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Newsletter Issue #515: 03 Mar 2019

Our newsletters are sent out once a fortnight and are displayed here for archival purposes only. Some of the content will be outdated and some layout issues may be present in the translation from email to the web. We recommend that you subscribe to our newsletter for the best results!

Jared Wrennall, vocalist and guitarist for impressive Auckland rock act Dead Favours has written our first guest editorial for the year:

When you consider New Zealand is such a small place, it’s quite a feat that we have such an amazing music scene!

If you compare us to California, we only have 12% of the population and half the land mass (let alone the rest of the states), but still we have a vibrant, eclectic and creative scene.

In saying this, our size is one of my favourite things about being a musician in NZ! When you’re put on a bill (even a festival as large as Homegrown), there are often friends on the same bill.

Homegrown is one of my favourite shows to play as it inevitably turns into a big reunion of friends, old and new, from various parts of the country, and we’re all brought together for the love of music.

I spent years touring other countries and it was never the same. Due to the vast size and population, every night was a new city, a new state and new bands to share the stage with. Here you get to know people pretty quick.

It also amazes me that we continue to produce such a strong pool of talent considering. We are seeing more and more great musicians take on the world’s stage. We’ve seen bands like Shihad celebrate 30 years and most recently Six60 set the bar high when they sold out Western Springs. (as some perspective, they sold more tickets than Taylor Swift)

Even though we are small and are at the bottom of the world, even though a lot of us don’t make much money from music, we do it because we love it and we do it because we are damn good at it!

I am proud to be a Kiwi and I am proud to be a part of NZ music!


You can catch Dead Favours on tour with Skinny Hobos throughout March, April and May. Full details are here. Dead Favours are also supporting Halestorm in Auckland on 13 March and Wellington on 15 March, and you can catch them at the Muzic.net.nz 20th Celebrations in Auckland on 4 May (more info coming soon!).

Thank you Jared, for writing this editorial!

Originally formed in Nelson, Papercity have been performing and recording music for eight years. To mark the start of an exciting new chapter, the band have recently released a new song and video titled Plastic.

Steve was fortunate enough to have seen guitarist, songwriter and frontwoman Alex Hargreaves's recent shows playing guitar in Ekko Park, opening for The Living End, and Papercity's powerful video release gig at Ding Dong Lounge. Naturally, Steve was stoked she was able to take some time out to chat about her bands and New Zealand music.

Let’s take a history lesson - How did the group form and how did the band name come about?

We all come from Nelson. We used to play shows together in different bands all the time. And I used to tour with our drummer Sam’s old band a lot (much to my school's disappointment) so we have all known each other for a long time. The band name came about when I was flicking through a poetry book at school and saw one called "paper city".

Papercity has been kicking around Aotearoa for some time now - What made your trio change gears and rev up again? 

It kind of looks like we have been quiet for a while, but we have actually been working really hard writing and recording. There's been quite a lot going on behind the scenes for a while now. 

The music video for Plastic was filmed entirely underwater – Besides holding your breath for ages, what was the toughest thing about shooting that video?

Being cold! We shot the video in winter, so it was freezing. Also getting my guitar to sink was a challenge. My uncle had to cut a big piece of metal to attach to the back if it so that it wouldn’t float.

Tell us a bit about what Plastic is based on - What inspired you to write it? 

Plastic is for young people who have had struggles and feel like outcasts. I wrote it when I was feeling down, which also made me feel really alone. I hope that when other people listen to the song it makes them feel a bit better or less isolated.

What’s the most memorable show you’ve ever played?

We have played shows to a few thousand people before, which is a pretty awesome feeling, but one of my favourites would be our show in Auckland on the night of our music video release for Plastic. It was a really small packed show and it just felt really good.

Which band or artist in the entirety of music history would you most like to open for?

I’m not sure… But I would have really loved to have met David Bowie, so I’ll say Bowie.

In your opinion, what changes in the New Zealand music industry would you like to see that would make the Kiwi rock scene better?

It would be really awesome if we could have more all ages venues in NZ. A lot of kids miss out on seeing rock bands play.


Read the full interview here



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Single Review: Plastic

Photo Gallery: Papercity @ Ding Dong Lounge, Auckland - 1/02/2019

Folk singer and band member Rob Joass is due to release his new album Pencarrow in March. He spoke to Lou from Muzic.net.nz about his creative process for writing music; his enjoyment of performing live and his admiration for fellow artists.

Catch Rob Joass on his album release tour beginning in March and including venues in Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington

How would you describe your music in one sentence?

I’m a singer/songwriter

How do you believe your music fits into the NZ music scene?

Ha! I’m not really sure what the ‘scene’ is. There’s a lot of us troubadours out in middle NZ playing cafe’s, folk clubs, country halls, bars, house concerts - whoever will have us. We get some support from Radio NZ and local stations, but we exist outside the mainstream.

Do you have any plans for future collaborations with other musicians? Who would they be?

No plans, but I’m always looking for people that inspire me to jam with or do some gigs together. I already have a pretty impressive group of friends that I work with when the opportunity arises.

Where do you get your ideas for your lyrics?

I stare off in to space, and if I’m real lucky, inspiration strikes. I’ve been writing songs for a long time now, so my brain is kind of hard-wired to turn random thought in lyrics. But it’s work, isn’t it? You sit in front of a blank page and hope something coalesces. I have hundreds and hundreds of pieces of paper around herewith scraps of lyrics on them, most of which are rubbish…..

What is the best part of playing in front of a live audience?

