16 Dec 2018

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking
  • Articles »
  • Reviews »
  • Gig Review: Steve Gunn & Arthur Ahbez @ Southern Fork Americana Festival, Auckland - 06/10/2018

Gig Review: Steve Gunn & Arthur Ahbez @ Southern Fork Americana Festival, Auckland - 06/10/2018

10 Oct 2018 // A review by Rupa Kelly

The Southern Fork Americana Festival returns again to New Zealand, bringing with it a tantalising and exciting selection of artists from a range of genres held under the umbrella of Americana. Expect folk, plaid and all things good and wholesome to vibe out to steel guitars from a who's who of some of the premier artists kicking it in the scene today. Hosted by the Great South Pacific Tuning Fork, aka. The Tuning Fork the first of the multi-evening's festivals offerings were Arthur Ahbez and Steve Gunn.

Arthur Ahbez preformed first, "playing original tunes and classic folk". Opening with a cover, I was initially a little shocked by the sweet voice I heard coming out of this previously deep-toned man, at moments you could almost at times picture a lady on stage serenading us with beautiful folk and harmonica solos. Ahbez's fantastically interesting vocal range aside, the songs he played were an enjoyable mix of the usual dreary subject matter that country likes to play around with an added bit of his own personal spice. For instance, a break up song urging the listening to moisturise if you're dried up.

Ahbez preformed a few new songs but more notably, brought out a technique he had been learning: Finger plucking on an acoustic guitar. Preforming the classic Railroad Bill, Ahbez excelled and weaved a fantastic show of talent that left me grinning with enjoyment. The only downer on the performance wasn't at the artists hand, instead a few rather disrespectful punters, sat unfortunately close to me talked loudly and drunkly through an acoustic performance despite many attempts from nearby audience members to quiet them down. Overall, Arthur Ahbez expertly and fantastically achieved exactly what he wanted to do, play the audience some originals and classics.

Steve Gunn, the main even came out next. Looking a little broody, which he assured us later in the night was just because he was up there working things he out, opted to open with an instrumental to ease himself into the role of preforming; what an easing it was. Introducing the artist and setting the stage perfectly, the one-man jam session was a steel guitar concerto, a dance through notes and melodies that broke all too perfectly into the first song. Gunn's guitar tone is extremely noteworthy, the slight reverb makes them flow on with a feeling of great depth that captures the listener and holds them.

I had noticed this first on his studio recordings, but when his songs are performed live, this breadth of tone is dished out in even larger doses of concentration. His skill as a musician was displayed when he pulled out an electric guitar, lent to him by Big Hungry of 95 bFM and proceeded to finger pluck out a folk song with as much distortion as an over-compensating acid rocker; his thumb held the rhythm while the rest of his fingers carried the melody. He tied off the gig with another fantastic jam, this time the sonic cascade came from the use of a tubular slide, being used on both the frets conventionally and also to softly pluck at the strings, adding beautifully to the already diverse and unique performance that Gunn had given. In all, Steve Gunn is a behemoth of musicality in the genre and a high recommendation for any fans, either hardcore or casual (like myself).

Rating: ( 5 / 5 )

Other Reviews By Rupa Kelly

Lexxa - Single Review: Get Out
20 Nov 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
Lexxa returns with Get Out, a follow up to their synth pop jam I Got Better Friends Now. After a good year of touring and opening for both local and international heavyweights, Get Out is an excellent second studio release.
Alae - Album Review: Henry St
27 Oct 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
Henry St is the debut LP from NZ indie-folk band Alae. After the success of their first self-titled EP Alae and the subsequent tour they undertook coupled with the release of their singles Too Strung Up and Stone Cold, Alae entered the studio to work on their first full length album.
Gig Review: Strangely Arousing @ Tuning Fork, Auckland - 19/10/2018
24 Oct 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
Strangely Arousing, hot off their strangely unconventional 7-date tour of South Korea and China crashed into the Tuning Fork In a hot beat and fantastic fashion. Bringing with them Joe's Van and their own DJ Straw Hat providing enjoyable jams between sets, the night was bursting with potential.
Biobird - EP Review: Counter Productive
05 Oct 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
Biobird is a one-man Dubstep project, with the main man Caleb Bird hailing from Hamilton. This is his third release, and his second EP, titled Counter Productive.
Gig Review: Daffodils @ Tuning Fork, Auckland - 27/09/2018
01 Oct 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
I spent the best times of my formative years adventuring into a multitude of venues, gigs, and shows. These gave me many fond memories of meeting up with friends, going out and enjoying our mutual interest: music.
Mitch James - Single Review: Old News
10 Sep 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
Coming out of the already fantastically robust music scene of Dunedin, Mitch James has released yet another single ahead of his debut album. Titled Old News the song is a heartfelt statement to one you care for, but one you have wronged and one that is leaving; a sentiment that many can relate to.
Demo Review: Sins of Eve
24 Aug 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
Sins of Eve's demo showcases, overall, their potential and vision for their music to come. A chunky riff-based Rock group hailing from Christchurch, Sins of Eve combines the very unique and honestly thrilling voice of their vocalist, Joy Bantayan with some thoroughly groovy and catchy riffs effortlessly.
Gig Review: Depths @ Ding Dong Lounge, Auckland 28/07/2018
30 Jul 2018 // by Rupa Kelly
It's been awhile since I found myself at a metal gig, long gone are the days of black clad, sweaty moshing where everything ended in the word ‘core’, deathcore, hardcore, grindcore. Funnelling into the small room that formed Ding Dong Lounge's upstairs gig room, smelling the sweat of closely pressed flannel donner bodies revelling in the burning of energy and joy at the expression of art categorised as metal brought back fond memories of 16-year-old me, Saturday nights spent at my local venue with close friends.
View All Articles By Rupa Kelly

NZ Top 10 Singles

    Ariana Grande
    Lady Gaga And Bradley Cooper
    Ava Max
    George Ezra
    Post Malone And Swae Lee
    Travis Scott feat. Drake
    Marshmello And Bastille
    benny blanco feat. Halsey And Khalid
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