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City Oh Sigh

Frag­ments Fine

(Home Alone)

City Oh Sigh - Fragments FineCity Oh Sigh’s debut EP Like a Light was one of the more spe­cial moments for Wel­ling­ton folk music in 2011. Util­ising voice, gui­tar, trum­pet, cello, keys and min­im­al per­cus­sion, the trio of Cath­er­ine Hene­han, Kate Uhe and Sarah Smythe presen­ted an intim­ate, mature and reflect­ive sound-world, which, while sit­ting with­in the Elec­tric Eden folk tra­di­tions of the United King­dom, also repur­posed them for lives lived in the cap­it­al city of New Zealand.

Three years on, they return with their first long play­er, titled Frag­ments Fine. Now a quar­tet, City Oh Sigh and the songs on Frag­ments Fine bene­fit from the arrival of highly sens­it­ive drummer/percussionist Hikur­angi Schav­er­i­en-Kaa. Build­ing on City Oh Sigh’s pre­dom­in­antly melody- and har­mony-led shapes and lines, Schav­er­i­en-Kaa fills in the rhythms that prob­ably should always have been there, push­ing an already vibrant set of arrange­ments into a space where thought­ful mel­an­cho­lia pulses with the heart­beat of life.

Else­where on the record, bed­sit folk sing­er Timothy Black­man drops by to con­trib­ute guest vocals on ‘Cot­ton Cocoon’ and ‘Let It Roar’, serving as trans­lu­cent coun­ter­point to Uhe’s voice, and in par­tic­u­lar on the lat­ter, Schaverien-Kaa’s clock­work grooves.

Moody, haunt­ing and power­ful, Frag­ments Fine deliv­ers exactly what Like a Light promised.


Rob Thorne

Whaia Te Maramatanga

(Rattle Records)

Rob ThornePalmer­ston North-based musi­cian Rob Thorne spent a dec­ade gig­ging around the loc­al exper­i­ment­al rock and free-noise scenes before fall­ing in love with taonga pūoro (tra­di­tion­al Māori instru­ments) in the late 1990s. He then pro­ceeded to spend the next dec­ade learn­ing not only how to play a selec­tion of these instru­ments, but devel­op­ing his own con­tem­por­ary music­al vocab­u­lary through com­bin­ing their ancient sounds with his past exper­i­ences in noise/experimental music.

While the likes of Richard Nunns and Hirini Mel­bourne were the taonga pūoro reviv­al­ists, Rob is an innov­at­or, mov­ing it for­ward cre­at­ively in new dir­ec­tions on Whaia Te Maramatanga.



@Peace and the Pluto­ni­an Noise Symphony 

(Young, Gif­ted & Broke)

At PeaceBetween their self-titled debut mix tape in 2012, their fol­low-up Girl Songs EP in 2013 and a stream of beloved live shows around the coun­try, Auck­land based hip hop/beats col­lect­ive @Peace may be one of the more dis­cussed emer­ging New Zea­l­and acts of the early 2010s. On their prop­er debut album, @Peace and the Pluto­ni­an Noise Sym­phony, they mine the his­tor­ies of psy­che­del­ic rock, space jazz and mod­ern elec­tron­ica, cre­at­ing a loc­al hip hop record that has very little in com­mon with most loc­al hip hop. This isn’t a bad thing. Join them on a jour­ney though the mys­ter­ies of space and time.

Delaney Dav­id­son and Mar­lon Williams

Sad But True Volume 3: Juke Box B‑Sides

(Lyttleton Records)

Delaney Davidson Marlon WilliamsOn Sad But True Volume 3: Juke Box B‑Sides, Delaney Dav­id­son and Mar­lon Wil­li­ams, the icon­ic yet world-weary country/rockabilly troubadours of Lyt­telton, reunite for anoth­er round of spec­tac­u­lar songs from the line and prair­ie. Dav­id­son is the twinkly-eyed old fox with a crooked smile, and enough music­al char­ac­ter to go around the whole camp­fire. Wil­li­ams is the young rock ’n’ roll god with an old soul, and impress­ively mature lyr­ics and melod­ies to boot. With Tami Neilson, Dave Khan, Ben Wool­ley and Joe McCal­lum drop­ping in for music­al fea­tures, it’s a trip to the right bar on the wrong side of the tracks.

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