Posts Tagged ‘Dunedin’

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If guitar rock is dead, no-one told Bad Sav. The latest blast of Analogue Dunedin comes from the band that refused to be left behind. Although featuring Death And The Maiden guitarist/vocalist Hope Robertson and bassist/vocalist Lucinda King, plus Shifting Sands guitarist Mike McLeod (on drums here), Bad Sav are the primary strain from which both of those bands sprang.
When asked to describe her band’s sound in a 2010 interview, Hope suggested …a missed punch and a grazed fist. Sad, heavy, unpredictable loud pop”. Indeed, Bad Sav offer a far more guitar-oriented hard attack than Death And The Maiden their distinctive filtering and reassembly of influences from shoegaze, psychedelic noise-rock – and goodness knows where else – are combined using a uniquely electrified Dunedin sonic alchemy, bursting with colossal, majestic, melodic noise.

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They conjure epic maelstroms of distorted guitars, pounding drums, reverbed vocals and squalling noisescapes to teleport listeners into their bruised sonic universe. The carefully balanced ten track collection is sure to be a local highlight of the year for many.

Bad Sav are:
Hope Robertson – Guitar, vocals
Lucinda King – Bass, vocals
Mike McLeod – Drums

From his earliest days as a member of the legendary New Zealand band “The Clean” onward, singer/songwriter, David Kilgour has come to be known as one of the most respected & admired songwriters of his generation & certainly one of the greatest rock musicians to come out of New Zealand. His signature guitar twang & languid, carefree melodies are readily identifiable. Kilgour is a guitar god for guitar atheists. 

Releases September 20th, 2019

The Band:
Thomas Bell: bass, keyboards, hand chimes and percussion.
Tony de Raad: guitar.
Taane Tokona: drums and percussion.
David Kilgour: guitar, vibes, keyboards and piano.

Piano on “Swan loop” played by Matt Swanson.

From the album “Bobbie’s a girl” out September 20th, 2019 on Merge Records.

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From his earliest days as a member of the legendary The Clean onward, singer/songwriter, David Kilgour has come to be known as one of the most respected and admired songwriters of his generation and certainly one of the greatest rock musicians to come out of New Zealand. His signature guitar twang and languid, carefree melodies are readily identifiable. Kilgour is a guitar god for guitar atheists. He’s worthy of worship, but his style neither demands nor expects it, all of which only serves to increase his otherworldly cool.

“It’s moody—as in low, subdued,” says David Kilgour of his new album. The atmosphere of “Bobbie’s a girl” does feel a bit mysterious. Largely missing the jangly distortion of Kilgour’s other work, the album’s ten songs exude a hazy warmth, with a light psychedelia that recalls ’60s outfits like The Byrds and The Velvet Underground.

Four decades into his career, Kilgour remains as creatively restless as ever. Wherever that drive takes him next, you’ll want to follow.

Releases September 20th, 2019
The Band
Thomas Bell: bass, keyboards, hand chimes and percussion.
Tony de Raad: guitar.
Taane Tokona: drums and percussion.
David Kilgour: guitar, vibes, keyboards and piano.

From the album “Bobbie’s a Girl” out September 20th, 2019 on Merge Records

This new number from the Auckland via Dunedin, NZ singer-songwriter’s ‘Two Hearts and No Brain’ album, released last year, is definitely not bad at all. The alt-rock guitar track with grungey overtones is, he says, “kind of an intense, sort of heavy, dark sounding song, instrumental but the lyrics are kinda positive.  I was in the record store the other day and did a double take as they played this album. Was it a lost Brendan Benson album? Jason Falkner? maybe It’s been a while since a pop album so immediately seduced me with its melodies and lyrics.

Beauty in simplicity and yet such a large collection of complexities that elude my understanding. Utterly captivating through each and every melody, while exploring emotions that feel all too familiar. A winning blend of careful precision and mercurial abandon, Kane Strang’s new album ‘Two Hearts and No Brain’ is constantly surprising. With a penchant for melodic earworms to rival those of the world’s best pop songwriters, the New Zealand artist’s glittering hooks twist and turn in perfect synch with meticulous band arrangements.

Strang’s proclivity for writing smart, anthemic guitar pop shines brightest now that he has moved away from the bedroom and into the studio. Showcasing his new collaborative approach to recording and writing with his band, the four-piece twists Strang’s melodies upside down and pushes his hooks inside out. ‘Two Hearts and No Brain’ proves emotive and playfully laced with a tongue-in-cheek nostalgia – timelessly old and new in the same breath.

