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Great North Announce New Album, National Tour

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday 31st March, 2014

Great North Announce New Album, Up In Smoke, and National Tour

Over the last six years, Tui award-winning band Great North have cemented themselves as one of New Zealand's most accomplished independent acts. On May 9th they return with their third full-length album,Up In Smoke, and take off on a national tour throughout May and June.

When the band won Folk Album of the Year at the 2013 New Zealand Music Awards, after being long-listed for a Silver Scroll the previous year, it seemed front-man and songwriter Hayden Donnell had stumbled on the formula to make folk-country resonate with a local audience.

But for their follow-up release, Great North reinvent the formula again. A lush new sound drives this powerful collection of songs. At times it pays homage to classic country, with lonely pedal steel guitars sliding over swaggering rhythms. But just as often it booms and echoes with a choir and swirling guitars.

Up In Smoke explores the things you lose getting older, moving from certainty to uncertainty, feeling beliefs you once held tight collapse into thin air. Sometimes that sounds like bitterness, at other times like defiance, but by the end of the album, it sounds like acceptance. Some things aren't coming back. Some questions stay unanswered.

Along with Donnell on lead vocals, guitar and piano, Up In Smoke features Great North band members Rachel Donnell (Hayden’s wife) on bass and vocals, Dale Campbell on piano, guitar and vocals, Strahan Cole on lead guitar and new recruit Ryan Attwood on drums. Matthew Hutching has been called in to play pedal steel. As with previous releases, the album is produced, mixed and mastered by long-time collaborator and producer David Parker at his Oratia-based Little Monster Studios.

The latest instalment in Great North’s prolific musical career is bigger and bolder than their previous albums. But it retains the elements that have made the band an institution amongst Auckland’s alt-country aficionados.

Up In Smoke, distributed by Rhythmethod, will be in stores and online from May 9th, 2014.

Download Spirits, the first single from Up In Smoke, free from

Tour Dates
Tickets from unless specified

Victoria Theatre, Auckland - May 9th (tickets from
Chick's Hotel, Dunedin - May 16th
Chambers Sessions, Christchurch - May 17th (tickets on the door)
Meow, Wellington - May 22nd
The Photographer's Gallery, Napier - May 23rd
Walton St Cafe, Te Awamutu - May 24th (tickets from the venue)
Major Tom's, Mt Maunganui - May 30th
Leigh Sawmill Café – June 7th

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