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    The Eighth Note: SOG

    21.03.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘The Eighth Note’ is 8 quick Questions with Wellington Musicians.

    A chance for us to catch up with people & see what they’re up to, or introduce you to a new musician/band and their music.

    Today’s guest is SOG, who are a ‘supergroup’ made up of members of other Wgtn bands.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    SOG: James, Luke (EgoValve), Ethan, and Bianca (O-Boy). Our music initially starts as James’ emotional rants and reflections on his own life. Almost a supergroup fulla good buggers and nice-looking guitars.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    Yes our sophomore album is being recorded in mid April out at James’ family farm. The songs are just in the finalizing stages after being tried and tested at house parties across Welly. The bad ones were disposed of responsibly at the Happy Valley Dump.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    Our music is on Spotify and Bandcamp. We are relatively active on Facebook for all our up and coming shows!

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    Is this it: The Strokes
    Elephant: The White Stripes
    You’re a woman I’m a machine: Death from above 1979.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    Ursula Le Sin and Ludus.

    What is your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    San Fran, Moon, Majoribanks Funhouse.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    Often 2min in the microwave, turnover and repeat. They typically start with James writing the lyrics and basic structure on the bass. Then the rest of the band collaborate and arrange their own parts.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    Our next gig is at Moon bar on the 21st of March.


  • General

    New Album: Beat Rhythm Fashion

    15.03.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is Nino Birch from legendary 80’s post-punk band Beat Rhythm Fashion, who have reformed after 35 years.

     

    When/where was the new album recorded?
    ‘Tenterhook’ has been a 2-2.5 year process. I laid vocals and gat tracks down as templates, flicked them to Rob Mayes in Tokyo. He laid bass onto the tracks and eventually we got the tunes to Caroline Easther in NZ. She went into Surgery Studios in Welly for a day session to lace real BRF drums into the songs. It took time but is was a damn fine process…which informed our creative journey with the material immensely. The album was eventually mastered in Tokyo – I joined Rob for this there and we rolled out a couple of gigs and filmed 2 vids while we were at it. A very productive visit to Japan it was;).

    Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
    Rob Mayes produced, mastered and engineered the album. This process occurred in constant consultation with me and as I said, we both sat in the flight chairs to master it…Rob at the helm while I listened and worked it all through with him. Ideal situation in truth. Rob and I are both very much on the same page…he checks everything through with me.. nonetheless we often come to the same decision in sync…sometimes it is a little weird ha ha.

    How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
    All the songwriting currently germinates from my end…lyrics and tune springs here but Rob conferences ideas and arrangement with me. We made a few changes to arrangements of the tracks on ‘Tenterhook’…nothing major but often the little tweaks here and there are the things that count. Rob added a number of elements to a fair degree in the tunes over and above his bass input. There are a few piano lines and horn lines he whacked in while most of the piano I played (and he tidied up…ha ha…Dan was the pianist..tho I can play ..my big bro was a brilliant pianist..and it was in fact his favourite instrument till his death in 2011). SO it is for this reason that Rob is credited for the music with me while I pen the story.
    The overall theme of ‘Tenterhook’ is much like the general tone and direction that has always driven BRF: Question everything, get active, wake up, challenge the rule of govt and corruption, question our inhumanity to one another, question this world at war since time immemorial and….frankly get off your ass and look at your shit and sort it out- help someone in need …pass on the oxygen mask…that sorta thing. The list is long. I am as angry with our human collective, me included, as I ever was and I seek change while now in my more seasoned epoch of my life, I chose to do my utmost to walk the talk. I am sick to death of all the preaching to the converted and the distraction of FarceBook and I am rooting for a more valuable and ground zero activation of our peephood. We are running out ion time…you know it …I know it ;)…. not. just saying…ha ha ..to use a really annoying trendy term;). By the same token I don’t like to use my music to lecture people…NO NO ..that is not cool at all. I want to take folks on a journey..leave them with a feeling and maybe that feeling is one we share and it colours our gesture to the world. I believe BRF music does that … at least this is what I am told ha ha.

    Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
    NO we were not trying to bounce out something different from what has always been the BRF sound. In fact our focus was to remain in that soundscape …big…lush…edgy.. lyrically forthright and politico poetica …. I made a joke with Rob the other day about our tag of Shoegaze DreamPop…. cos I don’t even really know what that is ha ha. I told him my music was more pre-appocalypso…too funny 😉

    Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
    Rob uses pro tools. I record with Ableton. I use a jazz master and run with a few effects but not much. Chorus, delay and o/drive are about it. But I like to run gats in stereo …always did live and intend to on the tour ..backline provisions permitting. Always used 2 JC 120’s live…big gat sweep is my aim. Solid big fat bass holding the guts and urgent drumming…thank you Caroline:)I think there is much to be said for double tracking gat and vox if you are up for it. Ancient trio in the book of tricks…it was one of Lennon’s pet wonders.

    Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
    I really am not sure about that. They are all rather different and all serve a valuable purpose to the overall picture of the album. The title Tenterhook (which is what Dan wanted to call our next band, before he passed on), speaks to our global state: the human psyche stretched to the limit of its endurance, pulled tight by the myriad impacts brought to bear by this clusterf**k of greed, senseless preponderance on economic growth and sheer wrecking ball tyranny, much of which is seeing the light of day due to our apathy and the play of an ancient collective of powerful narcissistic shitlords wielding power because we allow it.

    Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
    Yes a pretty cool CD package is available to order from Failsafe Records or by messaging the BRF site on Farce Book, and available nationwide in select NZ music stores. The album is also digitally available on the Failsafe Records site, Bandcamp and will be available on Spotify and iTunes etc when we get that sorted upon our return from the tour.

    Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs? Are you doing any gigs or promotion for its release?
    We have 3 vids ready to roll. ‘Hard as Hell’ the first single from the album was released with a video, which is on the tube, and ‘Property’ is our next release which will couple with a video. We have another vid lined up for the next song ‘Fake Peace’ that will roll out soon. Right now a main focus is bringing our live show to NZ….BRF’s birthplace ….where this all began. A perfect spot to bring it on again:)


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Tyson Music

    15.03.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘The Eighth Note’ is 8 quick Questions with Wellington Musicians.

    A chance for us to catch up with people & see what they’re up to, or introduce you to a new musician/band and their music.

    Today’s guest is Tyson Nemukula aka Tyson Music, who has just dropped his debut E.P.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    My name is Tyson Nemukula aka Tyson Music. Am 22 years old, from South Africa moved into New Zealand at the age of 15. My music is mostly pop/dance/hip-hop infused.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    Yes got an EP called DREAMS OF AN UNDERDOG.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    You can find and follow me on Facebook, iTunes, Spotify, Soundcloud Xtra.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    Kanye West: Gradution
    Brenda Fassie: Greatest Hits (South African artist)
    Trompies: Respect Toasted Gona’ Ganati
    I feel like this has shaped my music along with other artist like Kendrick Lamar, jays, Justin Timberlake, timberland and so many more.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    At the moment I would say Rie Music and on the producing side I would say Tumaini. It would be inserting to see what we would come up with.

    What’s your favorite Wellington venue to play in?
    Don’t really have one can’t say hahaha that a hard one.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the bandís songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    It so random how a song is made to be honest. But how a song is finished is when some say they really like the song and we should finish it. But how we start writing I really can’t say, sometime lyrics, keys/piano sometime it’s just the beat that sprat’s something.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    We are currently looking at April so hopefully that goes well.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Scapegoat MERCY

    14.03.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘The Eighth Note’ is 8 quick Questions with Wellington Musicians.

    A chance for us to catch up with people & see what they’re up to, or introduce you to a new musician/band and their music.

