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Newsletter Issue #483: 01 May 2016

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EDITORIAL: NZ Music Month 2016 Is Here!

Welcome to Music Month y'all!

That's right, the time has come again and we can't wait to showcase one of ours (and hopefully yours too!) favourite, most prominent months of the year.

NZ Music Month is a promotion run by the NZ Music Commission and is firmly ingrained in New Zealand culture as 31 day celebration of our very own homegrown talent across the nation. It all started some sixteen years ago and has been growing strength by strength every year since. There is no shortage of great Kiwi music being made but all those years ago, not enough people got to see, hear and buy this great music, and thus, NZ Music Month was created.

Music Month would not be the success it has become if it weren't for the solid support of the country's music labels, the media, the artists themselves and of course the massive support from the general public. Every gig you attend, every new musical discovery, every CD or merch you buy is helping to support out artists. It does make a difference. Here at Muzic.net.nz we showcase Kiwi music for you all year round and of course, with Music Month we will continue to keep you updated with what's happening around the country so you don't miss out.

This month in our Newsletter we have another jam packed issue featuring Robby Thorne, Pills For Breakfast, Dilz, Jesse Wilde & The Drive, Horsefight Records and some Singing Tips from Jann McMichael.

Kerry & The Muzic.net team


With crushing riffs, melodies that worm in to your brain and songwriting diversity that creates variety yet a clear identity, Pills for Breakfast's debut self-titled album is definitely worth listening to. Released earlier this year, and described by muzic.net.nz as "oozing rock and roll at its rawest, slimiest and filthiest" with "distorted guitars wailing blues riffs with a grind that will still be running through your head days later", this release proves that PFB have a good future ahead of them. PFB answered the following questions for muzic.net.nz:

How did you become involved in music?

Chris PFB: I’ve been a fan of music my entire life. My pre-school/toddler years were spent listening to Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon and Led Zeppelin's 4. My mother had to resort to making me wear headphones when I listened to them, as she got sick to death of hearing them over and over again...! When I was 13 I discovered AC/DC’s Who Made Who album and the intro of that song inspired me to want to learn how to play drums. I stuck with drums for a while but then I got bored with it and decided to give the guitar a go. It was all downhill from there really!

If you could perform with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

Chris PFB: This is probably going to sound quite cheesy, but the people I jam with now (Neil and Steve) are my favourite people to perform with. I am really comfortable playing with them, I know what to expect from them and vice versa. I don’t think I would want to perform with any of my idols because I would develop a massive inferiority complex and not enjoy myself at all...! In saying that though, I would love the opportunity to have a song writing jam with Chino Moreno of Deftones in his basement studio... he’s such a creative and talented musician, I’d love to see how his creative processes work!

Which one of your songs are you most proud of, and why?

Chris PFB: That’s a really tough call.. I think I would have to go with Inphlux. I wrote the riff for that song in a motel room in Manukau City one evening and it sounded so grunty and heavy. Neil and I worked the song into its current format and to me it’s a really good loud, powerful, kick-ass song. It has always gone down well live and I remember playing it when we headlined the Kapiti Music Festival one year, a guy in the crowd started dancing the Haka to it... I guess it inspired him. It was pretty cool though! It’s a bit of a buzz when you see something that you’ve created having an effect on someone like that.

How would you describe your music to someone who hasn't heard it before?

Chris PFB: That’s a hard one because our songs are pretty varied genre-wise. I guess I’d have to say that on the whole we are high energy, old school heavy rock. Our music is not something you have playing in the background for a calming effect or that you would play at a wedding! We try to write music that is catchy and will stick in the listener’s head. When your wife tells you that she has one of your new tunes stuck in her head, I take that as a tip that the song is heading in the right direction.

What can we expect to see from you in the next year?

Chris PFB: Neil and I are pretty amped with how our album has been received both here and overseas and we are both keen to get back to writing some new tunes together, so this winter shall be one of creation and recording. Our latest album took several years to put together before we could get it out there and I’d like to think that we can put our second one together a bit quicker than that. We’ve learned a lot along the way, so that should help. I have a feeling that our next album will probably be even more diverse in terms of genre; Neil and I are both looking forward to trying different elements and instruments in future compositions.

What NZ musicians or bands would you like to see more of, and why?

Chris PFB: I’d like to see Decortica getting the recognition they deserve; they are an amazing band with some epic songs. I’ve seen them perform live a couple of times and they bring it on stage, they really give it hell. One thing that amazed me was that they sound just as good live as their studio stuff does. Simon Sweetman once reviewed them and described them as NZ’s best kept secret. I’d tend to agree with him. I personally think that their earlier albums A New Aesthetic and Love Hotel are their best. I’d also like to see more of Dan Green in the NZ music scene; he’s a really talented solo artist who does some really cool stuff with his acoustic guitar and looper pedal. I first saw him opening for TrinityRoots a while back and was super impressed with his set. 

Have you got any tips for dealing with nerves before a gig?

