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  • General

    The Eighth Note: Pass the Peas

    13.09.19 | 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.

    Up next is Kurt, singer/guitarist for new band Pass the Peas.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    We are Pass the Peas, Wellingtons first gender diverse boy band. Down in the swamp I wrestled with the apathy, this resulted in ballads and blues with a cynical lyrical content. It’s a five piece (Tiho on drums, Jamie on Bass, Alice on lead guitar, Ben on keyboards and Kurt on vocals).

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    We just released our first EP ‘Greek Heat’, this is largely based around an arm wrestle my older brother had with a massive Greek barman (he lost). We also have several tracks that we are working on currently that explore the inner most workings of the human mind, such as; ‘Selling feet’ which deals with the inner most workings of selling smut on the internet.

    Where is the best place people can follow you and find your music?
    I’m not too sure about that as I don’t really do social media. But we do have social media, so people can just follow us there. We’re on Spotify and Bandcamp, probably other services including but not limited to the aforementioned.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    I can’t speak for everyone, but ‘Raw Power’ by Iggy and the Stooges lit me up from opening tip. I was drawn to this record in my Dads collection by the album art, I was trying to understand the androgyny as a 12 year old boy from a small town. It was only a few seconds before the blistering solo at the start of the opening track (Search and Destroy) absolutely blew me away and I grew my hair. Pretty much the same thing happened to me with Black Sabbath’s ‘Sabbath Bloody Sabbath’, some psycho looking album art drew me in and I never left. ‘Never mind the bollocks’ by the Sex Pistols hit at the right time for me too (mid-angst/puberty).

    What other Wellington musicians would you most like to work?
    Dartz and Ingrid and the Ministers.

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    I honestly like playing in my garage. I can do this nude and I don’t need to arrange any transport.

    In your songwritting or composing (or the bands songwritting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    In our time together we half learned ‘Do you think I’m sexy’ by Rod Stewart, but when Alice joined the band she vetoed that right off the bat. So we currently have no songs other than our originals, which come from all sorts of different stages in our lives. I’ve brought songs to the table that have all vocal parts and chords determined from back in my University days (6 plus years ago), yet when everyone comes together and does their thing it becomes the first time the songs sounds how I imagined it. We’re quite lucky how easy it is for us to play together. Alice has only recently joined the band, but all the material she has contributed fits so well that it feels like it was always there. Jamie has a very Miami Heat Chris Bosh way about how he plays, extremely steady (like a locomotive) yet capable of carrying the offense for extended stretches (good touch for a guy his size also). Tiho is a lawyer/drummer. He has a very mathematical way about him, wears a suit to practise and goes by the ‘Bosnian Document’ in certain circles. I know very little about Tiho, he’s an excellent drummer with plug and play ability (comparable to Lou Williams). Ben is the Brian Scalabrine of keyboards, extremely skilled and very intelligent but severely lacking in athleticism. I give Ben about 10 years before he suffers a heart attack. I’m Kurt, I play guitar and sing (you could liken me to Vince Carter if you look for similarities).

    Where/when’s your next gig?
    This Friday at Caroline with Dartz and Ingrid and the Ministers.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: ARLS

    03.09.19 | 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.

    Up next are Alba & Bravo from new trip-hop influenced band ARLS, who have just released debut single LUCKY.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    We are a collaboration. I (Alba Rose) am a singer/songwriter. I (Bravo Bonez) am a musician, songwriter and producer who has recently come back to the industry after a long absence. We came together as a result of our mothers suggesting we should meet up to chat about music, and the industry. Both of us were a little reluctant, thinking it might be a bit of a waste of time, but we finally met up in a cafe in Wanaka. The chat was surprisingly good so we decided to keep in touch. We later discussed maybe doing some music together as we both have a love of 1990s acid jazz, neosoul and trip hop. Some musical ideas were exchanged and that formed the basis of our “MELD” EP which is being released in early 2020.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    We are currently finishing off our EP in Norway. Bravo is here to record two 4 track EPs for his solo project, LearningToDive, with Alba featuring as both a backing vocalist and vocalist, and is co-writing one of the tracks. Alba is also using the opportunity to write and develop some new material. We’re excited to be recording at Ocean Sound Recordings which is situated in a stunning location on an island at the end of a fjord near the town of Alesund where many notable artists have worked in the past, such as Arcade Fire, Sampha and Travis.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    Our debut single “LUCKY” is available on all global streaming platforms. Those interested can follow us on Facebook and Instagram. We also have a YouTube channel at ARLS Official.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    Alba: Zero 7 – Simple Things, Florence and the Machine – Lungs, Lily Allen – It’s Not Me, It’s You.
    Bravo: Massive Attack – Blue Lines, Portishead – Dummy, The Verve – Urban Hymns.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    Really too many to name. Lord Echo would be awesome. We would definitely like to work with James Goldsmith as a producer.

