News of New Zealanders via Global Media

Boasting Grand Beginnings

Boasting Grand Beginnings

Twenty-one-year-old singer Kimbra’s debut album Vows is reviewed in The Sydney Morning Herald by Bernard Zuel. “On Vows, Kimbra leaps from rhythmic, multi-vocal exercises in the style of French artist Camille (a comparison which…

Artists of the Week

Artists of the Week

Auckland folk-fusion hip-hop-electronic foursome Sola Rosa recently secured the coveted spot as MTV IGGY’s Artist of the Week, edging out the likes of Rocktigers, Los Hollywood, Dama Do Bling, and Scarab. Their victory is…

Southern Storytelling

Southern Storytelling

New Zealand singer/songwriter Jackie Bristow, who is based in the United States, recently played a solo acoustic set at the Henry Miller Library in Big Sur, California. On her most recent release…

Soprano in the Scrum

Soprano in the Scrum

New Zealand soprano Hayley Westenra has been snapped with a number of burly rugby players, after she was named as the official voice of the Rugby World Cup for audiences in the UK. Westenra’s…

Love Song to Opera House

Love Song to Opera House

New Zealanders musician Neil Finn and opera star Teddy Tahu Rhodes have been included in a line-up of artists chosen to perform sections of Nick Cave’s classic The Ship’s Song for a Sydney Opera…

Grass and Seeds

Grass and Seeds

Wellington reggae-soul group The Black Seeds played at the Australian music festival Splendour in the Grass at Woodford in Queensland on 29 July; keyboardist Nigel Patterson was interviewed ahead of the gig by the…

Curing the Post-Tour Blues

Curing the Post-Tour Blues

New Zealand musician Liam Finn admits that on the back of tours around the world with Pearl Jam, The Black Keys and Wilco, he was cast adrift by his sudden sea change. “I didn’t…

Back to the Place He Loves

Back to the Place He Loves

Los Angeles is losing one of the greatest living jazz pianists, and a composer-orchestrator who has few peers, if any, New Zealand native Alan Broadbent. Before Broadbent moves his family to New York this…

Cameo Contest Win

Cameo Contest Win

Hamilton-born singer Kimbra has won the AU$5, 211 Vanda and Young Songwriting Contest, receiving the honour for her song Cameo Lover ahead of 4 other entries. Now based in Melbourne, Kimbra — real name…

Finding Solitude in the North

Finding Solitude in the North

New Zealand is American musician Moby’s favourite place on the planet to holiday. “My fear is that every person you talk to is going to give that answer, because New Zealand is so beautiful…

Talent Exported

Talent Exported

Lead singer of The Naked and Famous, Thom Powers tells The Irish Independent’s Ed Power that he thought the band could pretend they were from some obscure part of Europe. “It must annoy you…

Delicious Synth-Pop

Delicious Synth-Pop

Christchurch three-piece Sleepy Age’s “synth-heavy, European disco-inspired single Décor” has been selected by the Music Alliance Pact (MAP) as one of July’s best tracks from around the globe. “In 29, Sleepy Age…

Revealing Familial Tales

Revealing Familial Tales

“They didn’t know it at the time, but when New Zealand-born Chris and Peter O’Doherty lost their quietly spoken father 11 years ago, his story wasn’t over and theirs was about to take a…

Naked at Glastonbury

Naked at Glastonbury

Auckland band The Naked and Famous, together with Metronomy and Wu-Tang Clan, helped open this year’s Glastonbury music festival. Bass player David Beadle talked to NME ahead of the Pyramid Stage headliners U2. “I…

On-the-Road Epicurean

On-the-Road Epicurean

Fat Freddy’s Drop keyboard player Dobie Blaze features in the Irish Times weekly feature “Booking the Cooks”, in which the Wellingtonian reveals his secret recipe for ravioli of abalone with sea urchin butter. “When…

Dallas Represents

Dallas Represents

“New Zealand’s finest” hip hop star Aucklander David Dallas, who recently signed with US label Duck Down Records, reveals plans for a return to America in July and says that he’s not troubled by…

Leonine Frontmen Like It Nice

Leonine Frontmen Like It Nice

“If there’s one thing the Phoenix Foundation won’t abide, it’s dicks,” The Guardian’s Toby Manhire writes. “When it comes to dealing with other bands, says Luke Buda, the leonine frontman for the…

Infectious Influence

Infectious Influence

Radio 1 DJ New Zealand-born Zane Lowe and British producer Clare Chadburn jointly take the No 29 spot in the The Guardian’s Music Power 1 list — “the people exercising…