Neil PFB: Firstly and I know it sounds obvious but rehearse well. Rehearse in gig formation standing up using all of the gear you would at the gig and listen back to it! Also, time your set list. You don’t want to be cut short or even worse, finish your set with 10 mins to spare! You almost need muscle memory to be down pat. As a guitarist, this means I can enjoy the gig and be “present” rather than worrying about what I should be doing and when. You then have the “beers conundrum” – Loosening up is fine but playing live when you’re half cut isn't cool and doesn’t respect the audience who have travelled and paid to come and see you.

Where do you get your inspiration to create music from?

Neil PFB: That’s a good question as Chris and I as the songwriters have written songs in many varied ways. It can start with a riff or a lyric or songs can arrive fully formed from either of us. Sometimes we’ll write together just jamming and other times, you get that email ping late at night and there's an idea / demo in your inbox which means you’ve just got to get on to it and write! I tend to get ideas in downtime when I’m noodling on an acoustic or I’ll think of a song title / concept and write based on that. Some of the album tracks have changed a fair bit since the demo and some are almost exactly the same. For me, Inphlux was probably the most enjoyable as it was the first time I’d arranged a song that I didn’t write based on a recording of adlibbing off of the riff at rehearsal. We knew it was a powerful track but it was a bit all over the place structure wise especially with the lyrics. As a songwriting partnership, we have a very healthy friction that seems to get the right results. I can’t think of a time where we’ve had a personal disagreement and that makes it fun and liberating to try different things. It also challenges you as a songwriter.

Do you have any advice for aspiring musicians?

Neil PFB: Write good songs. That’s my sanity check really. Will a song stand up played on an acoustic guitar? Without effects and overdubs i.e. Fundamentally, is it a good song? I’m also an advocate for listening to music outside of your genre. I guess we’d be classed as a rock band but we like to shake it up a bit. Outphlux is an electronic track and Breathe is a guitar cover of The Prodigy! I also like using samples if it betters the song. At the other end of the spectrum, Vampire has a Mexican vibe but it all sounds like us as a band. In essence, what I’m trying to say is be true to yourself but don’t box yourself in; keep evolving.

Pills for Breakfast are Neil Johns (rhythm guitar, keyboards) and Chris Thorpe (rhythm and lead guitar, vocals, bass, keyboards).

Website Links

Muzic.net.nz Page
Official Website 
Facebook Page 
Youtube Page 
iTunes Page

Album Review: Pills For Breakfast


Dilz is a rapper from New Zealand with a fresh voice on hip-hop. Working endlessly on collaborations and mixtapes from the start of his career as an amateur rapper, Dilz has grown into a professional ready to break his way into the forefront of underground hip-hop. Dilz provided the following for muzic.net.nz:

I took a step back from performing after my last performance in September at the Manawatu College's One Big Mosh to focus on writing and recording new music. The next performance I have coming up is May 28th in Levin in support of the local music shop, King's Sound Centre.

My plans for 2016 include getting back into performing, having local producer Starsky that I've recently linked up with, DJing the set to bring a more professional vibe to the performance. I am currently in the works of finishing up my second mixtape for the year titled Reconstruction which is primarily myself rapping over other artists instrumentals and this will be uploaded for free download with a release date coming soon. A couple of weeks ago I released a new song to my YouTube channel, Karma that I worked on with Foxton producer Starsky. We plan to continue working together in the hopes of putting out a project of some sort before the end of the year.

I became involved with music at a young age as my Dad was teaching me guitar. I carried on working with the guitar and a couple other instruments through primary school and college doing many school performances and winning the NCEA Level 1 music cup. Towards the end of primary school and throughout my college years, I started writing lyrics, mainly rap lyrics and rhymes. I wasn't entirely sure how to put them to an instrumental or backing track so I continued to write and let them build up in a couple of books of mine. In 2012 I discovered an unsigned underground artist from Los Angeles named Hopsin who had accumulated millions of views and thousands of followers by making music in his basement. This motivated me to start setting up a home studio in my parents shed, I now have a more professional set up with a room in my home dedicated to being my studio.

If I could perform with anybody in the world it would be Hopsin, I seen him live at an Auckland show in December of last year and I've never seen another artist bring so much energy to the stage. His communication with the crowd included getting them on stage and crowd surfing multiple times. This inspires me to bring the same energy to my performances.

I'm always making new music and I never release a song unless I'm completely happy with it and I feel like each song I release I'm a little bit prouder of. So the song I'd say I'm most proud of currently is my latest track Karma, I'm very happy with how the song turned out. Heal the Wounds is a song I'd have to say as a whole I am most proud of. It was a song off of my first mixtape Better Days to Come that I wrote to help those going through self harm and it ended up getting a lot more attention that I thought it would. It is currently on over 275k views on YouTube with many listeners reaching out to me and letting me how beneficial the song has been with their recovery with self harm. Because this was one of the first songs I recorded the quality as a whole is not the best. My flow, delivery, the recording quality, everything could use work. I linked up with a producer named Justin Snodgrass who has recreated the instrumental for me and I am currently working on a recording a new, updated version of the song for the listeners to download in the hopes that the song will continue to help those facing self harm.