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    We love Meow! Also San Fran.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    Both of us come up with ideas, with hook development being shared, but with most of the verse lyrics being written by Alba, and the instrumentation, arrangements and production being handled by Bravo.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    No gigs planned at the moment, but we are looking into an EP release party early in 2020 with a live performance there 🙂

    String arrangement teaser from the song TREASON, along with some footage from Roundhead studios. At the desk is Simon Gooding, who recently worked with Pink on her latest album.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Low Key

    29.08.19 | 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.

    Up next is DJ/Producer Lachie, who records under the monikers MyEARS & Low Key.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    My friends know me as Lachie. I produce and DJ under MyEARS & Low Key. My music is geared primarily for the dance floor.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    I recently finished my first album, Functions, under the alias Low Key. I’ve been finding myself drawn to the techno side of things lately, so the new moniker is for exploring that. I’ll be continuing to explore everything else with MyEARS. Currently I’m working on some heavy stuff for a Low Key EP.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    Bandcamp & Spotify. [MyEARS on Soundcloud].

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    I grew up listening to Computer World by Kraftwerk. Was grooving to that stuff in my nappy. It still stands the test of time today. When I was 8, the first generation iPod shuffle was released. Demon Days by Gorillaz came out around the same time as well, and quickly became my go to. A couple years later, The Album by Project One was released, and I had just gotten into shuffling. The trancey melodies really captured me and I became obsessed.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    I’ve been living with Field Enhancement Unity this year, and seen him throw down more than once. Would love to play some more with him. Joshua B has played some killer sets around Wellington but recently moved to Europe. I’ll be doing the same next month so hopefully we can team up again soon. Paul Dockery strikes me as the first Wellington based DJ to really pull me into a techno set, so I have to mention him, too.

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    I love the intimate space at Valhalla. So many great memories have been shared there, both behind and in front of the decks.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    Most of my compositions happen spontaneously, I rarely ever sit down with an idea in mind. I prefer to experiment with the software and try to break it / use it in ways it was not intended for. Through this trial and error I usually find a sound I can work with, and the inspiration begins to flow.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    I just played my last Wellington set at Vertigo III the other week. Currently I’m packing up for Europe next month, where my musical journey will continue.

    Lachie: My partner and I made a music video with footage we got from the Wellington underground scene and a track from Functions.


  • General

    New Album: Flix Rose

    28.08.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is alternative Indie Folk singer-songwriter Flix Rose.

     

    When/where was the new album recorded?
    The first song I recorded, called Je Suis Perdue, was in my hometown Whangarei and the accompanying music video was filmed on the beautiful Tutukaka coast. The rest of the album was recorded at Park Road Post Production in Miramar with Munki Studio. The album was recorded sporadically while life and procrastination happened and I finally released it in February this year.

    Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
    The first song was recorded organically in a few days by Jonny Karklins a week before I moved to Wellington and was an amazing introduction into what is possible in a home recording studio. The rest I recorded with Munki Studio’s Mike Gibson who at the time was at Park Road Post Production. I never imagined recording in a professional studio but I felt Mike would be a great person to do a debut album with.

    How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
    I wanted the listener to feel relaxed and yet intrigued and almost other-worldly, which is why I love to use harmonies. When in the process of songwriting itself I create melody, lyrics and instrumentation all at once therefore I seldom know what exactly I am writing about until it’s finished.

    Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
    Quite often because you can redo a take as many times as you like in the search for perfection, it looses the feeling and depth that a live performance has. When I was recording I tried to look beyond the notes to whether the take had the right emotion and feeling. Though I am a perfectionist and the notes had to be perfect too so it was a long process….

    Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
    It was more about the people who were involved in the project in order to capture the desired emotion. I’m really honoured to have worked with such wonderful and talented artists and though it’s my solo album most songs have an accompanying guest musician who I really connected with at the time and I thought matched the song’s feel.

    Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
    That’s a hard question, the title track Like Birds is my favourite.

    Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
    Of course you may have a physical copy! It is also available online to download basically everywhere (eg. Apple Play, iTunes, Spotify, YouTube etc etc)

    Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs? Are you doing any gigs or promotion for its release?
    It’s available NOW!!! I toured for the release in February this year with the main gigs here in Wellington and in my hometown Whangarei as they are both very special places for me. I aim to get funding for a music video so fingers crossed.
    [Next gig is Moon’s Epic 5th birthday party on Saturday].


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Arjuna Oakes

    21.08.19 | 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.

    Up next is Arjuna Oakes, originally from Auckland but now based in Wellington.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    My Name is Arjuna Oakes, I am a 20 year old musician originally from Titirangi in West Auckland, but am now based in Wellington. I’ve been playing piano for 14 years and singing my whole life. I create music that is inspired by many different musical genres, mainly Jazz, Soul, Folk and world music. My music is often about social issues but told through a personal lens. I enjoy subverting conventions with my music and keeping the music interesting and meaningful but still entertaining.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    I have an E.P being released in September.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    Instagram, Spotify and Facebook. [Also Bandcamp, YouTube, Soundcloud]

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    In our Nature by Jose Gonzales
    Based on a True Story by Fat Freddy’s Drop
    and Astral Weeks by Van Morrison.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    H4lf Cast, they are mates of mine and such amazing performers! They have that perfect mix of exciting stage presence and topical/meaningful music that I think will take them far!

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    Caroline is fun! Also have played in San Fran with a band called The Shambles, that was wild!

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    I will start with the music, usually just chords on the piano and then will start singing to flesh out a melody. The use of harmony in the chord progression will usually provide me with the theme/mood for the song. Then I’ll find a line that informs the lyrical content. Often, I will only truly understand the meaning of a song half way through writing it, or even not until it is finished.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    Not playing for a little while as preparing for an E.P launch. I’ll be playing at the MOON birthday gig on 31st of August and then touring in October, possibly playing some low-key gigs before then. [Arjuna Oakes Single Release at Caroline to celebrate the release of his single “Lost”, which is the second single off of his upcoming E.P].

    VMorg LTD chat with Arjuna Oakes about his experiences in the New Zealand music industry with both The Shambles and Arjuna Oakes Music.

    From the Radioactive.fm Orcon Live Room, July 2019.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Uber Driver

    16.08.19 | 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.

    Up next is DJ/producer Uber Driver.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    I go by Uber Driver, a dance music specialist playing a range of genres spanning techno, bass and beyond. There’s an affinity for club music that has become deeper through amazing domestic and global experience.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    Currently I have some tracks circulating from EP ‘…Arriving Soon’, released on August 9 on Auckland record label Heat Rockers.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    To keep up with the journey and bad memes, I’m most active on Instagram and for streaming music, catch me on Soundcloud or Spotify.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    Growing up, Hip Hop was my first love and was definitely shaped by Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter III, 50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die Trying and definitely Illmatic by Nas.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    Borrowed CS, Riki Gooch and Alexa Casino. Incredibly talented musicians I’ve had the privilege to brush shoulders with but not (yet) create any magic with!

