All of the promotion leading up to this show did clearly state it would be intimate, but as I wandered into Auckland's Powerstation on Thursday night, it was like a venue I had never seen before. With the main stage being concealed by curtains and a newer platform situated in front, couches were scattered around the remainder of the room creating what felt and looked more like an over-sized intimate lounge room, than anything else.
This intimate and relaxed atmosphere continued for the entirety of the night as Tali kicked things off perfectly with a short and sweet set consisting of songs from her most recent album, ‘Wolves.'
Next to take the stage, introducing themselves and thanking the audience by jokingly stating, "We're Anika Moa, thanks for coming guys!" She's So Rad, performing songs from their most recently released record, ‘Tango,' were beyond magnificent.
The enthusiastic crowd applauded Anika Moa as she took to the stage for her first show in support of her latest album, ‘Queen At The Table.' Followed by her brand-spanking new band which includes multi-talented instrumentalist Jol Mulholland who plays everything from bass guitar to keyboards and drummer Alistair Deverick, they performed the entire new album, throwing in a few golden oldie favourites for good measure.
Now, if you've ever seen Anika Moa perform live before, you will know that you always get more than you initially bargained for, which is why we all love her so much. It's like a two for one deal. You go to hear her perform her exceptional array of tunes and you're also lucky enough to get one of the best comedy acts in between. I mean, it's no secret that Moa knows how to please a crowd, not only with her beautiful music, but also her quick-witted humour which again she perfected at this intimate show, dishing out dirt to her band mates, friends in the audience and of course her own self, leaving the entire audience in fits of laughter.
Despite this fact, it was still the music that ran true as the overall monumental highlight of the night however. From her opening track ‘If You See Her,' to one of my personal favourites ‘Our Love Will Die' and‘Closer,' Moa took the time to explain the love, heartbreak, significance and meaning of each song before performing it, adding to the intimate connection that remained between Moa and the audience.
Prior to beginning her set, Anika announced this is her and the new band's first ever show together, which followed by applause she responded saying, "don't clap yet because we may be bad, you don't know yet." Also informing the crowd that she doesn't normally play electric guitar, something, however, she did do much of throughout her set, showcasing her new sound which places a greater influence on electronics than the majority of her music has in the past, Moa did an impeccable job on the electric guitar, mastering the odd instrumental on her own throughout songs such as ‘The Only Thing That Matters.'
When announcing ‘Running,' the first single off the record, the majority of the audience leapt to their feet in excitement, considerably filling the dance floor space at the front. Following with ‘Fly,' "My personal favourite song from the album," Anika announced, the dance floor filled up even more, with a few fans taking to the tambourines Moa had passed out before performing the song.
Now it was time for the band to take a break and Anika to pull out some old favourites from her third album‘In Swings The Tide.' Putting aside the electric guitar for a moment, she went acoustic for ‘Dreams In My Head,' a song, that Anika, ever so earnestly admit, "made me a lot of money."
Followed by an enchanting performance of ‘My Old Man,' another from her ‘In Swings The Tide,' record, Moa finished off her acoustic set, sharing with the audience, "I wish I wrote this song, but I didn't," as she went on to perform the most stunning version of Kate Bush's ‘Running Up That Hill,' I have ever heard. With the words on a piece of paper in front of her, Anika jokingly added, "this is the first time I've ever performed this," laughing with what was probably relief as she concluded the beautiful tune with no apparently obvious mistakes whatsoever.
Reaching the end of her set with an energetic performance of the electronically-fused ‘Jealous,' which saw everyone rush to the dance floor one last time. Alistair let rip on the drums bringing things to an end with an epic solo, which then saw Anika give Jol a chance to show off more of his musical talents, extending the instrumental to allow him to shine with an equally as impressive solo.
Announcing, "We probably won't do an encore unless you give me a standing ovation for ten minutes," the audience obliged, clapping, screaming and yelling, in request for an encore before Anika, ever so graciously accepted the request and treated the audience to just one more tune, ‘These Lonely Tears I Cry,' "A Song I unfortunately wrote with Jol Mulholland" she laughed, while introducing the song, as She's So Rad's Jeremy Toy took to the stage to join in and play bass guitar on the track.
Showing off her musical talents one last time, both instrumentally and vocally throughout the song, it proved very obvious that playing music on stage, in front of an audience is what Anika loves most. With ‘Queen At The Table' being Moa's sixth studio album, she's certainly as far away as she's ever been from over-doing or slowing down on the music front, proving even more comfortable in her own shoes with her newer more electronically based sound, which although vastly different from the previous Anika Moa, many may be used to, is still nonetheless, the same Anika Moa we will forever love listening to and enjoy seeing perform live. Anika Moa
In the mid to late 90's, when grunge began to wither away and MTV strived to find the next easy to access label to attach to new batch of up and coming rock bands, global attention started to shine on the Alt Rock scene.
The I Love The 90s Tour returns to Auckland next year March 23rd at Auckland’s Spark Arena, with a completely off the chain lineup featuring classic Hip Hop crew Naughty by Nature. Vin Rock from the Grammy Award winning rap group speaks fondly of this country and love of our people.
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!
Anthonie Tonnon is taking his new Extended Player and single to Australia, and to New Zealand towns that missed the first run of dates, or sold out too quickly. He’ll also be appearing at three summer festivals this February.
After a stand of three Auckland concerts that sold out in minutes in January, Connan Mockasin is hitting the road across Aotearoa for the first time in eight years this summer for a select run of headline shows.