I love the immediacy of it. You’re trying to forge a connection between yourself and the audience, and when it clicks, it’s the best job there is.

What are your plans for the rest of this year?

Tour my solo album, then I have some shows with Too Many Chiefs (Laura Collins Andrew London, Wayne Mason) in June, and then it’s the Hobnail 25th Anniversary tour. We’re releasing a “Best Of” and I’m compiling that at the moment.


Read the full interview here



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Anxiety Club 
released their debut studio EP titled Black Heart in October 2018 and is about to embark on a three-date tour touching down in Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch during March of this year. Kev (vocals, guitar) spoke to Jeremy from Muzic.net.nz:

What has been the overall reception of the Black Heart EP since its release, and has this helped inform your decisions in deciding your upcoming tour dates?

The response has been hugely positive, both in NZ and overseas, which is always gratifying. The dates were booked before we released the EP, but beyond NZ, we’re definitely looking at options based on where people are listening. One of our tracks has a big listenership in Denmark, so you just never know!

Do you think the success of your upcoming shows will have an impact on touring more regional venues for Anxiety Club in the future?

Completely aside from these upcoming shows, we’d love to do more regional touring. We played Hastings, Gisborne and New Plymouth last year and had a blast. Hope to visit again soon.

The band’s music has been described as “feel-good anthems of heartbreak and despair”, “Wilco meets Radiohead”, and “Alternative Country”.

What are some of the specific musical influences that make up Anxiety Club, and how do you utilise these influences when writing songs and coming up with material as a band (or during your creative process)?

We all share a love of guitar music, but very different guitar music. For some in the band it’s folk and country, for others it’s rock and metal. This leads to a lot of fist fights and legal bills, but that’s just part of the ‘process’, right?

In terms of specific influences, we’re talking about David Bowie, Smashing Pumpkins, Wilco, Radiohead, Nick Cave, The Mutton Birds, most of the Flying Nun back catalogue. We’re not consciously trying to sound like anyone else, but the sound of bands we grew up with naturally infuses itself into the music we write.

The single Ginger In The Summer was released this month and infers some deeper lyrical content beyond the initial feel-good nature of the track. Could you describe the context of the lyrics in relation to the conflict that is described within the song?

Good question! It’s a classic love song really, but there is a darker theme of someone sacrificing themselves and their ambitions, for someone else, for too long. That’s what’s happened to the female character. She gives up a lot to be with a ginger drummer who’s not prepared to give up anything for her. Bloody gingers eh? Can’t trust ‘em.

How did the name ‘Anxiety Club’ originate?

We began by going through band name generators on the Internet, and out of that the name was inspired. We wanted something tongue- in-cheek but not ridiculous. The name Anxiety Club just seemed to fit – and somehow seems appropriate for the times we live in.

Do you think there are any mental health issues that can be linked to or that are specifically relevant to individuals working within the music industry?

I think any artform that involves you putting yourself and your creations out there to be critiqued has the potential to bring up a whole range of mental health issues. And let’s be honest – it’s often mental health issues that inspire that creativity in the first place. Are there issues specific to the music industry? I’m not sure – you need to be resilient and have a thick skin, be willing to get vulnerable in front of a crowd of strangers; but that’s probably true of most art.

As a band, do you see an increased level of touring as part of the future of Anxiety Club, and if so, how might you address some of the commonly experienced concerns associated with touring musicians (i.e. time spent away from family, staying healthy on the road, and stresses associated with travelling and performing)?

I certainly hope so, though it’s unlikely to be the 24hrs in a van, dossing on a couch style. While in our minds we’re still teenagers, our bodies are not so receptive to that level of punishment these days.

I think the most important thing is for the band to become a sort of family. You need to be looking out for each other, and if someone’s having a rough time, you help them out. We also have to pace ourselves and restrict our Jack Daniels intake to one case a day each – which is tough, but not impossible.


Read the full interview here


Anxiety Club are Kev Fitzsimons (vocals, guitar), Clint Meech (keyboards), Chris Armour (guitars),Cam 'Dusty' Burnell (guitar, lap steel, backing vocals), Brad Welch (bass, backing vocals)
Chris Hill (drums, percussion).


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Single Review: Ginger In The Summer

EP Review: Black Heart

Why Professionals Should Keep Learning

Great teachers are often the ones that live as great students. Professional musicians can benefit from continued learning just as much, if not more than beginners.

It is too common for musicians that have been playing some years to become too proud to seek help with their playing, yet the complaining about being "stuck in a rut", or "there is no-one that can help me" does not cease!

This great article from Ryan Kershaw gives reasons why continued learning as a professional musician is beneficial.

Read the full article here.

Important 2019 Music Industry Dates

Details of important NZ music industry dates for 2019 can be found here.

New Artist Pages

The following new artist pages where added to Muzic.net.nz in the past month:

Krispy & The Pooch Swizl Jager
Swizl Jager Tin Angels
The Fleetwoods Rob Joass
Josh Durning Tryptofunk
Silvera Bad Dog
Stalker This Silent Divide
Amnesia Jones Late Model European
Polar Extremes Marlowe
Jasmine Tilyard Sam Loveridge
Elidi Themeta
Khandallah Forgotten Architecture
Sit Down In Front Queen Neptune
Womb Claudia Jardine
Abby Wolfe Bearhat

New Reviews and Interviews

Check out our latest reviews and interviews at the below links:


New Photos

Have a look at our latest photo galleries at the below links:

Artist Galleries
Feature Galleries

Tour Features

Our next newsletter is going out on Sunday, 7 April!

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- The muzic.net.nz team

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