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    When the right crowd shows up, Club 121 on Cuba Street. Super intimate basement that’s perfectly suited for gritty and emotive techno.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    More often than not, it begins the drum tracks. The rhythm is predominantly the focus for me but recently I’ve been trying to build the drums around atmosphere or a melodic idea and yield more interesting results.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    On the day of the EP release, Aug 9, I played a show at Galatos Basement in Auckland. Otherwise you can catch me banging club tracks at Club 121 on Aug 16 for Satellites.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Sam Cullen

    09.08.19 | 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. Invercargill born pop singer/songwriter Sam Cullen, played upwards of 60 gigs across New Zealand in 2018 and has quickly established himself as one of the country’s hardest-working young performers. Sam placed 3rd in New Zealand’s SmokefreeRockquest competition in 2018 out of over 800 acts while having been named Southland’s Junior Entertainer of the Year in 2017. He performed at the NZ Parliament (Beehive) in August 2018 and also played at Cromwell’s highly successful River Range Music Festival in 2019. Now based in Wellington he released a new single & video earlier in the year.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    My name is Sam Cullen, I’m a solo alt-pop singer/songwriter bought up down south in Invercargill and now based in Wellington. My music focuses on emotional intensity, based on anthemic guitar-based hooks combined with dance music grooves and some songwriter flavour.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    I’ve got a bunch of new tracks in the works that I’m really excited about. They’re all very close to being ready to go so I’m looking forward to throwing them out there and following up my last single ‘Shut The Door‘.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    My Facebook page is my main output in terms of socials along with Instagram and Youtube!

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    I was bought up on Fleetwood Mac’s The Dance on family road trips. Classic! Discovering Radiohead’s OK Computer when I was about 15 was also a bit of a turning point. More recently, The 1975’s A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships has been my go to.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    I’d love to sit down with my friends Arjuna Oakes and Connor Moore (who I adore) to see what comes out. I’ve been lucky enough to spend some short time with Neil Macleod who is an exceptionally talented and forward-thinking dude. I went to see Solomon Crook play a gig a couple of months back which blew my mind as well. I feel privileged to be rubbing shoulders with so many great musicians.

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    Playing at Caroline was a super cool vibe. It’s such a unique space and has had some fantastic musicians through in the past.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    For me it’s never the same. Sometimes the music comes first, sometimes the lyrics do. It’s nice to have a couple of different ways of writing. Lyrically, things can often come from a personal space and musically a lot of the time it’s happy accidents where something will spawn from a certain moment in time. I’ve found lately that sitting down with nothing but a guitar and stripping things right back has been really productive.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    I’m opening for Auckland act Menino at Caroline on August 9th along with singer/songwriter Sofia Machray.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Marin Esteban

    08.08.19 | 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. Up next is French ambient musician, record producer and film composer Marin Esteban, who has been travelling around New Zealand for a while, and is currently based in Wgtn where he has been playing some gigs.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    I’m Marin, a French musician currently in Wellington. In music I use to compose and play on my old Guild acoustic guitar which is treated with some digital effects. The result is a mix between sound texture and sweet melodies. I like to think music like a process. It depends of the context, the acoustic of the venue and the state of mind, of course. I’m pretty much into the melody. There is something mysterious in the melody. A kind of thing with no name which is connected with the infinite.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    I was touring New Zealand last month with a solo act. This period make me thought about my first record. My work is often close to a journey, or visual arts. I usually work on movies soundtracks and I have published a music video showing some Fantails flying above the misty lake at Kerosene Creek. I should start a series video on the water element and why not continue on every elements.

    Video recorded at Kerosene Creek, New Zealand, 2019

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    People can find my music everywhere on the internet [Bandcamp] but I’m sure the easy way is on Youtube.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    When I was child, I was listening Marqueen Moon by Television in a loop. I got the album on tape that I have erased the recordings cause of several listenings. There is a bridge on the eponyme song Marquee Moon were guitars sounds like seagull. I thought music were very close to the nature. After that I felt in love with the live album, which is mainly a movie, Live at Pompeii by Pink Floyd. I have discovered how poetry and philosophy could surrounded the music. The album Ronrocco by Gustavo Santaolalla is one of my latest big influence in music. I was bringing a small speaker during tramping in the Pyrenean mountains in France to listen it at night. The album’s title is the name of the instrument recorded on it, also call Charango. It’s an eight nylon string wooden instrument. This intimate sound connected to the wilderness feeling during the night was quite a revelation.

