21 Mar 2018

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking

Gig Review: Head Like A Hole NYE @ Totara Street, Mt Maunganui - 31/12/2016

05 Jan 2017 // A review by River
New Years Eve at the Mount reminded me a lot of the high-octane gigs from back in the day when Head Like A Hole (HLAH) first started touring the metal scene up in Auckland, which was a bit dead at the time. Of course there’s not as much nakedness going on these days, but HLAH still helps people to get over their inhibitions with rip-roaring performances that will blow your mind.

The night started out with Hamilton based Rebel Sound Radio who blasted through their set like well-seasoned pros, with the hard-hitting rock mixed with a dash of punk warming up a small but enthusiastic crowd.  The stand out song was Liberation with Jesse James Hanright’s well-executed guitar solo holding the audience transfixed. Keep an eye on Rebel Sound Radio, who nailed their set without a hitch.

Second on the bill was local group Edward Gains and The Human Remains whose relaxed stage presence put the growing audience at ease. Surprisingly edgy pre-grunge with touches of melancholy for good measure, their post-punk sound generally allowed people to meet and greet as they arrived.

Tauranga band All Hail The Funkillers injected a bit more frenetic punk into the festivities. Think Bikini Kill with a tinge of X-Ray Spex. Faster and more energized than on their digital album, the song Sophrysyne was lapped-up by an enthusiastic audience and despite a false start; the cover of Beastie Boys track Sabotage also went down a treat. All Hail The Funkillers was well placed to get the crowd amped for the main event.

Dedicating this gig to their good friend the late Gerald Dwyer, Head Like a Hole started their set off in fine tradition with Fish Across Face, which was bloody awesome! 

HLAH swapped nicely between new and old material with Drummer Mike Franklin-Browne nailing all the tricky fills in their extensive back catalogue. Guitarist Andrew Ashton’s excellent solos and crunching power chords on a stunning Les Paul Gold Top put the icing on the cake. If anything the difficulties HLAH have gone through over the years has made for an even more cohesive group.

Halfway through their set and instead of the usual midnight countdown, founding guitarist Nigel Regan opted for a ‘Fuck You 2016’, which was happily echoed by the buzzing crowd.

At times the PA system struggled slightly to keep up with HLAH’s unrelenting dynamics in songs like 1 Pound 2 Pound, Hootenanny and Never Mind Today. But for the most part and with a little encouragement from the band, sound quality in the Mauao Performing Arts Centre was good. My favourite Johnny Cash cover, I’m On Fire, sounded great and by the time audience pleaser Wet Rubber got underway, consummate performer Booga Beasley had partygoers eating out of the palm of his hand.

A few guys looking for trouble kept bar staff and bouncers pretty busy throughout the night, which was the only dampener to an exceptional event of fantastic live music that left my head ringing like a bell. Get along and check out Head Like A Hole at a venue near you.


About Head Like A Hole

Formed in Wellington, Head Like A Hole originally consisted of Booga Beazley, Nigel Regan, Andrew Durno and Mark Hamill. Like most young bands, they started out by playing small gigs at local pubs and at various well known live venues. Then quickly started touring the university circuit. The band soon made a name for themselves with energetic and often outrageous live performances, appearing on stage either naked, caked with mud, or covered completely in body paint.

Therefore forming a solid and dedicated following throughout the live music scene. Head like a Hole were soon signed to Wildside Records and began their recording career. 1992 saw the release of their debut album, 13 which the band largley produced themselves. The single Fish Across Face successfully made it into the New Zealand Top 10 charts. In keeping with Head Like a Hole tradition the video for Fish Across Face included a scene where Nigel regurgitates an orange substance into Booga’s mouth and was promptly pulled off air.

