Elsewhere by Graham Reid

music - travel - arts

Wide angle reviews, interviews and opinion by writer Graham Reid

Music at Elsewhere

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Samantha Fish, Cassie Taylor, Dani Wilde: Girls with Guitars (Ruf)

Samantha Fish, Cassie Taylor, Dani Wilde: Girls with Guitars (Ruf)

Nothing like naming your album with a product description, right? This lead/bass/rhythm trio (with drummer Jamie Little) bridge sultry blues, a soul-kiss and rock'n'roll blues (bassist Cassie the daughter of the great Otis). Wilde's Stax/Aretha/sexy vocals impress and she's a double threat, pulling out mercurial and razor sharp lead solos. They deliver fine originals, and a feisty... more >>

Leaving Chicago

18 Jul 2011

New Telepathics: Clapping with Rockets (OUR Records)

New Telepathics: Clapping with Rockets (OUR Records)

New Telepathics' multi-instrumentalist mainman Darryn Harkness has certainly covered the waterfront in his 20-year career. He's been in straight ahead rock bands, the From Scratch percussion ensemble, written music to accompany the silent film Nosferatu, pulled together bands feeding off the spirit of Sun Ra and Fela Anikulapo Kuti, written self-published poetry, played and lived in the UK and... more >>

River Calls Me Now

12 Jul 2011

The Cave Singers: No Witch (Jajaguwar)

The Cave Singers: No Witch (Jajaguwar)

Over two previous albums this Seattle-based outfit weren't easy to pigeon-hole (alt.country, boho-folk, indie.something?) but were always interesting because of that, and not the least for singer Peter Quirk's distinctive vocals which were “quirky” for want of a better word. Here however they really throw in some visceral and edgy material (the abrasive and tense Black... more >>

Faze Wave

11 Jul 2011

The Vietnam War: The Vietnam War (Round Trip Mars)

The Vietnam War: The Vietnam War (Round Trip Mars)

Despite the explosive connotations of their name, Auckland's Vietnam War are far from an incendiary rock outfit. Rather, they are in that country rock lineage which reaches back to the Byrds (there's a little pre-Sweethearts Byrdsean jangle in the mid-ground of the opener High Window) and runs through the Band, and to the early Renderers and the Warratahs/Wayne Mason in New Zealand. They... more >>

Same Thought

7 Jul 2011

Joe Ely: Satisfied at Last (Rack 'Em Records/Southbound)

Joe Ely: Satisfied at Last (Rack 'Em Records/Southbound)

The very good news is that the great Joe Ely -- who has delivered a few patchy albums in the past decade -- doesn't sound at all "satisfied" as the album's title would suggest. In fact from the opener The Highway is My Home to Butch Hancock's Circumstance 40 minutes later this tight'n'tidy 10 song collection has much of the old Tex-Mex and narrative fire-power of some of his best... more >>

Leo and Leona

5 Jul 2011

The 3D's: Early Recordings 1989-90 (Flying Nun)

The 3D's: Early Recordings 1989-90 (Flying Nun)

Inspired by everything from the Pixies and Neil Young's El Dorado EP, sonic noise and folk music, the 3D's were a Flying Nun band which inspired passionate loyalty for the visceral power of their sound and often weaving, beguling melodies (from singer Denise Roughan as well as the guitars). The re-release last year of their early albums (Hellzapoppin', The Venus Trail and Strange News from... more >>

Evil Kid

5 Jul 2011

Neil Young and the International Harvesters: A Treasure (Reprise)

Neil Young and the International Harvesters: A Treasure (Reprise)

While many of us would wish Neil Young release the next long-awaited installement of his Archives series (ho ho ho, like that'll happen any time soon), in his wilful and non-chronological release schedule it was almost expected a follow-up to the terrific and raw Le Noise would be . . . a country music album. But even so, A Treasure is a little unexpected as it comes from his on-going... more >>

Flying on the Ground is Wrong

4 Jul 2011    2

Kitty, Daisy and Lewis: Smoking in Heaven (Sunday Best)

Kitty, Daisy and Lewis: Smoking in Heaven (Sunday Best)

While some have be quite taken by KD&Lewis' retro look and sound -- which is undeniably entertaining on the surface and live -- I have remained immune and indifferent to their charms. And nothing on this album of all originals can persuade me to be otherwise. These songs sound lame when they aren't just plain dull, or working out some tropes which so many others have not only done... more >>

I'm Going Back

4 Jul 2011

Various Artists: Watch the Closing Doors (Year Zero/Southbound)

Various Artists: Watch the Closing Doors (Year Zero/Southbound)

This ambitious double disc compilation of New York's musical melting pot (1945-59) by writer Kris Needs – who delivered the free-wheeling collection Dirty Water; The Birth of Punk Attitude – scoops up jazz (Ellington, Armstrong, Mingus), pop (Frankie Lymon), folk (Dave Van Ronk), blues (Sonny Terry, Big Maybelle) and Latin (Machito). Disc one ends with John Cage reading... more >>

Autumn in New York

4 Jul 2011

Various Artists: LateNightTales; Trentemoller (LateNightTales)

Various Artists: LateNightTales; Trentemoller (LateNightTales)

Another installment in the on-going LNT series, this compiled by Danish electronica artist Trentemoller who opts for a dark, almost suffocating and disturbing evening at home by many less familiar but very interesting artists (The Black Angels, Chimes and Bells, Darkness Falls, Thee Oh See's) alongside a few moody notables (This Mortal Coil, Low, Mazzy Star, Velvet Underground, M.Ward,... more >>

