Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Loafer in the kitchen

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Gettin' our groove back

Bit by bit Christchurch is nudging things back to 'normal' and getting it's groove back on. Out of town bands are (finally) seeing the city as a viable place to tour and the drought is coming to an end. This is due to the fact that new venues have been opening up over the last few months. Whether it's through foresight, luck or just people taking a punt, I couldn't be happier that those involved are just getting on with it and making it happen.

The Brewery is currently the best venue on offer for music lovers, but I'm looking forward to seeing what The Archive and also the new Dux venue will bring to the mix.

The Arts Festival has got some fantastic bands coming and at only $20 max I'll be taking in whatever shows I can.

Nix Pix
There's not a great deal on this week, some stuff, but only a couple of gigs really worth a mention in my opinion...

Thursday 18 August
with support from Nadia Reid
@ Telstraclear Club 

Friday 19 August
The Nudge
@ The Brewery

FREE download from The Nudge:

Friday, August 12, 2011

Good Vibrations - the final hurrah

Good Vibrations is over. Hurrah! 5 gigs from April 29th to 6 August that have fulfilled the need for indie music lovers to have somewhere to go and something to do in post-quake Christchurch. (Well, I'm pretty sure they have.) They have certainly fulfilled my need for music over this time, and selfishly, I think that's what drove me to do something like this.

I'm the one with the stupid smug smile on my face at every gig, and for good reason. I don't get out of the house much, so it's been real handy setting up one night a month to listen to my favourite local bands, and also those bands I'd heard were good, but hadn't had a chance to see. I've become an even bigger fan of Chch music. We're lucky to have such a depth of talented bands across lots of genres. Freakin awesome actually.

Anyways, it's been a blast. New venues are under way thereby ending our temporary role in the Christchurch music scene.

Job done.


The Nox

How to Kill

How to kill

Into the Void


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Three sheets to the Wind (Good Vibrations #3)

The above video is a few snippets of some of the bands at Good Vibrations #3. Keep your expectations LOW in regards to the quality of the video. I've synced it pretty badly here with some pretty basic software.  Eergh. Cest la vie. Buy me a camera. The sound is great thoough and is courtesy of Nick (?) who recorded the entire event for Doctors who were generous enough to give me a copy. Cheers guys!

Good Vibrations #3 hit the Canterbury Bowling Club last Saturday (May 28).
Great line up. Great night. Opened with Nadia Reid, then Doctors, then T54 and finally Von Klap.

I'm still bloody exhausted so have no words just pics. They tell the story well enough. Sorry no pics of Nadia tho cos I was on the door.

The Doctors, shoegazing sonic 6 piece




Two 'D's on the door

Me and Ira



The crowd

Von Klap takes the stage

AND finally the act that got everyone under 25 in Christchurch battling it out for who had the wittiest blog comment....

Tawdry Trainwreck...

Friday, May 6, 2011

Monster Vibrations Vibrations

The Steffan van Souest Monster Machine strutted it's stuff at Good Vibrations #2. Strutted, huffed, growled and purred. A perfect recipe for smiles on faces. Monster smiles!

Our new sign
We had a couple of improvements we needed to make from Good Vibrations #1 - the biggest of which was to increase our street presence so people could find us. Thanks to some masterful antics with lights, cardboard, laundry racks and glue guns,  Nick White and Chester Dextar got this job DONE!

The Dialtones

The Steffan van Souest hit Machine

Our new stamp

Lupus Lunar

G & Me

The Undercurrents

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The earth moved and it was GOOOOOOD!

Here's some pics from Good Vibratons #1. The pics are crap but the gig was a knockout success. We were able to donate $200 to the Wunderbar which will go towards their reopening, but more importantly we created a night of good music, good food, some big big love and some mighty good vibrations. Mission accomplished.

Good Vibrations #1
Devilish Mary and the Holy Rollers
Modern Trash Quartet
The Tiny Lies with guest Delaney Davidson on slide guitar
Delaney Davidson

Good Vibrations antipasto

Runaround Sue
Me and Si

Good Vibrations #2 is on 29th April... and rumour has it that Good Vibrations #3 will quickly follow. (I may have started that rumour...)

Poster design by Nick White

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Where there's a will...

I've had quite an uplifting week, and this is due, in part, to seeing some key areas of Christchurch gather the momentum to move forward. I talked earlier in the week about the serious lack of venues in the city - and particularly in the CBD. It has been incredibly sad to hear that some of my favourite venues - all huge supporters of local music - will never reopen their doors.

It's a sad farewell to Goodbye Blue Monday who in it's relatively short life had become one of the best venues in town. The iconic Dux-de-lux will be out of action for some time, possibly years. Jeez I hope not though. There is a call for the Arts Centre to restore the Dux, and I hope they have some success here. Al's Bar is also going to be closed for some time - although word is that their buildng is ok, it's the neighbouring buildings that pose a threat. Either way it's yet another live music venue that's not around.

Where does that leave musos and music fans? In a bit of a quandry really, but solutions are coming to fill the silence. The Loons has opened its doors and The Wunderbar is getting builders in today so they should be opening soon - all of which is great news for Lyttelton folk.  Sadly El Santo is in worse shape and it might take a while for that to get on it's feet again. Um... Sorry digressing a bit there. There is also a raft of events that are thinking outside the square (excuse the pun)  and getting creative in where and what they can offer. Gap Filler is back with a fair in Church Square, there 's The Great Sumner picnic, family fairs on beaches - all sorts of things. The CHART website is always a great place to see what's happening around the place.

And for all my talk earlier this week - well, where there's a will there's a way, and 'will' has never been something I've been short of. I've set up a couple of gigs a called Good Vibrations. I'm hiring the Canterbury Bowling Club to host a couple of nights of indie music right in the heart of the city. The response from bands wanting to play has been fantastic so I can now confirm Saturday 9 April will be 'Good Vibrations #1'. Several bands have confirmed but I'll wait until everyone has signed off before I post the event with bands. (The video is a big hint.) Rest assured it's a tasty line up that will relieve the silent void we've had of late.

The Canterbury Bowling Club host of Good Vibrations

Nix Pix:

Saturday 26 March
Unfaithful Ways, Runaround Sue, Al Parks @ Marine Club, Lyttelton

Friday 1 April
Gerry & the Pacemakers @ Aurora Centre, Burnside

Saturday 2 April 
Quake Raiser Music Festival @ The Venue, Hornby

Friday 8 April
Quakefest 2011 @ Sammys and Refuel (Dunedin)

Saturday 9 April
Good Vibrations #1 @ Canterbury Bowling Club

Saturday 16 April
UCSA presents The Official Volunteer Thank You Concert @ Ilam fields

Monday, March 21, 2011

I'm picking up good vibrations

It's not news that Christchurch has suffered a horrific natural disaster, nor is it news that we Christchurch folk have had enough of the endless shaking, Mayor Bob's face everywhere, and the general sense of unease all around us. Those of us that got through February 22nd relatively unscathed are still counting our lucky stars - which is at least less depressing than counting the cracks in our walls. In some ways it doesn't matter what scale of destruction each of us has had to deal with because we are all feeling tired, grumpy, sad, and frightened to some degree. I believe most people, like me, have had enough and want to do some of the 'normal' things we were doing prior to Feb 22nd.

For me 'normal' means hanging out with my friends over a few quiet drinks, playing music with friends and/or going out to see bands with friends. The latter is bloody near impossible at present. With estimates of 80% of the CBD to be demolished there is simply nowhere for bands to play. Well... nowhere you would usually expect to see bands, especially indie/alt bands.

Manchester Street - CARYS MONTEATH/ The Press

I'm not known for my patience and I've been getting sick of having nowhere to go, so I've decided to try and put some gigs on to get some bands back doing what they love. The plan is very simple - find a venue and ask bands to play. So far I've had about 10 bands let me know they are keen and I'm starting to work through some venue ideas. It looks like I've got 4 serious contenders for a venue all of which have their pros and cons. Thankfully people are already getting used to the fact that you HAVE to travel more than you used to prior to Feb 22nd to do anything, so I'm hoping that a bit of extra travel won't put people off coming out for a good night. I'm also hoping I can swing some sort of subsidized travel if need be.

So... that's the bones of my idea. Oh and the gigs will be called GOOD VIBRATIONS. Coz it's cheesey and I like cheese! I'll post new developments as they come. I'm hoping to sign off on the venue by the end of this week and put the first gig on mid-late April.

