Music at Elsewhere

These pages - with sample tracks and videos posted - introduce and review new music which may otherwise go unheard and unnoticed. Music from Elsewhere reviews new albums (and some important reissues) you'll play more than once at home or in the car, and will want to tell friends about.

If you do, pass the word: you heard it first at Elsewhere.

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Dictaphone Blues: Mufti Day (bandcamp)

18 Dec 2014

Ed Castelow aka Dictaphone Blues is, for Elsewhere's money, one of the most talented, smartest and best pop-rock songwriter/singers at work in this country right now. He's also very funny as he plunders doo-wop (here on the absurd intro to Lance's Tape), writes very witty lyrics and some highly moving ones, latches them to memorable tunes (Her Heart Breaks Like a Wave deserves to be pouring... > Read more

Prepaid Fare

SHORT CUTS: A round-up of recent New Zealand releases

11 Dec 2014

Facing down an avalanche of releases, requests for coverage, the occasional demand that we be interested in their new album (sometimes with that absurd comment "but don't write about it if you don't like it") and so on, Elsewhere will every now and again do a quick sweep like this.  Comments will be brief. The Eastern; The Territory (RPR): Adam McGrath of the Eastern... > Read more

Talking Americana Cowboy Yeeha Blues

Nathan Haines: 5 A Day (Warners)

8 Dec 2014

In a recent in-depth interview with Elsewhere, Nathan Haines spoke about how hard it was for him and his longtime producer Mike Patto to make this new album. In comments we didn't publish there he said, “we were running up against deadlines and it took a massive toll on our lives”. “I had to stop working because there were a lot of man hours in there. You read... > Read more

Hidden Fortress

ONE WE MISSED: Eyreton Hall: Featherstich (Aeroplane)

5 Dec 2014    1

Life, the need to make a living and a trip to Australia meant this exceptionally classy folk-rock and catchy-pop album by Eyreton Hall -- the antipodean duo of Andrew Keegan and Toni Randle slipped right by us when it was released a fornight ago. It is certainly not too late to discover this classy confection which was mostly written near Christchurch and was recorded Auckland by... > Read more


David Bowie: Nothing Has Changed (Parlophone)

5 Dec 2014

The surprising resurrection of David Bowie with his extremely good The Next Day last year doubtless prompted this retrospective double CD chronological collection (which also comes as an impressively thorough four CD version). There's never been much shortage of Bowie compilations and doubtless the hopeful tipping point for this one is the new single Sue (Or in a Season of Crime) at the end... > Read more

Sue (Or in a Season of Crime)

FleaBITE: The Jungle is Jumping (Border)

5 Dec 2014

Elsewhere rarely touches children's music (so please don't start sending them) but we have made an exception for Wellington's FleaBITE (Robin Nathan) because her songs are so quirky and when she was Fatcat and Fishface I swear I've referenced Spike Milligan, Yoko Ono, Mary Poppins and reggae when writing about this left-field stuff. This is another such outing with assistance from the... > Read more

Do the Woopsie

Curtis Harding; Soul Power (Warners)

1 Dec 2014

Back in early June we posted a review of this album under our ONE WE MISSED banner because it had appeared through the indie distributor Southbound the previous month. Well, seems everyone is now playing catch-up because it is out again through Warners and suddenly the reviews are tumbling in. So we'll just re-post what we said five months back . . . This fascinating, genre-defying... > Read more

I Don't Wanna Go Home

Sylvie Simmons: Sylvie (Light in the Attic/Southbound)

1 Dec 2014

Now in her early 60s, Simmons is acclaimed as one of the finest rock writers who has been a longtime contributor to Mojo (insightful articles, interviews and her Americana column), writing box-set liner notes (Johnny Cash, based on spending a week with him before his death) and for her most recent book, the thorough biography of Leonard Cohen, I'm Your Man. On her lengthy book tour... > Read more

Life Goes Bad

Erlend Oye: Legao (Bubbles)

21 Nov 2014    1

So here's how it goes in my Elsewhere world. A few months ago a friend was in Berlin somewhere, saw this guy Erlend Oye and his band, loved it, mentioned Elsewhere to the merchandising person after the gig and . . . Subsequently this CD showed up. "Clearly he seeks world domination," said my pal when I told him. I also told him . . . err, yes, Elsewhere was actually aware of... > Read more

Bad Guy Now

Foxygen: . . . and Star Power (Jagjaguwar)

