Smoke CDS - NZ Music Month
Smoke CDS - NZ Music Month
30 May 2003
Well smokecds music lovers, we have just about reached the end of New Zealand Music Month for 2003. Here's a bunch of fine home grown releases that have been tickling the fancy of all at the smokecds HQ throughout this month.
As always, enjoy, and thanks for being a supporter of New Zealand music.
Trip - Pretty Cool
Formerly known as Trip to the Moon, Trip are old school soundsmiths Tom Ludvigson and Trevor Reekie. While 'Pretty Cool' is an understatement on the standard of the album, the shortened name means no abbreviation on quality, combining electronic sampling and live recordings to create a seamless blend of multi-layered jazz influenced electronic soundscapes.
Jaguar - Think About It Later
The first long-player release of 2003 for Wellington label Capitalrecordings, this is the second album release from Melbourne-based Wellingtonian Jet Jaguar, pioneer of New Zealand electronica and also known as the prolific Michael Upton (Datsun Stereo, Dub Connection). 'Think About It Later' is eleven tracks of low key electronic listening music, full of down-tempo warmth and pleasant funk. A world class release and thoroughly recommended.
King Kapisi - 2nd Round
Testament (DVD Version)
The return of King Kapisi is marked by the release of '2nd Round Testament', the follow up to 2000 s 'Savage Thoughts'. It s a matured sound from the role model for Pacific Island youth, with a strong core of hip hop and a range of new influences including jazz, ragga, reggae and soulful breakbeats. Depicted on the album cover as a boxing champion, Kapisi has produced an energetic album, proudly sample-free, a tight follow up from the MC turned DJ turned producer.
Riverhead (Limited Edition)
A tasty debut from this melodic, thoughtful & accomplished 5-piece band from Auckland (NZ), chock full of breathy and seductive sweeping pop epics. Original and smart, with lush intriguing arrangements, and accomplished musicianship, Goldenhorse deliver a beautifully precise and tauntingly eloquent set of songs.
Nesian Mystik - Polysaturated
Auckland youngsters Nesian Mystik have captured the nation's ear with chart-friendly club sounds, the odd slinky slow jam, some smooth garage styles and even a lick of reggae somewhere in the mix. The Mystiks more than impress on this cool and confident album, a very good debut album indeed.
Nature's Best 3
By now everyone must know the story of the Nature's Best Series - all the APRA members plus a learned cast of 100 got together to list their all-time favourite 30 New Zealand songs. And things just got out of hand - with so many great singles to chose from the concept quickly spread to encompass a second volume, and now a third volume - and it doesn't look like stopping here either.
Channel Z - The Coleman
Named for high profile Channel Z host James Coleman, the collection includes a wide range of acts with the likes the Black Seeds, Pacifier, P-Money and the Feelers sharing the billing. As live recordings, the album works well, with good sound quality yet retaining the raw clarity and immediacy of live performance.
- The Datsuns (Limited Edition Bonus CD)
It's the stuff legends are made of - and believe me The Datsuns are legends already. This album is an explosive mix of "good" seventies metal (AC/DC, Deep Purple, Thin Lizzy) and youthful exuberant punk rock, easily living up to the surrounding hype. This comes fully recommended - it's one of the best rock albums made by a New Zealand band - ever. Oh yeah, as with all good rawk'n'roll, play loud.
Downtown - Mutha Funkin Earth
From the title and (elaborate, ornate) packaging downward, the whole CD has the feel of an obscure, mid to late 1970's funk or soul long-player, one of those great undiscovered gems that guys like Armand van Helden or Basement Jaxx make fortunes off, sampling and beefing up for mass market consumption. One of the better thought-out LPs to come out of New Zealand in the last wee while, 'Mutha Funkin Earth' is a great package that deserves to be in as many homes, cars, bars and cafes as possible.
The Brunettes - Holding Hands,
Feeding Ducks & The Boyracer EP (Limited Edition)
A sugary sweet pop masterpiece, just rough enough in the right places to seduce the indie-pop listener. Original and smart, the Brunettes are worth checking if you like acts like Saint Etienne, Mutton Birds, The Front Lawn, The B52s and most "quirky-pop" points in between. Stylish and plenty of fun, this fine local band just keep getting better.
Mark de Clive-Lowe - Melodius Beats Volume 1
This is a great compilation for people who've enjoyed Mark's work over the last few years while he's been based in London, while jazz enthusiasts should dig his so-called "broken-beat" take on the sound. The sound is very much on the West London jazz tip aka "broken-beat", with the emphasis on fairly complex instrumental work, as you'd expect.
The debut solo release from Barnaby Weir, one of New Zealand's most promising singer-songwriters, and the vocal powerhouse behind The Black Seeds... featuring fifteen delightfully crafted songs fusing together elements of rock and roll, electro, hip-hop, funk, dub and whatever else he can lay hands on... Flash Harry is an undeniably addictive piece of futuristic pop - Aotearoa style... recommended
s w e e t - the smokecds.com crew