    A horse trekking journey in south island’s high country of New Zealand during summer 2019.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    Motte alias Anita Clark is one of my favorite music project in Wellington. Her music is coming from outer space. I don’t know how to define it and I’ve talked to her only few words but her music is pretty close to my universe.

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    I’ve attend a lot of gigs in Wellington and playing some opens mics as well. Each place have it’s own personality but Valhalla is the high quality sound system I guess and the Pyramid Club is a good place to experiment as the audience is quiet and open minded.

    Live recorded at Valhalla, July 10th 2019 (Wellington, New Zealand). Support Tower Of Flints + Secrets Of The Sun.

    In your songwriting or composing how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    Working in the studio is mainly improvising and recording. When something happen, it’s recorded. Sometime, when you are playing, you don’t realise what you are doing. Recordings and listening is a great part of the composing’s process.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    I’ll perform at the Pyramid Club on August 8th with Todd Luffa an American musician. I’m very excited to perform in this venue and to share the stage with this artist.

    Video recorded at Huka falls, Taupo, New Zealand, July 2019.


  • General

    The Eighth Note: Lord of the North

    07.08.19 | 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.
    Up next is Lord of the North, an instrumental project formed by cebuano guitarist Jiji Aligno. The band was finally materialized on 2015 when Jiji a.k.a. “Lord of the North” was invited to play for the album launch of another rock instrumentalist, Dave Gonzales. Ron Garcia (ex-Stabwoundz) and Xyril Taran (ex-Burning Culture) was then invited to play in the band. They band stuck with the name “Lord of the North” and has been playing in gigs ever since. Richard Ricky Flores (Three Legged Men / Stellarskin) then took over the drummer duties which led to completion of the debut album called “MVRCK”.

     

    Who are you? Tell us a bit about your music:
    Friends call me Jiji. My music goes under the name ‘Lord of the North’ which is a long story. But to make things clear, the name is not referencing the famous TV show with the dragons and all that. It’s actually an inside joke that my friends used to call me back where I come from, since I used to live in the northern part of Cebu, which is in the Philippines. I’ve moved to Wellington (for good) and have tried to perform and share my music in the Welly scene as much as I can. I really love Wellington and the arts scene here. As for my music, I write rock instrumental music with a huge focus on guitar melodies, catchy riffs and with huge attention to arrangement and story telling. I guess you can say it is progressive instrumental music highlighting a lot of guitar work.

    What have you been working on lately? Any new tracks or albums on the way?
    I’ve been working on a new album and have just released a new single and a music video called “Apollo” which features one of my best friends Seth Jackson (Scorn of Creation). Very excited with the way this new album is headed since I’ve recently gained a huge interest in cinematic scoring and am trying to apply new ideas to express certain motiffs. Still in the writing process though and might even do a bit of singing in some tunes. I’m also writing music for a funk project called BuzzSaw.

    Where is the best place people can follow you & find your music?
    The music is available on Spotify, iTunes and other digital outlets. The first album, MVRCK, which I released in 2016 can be found there. My music is also lurking in the bowels of the internet like Facebook, Instagram and Youtube where I like to post guitar vids and exercises on top of the music I write.

    What were the 3 most influential albums to you growing up?
    Growing up as a punk rock kid, I’d say the biggest influence to me is Rancid’s “And Out Come the Wolves”. Marty Friedman’s music is definitely a huge influence to me as a guitarist and in how I see instrumental music especially his album Loudspeaker. And very recently, bands like Vulfpeck. So I’m going to say, Vulfpeck’s “The Beautiful Game” is a killer of an album. Obviously there’s a lot, but those are the top 3 that I can think of that I always listen to from a day to day basis.

    Which other Wellington musician (s) would you most like to work with?
    I’ve been working on another project with Seth (the same guy who featured in Apollo). Seems like we have a lot in common in terms of interests so will be definitely involved in a few projects with him or his band. Other Wellington acts that I really like are bands like Chocolate Thunder, Ghost Who Walks, General Vibe, Scorn of Creation, Dark Divinity and Into Orbit. I’m quite into a wide and various range of music.

    What’s your favourite Wellington venue to play in?
    Moon Bar and Valhalla. I really enjoy taking part in the jam nights there as well.