20 Nov 2014

There are such a lot of borrowed clothes being donned by this LA duo of Jonathan Rado and Sam France -- plus the various star power pals from Of Montreal, Flaming Lips and others -- that you either laugh at the sheer psychedelic gall of it all. Or play Spot the Source Material. Across two mostly groovy, tripped-out and casually delivered discs Foxygen -- who construct this as a... > Read more


Miho Wada: Miho's Jazz Orchestra, Live at the Lab (Aeroplane)

19 Nov 2014    1

 On the occasion of her debut album Postcards to Your Bed in 2010, I expressed considerable reservations about this young flute player who billed her style as "Japanese punk jazz". That seemed a description so wide as to be meaningless, and nothing on the album suggested punk or jazz as I understand them.  I also noted her bio made some striking claims: being... > Read more

Various Artists: A Day in My Mind's Mind; The Kiwi Psychedelic Scene (Frenzy/Real Groovy)

17 Nov 2014    1

A few months ago a friend and I were discussing prog-rock -- it had been a long lunch, this topic doesn't come up often -- and I observed there had been very few great prog statements by Kiwi artists in the late Sixties/early Seventies. I suggested prog by its very nature was expensive music to create and perform. He demurred and I bowed to his greater knowledge. For a couple of... > Read more

Bellyboard Beat

Pink Floyd: The Endless River (Sony)

10 Nov 2014    1

Because Pink Floyd have been around so long and went through various phases and stages, it's probably helpful for any reviewer of this album – identified by guitarist/prime mover David Gilmour as their farewell – to say clearly which era was their Floyd-of-Preference. I was there for their first singles and although I can't say I heard every song or album at the time since,... > Read more

Things Left Unsaid

RECOMMENDED REISSUE: Corben Simpson; Get Up With the Sun

10 Nov 2014    3

Although not a classic New Zealand album -- one which starts with a weird one minute kazoo solo perhaps precludes itself from consideration immediately -- this '73 release on the Harvest label by singer-songwriter Corben Simpson is frequently too good, or at least "interesting", to ignore. In another time that kazoo solo might have been replaced by putorino to better effect as a... > Read more

I Beg Your Pardon

Neil Young: Storytone (Warners)

9 Nov 2014

We've mentioned this before so at the risk of being predictable . . . the problem with “unpredictable” Neil Young these days is that he has become predictable. So after Le Noise (true to what it said on the box) it was Americana (as it says) then Psychedelic Pill (and again). And recently while he's been banging on about some special high-quality sound reproduction... > Read more

When I Watch You Sleeping (solo)

Various Artists: Lost on the River; The New Basement Tapes (Sony)

9 Nov 2014

The provenance of these hitherto unknown lyrics by Bob Dylan is discussed in our interview with the album's producer T Bone Burnett, but briefly the story is this: Dylan's publishers approached Burnett saying Bob had discovered a box of lyrics from '67 and would he (Burnett) like to do something with them. To hear Burnett tell it, at that point Dylan dropped out of the picture and even at... > Read more

Lost on the River

SHORT CUTS: A round-up of recent New Zealand releases

7 Nov 2014

Facing down an avalanche of releases, requests for coverage, the occasional demand that we be interested in their new album (sometimes with that absurd comment "but don't write about it if you don't like it") and so on, Elsewhere will every now and again do a quick sweep like this.  Comments will be brief. Jakob; Sines (Shoot the Freak/Border): The sound of this Napier... > Read more


Darren Watson: Introducing Darren Watson (Beluga)

6 Nov 2014

After the fame/notoriety which came with his pre-election Planet Key song and video (see here), Wellington singer-guitarist and long-running bluesman Darren Watson reveals further humour in this album's title. Fact is, he's more than half a dozen albums into his career (from Chicago Smokeshop in the late Eighties, through Smokeshop and then albums under his own name), but maybe That... > Read more

Slow Cooker

Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra: Be Mine Tonight (

6 Nov 2014

Among the many problems I have with this -- and they start with the cheap looking cover and extend to the sheer obviousness of the project -- is how utterly joyless some of these versions of New Zealand songs sound. Aaradhna's vibrant and uplifting Wake Up and the Swingers' once exciting Counting the Beat here sound barely able to rouse themselves from the hammock. But maybe that's the... > Read more

Slippin' Away

The Flaming Lips: With a Little Help From My Fwends (Warners)

4 Nov 2014

Now here are some words you wouldn't expect to read in the same sentence: "Miley Cyrus" and "the Beatles' A Day in the Life". Or even "Miley Cyrus" and "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds". But when you add "The Flaming Lips" into the equation things start to make some kind of bent sense. The Lips -- that is, the eccentrically... > Read more

A Day in the Life Of