington…

New Zealand’s Shocking Pinks, AKA Nick Harte, burst onto the scene in 2004 with the seminal dance pop record Dance the Dance Electric, which shared with the world Harte’s peculiar brand of uncomfortable dance punk intimacy. With dirty lo-fi production, sweet melodies, and unexpected aggression, Harte channels the demons of obsession and emptiness into darkly lyrical art.

A long-term staple of New Zealand’s indie scene, Harte has spent the last 20-odd years playing in some of New Zealand’ most prominent bands (The Brunettes, Solaa, The Incisions, CM Ensemble, Hiatus). After releasing his first album in 2004 (which earned an 8.2 on Pitchfork) Harte was quickly signed to New Zealand’s historic Flying Nun label, which released Mathematical Warfare and Infinity Land in 2005. Shortly thereafter, Shocking Pinks landed an international deal with New York’s DFA label, first releasing a series of limited-edition vinyl 7” with remixes by The Glimmers, Deerhunter, and Eluvium, and then issuing the full-length album “Shocking Pinks” in 2007.

While Harte did not formally release any music after 2007, they were years of great productivity, and also they were years of significant struggles. On February 22, 2011 a magnitude 6.3 earthquake tore through Christchurch, his home city. Three massive earthquakes and hundreds of aftershocks later, with no buildings and no infrastructure left, Harte was eventually evacuated and forced to relocate to the city of Wellington and try to rebuild his life.

After the destruction of his city and the diaspora of Christchurch’s vibrant youth culture, Harte used music as a therapy to deal with his isolation. Influenced by the cinematic structure of auteurs like John Cassavetes, Andrei Tarkovsky, and Nicholas Winding Refn, ‘Guilt Mirrors’ is a sprawling, haunting, beautiful, and at times violent and alienating trilogy, that is much less a curated “album” than it is a personal mix tape. Chronicling the loss, the love, and the limbo of the last 6 years, Guilt Mirrors was released in 2014 by Brooklyn-based imprint, Stars & Letters Records.

Camp A Low Hum 2014 – Shocking Pinks
Nick Hart talks about new album trio ‘Guilt Mirrors’, & why it took 6 years…

Cover image

Emma from Music 101 interviews Nick on ‘Guilt Mirrors’..

Cover sourced from Bandcamp. Text sourced from Amplifier & Facebook. Used with permission.

Last edited: 27.07.15

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