I would describe my music as technical. There's more to what your listening too than what your hearing. I love word play, I love metaphors and thinking of ways to create my own ones and putting a spin on classics. Puns and similes, I use them all so if your ever listening to my music and don't fully understand something, give it a second listen and see if you can find the hidden message. I also love to rhyme, multiple syllable rhyming is what I aim for in almost all of my songs. 99% of my music is based on what I'm experiencing in my personal life, love songs, sad songs, meaningful songs all come from the mind frame I'm in at the time due to what I'm going through outside of the music. 

I haven't followed the New Zealand Hip Hop scene until recently. I opened for a couple of rap groups here, The No Problemo's and Third3ye but my favourite New Zealand artists would have to be Scribe, David Dallas and an underground artist I've worked with before from Palmerston North, Joey Warner.

Before performing I used to drink to calm my nerves, I have never been dependent on alcohol in any way but it used to just help me feel less nervous and more settled before performing. When I did a day time performance in Levin to a group of minors I realised I couldn't be going on stage after drinking. After this performance I have done every live event sober, letting the crowd and enough practice of my set be what calms my nerves.

My music has always been a when I have time thing as it is really just a passion and a hobby. The thing is I've always made time for it. While living at my parents house my family were all very supportive, coming to any live performances and also making sure the house hold was quite while I was recording in the shed to ensure background noise wasn't picked up in my microphone. For years my music has helped me get through a long day at work as I think of lyrics or song concepts throughout my days at work and write them down in my breaks, which I then take home and finish up. My partner is supportive for the most part as long as I'm making time for her too.

My inspiration draws from my own personal life but also just hearing other artists work. I listen to other peoples music as a fan but also as a competitor and when I hear a song it gives me the drive to try and better myself to eventually be better than those I'm listening too.

My advice is that you can do anything that these people charging a lot of money can do. It may take time to learn what they're doing but with enough will there's a way. I'm talking recording your music, you don't need a studio bring the studio to your house. Your promotion, get on whatever websites you need yourself and promote away. Photo editing, download some photo editing software and start creating your own album cover. Be creative, with what we have available at our fingertips now days, your the only person getting in the way of what you can do.

Dilz is Dillon Lamb.

Website Links

Muzic.net.nz Page
Official Website 
Facebook Page 
Twitter Page 
Youtube Page 
Bandcamp Page 
ReverbNation Page 
SoundCloud Page 
iTunes Page


Robby Thorne is New Zealand's latest solo artist combining Country themes, life & stylings to hard rock heritage born from the mind of Rob Sadd. Whilst performing with Puppeteer, Rob completed multiple North Island tours, two albums and an EP, all the while keeping his blues / country playing style in the background of songs. Rob answered the following questions for muzic.net.nz:

How did you become involved in music?

When I was 14 I joined a band & bought a guitar (before even knowing how to play a note). From there I developed my passion & craft throughout high school with Punk band Whitethorne & classic fuelled rock band Acid Rain, however when I turned 18 I formed Metal act Puppeteer with whom I co-wrote & recorded two albums & performed on multiple North Island tours.

If you could perform with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

Lynyrd Skynyrd, they have been a massive influence since I began, Freebird was the first Guitar solo I ever sat down and actually learnt correctly

Which one of your songs are you most proud of, and why?

The debut single, Quick Whiskey as I feel it perfectly combines where I’ve been with my music & where I’m headed now.

How would you describe your music to someone who hasn't heard it before?

It is Country Rock but not without turning my back on my Heavy Metal / Hard Rock roots. It’s about playing the style that comes natural to me & fits the person I truly am. A simple Kiwi bloke who likes to drink a beer & enjoy the country we live in.

What can we expect to see from you in the next year?

I am currently putting the final touches on my debut solo album & there will be a lot of shows to accompany that. That’s my focus right now.

What NZ musicians or bands would you like to see more of, and why?

Any & all of them, from the new garage bands through to the household names, we’re a special breed of music down in our part of the world and everyone has their place.

What local albums have you been enjoying recently?

The Debut EP from Mae Valley is one of the coolest NZ country releases to come out in the last little while, also there’s a lot of the local Tauranga metal acts that are starting to see the value in high quality recording so I’m sure they'll be some favourites there soon.

What is your favourite NZ venue, and why?

Krazy Jacks in Tauranga, you always gotta love where you cut your teeth

Have you got any tips for dealing with nerves before a gig?

Haha, I still get nervous & I been doing this a long time now. Staying focused from the time you wake up helps though, you can’t just be lounging round all day!

How do you balance your music with other obligations; family, job etc?

My Fiancée, Grace, is my Muse & my career is in the Audio Industry so it’s all inclusive really. I’m surrounded by a bunch of talented musicians a lot of the time too.

Where do you get your inspiration to create music from?

Daily life, art & story telling. All things that come together with music.

Do you have any advice for aspiring musicians?

Get out & play as soon & as often as possible.

Website Links

Muzic.net.nz Page
Official Website 
Facebook Page 
iTunes Page

Quick Whiskey - An Introduction to Robby Thorne (press release)


Jesse Wilde & The Drive, a five-piece Auckland based band delivers catchy, southern-tinged rock with great passion and stadium confidence. Their debut album , Ghost Town Road, was released on 29 April, and they answered the following questions for muzic.net.nz:

How did you become involved in music?