“It’s Not That Bad” from ’Two Hearts and No Brain’ by Kane Strang, out now on Dead Oceans

Asta Rangu’s excellent debut EP, “Plasticine”It’s the work of label co-founder Ley-Hamilton, and is a fluid rock ‘n’ roll record full of tightly wound guitars and soaring vocal melodies. In the post-grunge era of the late ’90s it would have slotted in nicely beside some of the greats, but in a contemporary setting it still sounds fresh.

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These guys have been such an exciting find. A dark and emotional kind of indie pop, Marlin’s Dreaming are absolutely killing it over in New Zealand. Well curated and visually captivating, there’s mystery and a moody sophistication to their sound which we just can’t get enough of.

Have a sneaky taste of what they have going with this dope clip for Floating. All we can say is that we want to be mates with the boys from Marlin’s Dreaming. lets hope they make it to the UK.

Band Members
Tim McNaughton – Guitar
Oscar Johns – Bass
Hamish Morgan – Percussion
Semisi Maiai – Vocals/guitar

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Mike McLeod booked studio time at Manny’s Estudio International in East Los Angeles. Far less glamorous in reality than it all may sound says Mike. Joining the Shifting Sands for the sessions was guest guitarist Steven Schayer – a then LA-based musician with NZ connections, having played in The Chills during the early 90’s US-based “Soft Bomb” album era.  Steven brought a different flavour to complement the independent DIY No. 8 wire approach of The Shifting Sands.

Manny Nieto also brought a different flavour to the table, producing the tracks. Manny has worked with Steve Albini and has recorded bands like the Breeders and Los Lobos.

Whereas previous albums had been layered in fuzzy guitars and synthesizers, this session involved less layers, but more harmonic breadth within the layers. Tom added bass tracks on an 8 string bass, Mike adding a bass 6 – a guitar tuned down one octave.

While there are less layers of harmonic distortion – a characteristic component of the Shifting Sands sound – there is still a lot of harmonic complexity, just realised in a different way to the approach the Shifting Sands took on their first two LPs. These songs reflect a special moment in time, in the sweltering heat of Los Angeles, while the band were far from their busy normal lives and able to spend time purely focused on making music, in a vastly different environment to their home town of Dunedin,

“Run” is one side of a new 7″ single from The Shifting Sands due for release late in January 2018.

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Band Members
Mike McLeod
Tom Bell
Jake Langley
Steven Marr

Check out the Shifting Sands, the name of a psychedelic guitar-oriented rock band out of New Zealand and whose atmospheric sound is a bit reminiscent of Australian group the Church. Consisting of singer/guitarist Mike McLeod, bassist Tom Bell, drummer Jake Langley and guitarist Steve Marr, the Shifting Sands is one of bands who are part of the Dunedin Sound that emerged sometime in the early ‘80s in the university town of Dunedin in New Zealand.

The band released its debut album, Feel, in 2012; three years later, the Shifting Sands returned with Cosmic Radio Station. It is perhaps one of the most gorgeous-sounding albums you’ll hear these days . Its for fans of jangly guitar, pop melodies, and atmosphere,Cosmic Radio Station is nirvana from the almost anthemic “Waiting for the Sun” and gauzy-sounding “We All Fall Down,” through the driving and shimmering “Abstract Objects” and the moody Neil Young-like “Dreaming to Keep Awake.” A trio based at the legendary Chick’s Hotel at Port Chalmers near Dunedin, they create Southern symphonic psychedelia, alternating between slow lush lullabies and almost space-rock psychedelic noise songs.

The Shifting Sands present “Zoe”/”Run” as a classic 45 rpm 7″ single

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releases January 31st, 2018
The Band
Michael McLeod – Vocals, guitars
Tom Bell – Bass
Jake Langley – Drums
Steven Schayer – Guitars

Fishrider Records is a Dunedin, NZ record label specialising in psych-pop, no wave, post-punk, jangle & subversive DIY pop

The Clean

After rejecting the Hall of Fame accolade twice in the past five years, members of The Clean have agreed to accept it at this year’s Silver Scrolls ceremony on September 28th.

“I think when we were asked it just didn’t feel right for us,” Robert Scott, the band’s bassist, “We feel we are outside the industry, and in the past we were shunned and dismissed, and it seems like by saying yes we would be forgiving the industry for that.

