New Single Result Of Unique Trans-Tasman Lockdown Co-lab
While the rest of the world stopped during the Covid-19 lockdown, Baz Muir was busy writing, producing and putting the finishing touches on the latest offering from his band, NLC.
Muir is lead singer and songwriter for the six-piece reggae group, which released a new single and video on June 11 called, One More Try.
The single is ahead of plans to release the band’s fifth album at the end of July, 2020.
Muir, based in Whanganui, said One More Try was inspired by a story about a couple who were struggling to make their relationship work.
“And the male side of the relationship is asking for that one more opportunity to make amends, and that’s the story behind the song.
Muir drafted the song with friend and fellow musician, Stanley T, who is based in Brisbane and who also features in the single and its video.
“Stanley T was interested in a co-lab for the song and so using the internet, we worked on the project together.”
That included shooting the video footage between New Zealand and Australia.
“Stanley T recorded his part of the video in Brisbane and sent it through to me. I recorded my part in Whanganui and we put it all together.”
Muir said the lockdown provided the ideal opportunity to make the unique project a reality.
“It gave us a lot more time to make a professional job of the song and video.”
Muir said the lockdown also provided a chance to focus on the band’s fifth album.
Much of the work was now completed including two music videos for release later this year.
“We’re just mixing and mastering the new album now and really looking forward to seeing it completed for people to enjoy.
“It’s got 10 tracks and we’ve been working on the album for about a year but with the lockdown, that’s really allowed us to accelerate progress, which has been really good.”
Muir said all of the songs on the new album are special but he thought one track called Truth was of particular interest, reflecting on the unusual times of the past couple of months.
“That song is about the start of the lockdown, you know, when everyone went a little bit crazy, like buying heaps of toilet paper and doing all of those sorts of things.
“That’s what Truth is about and I’m looking forward to having that one released.”
NLC was formed about six years ago and while its lineup has changed a bit over time, Muir said the “core of the group” remains intact.
He described the band’s music as a unique mixture of roots-reggae, lovers-roots reggae and lovers-rock reggae.
“We are sort of in the middle. We’ve got roots-reggae and some militant reggae, embracing those types of protest songs that really focus on getting important messages of the day across to people.
“We’ve got some songs that are keyboard-reggae, some with a bit of distortion-guitar involved but still coming back to that reggae mix.”
Muir also plays rhythm guitar for the band as well as penning the lyrics for the songs.
“Our songs are predominately in English but we have some in Maori, again, just trying to find a unique direction for the band each time.”
NLC’s members live around the country now but get together whenever there is a gig coming up or when there is music to make for a single or album.
NLC won the Best Roots Reggae Album title at the National Waiata Maori Music Awards in 2019, which signalled a change in direction for the group.
It signed with the Waatea Music/Hustle Management and Muir hopes it’ll lead on to bigger opportunities for the band.
“We have been moving along by ourselves for a while but when we entered the Waiata awards, and won, we realised we had to step it up.
“Waatea Music and Hustle Management are going to help us move to the next level and with Waatea and Hustle, we’re among some of the top bands in New Zealand.
“It is a change in direction and we hope that will be reflected in the work we’ve put into our fifth album.”