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2007 New Zealand Music Awards Really Do Get Crazy

19th October 2007
Photos by Niels Shipper.
Crazy they may be, but dumb their music most certainly is not - and now they've got the Tuis to prove it. Auckland foursome The Mint Chicks stole the show and a Tui trophy for each on the strength of their stunning spaz-pop album 'Crazy?Yes! Dumb? No!' at the 2007 Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. Craziness became the night's theme with comic helmsman Dai Henwood opening the night in a lycra number leading the Vodafone cheer leaders and typically, at times sailing closer to the wind than the black boat ever managed. He came out another big winner on the night.

The Mint Chicks' self-produced album had already won lead singer Ruban Nielson a trophy for designing the Best Cover artwork before collecting a further four Tuis at the Music Awards main event. They included the premier Best Group award, Album of the Year, Rock Album of the Year and Best Music Video (for the album's title track) awarded to director Sam Peacocke.

In between all that trophy crazy-ness band members (Ruban and Kody Nielson, Paul Roper and Michael Logie) also brought some real edge to the stage, performing the title track. The album was clearly a favourite among the extended voting academy which RIANZ has adopted to find the winners in 10 of the two dozen categories now recognised throughout the year. Even so it hadn't sold enough to go gold prior to the awards and Flying Nun will be expecting a 'Crazy? Yes! Dumb? No!' sales boom in the next few weeks.

Hollie Smith's wonderfully successful debut 'Long Player' album earned her three fresh Tuis for being the Best Female Solo Artist, Breakthrough Artist of the Year and, rather less obviously, Best Aotearoa Roots Album. These on top of the trophy which Hollie and her studio pal Jeremy Toy earlier picked up for Best Producer. Hollie has been flying the world, playing and recording of late, but was wisely back to beguile with a live performance of I Will Do.

Evermore's fabulous Hume brothers, who also performed on the night, picked up the Single of the Year award and a matching trophy for their 2005 Tui recognising their International Achievement.

Shapeshifter were not surprisingly judged to have produced the Best Dance/Electronica Album with 'Soulstice', while the Best Urban/Hip Hop Album award went to PNC for his 'Rookie Card'. Tim Finn's return breakthrough album 'Imaginary Kingdom' won him a Tui for being our Best Male Solo Artist.

Rattle Records were well rewarded for their focus on the details of recording and presentation with a win for John Psathas (Best Classical Album) and also for the contemporary remix version of their Richard Nunns and Hirini Melbourne album called 'Te Whaiao: Te Ku Te Whe Remixed'. Richard Nunns described the album as a "hooligan child". Best Gospel/Christian Album went to Rapture Ruckus for their Parachute Records' album 'I Believe'.

This year's Silver Scroll awardee Brooke Fraser was in danger of grabbing only the Most Overlooked award (alongside Opshop), but claimed some reward with 'Albertine' being the Highest Selling Album (60,000 and counting) and Deciphering Me the NZ On Air Airplay Record of the Year. Opshop were saved from an unfortunate snub by having the public vote them Peoples' Choice winner. Although Crawl was the year's Highest Selling Single, and was also performed on the night, it apparently wasn't enough to qualify Atlas for breakthrough act status in the ears of judging academy.

At the opposite end of the career trail, Johnny Devlin became the first recipient of the New Zealand Herald Legacy Award and the second artist (following closely behind APRA's chosen star Jordan Luck) to be inducted into the newly created NZ Music Hall of Fame. His heartfelt thank you speech and brief description of those wild, crazy days when rock'n'roll first found its dancing feet here in NZ proved a real highlight.

Staged once again at Auckland's Aotea Centre the winners and finalists announced at the 2007 Vodafone NZ Music Awards were as follows:
 
Album of the Year
Winner: The Mint Chicks - 'Crazy? Yes! Dumb? No!'

Finalists: Brooke Fraser - 'Albertine'
Evermore - 'Real Life'
Hollie Smith - 'Long Player'
Opshop - 'Second Hand Planet'

Single of the Year
Winner: Evermore - Light Surrounding You

Finalists: Brooke Fraser - Deciphering Me
Liam Finn - Second Chance
Opshop - Maybe
The Tutts - K

Best Group
Winner: The Mint Chicks

Finalists: Evermore
Opshop

Best Male Solo Artist
Winner: Tim Finn - 'Imaginary Kingdom'

Finalists: Greg Johnson - 'Anyone Can Say Goodbye'
Paul McLaney - 'Edin'

Best Female Solo Artist
Winner: Hollie Smith - 'Long Player'

Finalists: Brooke Fraser - 'Albertine'
Hayley Westenra - 'Treasure'

Breakthrough Artist of the Year
Winner: Hollie Smith - 'Long Player'

Finalists: Atlas - Crawl
Liam Finn - 'Second Chance'

Best Rock Album
Winner: The Mint Chicks - 'Crazy? Yes! Dumb? No!'

Finalists: Evermore - 'Real Life'
Opshop - 'Second Hand Planet'

Best Urban/Hip Hop Album
Winner: PNC - 'Rookie Card'

Finalists: 4 Corners - 'The Foundations'
Deceptikonz - 'Heavy Rotation'

Best Aotearoa Roots Album
Winner: Hollie Smith - 'Long Player'

Finalists: Age Pryor - 'Shanks' Pony'
The Black Seeds - 'Into the Dojo'

Best Music Video
Winner: Sam Peacocke - Crazy?Yes!Dumb?No! (The Mint Chicks)

Finalists: Angus Sutherland and Liam Finn - Second Chance (Liam Finn)
Stephen Tolfrey - Maybe (Opshop)

Best Dance/Electronica Album
Winner: Shapeshifter - 'Soulstice'

Finalists: Bulletproof - 'Shake The Foundations'
State Of Mind - 'Take Control'

Best Maori Album
Winner: Richard Nunns & Hirini Melbourne - 'Te Whaiao: Te Ku Te Whe Remixed'

Finalists: Adam Whauwhau - 'Tukuna Mai'
Toi Hautu - 'Na Te Atua'

Best Gospel/Christian Album
Winner: Rapture Ruckus - 'I Believe'

Finalists: Hannah Donald - 'Unfinished Journey'
Magnify - 'Alive Within'

Best Classical Album
Winner: John Psathas - 'View From Olympus'

Finalists: NZSO and James Judd - 'Lilburn - Orchestral Works'
Dame Kiri Te Kanawa - 'Kiri Sings Karl'

International Achievement
Evermore

Highest Selling Album
Brooke Fraser
- 'Albertine'

Highest Selling Single
Atlas - Crawl

NZ on Air Airplay Record of the Year
Brooke Fraser
- Deciphering Me

The New Zealand Herald Legacy Award
Johnny Devlin
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