When I was 11 years old, I saw a rerun of an Elvis Special on TV – it made such an impression on me that I begged my mum for guitar lessons. She was a massive Elvis fan so she couldn’t really refuse. In my first year of college, I met a guy playing guitar on the beach and let me play his guitar and sing a song. I realized that musicians got more attention from girls, so I got a band together with my school mate Aaron Carpenter. We called it Acoustic Attitude. We figured that if we saved up for boat we would have somewhere to take all the girls that would suddenly be interested in us! With that in mind, we did some gigs to make money for our boat. But when we did our first gig, we realised we needed a PA so we spent our savings on that and never looked back. From then on, we put all our efforts into the band and never did get the boat!

If you could perform with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

My key influences are Bob Segar, John Cougar and Steve Earle, so in my 20s I took off to the States for 6 months and managed to meet them all. I would most like to perform with the Rolling Stones because they are a true testament to rock and roll, attitude and longevity.

Which one of your songs are you most proud of, and why?

Every record I release is the one I’m most proud of – at the time… I guess because it expresses who you are at that very moment. On the new EP, I’m most proud of the title track, Ghost Town Road because I wrote it with the legendary Rick Beresford (Rick has written quite a few hits including a song he wrote for George Jones called If Drinking Doesn't Kill Me Her Memory Will). I had just finished driving Route 66 in its entirety. Rick literally dragged that song out of me over a dozen or so song-writing sessions, it really was a labour of love and an example of pushing through when it’s tough. And it’s not every day you get the chance to write with a gold record award-winning writer! After that, I wrote a song that was selected by Don Williams Music Publishing Group at the Los Angeles songwriter Showcase.

How would you describe your music to someone who hasn't heard it before?

I would call it Southern rock with an Americana feel. My latest work on the EP Ghost Town Road evokes the faded allure of Route 66. My wife says hearing it made her want to jump in the van, turn the stereo up loud, and take a long road trip (with me, I hope!).

What can we expect to see from you in the next year?

In the next year, we plan to finish an entire album to be produced by Stephen Small who produced this EP. We’re also working on releasing some videos and planning mini-tours around New Zealand.

What NZ musicians or bands would you like to see more of, and why?

My favourite New Zealand band has always been Hello Sailor and Graham was a good friend of mine, and he and Dave are greatly missed. I see so much great Kiwi talent coming through my recording studio Wilde Records and love that I get the chance to promote them in my role as TV music host for a chat show which airs on Sky TV.

What is your favourite NZ venue, and why?

I love Backbeat Bar above the Rockshop on K Road, so that’s where we’re having the EP launch. It feels intimate whether there are 7 people or 70. Currently, I’m developing my own venue 'Studio 38' at 38 Airedale Street in the heart of Auckland’s CBD. It’s primarily a recording studio (after 15 years I’m relocating my recording studio, Wilde Records) and we’ll be able to host record release parties. If in the future people say Studio 38 is their favourite venue, I hope they’ll say it’s because it’s run by musicians who care about musicians.

Have you got any tips for dealing with nerves before a gig?

The emotions of “anxiety” and “excitement” are almost identical – you get all the same physical sensations like butterflies in the stomach, sweaty palms etc. If you don’t try to fight the nervousness and just go with the flow, then I think the adrenalin is what actually helps you focus your mind and body for the gig and helps you achieve incredible things.

How do you balance your music with other obligations; family, job etc.?

People try so hard to get ‘work-life balance’. Like Richard Branson, I don’t see a distinction between work and leisure – it’s all just life. And if you do what you love you never really work a day in your life. A life as a musician can be hard but I’ve never found anything else that’s more rewarding. I feel very lucky to have a family that sees my vision and supports my dreams.

Where do you get your inspiration to create music from?

Life, travel, books and movies, conversations with old friends, experiencing new things and meeting new people – inspiration is everywhere; you just have to be open to it.

Do you have any advice for aspiring musicians?

Don’t die with the music still in you. Be willing to take imperfect action.

Jesse Wilde & The Drive are Jesse Wilde (vocals, guitar, mandolin, harmonica), Henrik Rylev (drums), Mark Collier (guitar) and Aaron Watkinson (bass).

Website Links

Muzic.net.nz Page
Official Website 
Facebook Page 
Youtube Page

EP Review: Ghost Town Road

Jesse Wilde - Ghost Town Road (press release)


Born of one of the most presentable and yet murderous towns in NZ (Feilding), Horsefight is a collective of friends, acquaintances and sworn enemies grouped together in various configurations to make sweet, sweet music. Whether it’s post-rock soundscapes (Datewiththeknife), alternative rock (Urge Empire), indie (Polaroids of Polar Bears) or whatever the hell Churlington is - a new group is formed when the new music has a different feel to any existing Horsefight bands.