Head Like a Hole continued touring and performing the university orientation circuit. Then returned to the studio in 1993 to record their second album. Flik Y'Self off Y'Self. Which was released in stores in 1994 providing two singles. Faster Hooves and Spanish Goat Dancer. After the release of two successful records the band’s popularity and exposure increased, and so Head Like a Hole remained on tour. Playing to capacity crowds and sold out venues throughout the country, and in 1996 secured a position on the bill to play The Big Day Out festival. That same time the band suffered a sudden and tragic loss, with the death of their Manager Gerald Barry Dwyer. And it was late 1996 where they headed back to the studio, this time travelling to Australia and worked on a third album. Double Your Strength, Improve Your Health & Lengthen Your Life. Cornbag, the first single from the album, was released in November 1996, but received only moderate chart success.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Head Like A Hole


Faster Hooves
Year: ????
Type: EP
Spanish Goat Dancer
Year: ????
Type: Album
Year: 2015
Type: Album
Blood Will Out
Year: 2011
Type: Album
Blood On A Honky Tonk Floor
Year: 2000
Type: Album
Year: 1999
Type: Album
Wet Rubber
Year: 1998
Type: Album
The Not Nicomjool EP
Year: 1995
Type: EP
Flik Y'Self Off Y'Self
Year: 1994
Type: Album
Year: 1993
Type: EP
Year: 1992
Type: Album

Other Reviews By River

Arc of Ascent - Album Review: Realms of the Metaphysical
07 Apr 2017 // by River
The third full-length album from Arc of Ascent, Realms of the Metaphysical, is an uplifting release full of dark beauty and stand out vocals.  Like their two previous releases, Circle Of The Sun and The Higher Key, these songs will translate well live.
Beastwars - Album Review: The Death Of All Things
22 Feb 2016 // by River
There’s a real primal feel to the new Beastwars album, The Death Of All Things. Beastwars cut their own sonic path again and this release follows in the footsteps of their previous albums, both of which rated well in the New Zealand album charts.
Tainted - Album Review: Into Temptation
03 May 2015 // by River
Once again Tainted have delivered an outstanding album full of powerful riffs and massive soundscapes with enough subtle nuance to satisfy even the most refined metal connoisseur. Combining solid song construction and excellent engineering, Into Temptation merges all the elements required for a successful release.
The Jury & The Saints - Album Review: The Jury and The Saints
26 Mar 2015 // by River
There is no doubt that The Jury & The Saints have once again delivered an outstanding album containing a powerful uplifting message for the youth of today. Striking exactly the right balance, this self-titled release retains a nice raw edge while skillfully delivering a polished performance.
Checaine - Turn the Stone Album Review
11 Jul 2014 // by River
There's a real solid feel to this Checaine album, Turn the Stone. With a plethora of stonking riffs interspersed by lighter moments, these four guys from Hamilton have pulled a real gem out of the rock n roll bag.
Dead Dreamers - No Closure for Open Ends Album Review
01 Nov 2013 // by River
If you like your metalcore intricately crafted with a hint of punk and a dash of death for good measure, Dead Dreamers latest release No Closure for Open Ends is a must-have for your music collection. Originally hailing from Hamilton and after touring extensively throughout New Zealand, the five piece have recently relocated to the UK to break into the international market, so you will have to wait for their return tour to catch them live.
Shitripper - Brain Defect Album Review
26 Jul 2013 // by River
There's something very traditionally punk about Shitripper’s latest release Brain Defect. The Auckland based six-piece band isn’t your average three-chord punk outfit though, with a hardcore edge and snappy raucous songs sure to keep you on your toes.
Osmium - The Misery Harvest Album Review
29 Jan 2013 // by River
There’s no escaping Osmium’s awesome metal prowess throughout their second full-length album The Misery Harvest. Stylistically similar to Alice and Chains, what sets the Invercargill based three-piece apart is a harder edge of heavy riffs with a bit more grunge for good measure.
View All Articles By River

NZ Top 10 Singles

    Post Malone feat. Ty Dolla $ign
    Khalid And Normani
    Kendrick Lamar And SZA
  • MINE
    Dua Lipa
    Rudimental feat. Jess Glynne, Macklemore And Dan Caplen
    Marshmello And Anne Marie
    Zedd, Maren Morris And Grey
  • SAD!
View the Full NZ Top 40...
muzic.net.nz Logo
100% New Zealand Music
All content on this website is copyright to muzic.net.nz and other respective rights holders. Redistribution of any material presented here without permission is prohibited.
Report a ProblemReport A Problem