    Today’s guest is Hamish Kokaua, who records under the name Scapegoat MERCY in a variety of contexts and collaborations on Soundcloud.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    I’m Scapegoat MERCY, birthname Hamish Kokaua. My music has been through a variety of musical phases but it’s consistently informed by hip-hop and RnB I’ve listened to over my existence and my awkward influences of nu-metal, IDM and jazz. This extends to my production for other artists aswell. Pretty loose to be honest.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    I’m always working on something – it’s habitual. I am releasing something on Thursday (14/3) that’s stupidly upbeat with one of my favourite up and comers Waguan. It’s an upbeat summer tinged hip-hop track called Fly Away. I am also working on a very low-key RNB/Soul E.P with cxlm which will be out in the next few weeks. Apart from that I also have my album releasing near the end of this year which has been a personal passion project of mine for the last few years (basically since I moved to Wellington). You’ll hear about it when it drops. A track with Dharmarat from Christchurch and a few features with TUMAINI and VINE which are exciting. Lots of stuff.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    Scapegoat MERCY is a pretty specific name so its easy to find on Soundcloud, Insta or Facebook. Whatever whets your social appetite.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    There are so many – off the top of my head they are Timbaland, Trent Reznor and Lorn. There’s always a good mixture flowing through the speakers and annoying my neighbours.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    Wellington is small and we are all on each other radars which is awesome. Some people I haven’t worked with yet are Natenotsorry, Sugar the Playboy and uhhh LBFRmikey & DUB A.. soon though – trust.

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    I think my favourite that i have played in is uhh Meow. Im trying to promote a show that’s a bit of a different venue but ill keep that under wraps until the weather gets a bit cooler.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    I usually make or mess with a synth sound or a sample. Add drums. Bass. Add lots of percs. Mix. Refine. Usually i wait for vocals to add the structure because I’ve moved away from purely instrumental stuff. If it’s my personal stuff with vocals I’d start with a hook and then write to the beat pretty quickly – for me the vocals need to just come straight from the feels – i’m admittedly not the best songwriter hahahaha

    Where/when is your next gig?
    I don’t have any in the foreseeable future to be honest – I’ve been meaning to work on my live set a bit so now I’ve got the time. A lot of releases though. It’s more my vibe.


  • General

    New Album: Rob Joass

    07.03.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is Rob Joass, who has just released his third album ‘Pencarrow’.

     

    When/where was the new album recorded?
    Drum and bass tracks were recorded at Audiosuite in Kapiti August 2018 with Ross McDermott engineering. I then moved to my home studio (Mad Dog studios, in honour of my 2 german shepherds) where tracking and first run mixing was done over the next 3 or so months.

    Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
    I self produce. I like to grow songs in my home studio, and experiment with guitar parts,vocals and other arrangement ideas as I go. I also mix as I go, as to me these things are all interrelated. I then went to my old friend Andrew Downes (we used to co-own a recording studio together called Mediate Recording) at his Home-Run Studio in Miramar where we did final touches on the mixes. Andrew also mastered it.

    How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
    I write fairly constantly, so these are essentially my favourites of the last few years, and I’ve also rearranged an old song (‘Baggage’) and covered a Paul Kelly song that I’ve always loved. There’s no overriding theme to the album but I did want it to have more love, hope and redemption than my last album (Black and White).

    Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
    Following on from my last answer, ‘Black and White was’ a break-up album that was very stripped back and intimate. Sound-wise I was thinking Bruce Springsteen’s Nebraska for that one. This time I wanted to be more expansive. I have a great band now – Hamish Graham on drums, Murray Costello on Bass and Alan Norman on Keys, and they’re all over the new album. I also played more electric guitar on this one.

    Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
    So, My Gretsch and Reverend electric guitars feature, as well as my Martin acoustic. Studio wise I I used a Focusrite ASA 1 mic pre on most things, and I’m fond of the Waves Abby Road Plates reverbs. They’re all over it. Nice, natural and lush.

    Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
    Not really – the album is quite varied, in a typical singer songwriter sense. I’d probably point you at the title track, ‘Pencarrow’, which in it’s way is an atypical song for me. It started life as an instrumental, then I added some words. It starts out with a single guitar and builds into the full band. I wanted the album to be relevant to both my solo performances and when I play with the band, so I guess Pencarrow does capture that.

    Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
    I will have CD’s available and it will be available to download and stream from all the usual sources. [Bandcamp here].

    Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs? Are you doing any gigs or promotion for its release?
    I released Souvenir from the album as a single a couple of months ago, and there is a lyric video to go with that. And yes, I’ll be touring. Starting with Raumati and Wellington with The Small Mercies [Raumati Social Club & The Third Eye], then South Island shows as a duo with Hamish during March, and then some solo shows in Sydney and Auckland in April and May. Details for those also on my Website.


  • General

    New Album: The Polly Johnson Set

    01.03.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is The Polly Johnson Set, who have just released their self-titled full length debut.

     

    When/where was the new album recorded?
    We recorded at The Surgery in Newtown back in November. We were on a pretty tight schedule, so we spent 3 and a half days recording the songs and another 2 days mixing them.

    Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
    We worked alongside Dr Lee Prebble to bring the album together. The album had essentially taken shape over the six years that we’ve been playing together, so it’s fair to say that it was pretty much ready to go when we hit the studio. That said, we did experiment a bit when we discovered the treasure trove of goodies available to us at The Surgery. All in all though the songs were at their peak before we started to record.

    How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
    Ah the songwriting. What a beast. The PJs is made up of five songwriters who all have a very different writing style. Each of bring songs to the band which then get picked apart and put back together as a PJs song. Which means we’ve all make an equal contribution to the songs for the album, something we’re quietly proud of. What that means is that the album is pretty diverse – we’ve got murder ballads, sunshine songs, and love songs, and the rest. Overall though, there’s a general lightness about the album. While we’re serious about creating the best music we can, we’re a pretty lighthearted bunch.

    Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
    Our main goal with this album was to accurately capture our live sound. There’s a dynamic feel to our music and we didn’t want to loose this through the studio process. With this being our first album, and having only performed these songs live up until this point, this was something we were particularly passionate about. Finding an engineer/producer who understood this, and who could allow us to play as close to live as possible, was really important, and we found that in Lee. He was the right guy, and his studio was the right place for us to capture the PJs sound.

    Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
    No, we kept things simple. We took advantage of Lee’s impressive range of microphones and outboard rigs, but apart from that it was all pretty true to how we usually play.

    Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
    Is the whole thing an acceptable answer? Haha. Our individual songwriting and performance styles are reflected throughout, but it really is a case of the whole being greater than the sum of its part.

    Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
    Yes! You can grab one of these through our Bandcamp page, where you can also snag a download. It’s also available on iTunes and all major streaming platforms, along with our earlier singles.

    Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs? Are you doing any gigs or promotion for its release?
    There is a video in the pipeline which we’re really excited about. Lo-fi, black and white, real film – what’s not to love? We recently launched the album with a fantastic gig at Te Auaha, but we’ll also be sharing it with the world at Newton Festival and CubaDupa.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Liam Poole

    25.02.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘The Eighth Note’ is 8 quick Questions with Wellington Musicians.

    A chance for us to catch up with people & see what they’re up to, or introduce you to a new musician/band and their music.