The collective started in 2010 with the now defunct The Highfield Weekend, where primary song writer Daniel Brown, growing tired of making a “certain type” of music, started recording demos for what was to become DWTK, Churlington (who recently featured in the Fresh Talent section of the latest NZ Musician magazine), Polaroids and others yet to surface.  Since then, various other group and solo projects have been added to the fold, where members come together to add their own musical elements to the various groups and help with production and live shows. Playing music together with the same people in multiple acts has led to a group of people that can gig with new bands at the drop of a hat, for the most fun with the least effort possible. Basically a musician’s dream….

Horsefight are a completely DIY outfit - every recording is completely self-produced and released, ideas often coming together via email, before gathering in Bunnythorpe to pull the trigger. 2015 was a big year, having released six EPs.  2016 is looking even bigger, with one release from Churlington already complete and another coming in a week or so, and further releases from Polaroids, Urge Empire, DWTK and more planned before the end of the year.

Send hate mail to: Daniel Brown, James Cartwright, Jason Tipping, Neil Anderson, TheMouthSwabs, Gordon Turnbull, Phil Aitofi, Julian van der Krogt and Hans Weston.

Website Links

Facebook Page
Bandcamp Page

SINGING TIPS: Ease your 'vocal-breath'

3 Safety Tips for Singers to ease their ‘Vocal-Breath’

by Jann McMichael

In my childhood, I was required to sing by myself on stage. I dreaded the moment and in fact by the time I was actually there, I could only manage a squeak!

Growing up is both advantage as well as disadvantage. You lose the natural easy tone you once had but you gain in experience and learning how to sing. Question is; do all the things we learn have the best outcome, and can we tell the difference?

Often the focus is on the control of the voice – better training, more practicing, or better breathing techniques...And these are critical and important.

Your voice is innately in tune with the quality of your awareness, the level of tension in your body, the focus of your eyes, the pace of your movement, the quality of your breathing. How can you possibly manage all these factors in order to help your vocal output? You can't!

You can’t control all the parts of yourself but you can affect them positively by working with your whole self, body and mind as one.

Learning beyond the regular ideas about how to breathe, shape the mouth or throat, here are some often overlooked tips that can make a real difference to the vocal sound.

3 tips that can help you train yourself increase confidence in the ability to self-improve. To calm yourself by calming your own neuromuscular system and impact the whole voice/body self. Ease yourself, ease your voice.

Tip # 1. Make sure that you have a stable and relaxed manner for your singing.

Notice if you’re tensing up. Any unnecessary and prolonged tension in your voice will extend over time to any part of your body, and this will of course affect the quality of your singing.

Or, be aware of tension anywhere in your shoulders, your neck or hips. This too will sooner or later tense your throat and tighten your vocal cords.

Is this what you have already noticed?

One possible observation here is to think of your feet :

Notice if your balance is forward of your feet. This can leave you holding your ankles or calves rigid

Give thought and consideration to your front/back weight. Are you throwing your torso forward or are you really upright, your head easily balanced on your spinal column. This will give more freedom with your voice.

To sum it up: providing your head, neck, shoulders and spine with relaxing support will allow you to sing more freely.

Tip #2. Learn the basics of your Body Form/Shape and its functional organisation.

Discovering your true ‘mind picture’ of the body will give you a better control of your natural physical design.

Having the correct picture of how your skeleton/muscle system is built means you will use yourself in line with that picture and reduce unnecessary muscular stress and wear and tear on the body: which in turn will make singing easier.

Tip #3. Pause a moment before you start to sing to re-align yourself with your easiest voice.

What singers often do is take a stance that has become familiar over time in order to start singing.

It can be from incorrect learning in the past or just an action that has become normal.

Holding the score rigidly to one side or turning to accommodate this can pull you out of shape which may at large be necessary, but at least it can be minimized and cause less unnecessary tightening.

Give yourself a moment to just stand and only then raise the score.

For more tips see my blog: The challenges of being on stage


NZ Music Month 2016 is here!

Welcome back May and welcome back NZ Music Month. It’s the first of May and that means NZ Music Month is officially underway – New Zealand’s annual celebration of homegrown music and the people who make it! 

It’s 31 days of celebrating local music in our venues, schools, libraries, parks, on our screens and on our stereos. With over 800 events around the country listed on our gig guide already, this year’s celebrations are busier than ever.  And back by popular demand, NZ Music Month t-shirts are available at the nzmusicmonth.co.nz website.

NZ Music Month Manager Simon Woods says "NZ Music Month is a time when we shine a light on those amazingly talented music makers and the music they create. Kiwi musicians here and abroad contribute so much to our culture and speak to us through their art about what it is to be a New Zealander. This May you will find local music throughout the country, in venues, clubs, community spaces and coming out of our music playing speakers."

NZ Music Commission Chief Executive Cath Andersen said “New Zealand music continues to excel locally and internationally. Once again we can celebrate the musical talent that New Zealand has to offer. We hope that music fans all across New Zealand get out to support their local musicians this May.”

Full Article


Finalists announced for the Vodafone Pacific Music Awards

The range of faces from the familiar to the brand new which have made the finals of the Vodafone Pacific Music Awards attests to a Pacific Music industry which has never been in better health.

