Singer-songwriter Matt Joe Gow grew up in Dunedin listening to the sound of Flying Nun bands, but as a longtime Australian resient he has taken another direction with his band the Dead Leaves.
Their first album -- credited to Matt Joe Gow and the Dead Leaves, The Messenger -- received good notices for its smart alt.country feel, but for the new album Cities on the Sea, Gow has pulled his name into that of the band, shared the excellent arrangements with band member Andrew Pollock and set his sights on a sound that edges neatly towards sort of alt.country power pop interspersed with some mature and memorable ballads.
Time for Gow to join the very long list of guests who have answered the Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire.
The first piece of music which really
affected you was . . .
Thriller, Michael Jackson
Your first (possibly embarrassing) role models in music were . . .
Lennon or Jagger, Ramones or Nirvana, Madonna or Gaga, Jacko or Jay-Z?
Lennon, Nirvana, neither and Jacko
If music was denied you, your other career choice would be . . .
nowhere near as good
The three songs (yours, or by others) you would love everyone to hear are . . .
Ordinary Lot, Cover, Changing (all on Cities on the Sea)
Any interesting, valuable or just plain strange musical memorabilia at home?
Not particularly interesting… just instruments, some valuable, I don't collect memorabilia
The best book on music or musicians you have read is . . .
If you could get on stage with anyone it would be . . . (And you would play?)
My band, I'd sing
The three films you'd insist anybody watch because they might understand you better are . . .
25th Hour, Old Boy and Heat. They wouldn't understand me any better but they'd be happier for it.
The last CD or vinyl album you bought was . . . (And your most recent downloads include . . .)
Exile on Main Street, (sister bought it for me). Downloaded Bon Iver - Bon Iver.
One song, royalties for life, never have to work again. The song by anyone, yourself included, which wouldn't embarrass you in that case would be . . .
Any of my songs
The poster, album cover or piece of art could you live with on your bedroom forever would be . . .
Dark Side Of The Moon
You are allowed just one tattoo, and it is of . . .
Well I already broke that rule so...
David Bowie sang, “Five years, that's all we've got . . .” You would spend them where, doing . . .?
Rewatching The Wire
And finally, in the nature of press conferences in Japan, “Can you tell me please why this is your best album ever?”
Because it's our only one.