News of New Zealanders via Global Media

Hands Play San-Fran

Hands Play San-Fran

Auckland-formed indie band Cut Off Your Hands are touring the United States promoting their 2008 debut album You and I. “Pause a minute while taking in the dreamy, vigorous Brit-pop of Cut Off Your…

Phase Five

Phase Five

The Phase Five Program, led by NZ On Air’s Mike McClung and Brendan Smyth, is exposing international audiences to up and coming New Zealand bands. The Program pairs a Phase Five…

Strange Brew Debut

Strange Brew Debut

  Cambridge rockers The Datsuns will play Galway, Ireland on February 5 promoting their latest album Head Stunts, which was recently recorded in Sweden. Formed in 1997 under the name Trinket, The Datsuns have drawn…

Nomination for Brown

Nomination for Brown

Ladyhawke continues to make entertainment headlines with a 2009 Shockwaves NME Award nomination for Best Solo Artist, alongside Laura Marling, Lightspeed Champion, Jay-Z and Pete Doherty. The Awards will be announced…

Robot rock

Robot rock

Hamilton based rock band the Trons are appreciating a rapid ascent, despite the noted absence of any actual human members. The Hamilton based four-part robot rock band consists of Ham on vocals, Fifi on…

Back to Her Roots

Back to Her Roots

Christchurch-born musician Bic Runga, 32, has been in Kuala Lumpur performing at the launch of the new BMW 7 Series, having just completed an album for Oxfam with Neil Finn, Radiohead and Wilco. “I’m…

In vogue in Sydney

In vogue in Sydney

18 December 2008 – Auckland songstress Gin Wigmore, 22, has been named one of ten best up-and-coming musical acts in the Metro section of The Sydney Morning Herald. Wigmore is fairly confident she’s the…

Collision with the big guns

Collision with the big guns

Te Awamutu-born Crowded House frontman Neil Finn is Billboard’s featured artist, just ahead of a planned studio project with his son singer Liam Finn, UK band Radiohead and American rockers Wilco. In a sequel…

In all honesty

In all honesty

“The curry-scented streets of Pip Brown’s east-London neighbourhood Brick Lane are a far cry from her beginnings in New Zealand,” writes The Independent on Sunday’s Luiza Sauma in a frank interview with Brown, now…

Music to his ears

Music to his ears

Associate professor in instrumental and vocal composition at The New Zealand School of Music Jack Body’s latest cross-cultural composition is a production called ‘The Seven Ages of Man’, which is a “multimedia music theatre”…

Fame from the field

Fame from the field

Wellington-born Singer Will Martin, 24, is one of a number of classical crossover performers who, writes the Times Online, made their “big break” singing the national anthem at a sporting event. Martin first performed…

Tidal promotion

Tidal promotion

Christchurch singer-songwriter Anika Moa’s third studio album ‘In Swings the Tide’ has been released in Australia, and with the release Moa, 28, will perform several promotional concerts in Melbourne ahead of shows supporting Crowded…

Blondes make blog

Blondes make blog

Auckland singer Gin Wigmore, 21, and Wellington’s Ladyhawke are both plugged in Perez Hilton’s Hollywood gossip blog, who enthuses that if you are blonde and from New Zealand, he is: “LOVING you this week.”…

New Kids Take on NY

New Kids Take on NY

16 October 2008 – Four New Zealand bands – The Naked and Famous, Bang! Bang! Eche!, Cut Off Your Hands and The Ruby Suns – “showcase an evening of up-tempo Kiwi-centric jams” at New…

Success on the periphery

Success on the periphery

Dunedin noise-rock trio Dead C formed in 1987 and over the past two decades has made more of a reputation outside of New Zealand music circles. They’re on the fringe, and they don’t plan…

Rhombus Nices It Up

Rhombus Nices It Up

Wellington-based musical collective Rhombus headline at Mullumbimby’s Mullum Music Festival in late November, having this month released their third full-length self-titled album. Initiated in 2001, Rhombus presents a seamless blend of hip-hop, soul, funk,…

From dusk till dawn

From dusk till dawn

Ladyhawke’s self-titled debut album has been released in the UK where the former-Wellingtonian is touring through October ahead of dates in the United States and Europe. In this Guardian review: “Not many budding pop…

Four Decades With Finn

Four Decades With Finn

Musician and songwriter Tim Finn is interviewed by Salt Lake City newspaper The Deseret News about his forthcoming solo album release, ‘The Conversation’, and a career spanning 40 years. “If you would have told…

Releasing Expectations

Releasing Expectations

Auckland-based band Cut Off Your Hands are described as a “vicious and vibrant foursome” and frontman Nick Johnston, “the new Iggy Pop of the New Zealand pop-punk pioneers” on a British news website. The…

Sunshine Travels

Sunshine Travels

Auckland band the Ruby Suns are fusing the sounds of the South Pacific and California, “bridging the gap between world music and pop.” Sole permanent member of the band, American Ryan McPhun permanently resettled…

Dropping in on Europe

Dropping in on Europe

Wellington’s Fat Freddy’s Drop will tour Europe in November on the back of their latest release, the mammoth nine-minute track ‘The Camel’, which readers are offered free to download at the Times Online site….