    In your songwriting or composing (or the band’s songwriting) how do the compositions and songs take shape?
    I pretty much do most of the songwriting and make adjustments from there with the band. I usually start with a rhythmic idea and then chord progressions. That is where the rest of the elements take place, based on the rhythm and the direction of the song chords-wise. I write the guitar melodies last since I like to take time in coming up with the best melodies to my ears considering it is instrumental music.

    Where/when is your next gig?
    As of the moment, the band is still doing rehearsals, writing songs and will definitely be playing out there soon. However, I plan to perform some of these songs in Valhalla’s open jam night which takes place once a month. There’s one just around the corner which is on the 7th of August. I’ll be filling in bass guitar duties for Scorn of Creation on the 15th of August at Valhalla opening for Disentomb.


  • General

    New Album: Earth Tongue

    06.08.19 | Permalink | Comment? | By

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    ‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is Gussie from Earth Tongue, whose latest album ‘Floating Being’ has been getting rave reviews locally and overseas, including making a BBC Radio 6 Best of 2019 So Far list.

     

    When/where was the new album recorded?
    Floating Being came to fruition in a few different places. We started off in Melbourne with our friend Fabian Shaw in his home studio, where he’s got a great tape machine recording set up. Then it was back home to Wellington where we recorded some snatches of vocals, percussion and synths. We were living in Berlin for a few months in 2018, and so recorded bits and pieces there. Following that, we were lucky to spend two days with our friend Pat Stewart at the music conservatory in Den Haag. ‘The Dome’ was recorded there, and Pat also contributed some lovely keys in that track. Once we got back to Wellington, we finished it all off over a few days at Blue Barn Studio with James Goldsmith. I believe we were the last band to record there before the building was demolished. A true honour!

    Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
    Well as you can see above we worked with a few different recording engineers, but it was mixed in the end by James Goldsmith. Some songs were so straightforward to record, and we were able to smash them out pretty quickly. Some songs went through lots of different changes and re-writes in the studio, and a couple didn’t have any vocals when we recorded them. I guess we could have sat those songs until they were fully realised, but I think the fact that they were so fresh makes for pretty interesting recordings.

    How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
    We write really collaboratively. Most of the song writing happens in our rehearsal studio, ‘cause we like to be loud. Although, I do like writing riffs on acoustic guitar and then seeing if they translate once they’re fuzz-ified. There’s some pretty silly themes in the album – single cellular organisms gaining a life of their own and thinking profoundly, opening portals to alternate realities, insatiable sapiens dissolving into mush…that sort of carry on!

    Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
    We’re a rock band, but we didn’t want to sound like a shiny, high-production creature. Our favourite recordings are 1970s psych and prog rock – bands like Captain Beyond, Billy Cox’s Nitro Function, Ironclaw and Coven. There’s a lot of current bands that are nailing that sound too. I like really dry, warm fuzz, compressed drums and toms that sound like ice cream containers! We stayed away from too much reverb and embraced the distortion that comes with recording drums to tape.

    Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
    Recording to tape was crucial to capturing the sound we wanted. It was cool to hear how you can use simple EQ on an old desk to achieve so many different drum sounds. There were no room mics used to record the drums, only close mics. The result really smacks you in the face. A few different vintage pedals were used too. There’s plenty of Russian Big Muff on the record as well as the ‘Royal’ fuzz wah – the most punishing fuzz I’ve been lucky to use. Then there’s the electro-harmonix “smallstone” phaser and of course heaps of Hot Cake.

    Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
    Microscopic God has got all the classic ET elements! We’re singing in unison to wacky time signatures and there’s some classic Ezra drum fills in there too. It’s my favourite to play live.

    Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
    Yes, we have vinyl and CDs. We’re currently sold out of physical copies but you can get it on vinyl from RPM and Slowboat. You can purchase it digitally through our Bandcamp or stream through your fave streaming platform. [Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music, ]

    Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs? Are you doing any gigs or promotion for its release?
    Hell yeah! We have a video for the song Probing the New Reality in the works. That will be out this month. Keep your eyes peeled for a NZ tour announcement too. Here’s a secret… it’s in December!


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