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Popstrangers to open for Dinosaur Jr. NZ show


Popstrangers to open for Dinosaur Jr. NZ show

Local high-flyers Popstrangers and their nuanced, distorted pop will open for US alt-rock influencers Dinosaur Jr. at Auckland’s Powerstation in just over a fortnight (Tuesday March 5).

Plus1, UnderTheRadar and Radio Hauraki are proud to present the Dinosaur Jr / Popstrangers line-up, with tickets on sale through and Real Groovy.

Popstrangers’ billing with Dinosaur Jr. is timely with this Friday’s release of their debut album Antipodes. Recorded in the basement of a 1930's dancehall, their first full-length features dissonant, claustrophobic melodies, that bring a vintage feel to their decidedly contemporary garage rock.

Channeling early Radiohead and local heroes The Gordons, 3Ds and The Chills, Antipodes further develops the band’s sound.

NME said of single Heaven: “owner of one of one of the most killer choruses we’ve heard in a long time.”

And as for Dinosaur Jr? Fans can look forward to witnessing J Mascis, Lou Barlow and Murph tearing through favourites from career defining albums like Dinosaur, You're Living All Over Me, Bug, Green Mind and Where You Been, through to last year’s gem I Bet On Sky.

It’s now 28 years since their indie debut on Homestead Records in 1985, and Dinosaur Jr. have come to be widely recognised as one of the significant American rock bands of our generation.

Dinosaur Jr overview, by Bryon Coley – music writer: Spin / Wire

“Preceding Nirvana by several years, they were instrumental in bringing the crashing sounds of lead guitar back to indie rock. It wasn't just their signature metallic haze that made an impression on listeners; their effects-laden guitars were wrapped around some of the best songwriting of the decade.

When the original line up of Mascis, Barlow and drummer Murph re-formed in 2005 for select live dates it was apparent that the years apart had not eroded any of their vitality. In fact, many critics claimed their shows were even better than they used to be.

It was natural, then, that the band would begin to work on new material. Their new album, I Bet On Sky, plants them squarely in the present landscape like majectic old growth trees among the shrubs.

The trio’s early shows were so full of sonic chaos, such a weird blend of aggression and catatonia that we all assumed they would flame out fast. But the joke was on us.

The trio has taken everything they’ve learned from the various projects they tackled over the years, and poured it directly into their current mix. J’s guitar approaches some of its most unhinged playing here, but there’s a sense of instrumental control that matches the sweet murk of his vocals (not that he always remembers to exercise control on stage, but that’s another milieu).

This is headbobbing riff-romance at the apex. Lou’s basswork shows a lot more melodicism now as well, although his two songs on I Bet on Sky retain the jagged rhythmic edge that has so often marked his work. And Murph…well, he still pounds the drums as hard and as strong as a pro wrestler, with deceptively simple structures that manage to interweave themselves perfectly with his bandmates’ melodic explosions.

For a combo that began as anomalous fusion of hardcore punk and pop influences, Dinosaur Jr. have proven themselves to be unlikely masters of the long game. If I were prone to wagering, I’d say their best days are yet ahead of them. And yeah. I would bet the sky on it.”


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