Dominated by new artists last year, the annual event has seen a resurgence of established talent in 2016, showing that Pacific music is alive and well and more popular than ever.

With 18 finalists in line for wins in the 11 categories, artists Annie Grace, Te Vaka and Vince Harder lead the pack with four finals nods apiece. Included in Annie’s tally is the coveted ‘Best Pacific Female Artist’, while Vince Harder has among his the ‘Best Pacific Male Artist’ award. Te Vaka’s four includes one for ‘Best Pacific Group’.

The Awards also introduce, for the first time this year, the Best Producer category sponsored by MAINZ

Full Article

Finalists Announced for the 2016 MMF Music Managers Awards

The New Zealand Music Managers Forum in association with NZ Music Commission, Recorded Music NZ and OneMusic are proud to announce the finalists for the 2016 Music Managers Awards.

To appoint a manager is one of the most important career decisions an artist will make. With the changing landscape of the music industry, music managers have never played a more important role than today. As well as shaping the career of the artist, and running their day-to-day business affairs, a music manager is now responsible for building and managing a range of activities, from crowd funding through to marketing. 

The MMF Music Managers Awards celebrates the very best of those New Zealand music managers who support their artists every step of the way. The awards have become one of this country’s most respected music industry events, with attendance from managers, industry professionals and artists. 

The MMF Music Managers Awards will be held at The Tuning Fork in Auckland on Wednesday 11 May.

Full Article

Music Industry Returns to Growth in 2015

The music industry in New Zealand has streamed its way in to growth.

Total wholesale revenues to the local industry grew 12 per cent in 2015 to $74.4m, the first positive growth in 15 years indicative of an industry that has embraced and adapted to the digital age.

Recorded Music NZ CEO Damian Vaughan says, “It is a great first step towards a more positive future for recording artists and record companies in NZ. The popularity of music streaming has aided industry growth enormously and our industry is determined to build on the momentum.

“However, while it is very encouraging that we have returned to growth, our industry has spent 15 years fighting the impacts and losses largely due to piracy estimated to be upwards of $1.5 billion (GDP adjusted),” Vaughan says.

Full Article

Announcing The Winner Of This Years Taite Music Prize 2016!

The winner of the seventh annual Taite Music Prize 2016 is Silicon for the album ‘Personal Computer’ released on Weird World/Domino Recordings (Universal Music NZ).

Emma Smith, a member of the 2016 judging panel commented: “It's a singular vision, beautifully executed, that speaks to now. And it's funny.”

Named after the late Dylan Taite, one of the country's most highly respected music journalists, this is the seventh year for the prestigious award. The Taite Music Prize's purpose is to recognise outstanding creativity for an entire collection of music contained on one album. Silicon wins a cash prize of $10,000, to be spent as they wish. The Taite Music Prize is organised by Independent Music New Zealand (IMNZ) and the Founding Partner Recorded Music NZ kindly supplies the cash prize. The winner will also receive free recording time at Red Bull Studios and a year’s supply of Red Bull product, alongside two magnums of MOA Beer.

Full Article
The Taite Music Prize 2016 Announces This Years 'Independent Music NZ Classic Record' Award

The official NZ Music Month Summit 2016 - Understanding The Music Industry

The NZ Music Managers Forum and the NZ Music Commission with support from Recorded Music NZ, APRA AMCOS and NZ On Air, are proud to announce the return of the Official Music Month Summit on Saturday May 28th.

This year’s Music Month Summit delves deeper into the Music Industry and throws the spotlight on management, labels, touring, radio and royalties.

Following the overwhelming success of last year’s new format of intimate master class discussion groups, the Summit will again offer the environment and the time to ask the questions that matter to you as well as the opportunity to meet some of New Zealand’s most experienced Music Industry professionals. 

Full Article

Depot Sound Recording Studio: Seen And Heard

Depot Sound is launching an online series of interviews and live studio performances to celebrate New Zealand Music Month. The videos showcase the enormous talent of both well known and emerging Kiwi artists, and cover just a small selection of the incredibly diverse mix of musicians performing in New Zealand today.

Featuring Brendon Thomas and The Vibes, the Hamilton County Bluegrass Band, Blue Ruin, Sophie Mashlan, Average Mars Experience, and Swizl Jager. These artists span many genres, showcasing Blues, Bluegrass, Punk, Folk, Progressive Rock and Hip Hop.

Kicking off the series are all-girl punk band Blue Ruin and Brendon Thomas and The Vibes.  Brendon Thomas and The Vibes, recent stars of The X Factor, play an intimate set of classic tracks mixed with brand new songs from their upcoming EP. The band is in the studio right now recording the EP with producer Eddie Raynor from Split Enz. In contrast Blue Ruin tear through a set of high energy punk rock. The band’s awesome live show has already won them an impressive list of gigs, opening for international touring bands including The Misfits, Buckcherry and Cherrie Currie from the Runaways.

