Graham Reid | | 3 min read
We still get excited when New Zealand acts do well overseas – recently Gin and the current coverage of Lorde – but when the Datsuns out of Cambridge made the cover of the NME in late 2002 and were called the best live band on the planet we really started to pay attention to them.
Mainly because they'd made more of an impression in the UK than they had on home-turf at that point.
But a great live band they were.
I have two memorable experiences, one at the 100 Club in London when the Von Bondies were playing an explosive set. I said to my son who was with me at the time, “The Datsuns should be doing this kind of thing” and within minutes there they were, joining the Detroit rockers on stage for a dual set which took the roof off the place.
And it's an underground room.
The other time was also in an underground room, a club on Albert St in Auckland some years later (the night before a Big Day Out if I recall) when they joined fellow rockers the D4 on the tiny stage for a night of guitar noise, mayhem and some of them being carried on the shoulders of other band members.
The Datsuns deliver – although few were quite as impressed with their second album Outta Sight Outta Mind produced by Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones as we wanted to be.
But since then they have run true to rowdy garage-rock-cum-power-metal form and their fifth album Death Rattle Boogie (partly recorded in Stockholm with former Hellacopter Nicke Andersson) signaled that after almost 15 years they were still firing.
They return to New Zealand for their Death Rattle Boogie tour very soon (dates below) but meantime guitarist Phil Sommervell lines up for the Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire. . .
The first piece of music which really affected you was . . .
Michael Jackson - Smooth Criminal..
Your first (possibly embarrassing) role models in music were . . .
New Kids On The Block.
Lennon or Jagger, Ramones or Nirvana, Madonna or Gaga, Jacko or Jay-Z?
Lennon, Ramones, Madonna, Jacko
If music was denied you, your other career choice would be . . .
A Squash Guru
The three songs (yours, or by others) you would love everyone to hear are . . .
Reptile Style - the Reigning Sound, Two Thieves - the Compulsive Gamblers, A Little More For Little You - The Hives
Any interesting, valuable or just plain strange musical memorabilia at home?
Ace Frehley's guitar pick.
The best book on music or musicians you have read is . . .
Please Kill Me.
If you could get on stage with anyone it would be . . . (And you would play?)
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and I would play the Bass..
The three films you'd insist anybody watch because they might understand you better are . . .
Cool Hand Luke, Cool Runnings and The Dark Crystal.
The last CD or vinyl album you bought was . . . (And your most recent downloads include . . .)
Mikal Cronin - MC11, the Oblivians - Desperation.
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 . . .
Crippled Inside - John Lennon
The poster, album cover or piece of art could you live with on your bedroom forever would be . . .
Anything by John Appleton.
You are allowed just one tattoo, and it is of . . .
My Daughters foot.
David Bowie sang, “Five years, that's all we've got . . .” You would spend them where, doing . . .?
In N.Z making music with my friends and family.
And finally, in the nature of press conferences in Japan, “Can you tell me please why this is your best album ever?”
Because we have captured what we do live better than before, and we are having more fun with it all.
THE DATSUNS' TOUR DATES
Thur Aug 29 Whangarei, The
Fri Aug 30 Auckland, Kings Arms
Sat Aug 31 Palmerston North, The Royal
Thur Sept 5 Mayfair, New Plymouth
Fri Sept 6 Napier, The Cabana
Sat Sept 7 Masterton, King Street Live
Thur Sept 12 Wellington, Bodega
Fri Sept 13 Christchurch, Bedford at CPSA
Sat Sept 14 Dunedin, Refuel