With rapturous applause

With rapturous applause

Gisborne-born soprano Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, 64, “came, sang and conquered” with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at a Ravinia gala benefit concert. Looking every inch the beauteous diva in a stunning red-and-black ensemble, Te…

Vocal ambassador

Vocal ambassador

Christchurch soprano Hayley Westenra, 21, performed with the US National Symphony Orchestra at the 28th annual broadcast of America’s popular 4th of July concert, Capitol Fourth before returning to the UK to continue a…

Spoilt for shenanigans

Spoilt for shenanigans

Wellington’s Bret McKenzie likes Los Angeles eatery Pie n’ Burger because “the name lets you know what you’re going to get. No surprises.” This is one of a sampling of places McKenzie recommends in…

Synthesised on Flying Nun

Synthesised on Flying Nun

Lead singer of Wellington band the Phoenix Foundation, Samuel Flynn Scott released his debut album The Hunt Brings Us Life in 2006 but continues to work with the Foundation which recently promoted their latest…

Taranaki has Guests

Taranaki has Guests

Since 2003, thousands have converged on New Plymouth’s Pukekura Park in March for three-day international music festival WOMAD, which from this year becomes an annual event. WOMAD 2008 featured over 300 performers from 14…

Shocking Advance

Shocking Advance

Auckland pop band the Shocking Pinks have signed a four-album deal with New York label DFA Records, which also represents LCD Soundsystem and Hercules & Love Affair. Founder and ex-Brunettes member, Nick Harte says…

Drawing Comparisons

Drawing Comparisons

Masterton-born indie pop rocker Pip Brown, 28, otherwise known as Ladyhawke, is garnering enthusiastic reviews in London – the Guardian dubbing Brown’s sound “exquisitely distracted insouciance over fabulous machine melody.” Her second release ‘Paris…

Union Man’s Aria

Union Man’s Aria

Christchurch-born singer Max Merritt, who fronted Max Merritt and the Meteors, will be inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame alongside New Zealand band Dragon. “I didn’t expect it – it was an incredible…

NZ Pop’s Work Permit

NZ Pop’s Work Permit

Auckland band Ruby Suns has the UK press “salivating” over its latest guitar-pop album Sea Lion, with other acts like the Brunettes, Connan and the Mockasins and Lawrence of Arabia proving…

Comedic Eclecticism

Comedic Eclecticism

Flight of the Conchords have “a gift of genre-blending that makes even David Bowie’s efforts pale in comparison,” writes London Time Out. Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie shift comfortably from the soft-hitting hipn hop…

Singer Performs on Ice

Singer Performs on Ice

New Zealand singer/songwriter, Mihirangi has returned from a trip to Antarctica where she filmed a video for her latest single No War. “They put me on this iceberg all by myself!” she said. “It…

Scaling the Opera Ladder

Scaling the Opera Ladder

New Zealand tenor Geoffrey Knight is a versatile individual, a former member of motorbike gang Highway 61, a stuntman, actor and deep sea trawlerman, Knight is currently performing Gilbert & Sullivan’s operetta Utopia Limited…

Dame Kiri’s festival circuit

Dame Kiri’s festival circuit

Soprano Dame Kiri te Kanawa is to perform at three North American summer music festivals – Washington D.C.’s Wolf Trap, Chicago’s Ravinia and the famous Ontario Elora Festival on July 13. Elora artistic director…

Sound System Men

Sound System Men

Hamilton reggae group Katchafire are touring the US “spreading their Aotearoa Roots” to big crowds from Albuquerque, New Mexico to Hawaii, where the band headlines at the One Love Reggae Festival. Lead singer Logan…

Lightning Success

Lightning Success

Liam Finn is currently touring the United States promoting his 2007 solo album I’ll Be Lightning, and is mesmerising critics there. In Texas, former Dirty Vegas frontman, Steve Smith was impressed with how Finn…

Pacific Mix

Pacific Mix

Eleven-piece New Zealand band Te Vaka travelled to Macau where they enchanted the audience with the sound of the South Pacific, just as they have done at venues throughout the world…