This is the Buzz

This is the Buzz

Hip-hop star Auckland-born Dane Rumble and Avalanche City recently featured on ABC’s top-rating celebrity gossip show What’s the Buzz. Rumble and Dave Baxter, brainchild behind and frontman of the folksy Avalanche City, were guests…

All Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs

All Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs

Auckland’s Naked and Famous are included in a Guardian list of “12 new bands you have to catch” at one of this summer’s UK music festivals. “ New Zealand five-piece make the…

Singular Artistic Vision

Singular Artistic Vision

Singer-guitarist of The Naked and Famous Thom Powers wasn’t as temperamental as Orson Welles but he did have a singular artistic vision his Auckland peers apparently could not comprehend. “I had a real difficulty…

Home and Away Favourite

Home and Away Favourite

Singing star Brooke Fraser — described as New Zealand’s answer to Adele — reveals to News of the World’s Dan Wootton how she’s lent some of the songs from her impressive new album Flags…

Perkier Versions of the xx

Perkier Versions of the xx

“The Naked And Famous go one better than MGMT by having a girl in the band — the spectacularly named Alisa Xayalith, whose dreamy yelps combine with the hazy utterings of co-singer…

Recording Four Letter Words

Recording Four Letter Words

New Zealand musician Simon Spire, 28, is forging a career on both sides of the globe simultaneously. Spire has lived in New York since 28. His second album, Four-Letter Words is due to be…

Stones Analogies Welcomed

Stones Analogies Welcomed

Sam McCarthy, one half of Auckland duo Kids of 88, tells The Huffington Post’s Mike Ragogna the “whole ‘88’ thing sort of summed up the kind of cultural references and the bizarre things we…

Zowie Likes Left-Field Types

Zowie Likes Left-Field Types

Electro pop star Aucklander Zowie — who opens Katy Perry’s shows in Australia and New Zealand during May — talks to MTV Australia about her idol Michael Jackson and about her debut album set…

Snoop and Rico Salute Sun

Snoop and Rico Salute Sun

Air New Zealand’s mascot Rico has teamed up with US rapper Snoop Dogg to produce a music video for the airline. Rico, whose controversial antics promoted Air New Zealand’s Skycouch, joins Snoop, who dons…

Wizardry with Melody

Wizardry with Melody

“What Peter Jackson did for New Zealand tourism with the most expensive ad campaign ever — The Lord of the Rings — singer/songwriter Maisey Rika could possibly do for New Zealand music,” Honolulu Weekly…

Critical darlings most promising

Critical darlings most promising

Art-pop quintet The Naked and Famous has been named as this year’s “most promising new act” by NME; post-award ceremony the band talks to Mark Savage of BBC 6 about their recent “good fortunes”….

Diva Loves Danny Boy

Diva Loves Danny Boy

Soprano Kiri Te Kanawa is a “sucker” for sentimental Irish ballad Danny Boy. Te Kanawa is one of eight musicians asked by the Los Angeles Times to share their favourite love song in the…

All Work for TNAF

All Work for TNAF

The Naked and Famous are currently on tour in the UK and with their London performance feature in the Guardian’s weekly gig guide. The publication writes: “Essentially the project of Thom Powers and Alisa…

Finn Plays SXSW

Finn Plays SXSW

Musician and songwriter Liam Finn launches his first-ever full band tour beginning with two gigs in Austin at this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) music festival. Finn’s next album is set for a spring…

Army Band humour

Army Band humour

New Zealand’s Army Band will perform at the 6th anniversary of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo in August. Major Leanne Smith, director of music for the 28-piece Band said they can’t wait to perform…

Colours of Aotearoa

Colours of Aotearoa

Whanganui-born composer Douglas Lilburn’s overture ‘Aotearoa’ and ‘Symphony No. 2’ were recently performed by the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra in Charleston; the conductor was New Zealander Grant Cooper, who is also the orchestra’s artistic…

Young Blood Take Scroll

Young Blood Take Scroll

Auckland five-piece band Naked and Famous have won the Silver Scroll prize for their smash hit “Young Blood” at the Australasian Performing Right Association’s awards held in Auckland on 8 September. Alisa Xayalith, Thom…

Ladyhawke at Laneway

Ladyhawke at Laneway

“For an artist with such a fierce-sounding moniker, award-winning New Zealand singer-songwriter Ladyhawke — whose name conjures up anything from female shaman warriors to an Academy Award-nominated fantasy film — is surprisingly shy,” Asia…

Song of the Day

Song of the Day

Tim Finn’s ballad “Persuasion”, from his 1993 album Before and After, was named ‘Song of the Day’ on January 20 by the New Jersey Star-Ledger’s Tris McCall. McCall declares Before and After “one of…

