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  • Shapeshifter - Gig Review: Shapeshifter @ Trustspower Baypark, Mt Maunganui - 28/12/2019

Shapeshifter - Gig Review: Shapeshifter @ Trustspower Baypark, Mt Maunganui - 28/12/2019

09 Jan 2020 // A review by Jason Peters

After a small hiccup getting into the venue, we arrived to see State Of Mind hitting the stage, unfortunately we had missed Concord Dawn but I heard they had a killer set. State of Mind warmed up the throngs of summer DnB heads nicely with their heavy DnB morsels, their MC hyped the crowd and it was a great set for this mini DnB festival Shapeshifter had compiled on this warm summer night.

Next up were fellow Shapeshifter collaborators The Upbeats with the talented Tiki Taane taking the MC reins. It’s been a while since I’ve seen him perform a DnB set and he nailed this one to the wall. The Upbeats set had a sweet variety of beats switching from heavy DnB, to fast breakbeats, ragga inspired grooves and Tiki even mixed in a bit of Basement Jaxx Where’s Your Head At for good measure.

Their energetic set culminating in Tiki donning a silver jumpsuit while crowd surfing in an inflatable raft with a cool nod to Dillinja's 90’s track All Aboard, and then he capsized into the audience, there were smiles all around. The Upbeats and Tiki combo was a great success and enjoyed by all, next-level fun indeed. The entrees were rather delicious but now it’s time for the main course.

The anticipation was high for Shapeshifter who have been on the Kiwi summer circuit for many years now and are quintessential live performers and know how to hype up their audience to the max with their brand of heavy fusion soul DnB.

They kick off with Lifetime from System Is A Vampire which goes off and then launch into Stars and Eternal from their 2016 album, also called Stars, and the sound was huge! We are then treated to two brand new cuts Found In You and Ritual - both very cool tracks and I'll be looking forward to hearing the recorded versions later on in 2020. A stand out of the night was Dutchies from 2009’s System Is A Vampire; Tiki had now found his stride in the mix and the band also hit top gear.

We were treated to three more new tracks, the stand out being a heavy banger called Roxy, this track reminded me of their version of Shihad's Screwtop they did a few years back, heavy guitars over frenetic DnB beats, a stand out was Darren Mathiassen’s drumming in this track, a killer tune and I look forward to hearing the recorded version as well, but live this song is monster and will be a future live favourite for sure.

Lead singer P Digsss is in fine form tonight and always brings the good vibes to their shows, he introduces the next tune, a fav of mine called One off the excellent Soulstice album, it’s a sweet version although I do miss Devin Abrams live Sax playing on this tune. Their big hit In Colour had the crowd singing in unison before ending the set with the wonderfully epic Monarch.

A shout out also must go to the awesome light show and superb 80’s Tron/Star Wars-inspired video graphics by Tim Budgen for this show. Tiki always pulls a massive mix for Shapeshifter, and the crew and this band know how to put on memorable shows with sweet top-level production.

I’ve seen these guys perform a bunch of times now and this show was one of their best, it’s never easy including brand new tracks into a set but the new cuts sat nicely with the classics. What a fun night, and I highly recommend that you brothers and sisters, kings and queens catch these guys on their remaining Aotearoa summer tour dates, mean as!

Photos courtesy of Nichole June Productions


About Shapeshifter

New Zealand's best live act is an extraordinary spectacle you can't miss.

Shapeshifter has been heralded as a musical phenomenon on their ground breaking live shows and unique blend of heavy Soul/Drum n Bass. Their reputation as pioneers of modern music was built by an unique approach to Electronic music which had previously been restricted to computer based studio musicians and has earned them widespread critical and commercial acclaim.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Shapeshifter


Year: 2016
Type: Album
Buy Online @ Mightyape
Year: 2014
Type: EP
Year: 2013
Type: Album
System Remix
Year: 2011
Type: Album
The System Is A Vampire
Year: 2009
Type: Album
Buy Online @ Mightyape
Shapeshifter Live
Year: 2007
Type: Album
Year: 2006
Type: Album
Riddim Wise
Year: 2004
Type: LP
Year: 2003
Type: EP
Been Missing / Relocator
Year: 2003
Type: EP
Year: 2001
Type: EP
Year: 2001
Type: Album

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