Maconie Explains Stockhausen on War

Maconie Explains Stockhausen on War

Composer and musicologist New Zealand-born Robin Maconie writes about celebrated German composer Karlheinz Stockhausen’s controversial statement after September 9/11, in which he called the terrorist attacks “the greatest work of art” ever. Maconie writes:…

Off-Stage Antics

Off-Stage Antics

Wellington-born musician and “New York Rock God” Dean Wareham formed the band Luna in 1992 and later, together with his second wife Britta Phillips, Dean & Britta. Black Postcards is Wareham’s…

Promises Reviewed

Promises Reviewed

Dunedin indie band Die! Die! Die! is currently touring Los Angeles and Austin, Texas to promote their latest album Promises, Promises released in the US in February. Die! Die! Die! may sound less like…

Full dance card

Full dance card

New Zealand singer/songwriter Liam Finn is in Brooklyn, New York playing at the Music Hall of Williamsburg before an interview on Letterman and a tour as support act for Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder….

Bursting Into Canzone

Bursting Into Canzone

New Zealand bass-baritone Paul Whelan stepped out of the audience and onto the stage to sing the part of Raimundo at a London Coliseum performance of Lucia di Lammermoor. Whelan, who is due to…

The most popular

The most popular

Wellington comedy pair The Flight of the Conchords won best comedy album Grammy for their debut EP The Distant Future at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. The EP…

Pianist in Demand

Pianist in Demand

Award-winning New Zealand pianist and current associate professor of piano at Florida State University Read Gainsford has performed throughout the world as solo recitalist, concert soloist and chamber musician. Gainsford performs at Middle…

Dazzling Debut

Dazzling Debut

Liam Finn’s solo debut, I’ll Be Lightning, has received widespread praise in the US, where it was released this week. Paste magazine calls it “a dazzling solo debut” while The Wall Street Journal praises…

Christchurch soprano tops UK sales

Christchurch soprano tops UK sales

Hayley Westenra‘s breakthrough album has been named the UK’s biggest-selling classical record of the 21st-century to date. Pure (2003), the Christchurch singer’s international debut, went gold in its first week of release in…

An appreciative audience

An appreciative audience

The Telegraph describes Crowded House’s performance as “just like old times” and Neil Finn’s voice as “Lennonnish” in a review of their show at Manchester’s MEN Arena. “There’s a long tradition of audience participation…

Nearing perfection

Nearing perfection

The Guardian‘s guide to the world’s greatest music acts beginning with C features Flying Nun luminaries The Chills. The band’s 1994 best-of, Heavenly Pop Hits, is recommended to first-time listeners. The Guardian: “Set…

Music that moves you

Music that moves you

The acclaimed NZ String Quartet is currently touring the United States’ East Coast. Formed 20 years ago, the Wellington-based group consists of cellist Rolf Gjelsten, first violinist Helene Pohl, violinist Douglas Beilman and violist…

Home tour for Split Enz

Home tour for Split Enz

Iconic NZ group Split Enz will tour their home country next year in support of their new live DVD/CD, One Out Of The Bag. Split Enz recorded One Out Of The Bag in 2006…

Cosmic pop

Cosmic pop

One-woman Christchurch act Bachelorette is winning over Australian audiences with her “beautifully odd, inter-planetary pop”. Annabel Alpers is currently touring Australia with her new album, Isolation Loops, which she recorded in a remote wooden…

Kora impress offshore

Kora impress offshore

Whakatane band Kora is steadily building an international fan base to rival its one in NZ. The five-piece band – which consists of brothers Brad, Stu, Laughton and Francis Kora, and Dan McGruer -…

Auckland band makes the cut

Auckland band makes the cut

Auckland power-punk quartet Cut Off Your Hands scored an invitation to play at New York’s “suffocatingly cool” CMJ Music Marathon, one of the US indie scene’s premiere events. Cut Off Your Hands was…

Emotions running high

Emotions running high

Crowded House were praised for their “emotion-drenched performance” at The Greek Theatre in an LA Times review. LA Times: “he group’s exquisitely crafted songs are infinitely rich with melodic and harmonic invention but lyrically…

Check one-two

Check one-two

Auckland five-piece The Checks featured as the Guardian’s New Band of the Day for August 22. Music critic Paul Lester: “These five New Zealanders may be teenagers, but they sound as old as the…

Nerd chic in Seattle

Nerd chic in Seattle

A San Diego entertainment guide has hailed NZ as “the new Seattle” for its flourishing alternative music scene. The article name-checks HBO show Flight of the Conchords, starring Wellington folk-comedy duo Brett McKenzie and…