    Today’s guest is singer/songwriter Liam Poole, originally from Nelson but now based in Wellington.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    I am a 20yr old male singer/songwriter originally from Nelson. I began getting guitar lessons in intermediate school, as soon as I learnt my first chord, I had an instant connection with the instrument. Two years later I began to get singing lessons, which was essential for keeping my pubescent voice box under control, plus building my confidence for singing in front of an audience. I began songwriting around the age of 14, and to me it was the coolest thing, to be able to put the ideas I had in my head, and turn it into a song. I entered as many competitions as I could in school, such as Smokefree Rockquest, Nelson Jazz competitions etc. In my last year of high school I recorded my first 4 track EP titled Fly High, I was starting to really develop my sound and take everything more seriously. I spent one year in Nelson working full time, in that time I heavily invested in my last project which was my second EP, Wake Up.
    I had learnt from my mistakes from the first EP, and had new, exciting ideas. Rather than recording in the space of a weekend, I recorded over 1 year, adding saxophone sections to my songs, and building songs from scratch. I have been heading down the rock/pop genre, that I find to be easy listening, and catchy. My Wake Up EP has had nearly 2000 streams on Spotify. One year ago I moved to Wellington, and it was the best decision I could’ve ever made, I have been playing at the Night Markets, the botanical gardens Magic, a few local pubs, and the odd open mic night. I am about to start studying my 3 year bachelors degree at Whitireia this year, where I will be hoping to progress with my musical journey.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    I have been working on a few covers, adding them to my set list as I go, to keep it fresh at my gigs. I have written a few of my own songs as well, one that I feel rather proud of is a song called “Over You”, which is about a break up that happened last year, it took months of recovery and was quite a low point for me. The song symbolises hope, that there is light at the end of the tunnel, and it won’t always feel like this. I have plans to record ‘Over You’ as a single this year, which I’m excited about.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    People can follow me on Facebook Instagram & Spotify.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    An album that I always find myself going back and listening to is Parachutes by Coldplay. It was there first LP, and for me, the alternate tuned guitars, moody vibe, and Indie rock sound resonates with me.
    Heavier Things by John Mayer. As a guitarist it’s almost deemed a sacrilege for not listening to him, although a lot of musicians find him egotistical, a show off, and too clever. But I think John nails pop music, whilst still staying true to himself, by creating music that HE wants to create, and as a singer/songwriter, I have to take my hat off to him.
    Only by the Night by Kings of Leon. Most will remember this album for their hot singles “Sex on Fire” and “Use Somebody”. This album has great flow, and is one I can put on from start to finish and enjoy every track. This album sparks fond childhood memories of driving to the beach in summer etc, and it also has incredibly strong tracks that didn’t make it as singles, such as “Manhattan” and “Cold Desert”.
    Those 3 albums quite easily sum up my childhood, and inspire me to write songs everyday, each one unique and different.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    That is a tough question as there is no shortage of musicians in Wellington, but I am a regular listener of locals such as Louis Baker, Thomas Oliver, DRAX Project, so a jam with any of those boys would be wicked!

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    I have played a couple of times at the San Fran and it is always a good gig there, but a venue I’m eager to play at is Meow.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    My songs always start on the guitar whether it be a chord progression or melody. Lyrics always seem to come last, but lately I’ve been trying to write short stories and pick out pieces that could go in a song, half the struggle can be trying to figure out what story you want to tell. Usually for me it’s about heart break, love interests, sometimes I like to change it up and write about something fictional, or something that’s happening to someone else and not myself.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    On March 30th I’ll be playing at the San Fran as part of Cuba Dupa. Then in between I’ll have Night Market gigs, pub gigs, open mic nights etc.


  • General

    New E.P: DEAF

    18.02.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘New EP’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is DEAF, a new post-punk/dream-pop five-piece, featuring members of Sunken Seas and Tiddabades.

    When/where was the new EP recorded?
    The DEAF EP was recorded in March 2018 at Blue Barn Recording studio’s, which regrettably went the way of the dodo at the end of 2018.

    Who produced/engineered the EP? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
    James Goldsmith engineered the EP, Mike Gisbon mastered it. We have this weird European contraption called the Jamhub which allow us to practice noiselessly in each others houses, the only noise being the sound of my own primal screaming. Stuff was 98% written at each others house using this Jamhub, with some deft last minute tweaking in the studio.

    Did the shorter format of an EP give you the option to experiment in any way with your sound or with different forms of song-writing?
    After playing in a band which was very album focussed (Sunken Seas) I thought doing an EP was a liberating experience; just more “blood and thunder”, a short and sharp 20 odd minute statement of where a band is at a certain point.

    Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
    Much of our stuff is New Zealand gear – Hayden the bass player couldn’t live without his Prunes and Custard and guitar wise I’m a big fan of vintage Jansen bass amps for the particularly noisy stuff, with custom fuzz/distortion pedals. New Zealand equipment has real character. The chorus was from an old 1970’s pedal whose name escapes me (but thank you Duncan for lending). Aside from that Jarrod and Mat use synths . Jarrod uses a Roland JDxi and Mat uses a Korg mini.