“Of course, with time they are proved wrong as our music has stood the test of time.

“It’s a strange thing dealing with other people’s perception of your music and what you stand for as a band.”

The Clean pulling faces in the back of a car

Inspired by obscure sixties garage and psychedelic bands, as well as the punk revolution of the 1970s, The Clean helped introduced New Zealand to what would later become known as ‘The Dunedin Sound’.

It was 1981 when a young Roger Shepherd was in the process of launching his new label, Flying Nun Records. He wanted to promote the many post-punk alternative bands that were springing up in his hometown of Christchurch, and further south – Dunedin.

Shepherd chose The Clean’s ‘Tally Ho’ as one of the two singles he released to the launch the label. It made it to No. 19 on the NZ singles chart, much to the delight of those involved. Not many people realised it at the time, but it was the start of something that would influence music and culture in NZ – and beyond – for decades to come.

The Clean helped cement The Dunedin Sound’s popularity – and Flying Nun’s finances – with their EP Boodle, Boodle, Boodle, also released in 1981. Surprisingly, it reached number four in the NZ charts and remained in the Top 20 for nearly six months. “To make Boodle and then it be so successful was just incredibly encouraging for everybody involved … like, ‘Hey, we’re on the right track here. Maybe we aren’t so crazy,’ David Kilgour recalls.

The band’s members include guitarist Kilgour, his brother – drummer Hamish Kilgour, and bassist Robert Scott. Each has forged a life in music including multiple bands and projects including The Bats, The Great Unwashed, Bailter Space, The Heavy Eights and more.

But it was The Clean that made it onto US college radio in the 1980s; garnered an enduring fan base in Australia, the UK and Europe; and influenced generations of NZ musicians and fans. And they’re still touring successfully across the world today.

As a reminder of how great The Clean really is, and to get you in the mood, here’s some quality gear to binge on:

The story of Boodle Boodle Boodle (2012)

“By the time we got to do Boodle Boodle Boodle, The Clean … were such a wonderfully great live band. Most of those songs were done in one or two takes.”  Boodle producer Doug Hood

A video tracing the history of The Clean’s iconic first EP. Featuring Hamish Kilgour, David Kilgour, Robert Scott, producer Doug Hood and former band member the late Peter Gutteridge:

Earlier this year Boodle Boodle Boodle was awarded the 2017 Independent Music New Zealand Classic Record Award. We spoke to David Kilgour about the record“We only [play live] every three years, so that’s how we do it. We take the mickey out of each other, in a kind and caring way. You can have a laugh at someone’s expense, but to a certain degree, and then you cross a line and the expression changes, and you know you’ve gone too far.”
Robert Scott

The Clean: selected discography

  • Boodle, Boodle, Boodle – 1981
  • Great Sounds Great, Good Sounds Good, So-so Sounds So-so, Bad Sounds Bad, Rotten Sounds Rotten – 1982
  • Odditties – 1983
  • Live Dead Clean – 1986
  • Vehicle – 1990
  • Modern Rock – 1994
  • Unknown Country – 1996
  • Getaway – 2001
  • Mashed – 2008
  • Mister Pop – 2009

New Zealand trio Opposite Sex called their new album “Hamlet” should come as little surprise. Dunedin, their hometown, is surrounded by drama both geographically and culturally. Lying at the foot of New Zealand, the furtherest city in the world from London, Dunedin is also home to iconic music labels Flying Nun and Expressway, and has a rich tradition of music and art.

On Hamlet, Tim Player, Lucy Hunter, Reggie Norris have created an ode to the drama and ideology of a city that has produced bands of the quality of The Clean, The Chills, and the Dead C. Released on Dull Tools Label, the Brooklyn label co-run by Andrew Savage of Parquet Courts, “Hamlet” mixes punk, Kiwi pop and straight up avant-garde weirdness.

On “Oh Ivy” Lucy, who has worked as a restaurant pianist, slips from gentle and soothing coos to shrieks and wails. It’s both cathartic and desperate.

Opposite Sex have already left a permanent impression within today’s younger underground generation. Besides that one fact, there aren’t many unifying features of a band so scattered, but so brilliantly chaotic, and by no means confused. But that’s just what you get from a band with so much uncontrollable inspiration, with imagination that’s like not unlike mashing one’s hands against the keyboard of existence

Off the album  “Hamlet” LP
Available on Dull Tools an album that came out August 12th 2016

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