Full Article


New Releases

Mice On Stilts - Hope For A Mourning
Pales - Don't Be So Nice
Lawrence Arabia - A Lake
Bailey Wiley - S.O.M.M.
Street Chant - Insides
ASKE Featuring Ed Waaka - Found
Miloux - EP1
Yumi Zouma - Yoncalla
Tiny Ruins & David Lynch - Dream Wave
Zen Mantra - Zen Mantra
Broods - Conscious
Gareth Thomas - All Eyes In The Room
Nation - Nation
Bernie Griffen - Burial Ground
Jesse Wilde and The Drive - Ghost Town Road


Upcoming Tours


Drax Project
6 May @ Totara Street, Tauranga - 13 May @ Neck of the Woods, Auckland and
20 May @ San Francisco Bathhouse, Wellington
Skinny Hobos
6 May @ Crave Club, New Plymouth - 7 May @ Lovelands, Wellington - 13 May @ The Royal, Palmerston North -
20 May @ Nivara Lounge, Hamilton and 21 May @ Galatos, Auckland
6 May @ The Dome Bar, Gisborne
The Jordan Luck Band
5 May @ Cabana, Napier - 6 May @ The Cossie Club, Upper Hutt - 7 May @ Riverside Bar, Whanganui -
14 May @ Kings Arms, Auckland - 20 May @ Penguin Club, Oamaru - 21 May @ The Carlton, Christchurch -
26 May @ Refuel, Dunedin - 27 May @ The Sail & Anchor, Timaru - 28 May @ Tillermans, Invercargill -
3 June @ Totara Street, Mt Maunganui and 4 June @ Mangawhai Tavern, Mangawahi
Ladi6 and Jon Toogood
14-15 May, Wanaka
Avalanche City
27 May @ ASB Theatre Marlborough, Blenheim - 28 May @ Isaac Theatre Royal, Christchurch -
3 June @ Powerstation, Auckland - 4 June @ Clarence St Theatre, Hamilton - 9 June @ Baycourt Theatre, Tauranga -
10 June @ Great Lake Centre Theatre, Taupo - 11 June @ MTG Century Theatre, Napier -
16 June @ Theatre Royal, New Plymouth - 17 June @ The Regent on Broadway, Palmerston North
and 18 June @ Opera House, Wellington
Doprah and Yumi Zouma
4 May @ Darkroom, Christchurch - 5 May @ ReFuel, Dunedin - 6 May @ Crystal Palace, Auckland
and 7 May @ Meow, Wellington
Tahuna Breaks (Final Show Ever)
14 May @ The Studio, Auckland
Shihad - 3 Shows in one Day
1 May @ CPIT, Christchurch (12pm) - @ Meow, Wellington (4:30pm) - @ The Powerstation, Auckland (9pm)
14 July @ Horncastle Arena, Christchurch - 15 July @ Vector Arena, Auckland and 17 July @ Shed 6, Wellington
7 May @ The Cabana, Napier - 21 May @ Ding Dong Lounge, Auckland - 27 May @ Krazy Jacks, Tauranga
and 28 May @ Nivara Lounge, Hamilton
French For Rabbits
6 May @ Caroline, Wellington - 7 May @ Te Runanga Tearooms, Rotorua - 8 May @ Wine Cellar, Auckland -
26 May @ The Grainstore Gallery, Oamaru - 27 May @ Wunderbar, Lyttelton and 28 May @ East Street Café, Nelson
Featuring The Whiskey Show, Three's A Crowd and King Laser
28 May @ Moon 1, Wellington
Mojo Crow and Outside In
13 May @ Backbeat, Auckland
A Symphony of Horror
Featuring Needless Cane, Shelly GoLightly, Black Alpine, Sigilia, Lady Stab/Twisted Shadows and Ruby James
6 May @ Valhalla, Wellington
Wellington City Punk Rock Presents
Featuring One Outs, Starving Millions, Mother's Dearest, Churlington and Short Girls
7 May @ Valhalla, Wellington
Black Friday
Featuring Team Kill, Gunt and Invoke The Fury
13 May @ The Cabana, Napier
Rise of the Yggdrasil
Featuring Silent Torture, Headroller and Fathom The End
14 May @ The Dogs Bollix, Auckland
Hu's Got Phat Beats
Featuring Sean Murray, Marcus Morgan, Know Ones Pocket and Andy Vann
14 May @ Ink Bar, Auckland
21 July @ CPSA, Christchurch - 22 July @ Bodega, Wellington and 23 July @ Powerstation, Auckland