    Is there a particular track or theme that the EP was formed around?
    Truancy was the first ever one we wrote as such, so that was probably how we started writing the EP…Alot of themes – abstract existentialism / the vulgarity of social media and why people look to it for answers / observations on daft situations / intellectuals yet idiots / looking around you and wondering how people have buy in to such empty soulless things / why having to ‘adult’ is shite, often / ageing / beauty in simplicity. A myriad of things.

    Where do you see the EPs place in growing an audience online? Do you see it as a progression towards an album or a separate entity?
    At present not sure, we like EP’s, somehow they seem to fit this world of limited attention span’s we have found ourselves in. It’s certainly not beyond us to do another. An album would be great and is a commitment, but keen to see how things pan out.

    Which digital platforms is it available on?
    It’s available on Bandcamp, Spotify to listen to, and everywhere else.

    Are you doing any gigs or promotion for its release?
    We’re supporting the mighty Hiboux on Sat Feb 23rd at San Fran Wellington. New tracks will be played!


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Earth To Zena

    15.02.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘The Eighth Note’ is 8 quick Questions with Wellington Musicians.

    A chance for us to catch up with people & see what they’re up to, or introduce you to a new musician/band and their music.

    Today’s guest’s are Earth to Zena, who released their debut E.P ‘Transmundane’ late last year. They will be touring the South Island soon to support it, and will be back in Wgtn to play at the Newtown Festival in March.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    We’re Earth to Zena! We’re a four piece psychedelic dream-pop shoegaze band. We like to combine apparent opposites: dreamy atmospheres with cutting riffs and noise; catchy infectious melodies with noise and a bit of experimentalism. We hope the result is music that’s surprising and dynamic.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    We’ve recently released our debut EP ‘Transmundane’, and have just started working on a new collection of songs. The first of which, ‘End of the World’, can be heard in our recent performance on RNZ’s “NZ Live”, which can be streamed from their website.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    The BEST place people can follow us and find our music is in person at any of our upcoming shows. The next best place is our Website. We’re also on Spotify and Facebook.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    Each member of the band has pretty distinct backgrounds and tastes, which helps us find our own unique sound. We’re gonna bend the rules a tiny bit and choose 4 albums. We each picked one!
    Chronologically:
    Pink Floyd – Meddle (1971)
    My Bloody Valentine – Loveless (1991)
    Mint Chicks – Crazy? Yes! Dumb? No! (2006)
    Tame Impala – Lonerism (2012)

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    There’s so much great music out of Wellington right now, that’s a tough choice. We recently saw Glass Vaults at Space Place and were super inspired. Both sonically and visually that show was so immersive and hypnotic, we’ve talked about it a lot since. So we’d certainly love to work with them. We’re also really excited to share the stage with Hans Pucket when we open for them at Wellington Gardens Magic on 11 January.

    What is your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    We had a blast at Moon Bar for our EP release show in September. Caroline has also been very good to us and hosts us regularly. We’re playing SanFran for the first time tonight though, so who knows, that could become a favorite. Overall though we’re really looking to play more outdoor shows now that summer is approaching. …and Space Place, we gotta play there sometime!

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band ís songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    It varies song-by-song, but often Renee (our lead singer and synth player) will bring the bones of a song that she’s written, often just voice and ukulele, and then as a band we’ll transform it into a fully embellished song, each bringing our own pieces to the arrangement. Then later when we record it we’ll hear the song with new ears, add new elements and maybe even restructure things, and then we’ll selectively bring some of those changes back to the live performance. So the songs are constantly evolving really, with writing informing performance informing recording informing writing informing performance, on and on forever.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    In February we’ll be touring the country, in CHCH on 27 Feb, Dunedin on 1 March, back in Wellington for Newtown Festival on 3 March. Those are just the dates booked so far, hopefully we’ll be adding some stops. Stay tuned!


  • General

    New E.P: Anxiety Club

    13.02.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘New EP’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is Anxiety Club, who released E.P ‘Black Heart’ late last year, and are now following it up with a 2019 tour.

     

    When/where was the new EP recorded?
    In the winter of 2018 at Blue Barn Recording Studios in Newtown.