Watch this space.

Nix Pix:

I have heard of a few gigs happening around the place, but very little (see below). There seems to be some good news in Lyttelton with the The Loons had been upgraded to a Yellow sticker and the Wunderbar talking of opening up in April - which is something.

Wednesday 23 March
Radius Kink Unplugged @ Silverback Cafe, 144 Cashmere Road

Thursday 24 March
MC Smooth & Dek Protektion @ The Venue-musicbar, Hornby

Friday 25 March
D'Sendantz Reggae The Venue-musicbar, Hornby

Saturday 26 March
Annual Fund Raiser for the SPCA @ The Nut Point Centre, 703 Old West Coast Road
MC Smooth & Dek Protektion @ The Venue-musicbar

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Chin up Christchurch

I went to start finding some information about what's left of Christchurch's music venues and stumbled across this site
where they have done all the work for me. Some great info here and it seems to be up to date. So thanks NZ Musician for pulling that together.

After speaking with a couple of friends who work full-time as musos in this city it sounds like there's a heap of muso's with no where to play. Venues like the Hornby working Mens Club is now hosting some different bands to what it might be used to. On a similar note, The Eastern, the band with the big heart, are offering to play anywhere - just contact them and they'll bring the music. Superb. It's things like this that make us all feel a bit better about this wreck of a city we're living in. 

Chin up Chch. Keep on rockin. That's rockin' NOT quakin'. Ok? Ok.

Nix Pix:

I actually have no freakin clue about what could possibly be open to go and see, so I suggest having a few friends over with a crate and a few guitars. If, on the off chance, I find an event to see I'll let you know.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

You render me speechless... not

Seeing bands play at a party is always a real novelty. Sometimes a good one. Sometimes not so good. But always memorable. If I put my muso hat on for a second I'd say people's houses are hands-down a more favourable place to play. There's just a different vibe. It's more like playing in the band room, with the added bonus of having guests to egg you on.

Local legends The Renderers are playing at Goodbye Blue Monday this week, which sent me on a You Tube search where I found this great wee clip of them playing a party.

I love this band and wish I got to see them more than I do. I adore them for their country psychedelic rock, their laid back attitude, but most of all I love that their front person is a chick...  AND she's freakin awesome! I do have a bit of a thing for chicks in bands - well, who doesn't?! But it's a particular joy to watch someone so confident and at ease with her music. Not that The Renderers are all about Mary-rose, not at all, but she's the highlight for me. If you're looking for some sweet sounds to check out on Saturday night then head along to Goodbye Blue Monday - it's a sure thing.

Nix Pix:
Heaps to choose from this week.  I have my suspicions that there were cheap flights from the US to NZ recently cos there's three US bands in town this week - Ocean Floor, The Melvins and Queens of the Stone Age. Also some great NZ and local bands too.

Thursday 17 Feb
Secondi, Von Voin Strum @ Dux 
'Touch My Toga' - Yolanda Be Cool, Dick Johnson, MayaVanya, Supermodel more @ Orientation

Friday 18 Feb
I Am The Light w/ The Willow Page & The Gentlys @ GBM
Mustard @ Dux
Nudge! with special guest Dr Captain @ El Santo
Carnival For Carnivores, 2 Worlds, Awakened Inferno, Sekht @ Al's Bar 
Aaron From Cairo Knife Fight  @ Cartel 
Belushio @ Wunderbar 

Saturday 19 Feb
The Renderers @ Goodbye Blue Monday
NZeppelin @ Al's Bar
'New Noise' - Ruby Suns,Tommy Ill, Street Chant & The Guest @ Orientation
The Eastern + Dj Insomniac @ Cartel
Blue Blood, with support from Suede Arcade @ Dux
Curb @ El Santo

Sunday 20 Feb
Ocean Floor (Portland) with The Undercurrents & Paper Ghost (Wellington) @ Wunderbar

Monday 21 Feb
The Melvins (LA) and High On Fire @ Al's Bar

Thursday 24 Feb
Queens of the Stone Age (California) w Cairo Knife Fight @ Christchurch Town Hall

Monday, February 7, 2011

Hang Ten - Surfing USSR are back in town! Yoowwee!

