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Music News - Matt Joe Gow Announces NZ Tour

Matt Joe Gow Announces NZ Tour

17 May 2021 - 0 Comments

Like many Kiwis, when the pandemic struck, proud son of Dunedin Matt Joe Gow found himself trapped overseas wondering what to do for the best. His tour, which included Europe and Australia, was cancelled, and he eventually made it back home towards the end of 2020. This has turned into  a blessing for his fans here in Aotearoa as he undertook a "South of South" tour and reacquainted himself with small town NZ once again, getting back in touch with people and reconnecting with the fans. Selling out places like Ophir and Oamaru and playing Bluegrass festivals in The Catlins.

With the bubble opening with Australia, he has soon found himself back in demand overseas, and has shows booked for July and August, but before that he decided to undertake a longer version of his NZ Tour. So as well as playing in the likes of Auckland, Tauranga and Napier, he is also heading to places like the Mussel Inn and Tekapo and Twizel for full band outings. Some of these events are solo, but others are with a full band as he brings his NZ tinged style of alternative country and Americana to places which do not normally have the opportunity to hear live music like this. With his new album due out later in the year, Matt is planning to return to Aotearoa at that point, but fans of his music need to make the most of this opportunity to see one of our finest musical exports in his natural environment, on stage.


Matt Joe Gow grew up in the deep south of New Zealand in a town with bad weather and good music: Dunedin. Surrounded by music, he was encouraged to pick up a guitar at an early age. After traveling the world, Matt moved to Melbourne, Australia, drawn by its culture and vibrant music scene. He formed a band, The Dead Leaves, and in 2009 released his debut record The Messenger, produced by multi-Aria award-winner Nash Chambers, and featuring contributions from Jim Moginie of Midnight Oil, and iconic Australian country guitarist Bill Chambers. As Alternative Country and Americana continued to grow in popularity, Matt steadily toured and supported acts such as Chris Isaak, The Jayhawks, Justin Townes Earle, James Reyne, Kasey Chambers, Marlon Williams, Jimmy Barnes and John Butler.

Whilst regularly making demos and working on other projects in the studio, it would be 2016 before the next Matt Joe Gow record, Seven Years, which was released to critical acclaim and was nominated for the Music Victoria Award for Best Country/Americana Album Of The Year. This was self-produced by Matt and guitarist Andrew Pollock, and after touring and playing numerous festivals in support of the record, Matt returned to the studio in 2018 to record the follow-up, Break, Rattle and Roll. This was an ambitious outing with keyboards, horns, pedal steel and backing vocalists supplementing the core band. It was released to even wider acclaim, and went one better than his previous release and was awarded Best Country Album in the 2019 Music Victoria Awards. In addition to full band shows, Matt undertook a solo tour with Grant-Lee Phillips, with Phillips later posting that [Break, Rattle and Roll's] "Bridge Over Concrete is on constant rotation in my head!".

After the rewarding but demanding process of making Break, Rattle and Roll, Matt headed back into the studio in early 2020 with the guiding concept of making a stripped-back record; unvarnished by production tricks and elaborate instrumentation, which would again be self-produced. With recording complete and while preparing to mix and master the record that would become the new album, the world was hit by the coronavirus pandemic. With Matt touring overseas and the Melbourne studio under strict lockdown, the choice was made to continue work on the record remotely over the following year. The result is a unique record which, although laborious to make during a dark and difficult time, is the most pure and direct expression of Matt's songwriting and artistic vision of his career, and will be released later in 2021. 

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