    Who produced/engineered the EP? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
    James Goldsmith engineered. A collaborative approach was taken with the production, with James and Kev at the helm with the rest of the band all making contributions. Most of the songs had been in our set for awhile so we pretty much stuck with the arrangements that had developed from our regular rehearsals at Toi Poneke, and from playing them live. The one exception was the title track, “Black Heart” which only came into existance a month or so before the sessions. Some of that song’s arrangement was shaped in the studio.

    Did the shorter format of an EP give you the option to experiment in any way with your sound or with different forms of song-writing?
    In a lot of ways the EP is very “live” sounding and fairly representative of what you get at our shows. Even though the EP is a short format, budget constraints did dictate a fairly workman-like approach to the recording. I guess we had a choice – we could record this the old fashioned way (quickly), or chip away over months/years to make something more complex. Our overwhelming desire was to get something out there sooner than later – and it’s arguable which route would have produced the better record anyway.
    Having said that, we didn’t play it completely straight and we made the most of the studio to take a couple of the songs to places we couldn’t take them live – notably the instrumental passage of “I give in” and a lot of “Love rescue me”. We also had Chris Winter (Eb & Sparrow) add a really nice horn line to the coda of “Black Heart”.

    Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
    Don’t ask me what specific gear James was using. He has a nice collection of microphones and he has lots of impressive looking electronic boxes in racks with dials and lights – but the really key thing is that James knows what he’s doing with it all. Everyone bought their usual collection of road-trusted instruments and guitar amplifiers – with a banjo thrown in for good measure. In some ways the room itself was a contributing piece of “gear” – the high-vaulted ceilings and large floor area made it a very natural space to make music. So many studios can be claustrophobic and sterile.

    Is there a particular track or theme that the EP was formed around?
    A lot of the songs in this collection explore themes that unite us as humans – relationships, love, doubt. But then you have songs like “I give in” which is about the toll the music industry machine takes, and “Holes in my Skin” which was conceptually inspired by James K Baxter’s poem, “The Maori Jesus”. So yeah, in conclusion, there actually is no common theme – except that they’re all bangin’ tunes!

    Where do you see the EPs place in growing an audience online? Do you see it as a progression towards an album or a separate entity?
    Every piece of music you release is hopefully a step towards more people hearing your stuff, and then hopefully forming some sort of relationship with it and ultimately extracting some joy or comfort from it. Audience size and numbers is quite nice to know – but it’s not a goal. If you’re driven by that alone it’s hard to imagine that you’ll make anything good. We make music because we HAVE to make music. Creating something new – that didn’t exist yesterday – is the real thrill. But we do want to reach as many people as possible, because that just might – in a tiny way – enrich both the lives of our listeners, and our own. And it really doesn’t get any better than hearing other people sing your songs back to you at a gig! So yes, here’s hoping this EP gets our music in more ears and brains!
    We’re not entirely sure that there ever will be an album (but never say never!). The way people listen to music these days is almost like the 1950’s when the 45rpm record was king and it was all about singles. I think we’d be capable of making a great album (if all the right ingredients and astronomical alignments were in place), but is it worth it if no one is going to listen to all the songs? You just have to look at our Spotify stats for the EP (and I imagine this is quite common) – the first 2 or 3 songs in the track-listing get the bulk of the streams, with listens trailing-off noticably by track 5! I shudder to think what would happen with a 10 or 12 track album!
    During the “Black Heart” sessions we also tracked Ginger in the Summer which we released last month as a charity fund-raising single. It’s been great for people to just focus on one song and really connect with it. Just look at what Lawrence Arabia did with his “Singles Club” last year – releasing one song every month or so. We are living in a world of playlists where it’s all about the song. I think we will see more and more singles, B sides and EPs released by everyone (including us) in the future.

    Which digital platforms is it available on?
    Pretty much everywhere – Bandcamp, Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon, etc. [Also via their Website].

    Are you doing any gigs or promotion for its release?
    In March we will embark on a 3-date nationwide tour:
    Saturday 16th March – Galatos, Auckland
    Saturday 23rd March – Meow, Wellington
    Friday 29th March – Blue Smoke, Christchurch


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