I love it when something great you haven't seen for a while turns up unexpectedly. So I'm very happy to hear that Surfing USSR are playing at El Santo this week.

The Surferdelic EP was released in 2000
Surfing USSR were (are?) a Christchurch group formed about 1999 who played "instrumental surf tunes based on melodies from traditional Jewish klezmer music and eastern European folk tunes" (so says the band website). The band - Greg Malcolm (guitar), Marc Howe (bass), and Matt Gibb (drums) had a good following of loyal fans and haven't to my knowledge been seen around this neck of the woods for a while - what a great treat! (It's usually about now that I find out they play regularly and I just haven't noticed! Eeeeh...Cest la vie.)

Delaney Davidson's awesome Self Decapitation poster
I heard a track from local fella Delaney Davidson on the radio today which reminded me how much I like him, and that I need to get more of his music in my collection. So here's his lovely Homeward Bound tune for you to enjoy. He regularly plays at El Santo - well worth a trip through the tunnel I say. There's also a great article about him in the Philadelphia Examiner that's worth a looksee too.

AND this just in...
Singer / songwriter/ guitarist / turntabilist / producer Mara TK is in town playing a solo set  at  - you guessed it - El Santo on Thursday night. If you're into soulful vocals then this is a gig not to miss. Mara currently plays with Electric Wire Hustle, Fly my Pretties, and has featured on Julien Dyne and Benny Tones' albums amongst others.
He's a great songwriter and all-round super dude, go check him out on Thursday night.

Nix picks for what's on this week

Wednesday 9 February
The Eastern @ The Wunderbar  

Thursday 10 February
Mara TK @ El Santo
Folk & Blues Night with special guests Farrago (UK), Al Parks @ Al's Bar
Canterbury Rams @ The Dux
Psymon Barnet @ Goodbye Blue Monday
Plum Green "The Red" EP Release @ The Wunderbar

Friday 11 February
Surfing USSR with guests @ El Santo
Masters of Our Universe @ Goodbye Blue Monday

Saturday 12 February
Oxfest, Dance Asthmatics, Palace Of Wisdom, The Stefan Van Soest Hit Machine @ El Santo
Jess Chambers + Marlon Williams @ Goodbye Blue Monday
The Weight @ Cartel


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My mum always told me...

My mother was never one of those mums who told me "if I didn't have anything good to say then say nothing at all", and in retrospect perhaps she should of. It might have made me a quieter and more thoughtful person. I fear it may be a little too late, but this old dog is gonna try and learn this new trick. And as I have nothing good or exciting to comment about this week I'm gonna leave it at that. Nada. Not even a tiny squeak. Nada.

Thrilling, isn't it?

What's on this week?

THURSDAY January 27 
The Unfaithful Ways @ Cartel
Blindfolded and Led to the Woods (EP Release) with My Dad's a Heart Surgeon @ Dux
The Golden Awesome with T54 @ Goodbye Blue Monday
Jack Derwin (Sydney) @ Al's Bar
World Buskers Festival @ The Bedford

FRIDAY January 28
Azalia Snail Celestial Respect Tour @ El Santo
Magic Eye with Bits'n'Pieces @ GBM
Ed Musik and the Burning Sensations @ Dux
The Mamaku Project Electro 4tet @ Wunderbar
Made in China, Osmium, Stonehurst @ Al's Bar
World Buskers Festival @ The Bedford

SATURDAY January 30
Echo Chamber_Roots/Dub/Dancehall @ El Santo
Scarlett Lashes & Vostok Lake @ Harbourlight
Lupus Lunar + Tiny Lies + Happiness Stan @ Wunderbar
Crossroads with Kelly Fletcher-Jones @ Al's Bar
World Buskers Festival @ The Bedford

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

You squirmed your way into my heart

Apologies to all the blog purists out there but I'm feeling VERY lazy tonight so I gotta whole lotta 'copy and paste' goin on. I just wanted to quickly let you know about the upcoming documentary release (trailer above) called 'Gone with the Weird' featuring one of my favourite Christchurch bands Squirm.

Squirm outside Hex Central

"Squirm were a New Zealand alternative rock group based in Christchurch New Zealand. The band played from 1991–1997 and released 2 albums and one 6 track ep.


