Beastwars - The Beast In Our Blood -
With Shihad already marking a quarter century of solid musical contribution it’s more than timely that the capital should have another massive metal band to celebrate, look forward with and lay international claim to. Beastwars deserve to be it. Their newly released sophomore album is entitled ‘Blood Becomes Fire’ and serves witness to the end of days, a reflection on mortality, death and disease. Music to go into battle by, as the fiery foursome’s spokesmen Nathan Hickey and Matt Hyde tell a newly shaken Westley Holdsworth. ...more
BrownHill - Harmonies & Horns -
Wellington reggae act BrownHill aren’t letting the grass grow under their feet, releasing a self-titled EP in 2011 and now back with a debut album of smooth Pacific reggae tunes called ‘First Love’, described as a culmination of their own individual experiences. The Good Friday-scheduled release makes sense given their various strict church upbringings and the album’s abundantly evident central theme of love, conveyed with up-lifting harmonies, beats and lyrics. BrownHill say they want people to use their music as “…a tool of encouragement for anyone facing the challenges that life and love throw at us.” Martyn Pepperell threw some questions at the nine-piece band’s lead singer and lyricist Caesar Masoe. ...more
Student Radio Network NZ (Part 2) -
NZM’s February/March issue included Part One of a look at the current state of our student radio broadcasters and the plainly unsuccessful adoption of the Student Radio Network as a collective brand. What with the need to introduce the subject and the fascinating story of Christchurch’s earthquake-reshaped RDU, we ran out of room to cover off any more of the stations that fit under the ‘student radio’ umbrella.
Two decades ago all our major university campuses had their own radio broadcast outlets. Student-focused radio filled an important role in on- and off-campus communications as well as the wider social, political and creative environments. Those days passed with the gradual erosion of Government funding to tertiary institutes, changes in the make up of the student body and most critically the introduction of non-compulsory student association membership.
In 2013 only the three stations included in the following pages can accurately be called ‘student radio’, in the sense of being on-campus and student body owned and controlled. In the capital, Radio Active was sold by Victoria University in the early ’90s and although fitting NZM‘s editorial bill, was reluctant to be included in our coverage given its wider public broadcasting role aspirations. ...more
Superturtle - Manifesting The Post-Punk Beat -
The first Superturtle album, 2008’s ‘Freeride’, was essentially a solo project for Darren McShane, formerly guitarist with Chainsaw Masochist and radio DJ, now studio owner. It was followed two years later with ‘About The Sun’ and now in 2013 with a third album, rather brashly entitled ‘Beat Manifesto’, and firmly based around the early British post-punk band sound. All have been recorded at his Earwig Studios in a holistically analogue manner and released on vinyl. Richard Thorne caught up with the past and McShane to talk ’turtle. ...more
Tattletale Saints - Based On A Book -
When NZM last talked to Vanessa McGowan and her partner-in-music, Cy Winstanley, they were London-based and busy promoting the debut (and well-reviewed) album of their Americana country-tinged outfit, Her Make Believe Band. That was 2010 and quite possibly it was that trip back home to NZ that convinced the pair to return more permanently. HMBB is now gone and in its place is an Auckland-based duo called Tattletale Saints who have just released their own debut album, ‘How Red Is the Blood’. Silke Hartung talked with the pair about the change, tradition and juxtaposition.
The Phoenix Foundation - The Friendly Society -
The Phoenix Foundation’s previous album ‘Buffalo’, came after a series of solo albums from the various members. When NZM’s Amanda Mills talked to Luke Buda ahead of that early 2010 release he mentioned it had been shaping up as a double album until they’d culled 25 songs down to a more manageable ten. Returning to the market with their fifth LP, exactly three years on, the musically profuse Wellingtonians have this time given in to temptation, producing a double album they’ve called ‘Fandango’. This time round Amanda talked with Samuel Flynn Scott. ...more
The Veils - Of Veils and Vapour Trails -
I think with every record I’ve judged its success just by whether I got to make another one.” So says The Veils’ Finn Andrews as he’s about to release ‘Time Stays, We Go’, the fourth and quite possibly best yet in a professional career now just shy of 10 years, that sees him as a well-travelled and seasoned campaigner while still only in his late 20s. Andrews has a work ethic to match any in the business and an unwavering commitment to making passionate and uncompromising music that he can be truly proud of now and in the years to come. Mark Bell met up with the tireless traveller, somewhere in cyberspace, during one of Finn Andrews’ rare moments of actually sitting still… ...more