Science Killer

4 Jul 2011

Mickey Newbury: An American Trilogy (Saint Cecilia Knows/Southbound)

Mickey Newbury: An American Trilogy (Saint Cecilia Knows/Southbound)

Not many people know about Texan Mickey Newbury, who died almost a decade ago, age 62. Maybe it's enough Elvis (who made Newbury's medley An American Trilogy a cornerstone of his latter performances) did. And that Mickey's songs were covered by Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Willie Nelson, Joan Baez and dozens of others. Often spoken of in the same sentence as Kris Kristofferson... more >>

33rd of August/When the Baby in My Lady Gets the Blues

28 Jun 2011    1

Urge Overkill: Rock&Roll Submarine (Redeye)

Urge Overkill: Rock&Roll Submarine (Redeye)

Possibly the most coolly knowing, confidently aloof band since Steely Dan, Urge Overkill out of Chicago were touring mates with Nirvana and Pearl Jam but their stylish and increasingly power pop sound (and cover of Neil Diamond's Girl You'll be a Woman Soon which was used in Pulp Fiction) took them to a mainstream, but small, audience. This, their first album in over 15 years, and has... more >>

Poison Flower

27 Jun 2011

Highway: Highway (Ode)

Highway: Highway (Ode)

A decade or so ago there was a major excavation undertaken of New Zealand pop and rock of the Sixties, thanks to enthusiasts like John Baker and Andrew Schmidt, and Chris Caddick at EMI who actioned a series of terrific compilations. Some of the work of these people spilled over into the early Seventies. Thierry Pannetier at EMI was responsible for the three decade-bridging double discs of... more >>

New Day

26 Jun 2011

Tamar McLeod Sinclair: The Heart Notes (TaMartin)

Tamar McLeod Sinclair: The Heart Notes (TaMartin)

No one would accuse this Auckland-born graduate of Wellington's Massey University Conservatorium of Music of lacking ambition. This, her debut, is the result of her internationalism (she has worked in various parts of Europe for over five years) and the songs were written everywhere from Sydney and parts of Italy to Scotland, Switzerland and the Czech Republic (where it was recorded, as well as... more >>

Thankful

22 Jun 2011

Apanui: Matariki (Frequency)

Apanui: Matariki (Frequency)

Ngahiwi Apanui, formerly of the seminal reggae band Aotearoa, was in the vanguard of the use of taonga puoro (traditional instruments) with his autobiographical solo album Te hono ke te Kainga/The Link with the Homeland in '89 which also brought in reggae and folk. A staunch advocate of te reo and cultural pride, he opens this album with an electro-thump call for everyone to support... more >>

Apanui: Ko Ko/Call Call

21 Jun 2011

Spa: Spells for Travelling Forth By Day (Sarang Bang)

Spa: Spells for Travelling Forth By Day (Sarang Bang)

On a cursory listen, this album by the Auckland three-piece Spa (Steven Tait, Hayden Sinclair, Brian Donnelly) plus guests seems a little slight and unfocused. An acoustic instrumental opens proceedings, later there is indie.pop, alt.rock, a touch of Plastic Bertrand/Ramones-like punk-pop (Lionel Lopez, about a former sports star?), a little shoo-wop pop . . .. But -- and might we mention... more >>

Please Let Me Down

20 Jun 2011

The Wronglers with Jimmie Dale Gilmore: Heirloom Music (Neanderthal)

The Wronglers with Jimmie Dale Gilmore: Heirloom Music (Neanderthal)

Jimmie Dale Gilmore possesses one of the most distinctive voices and when deployed on lachrymose ballads he can tear your heart out. But this is an odd and old time project, Gilmore out front of a band of mixed abilities (interesting, but not interesting enough) and performing mostly songs from the Thirties and Forties, some of which come from bluegrass, others from blues and country. And... more >>

If I Should Wander Back

20 Jun 2011

Greg Brown: Freak Flag (YepRoc)

Greg Brown: Freak Flag (YepRoc)

When you get to your 24th album you probably aren't expecting a major breakthrough in terms of having a whole new audience find you. And nothing on this fine album sounds like either a departure, or capable of taking this poet/singer beyond those who already know of him. Formerly the musical director on the famous A Prairie Home Companion radio show, married to Iris De Ment and with a... more >>

Rain and Snow

20 Jun 2011

Known Associates: Penny Love (Warcat)

Known Associates: Penny Love (Warcat)

Auckland singer/writer/guitarist Warren Cate of Known Associates has made some fine and deliberately unpolished rock albums under his own name in the past but here, with a team of equals who hunkered down for weekly sessions last year to toughen themselves up and work out material, he excels himself. Cate always possessed a slightly dangerous edge in his vocals but here he sounds angry and... more >>

Made of Blue

15 Jun 2011    1

Various Artists: Forbidden Planets Vol 2 (Chrome Dreams/Triton)

Various Artists: Forbidden Planets Vol 2 (Chrome Dreams/Triton)

Subtitled "More Music from the Pioneers of Electronic Sound", this double disc with a booklet will not be for everyone. But if the original theme to Dr Who, the Bebe and Louis Barron soundtrack on the film Forbidden Planet and even the more demanding music in 2001: A Space Odyssey (nope, not the Strauss) held any appeal then you should sign up for this collection. Much electronic... more >>

Serenata (1924)

13 Jun 2011