Weighing in on the Buzz

Weighing in on the Buzz

“For the first time, probably ever, a band from is poised for huge success in the States,” The Huffington Post’s Jon Chattman predicts. “The Naked and the Famous have already taken their…

Buzz-worthy bands

Buzz-worthy bands

“Z is For (New) Zealand,” in NME’s New Music Glossary for 2011, “a handy guide to all the buzz-worthy jargon for the coming 12 months.” “Finally it seems there’s a new generation of bands…

Sense of spaciousness

Sense of spaciousness

The Phoenix Foundation’s fourth album Buffalo is reviewed by the Guardian’s Dave Simpson who writes that “songwriting this good doesn’t come along often.” Like the xx — whose sense of spaciousness they share —…

North Carolina to Maine

North Carolina to Maine

Auckland-based guitarist Mark Mazengarb will tour with American musician Loren Barrigar “from North Carolina to Maine” later this year, after a successful 2010 collaboration in Nashville at the annual Chet Atkins Appreciation Society convention,…

Taking on the World

Taking on the World

New Zealand quintet  The Naked and Famous have already topped local singles and album charts and now they want to repeat their success globally. They’re off to a blistering start after being named in…

Breaking the NY ice

Breaking the NY ice

Actor and comedian Jemaine Clement recently made an appearance at the opening of sporting apparel line Icebreaker’s new Manhattan store. Examiner.com wrote: “While the staff was getting ready for the big grand opening, a…

Awesome US deal

Awesome US deal

Auckland hip-hop talent David Dallas, formerly known as Con Psy, has partnered with American label Duck Down Records in a publishing, distributing, and marketing deal. The half-Samoan artist reached No. 1 on the New…

Adventure Shared

Adventure Shared

Bachelorette’s second full-length release My Electric Family is reviewed in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer by David Bowling, who writes that Alpers has “a mind that doesn’t work like the normal musician, which is part of…

String release

String release

The New Zealand String Quartet has recorded an album of Asian composers in St Anne’s Church, Toronto. The ensemble’s fifth disc for the label Naxos includes Tan Dun’s Eight Colours, T?ru Takemitsu’s A way…

U2 pay tribute

U2 pay tribute

The 29 men who perished in the Pike River coal mine tragedy were honoured during the song One Tree Hill at the November 27 U2 concert, with their names listed on a massive stage…

In-tents Experience

In-tents Experience

The Auckland Theatre Company performance of Cabaret is praised by Los Angeles Times blogger Christopher Smith, who writes that company director and actor Michael Hurst is “fortunate to have a compelling Sally Bowles in…

Conchord revival

Conchord revival

The Flight of the Conchords are in discussion to bring a live version of the cult television series to Australia and New Zealand next year. US comedian Arj Barker, who plays the philosophising stoner…

In love with Brooke

In love with Brooke

“In early 28, I fell in love with New Zealand indie-pop-rock sensation Brooke Fraser’s second album, Albertine,” Speakers in Code blogger Jason Gonulsen writes. “I played it everywhere — in my house, in my…

Mozart deters crims

Mozart deters crims

Since 29, in a downtown Christchurch mall, music by Mozart and other classical composers has been played over speakers to deter would-be criminals. The music has led to a steep fall in petty crime,…

Covering the dream

Covering the dream

Britain’s got Talent star Susan Boyle performed Crowded House classic Don’t Dream It’s Over on The Oprah Winfrey Show in October with the cover also included on Boyle’s new Christmas album The Gift. “Don’t…

Rocking good chat

Rocking good chat

Juice TV presenter Scotty Rocker, 3, host of the Rocker’s Hell show interviewed American popstar and 29 American Idol runner-up Adam Lambert who was in New Zealand in October on his Glam Nation…

Song for consolation

Song for consolation

Christchurch-born singer Hayley Westenra, 23, performed Taiwan on November 1 as part of her 21 Asian tour. Westenra, sang Amazing Grace at a press conference in Taipei as a prayer for victims of Typhoon…

Classic Q for Finn

Classic Q for Finn

Neil Finn, 52, earned a Classic Songwriter Award at the Q Awards 21 held in London at Grosvenor House on October 25. He was presented with the award by Scottish singer KT Tunstall, who…

Waving the flag

Waving the flag

Wellington-born singer/songwriter Brooke Fraser’s third album Flags is reviewed by Birmingham, Alabama university magazine The Samford Crimson. Reviewer Matt Davidson describes the album as “unlike any other Fraser has put out because it tells…