Walking into the Powerstation last night in Auckland to see YouTube phenomenon-turned international performer Lindsey Stirling, I saw the most packed out, excitable crowd I have witnessed at the venue to this date.
With a surprisingly diverse but predominantly young (20-30yr) audience, it is clear that Lindsey's unique musical expressions have drawn in a contemporary fan base who are open minded and eager for something new.
The stage was set up with a keys section for Gavi and drum set for Drew who both have been playing with Lindsey since her first show in New York, 2012. They left as much space between them as possible on the humble sized stage for Lindsey to work her multi-dimensional performance magic. Lindsey is famous for engaging viewers with her intricate violin scores whilst she dances free spiritedly and whole heartedly to the trance, drum and bass and dubstep beats that are produced with her work. Most of the scores are original, all are authentic.
The moment she came on stage and broke into Beyond The Veil was incredibly moving, a powerful opening song and the expression of pure joy on her face as she performed with 100% energy from the band was an unforgettable first encounter with the undeniably progressive artist.
Lindsey introduced me to the most kinetic performance I have seen; during the first 5 songs she literally leapt and spun around the stage falling into backbends which turned into high kicks, all necessarily placed with the sound. While you may think this sounds contrived or over the top it's the opposite, nothing about Lindsey or her choreography seems forced.
At first quarter she had a conversation with the audience which turned out to be one of a few staggered throughout the evening. She became approachable with the audience quickly, introducing her love of New Zealand and the stories behind some of her songs. She went on to play Lord of the Rings for us which she spontaneously realised was necessary 5 minutes before she came on stage. She admitted to a bit of a freak out about forgetting the middle section (she nailed it). She then introduced us to a cover of the Japanese song Sebonzakura that she learnt in time for the Japan leg of her tour.
The structure of her set and personable connection she made with the audience had the essence of a classical concert with the energy and freedom of a contemporary gig. She mastered this fusion beautifully and maybe unintentionally, but with her background being classical it makes sense that stage etiquette has stuck. There was a break down section of the concert where the band sat down and played more acoustically with the exchange of the drum set for the box drum; this break was probably beneficial for Lindsey who must be as, if not more fit than the Black Eyed Peas.
I was excited though when the lights went back to electric blue and a costume change to black leather like fabric made for a dramatic lift in energy. One of her more heavy songs, Moon Trance was played in front of a video of gravestone wandering zombies. Lindsey's creative videos often resemble short films, she admitted that sometimes the song is written subsequently to the video concept being developed. She continued to open up to the audience and showed her inspirational speaker side talking about her new single Shatter Mewhich is the story of her breaking out of a depression caused by striving for perfection and coming through it to show her unique self. This followed by her song about hope, Transcendence, made the last part of the show really uplifting.
Lindsey and her band are truly cool performers and so diverse on stage going from serious to playful all in a one and a half hour set. The mix of edgy beats, commercial trance and Celtic violin is something new and exciting to my ears. Lindsey said it best, "the world is truly a better place when we share what makes us different, not what makes us the same."
The Soundsplash Festival is returning to Raglan in January 2018. Local reggae favourites Katchafire are returning to feature on the bill. We sent a few questions over to lead vocalist Logan Bell ahead of the festival.
Following 2015’s Kitty, Daisy & Lewis'The Third', the sibling trio are back stronger than ever, harnessing their ability to create pop-infused soul, blues, rock n roll and a large mix of genres to perfection, in the shape of their fourth studio album, Superscope.
Kylie Price has just released her new album Bones. Last week she appeared on theNZ Entertainment Podcast, where she sang a new song I Dont Want To Go off the album while talking shop about her dream gig to play with Ed Sheeran and her Philipino roots.
Last week I caught up withPeter Hook ahead of returning down under for Australasian leg of the Joy Division and New Order Substance tour. We had a great chat about the spirit of punk, what it takes to write a book and why shows like the X-factor are so unhealthy…
Long established as one of New Zealand’s finest acts, South Pacific reggae-soul legends, The Black Seeds are set to tour the country in September, following the release of their long awaited 6th studio album Fabric, (out today - Friday September 8th).
Jacqueline Nalpant is a Booking Agent for the Paradigm Talent Agency, and is heading to New Zealand early next month where she'll be one of the speakers for the Going Global Music Summit (Friday 1st & Saturday 2nd September at Roundhead Studios, Auckland).
Since making her musical debut with her song Drift early last year, fast attracting a solid fan base and over 1 million plays across Spotify and Soundcloud in just a few months, Madeline North, better known by her musical moniker So Below, has once again blessed us with a moodier, masterful electro-pop banger, titled Ruin.
Since forming in 1998, the Antwerp, Belgium based trio Triggerfinger have long become a mainstay on the rock scene, building a solid reputation across Europe, the US, Canada and beyond, as one of the hardest-driving and sharpest dressing bands around.
Popular metalcore group Northlane are on their way to New Zealand. The Sydney band are touring North America taking in countries like Chile and Mexico as they head our way down-under next month to play Wellington’s San Fran then Auckland at the iconic Kings Arms.
Returning to New Zealand for the first time in three years, Australian metalcore band In Hearts Wake are on their way to our shores next month for a quick run of shows supporting their label cohorts Northlane.
Courtney Marie Andrews has landed in New Zealand, and set to play two concerts this week with Joe Pug - tonight at San Fran in Wellington (Wed July 19) and tomorrow night at The Tuning Fork in Auckland (Thu July 20).
Auckland two-piece Skinny Hobos, Alex Elvis and Texas Holdom, are heading on a 5 date New Zealand tour with headliners Decades, Bakers Eddy and Dead Favours. Kicking off tonight in Hamilton (July 14), the tour will also take them to Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and finishes up in Dunedin.
Have you ever considered sharing your most personal experiences with the entire world? Well come this Friday 14th July, that’s what Emma Cameron, the rocking front-woman of kiwi band Decades is about to do, when they release their long-awaited full length debut album, The Truth And Other People, so we sat down with the cheerful front woman to discover just what truth this album reveals..
Whilst Sonny Landreth is a well known slide-guitar master, zydeco enthusiast and phenomenal blues legend, what you may not know about him, is that he is one of the nicest gentlemen in the entire universe.
He was always the boy next door type energy, that type of person you just always wanted to be around. From day one, Shay Taylor has always been one to break the mold and live life in such a vibrant and contagious manner, that no matter who he spoke to, they walked away feeling great!
One month on from the release of their third album [Wade Waist Deep], American rock band Thomas Wynn & The Believers are back on the road, breaking beyond the southern rock scene with complex, pulsing rhythms and breathtaking harmonies.
Due to significant weekend rainfall, and the forecast of more rain over the next 72 hours, Coffs Harbour City Council, Frontier Touring, John Logan Entertainment and Midnight Oil management have met and reviewed the site for Midnight Oil’s show on Thursday 19 October.
After their 2012 Mercury Prize-nominated debut and 2015’s Top 20 follow-up Born Under Saturn, musical adventurers Django Django are back for 2017, exploring new sounds with their brand new album Marble Skies
After stunning, sold-out concerts across the US, legendary Led Zep drummer Bonzo's greatest legacy - his son Jason - brings his critically acclaimed concert, Jason Bonham's Led Zeppelin Experience, to New Zealand for just two performances.
Playing their breakthrough debut self-titled album in its entirety, pop rock sensations We The Kings will return to New Zealand and Australia to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of their breakthrough self-titled debut album.
Instrumentals, imagined soundtracks and cut and paste experimentation sets a bracing, perception-shattering course for Who Built The Moon? - the keenly anticipated, WORLD TOUR-triggering third album from Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds.