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Dimmer was the name under which New Zealand musician Shayne P Carter (formerly of Straitjacket Fits, The DoubleHappys and Bored Games) recorded and played music from 1994. It began as an umbrella name for jam sessions and short-lived band line-ups, then home recordings, then an ensemble with various members and guests. This evolution led to more settled four-piece rock band (especially from 2006–10, when only the bassist changed). At least 41 musicians have been acknowledged as playing a part in Dimmer over 18 years, with Carter the only permanent fixture.

The last Dimmer recordings were made in 2009, with the band playing live shows through 2010. A short farewell tour announced the end of the band in 2012, and Carter began recording under his own name after that. Reformed and reformatted versions of Dimmer have occasionally played live shows, drawing on all four Dimmer albums, since 2018.

All four of Dimmer's albums were admired by critics, and all earned multiple New Zealand Music Award nominations. Non-album singles were released in 1995 and 1996, with debut album I Believe You Are A Star not following until 2001. In 2004 You've Got To Hear The Music was named New Zealand's Best Rock Album for the year, and Dimmer named Best Group. There My Dear saw Carter return to playing and recording with a live rock band in 2006, and return to the national album charts. Final album Degrees of Existence (2009) was recorded by the longest-lasting version of the band.

Band Members:
Shayne Carter (guitar, vocals)
James Duncan (guitar)
Vaughan Williams (bass)
Gary Sullivan (drums)


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muzic.net.nz Admin

Joined: 17/07/02
Posts: 5068
Location: Manawatu
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New album for Dimmer
Posted: Thu Jul 9, 2009 7:06 pm

Shayne Carter has been in the studio for over a year working on the follow-up to Dimmer’s acclaimed third album There My Dear and the result is one of the most potent recordings of his remarkable career, ‘Degrees of Existence’, due for release on 27 July.

Preceded by the snarling melodic brilliance of the singles ‘Degrees of Existence’ and ‘Cold Water’, the latter currently searing across the airwaves, this Dimmer album promises to meet the exacting standards of one of the finest New Zealand groups of recent times.

Inducted to the exclusive membership of the NZ Music Hall of Fame at last year’s Tui Awards with his other most famous act, Straitjacket Fits, Shayne Carter is a man whose incredible music has helped shape the story of NZ song since he emerged in the fertile Dunedin scene of the late 1970s.

Dimmer ‘Degrees of Existence’ will be released in NZ on 27 July through Warner Music.


muzic.net.nz Admin

Joined: 17/07/02
Posts: 5068
Location: Manawatu
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Dimmer Signs With FMR
Posted: Wed Dec 4, 2002 6:40 pm
Festival Mushroom Records are delighted to officially announce that Shayne Carter has signed a new album deal for his Dimmer project to the label.

Recording of the second Dimmer album is currently under way with a new single due for release in early 2003.

Dimmer first album ‘Believe You Are A Star’ was one of 2001 most critically acclaimed local albums.

Prior to working under the Dimmer moniker, Shayne Carter fronted Straitjacket Fits, a group widely acknowledged as one of New Zealand greatest and most innovative rock acts of the nineties.

‘Believe You Are A Star’ saw Shayne move away from the Straitjackets anthemic rock and into a new musical territory of electronic soundscapes and subtle textures.

Shayne promises that Dimmer second album will continue the evolution in his sound, saying that the new album tracks are as strong a set of songs as he has ever written.

Dimmer will debut a number of these songs when the band new line-up makes its highly anticipated first live appearance at Auckland Kings Arms on Saturday 21 December.

Commenting on the new deal with FMR as he plunged a safety pin into his thumb and readied to sign the contract, Shayne said “Once again I have signed in blood to give my soul away to yet another music industry devil. On a lighter note, FMR is a company staffed by real music fans and they have made me feel very welcome in that leper-like way that all artists suffer at record companies.”

Sitting beside Shayne at the boardroom table and clasping a solid gold fountain pen between his bling-laden fingers, FMR Managing Director Mark Ashbridge said “Carter came in here with his arrogant rock star ways and an entourage of lawyers and floozies. The contract may well be signed in his blood but it was already drenched in the sweat of FMR staff as we battled to create an incomprehensible document that will shaft him from the moment we start selling his album. But such is the way of the biz. Everyone at FMR already loves the Dimmer shit and that bit is the truth. We can’t wait to start working with this band.”

With their respective marks scrawled all over the offending document, the two men embraced and headed for a game of pool and a celebratory beer in the luxurious setting of FMR warehouse, both crowing at the top of their voices that music was the winner on the day.


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