Having been an avid Gomez fan since the late 90s, I was pumped to get the chance to hear frontman Ben Ottewell perform solo. His voice added the soulfully distinct sound to the Southport 5 piece so if ever there was a vocal talent that deserved its own moment of independent acoustic purity, his is it…. and mark my words, he delivered.
The Tuning Fork was the location and you couldn't have asked for a more appropriate backdrop. A dimly lit, intimate setting with floor to ceiling maroon and black drapes surrounding the 250 odd patrons, with all eyes drawn to the stage by 2 spot lights on the man of the hour. Without hearing a single note you knew what you were in for, one man and his envy inducing talents.
Aided only by his guitar, Ben belted out soulful tunes with his husky delta blues voice. There's always a risk that one man performing solo for and hour and a half with little to no accompaniment can become monotonous…. I can assure you this wasn't the case. Not only are you mesmerised by the sound and sonic skills, every track had a different meaning and emotion, not only in the lyrics and themselves, but buried in Ben's performance and delivery, making every tune its own special moment.
Two thinks struck me. First, his voice has stood the test of time, 20 plus years on the road and singing with such a rasping baritone hasn't effected a single note. Second, I’d never appreciated his instrumental skills until now. Not only was this a audibly pleasing experience, watching Ben and his effortless control of the guitar was equally as impressive.
The set list was a mixture of original solo arrangements peppered with classic Gomez favourites. The perfect mix for fans young and old.
If you get the chance to spend an evening with this acoustic magician, i highly recommend it.
Car Seat Headrest fans, new and old alike, will be elated to learn that Will Toledo’s 2011’s Bandcamp masterpiece, Twin Fantasy, has been re-recorded and re-imagined and will come out on February 16th, 2018 on Matador Records.
Groom Epoch, a luminous outfit created by former drummer of The Church, Richard Ploog, are set to release their new album, Solar Warden, through Golden Robot Records in April 2018, with Cosmic Artifice, the lead single from the eclectic group.
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!
Roger Waters is bringing his US + THEM tour to New Zealand this week, performing two shows at Auckland's Spark Arena on Wednesday Jan 24 & Friday Jan 26, before heading to Dunedin's Forsyth Barr Stadium on Tuesday Jan 30.