* 1994 - Whip Me Honey CDEP - 6 tracks - Failsafe Records
* 1995 - Mastermistakemaker - Album - Failsafe Records
* 1996 - Spastic Sarcastic - Album - Noseflute Records


The band line up centered around

* Brett Lupton (Virgil Reality) - Guitar and Vocals
* Michael Brassell (Mike Hex) - Guitar and Vocals

and Drummers

* 1991 - 1994 Hat Myer
* 1994 - 1995 - (Darryl Kirk) Lawrence O'blivion
* 1995 - 1998 Pete Mitchell

and later bassist Vaughn Watson.

The band didn't officially split but members went off to do their own thing, Notably Michael Brassell's Hiss Explosion featuring Pete Mitchell on drums which released a couple of albums, and his other side project whitey Hiss which also had releases. Michael Brassell died of complications arising from pneumonia in February 2004."

[Thanks Wiki!]

Gone with the Weird is a documentary by Simon Ogston about Christchurch's much loved 'progressive art punk glam rock band' Squirm. (Check out the link for a great article about the doco on CHART by Vicki Anderson. This much anticipated documentary premieres at Al's Bar on Thursday night. Not only will you get to see a great documentary but both Permanence and, of course, Squirm are playing. I believe the run sheet for the night goes something like this:  
Permanence 8.30pm, Documentary 9.30pm, Squirm 10.30pm. 
Cost $10.

Sounds like a great way to spend a Thursday night.

I'll post some other events for the rest of the week later on.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Sounds Abound

January is here and with it comes a heap of musos on tour for various gigs around the country. The Big Day Out and Fly My Pretties are a couple that spring to mind. It's been a long (long) time since I last made it to a Big Day Out, and realistically I don't think I'll make it to another.  Back in 1996 I sold my 1962 Morris Mini for $300 to go to the BDO. The thing I remember most about the concert is that every second girl seemed to have blue or green hair that they'd dyed with food colouring and after a torrential change in the weather there were blue and green 'smurfs' everywhere as their hair colour leaked out and the green grass turned into brown muck. I can't remember a lot of the bands but I vividly remember Elastica and Tricky.

I'm a horder of all sorts of bits and bobs and it turns out that I still have the timetable I ripped out of the Auckland Herald and my ticket. Back then it was $62.50 and that seemed like a lot of money so I guess it's probably about the equivalent of today's ticket price of $158.
The timetable and map from The Herald January 19th 1996
The ticket
The 1962 mini I sold to get to 1996 BDO.

I'm happy to say that one of my favourite Christchurch bands The Unfaithful Ways are playing this year, but to be honest I'm not all that enthused about this years international acts, mmm that may be in part to my sheer ignorance (or my age) but I don't seem to know many of them. Shame. And the ones I do know... yawn.

Anyhow Fly My Pretties are back in town and playing out at Pegasus Bay Winery at Waipara on the 15th. I'm sure that'll be sweet. I saw FMP's slick third production in June last year and thoroughly enjoyed it. There's some other great gigs in town this week - EP releases from T54 and Second Gear Grind and English band Kitty, Daisy and Lewis are playing at Al's - so get ya gladrags on and get amongst it!

What's on this week? 

Evening Empire, Weaponized, Lupus Lunar, Secondi & Raukus Methods (Nelson) @ Al's Bar
Slammin Bitches @ Dux
Orchestra of Spheres @ El Santo
Gypsy Fever Summer Tour feat. Niko Ne Zna & DJ Balkanetic @ Harbourlight

FRIDAY 14th Jan
Kitty, Daisy and Lewis @ Al's (Sold out)
Delaney Davidson, The Mysterious Tapeman introducing Zeno Tornado @ El Santo
Oakley Grenell Duo, 11pm Supership @ Fat Eddies
The Micheal Gordon Trio Experience @ Wunderbar


Fly My Pretties @ Pegasus Bay Winery, Waipara
Steriogram Moving On Tour @ Al's Bar 
T54 - Drone Attacks EP Release with Magic Eye and The Guest @ El Santo
Second Gear Grind Grayscale EP Release with Soulseller @ Dux
Another great poster from El Santo