Troye Sivan
28 July @ Horncastle Arena, Christchurch - 30 & 31 July @ Town Hall, Auckland
The Temper Trap
9 May @ Powerstation, Auckland
Cherie Currie
20 May @ Kings Arms, Auckland - 21 May @ Bodega, Wellington and 22 May @ Churchills, Christchurch
Danny Byrd
20 May @ The Bedford, Christchurch - 21 May @ 10Bar, Dunedin - 27 May @ San Francisco Bathhouse, Wellington
and 28 May @ Neck of the Woods, Auckland
28 October @ Claudelands Arena, Hamilton and 29 October @ Bruce Mason Centre, Auckland
Common and Talib Kweli
11 May @ The Powerstation, Auckland
(Please note - venue change)
Average Rap Band
7 May @ Neck of the Woods, Auckland
A Wilhelm Scream
2 June @ Whammy Bar, Auckland
Steel Panther
26 June @ Powerstation, Auckland
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
28 July @ Vector Arena, Auckland and 30 July @ Horncastle Arena, Christchurch
Disturbed with Devilskin
18 November @ Vector Arena, Auckland
Drowning Pool
24 July @ Kings Arms, Auckland
13 May @ Kings Arms, Auckland
Blind Man Death Stare
26 May @ Kings Arms, Auckland - 27 May @ Newtown Bowling Club, Wellington and 28 May @ Churchills, Christchurch
Leo Sayer and Lulu
26 June @ The Civic, Auckland
15 June @ Civic Theatre, Auckland


Latest NZ Music News
Latest Gig and Tour Announcements


Join The Muzic.net.nz Team

Do you love listening to music? Do you enjoy going to gigs? Maybe you get a buzz out of discovering new music and telling everyone about it, or perhaps you'd like to meet some of the incredible musicians that NZ has on offer?

The Muzic.net.nz team are looking for more people to join us as reviewers, interviewers and photographers. The criteria is simple - you must be computer literate, a 'people person', and be able to meet due dates.

If you think you'd like to volunteer for us, we'd love to hear from you! Email [email protected] today for more info.

New Artists

The following musicians and bands have been added to the muzic.net.nz website during the past month:

Ten Tonne Terror Jesse Wilde & The Drive
Dilz The James
Nation Robby Thorne
Ant Wars Gareth Thomas

It's free to add yourself or your band to muzic.net.nz:
Add Artist Form
Info about filling out the add artist form

New Reviews

Check out our latest reviews at the links below:

Merrin - Single Review: Mr. Dominant
Written by Gray

Gig Review: Armed In Advance & Bakers Eddy @ Whammy Bar, Auckland - 8/4/2016
Written by Nick

Gig Review: Villainy @ Galatos, Auckland - 16/04/2016
Written by Kerry

Jesse Wilde & The Drive - EP Review: Ghost Town Road
Written by Andrew

Gig Review: Hollie Smith @ San Francisco Bathouse, Wellington - 8/04/16
Written by Charlie

Street Chant - Album Review: Hauora
Written by Peter

Gig Review: Street Chant @ Nivara Lounge, Hamilton - 31/03/2016
Written by Rob

Gig Review: Mermaidens with Kane Strang @ Whammy, Auckland - 08/04/2016
Written by Rob

Mice on Stilts - Album Review: Hope For A Mourning
Written by Jason

Pills For Breakfast - Album Review: Pills For Breakfast
Written by Terry

Hollie Smith - Album Review: Water Or Gold
Written by Andrew

Gig Review: The Datsuns @ Kings Arms, Auckand - 1/04/2016
Written by Kerry

The Boombox Eulogy - EP Review: Crates and Collabs
Written by James

Gig Review: Kora @ The Zoo, Brisbane Australia - 8/04/2016
Written by Gray

Gig Review: Andrew Keoghan @ Q Theatre Loft, Auckland - 24/03/2016
Written by Crystal

Festival Review: Homegrown @ Wellington Waterfront - 2/04/2016
Written by Charlie


All of our reviews can be read here.
All our interviews can be read here.
Email [email protected] if you would like us to review your music.

New Photos

Check out our latest photos at the links below:

New Reptiles
Photos by Ngamihi

Antagonist A.D.
Photos by Ben

Homegrown 2016
City of Souls
Armed in Advance
Matt Corby
Photos by Bradley

Hamtown Smakdown
Strung Out with Pears
Thy Assassin
The Inquisition
Fall Of The Sun
City of Souls
Photos by Matt

City of Souls
Breathing Still
Seas of Conflict
The Inquisition
Devilskin (1)
Devilskin (2)
Devilskin (3)
I Am Giant
Fire At Will
Heavy Metal Ninjas
Ant Wars
Photos by Richard

Hollie Smith
Photos by Karl

The Datsuns
Photos by Kerry


All of our photo galleries can all be viewed here.
Email [email protected] if you would like us to photograph you.

Tour Features


All muzic.net.nz tour features can be viewed here
Email team@muzic.net.nz if you would like us to create a tour feature for you.


The next muzic.net.nz newsletter is going out on Monday 6 June 2016!

If you are a NZ musician and you would like to promote your music,
we would love to feature you in our newsletter
and you can choose the date which suits you

We can also feature record labels, venues, music stores, music websites...
anything that has something to do with NZ music

Check out this forum and email [email protected] for more information about our newsletters

Muzic.net.nz newsletters are currently sent out to over 8000 members!
with this number growing every day, featuring in our newsletter is an excellent promotional tool

Access our newsletter archives here

- The muzic.net.nz team

Important Links

Artist Pages
Add Artist Form

Newsletter Dates

Important 2016 Music Industry Dates

Gig Guide Page
Gig Guide Forum

Links Directory

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Photo Galleries
Reviews, Interviews and Previous Newsletters

About Muzic.net.nz
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