Absolute Elsewhere

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MIRIAM CLANCY INTERVIEWED (2006): Career opportunities

30 Sep 2006  |  5 min read

“You know, I’d left school and had gone straight into playing in pubs,” laughs Auckland singer-songwriter Miriam Clancy. “I had no other training behind me. So it was either work in a café, or go and live at mum’s.” Clancy laughs again as she remembers that difficult period a few years ago when she decided to stop knocking herself out after a decade of... > Read more

Miriam Clancy: And So It Begins

OVER THE RHINE INTERVIEWED (2006): Coming out quietly

5 Mar 2006  |  2 min read

Karin Berquist and Linford Detweiler get the treatment usually reserved for big stars. A year ago few people here were aware of Over the Rhine, the Cincinnati band formed around the song-writing core of Karin Berquist and Linford Detweiler, whose seductive blend of alt.country and American folk had quietly been captivating an American audience.  Yet here they are now, receiving... > Read more

Over the Rhine: Who Will Guard The Door (from Drunkard's Prayer)

LANCE HENRIKSEN INTERVIEWED (2005): No rest for an old cold-eyed geezer

5 Oct 2005  |  4 min read

Lance Henriksen in daylight is a strange thing. As an actor - from his role as the android in Aliens almost 20 years ago through the Millennium television series in the mid-90s to the current Alien vs Predator movie - he's a man whose crumpled, carved features have always been half-lit. He moves through shadows, then usually gets killed in some especially brutal manner.So the... > Read more

MAX MERRITT INTERVIEWED (2005): The rock'n'roll originator

3 Aug 2005  |  5 min read

At some point in the mid 2000s, Christchurch-born rock'n'roll pioneer Max Merritt was receiving some award for his contribution to New Zealand (and Australian) music. There may also have been some kind of compilation coming out (I forget) so I interviewed him about those early days. I initially asked what it was like being a teenage rock'n'roll hero and how he got started. I... > Read more

EVERMORE, INTERVIEWED (2004): On the Hume's highway

24 Sep 2004  |  6 min read

The way Jon Hume of Evermore describes it, they are living the dream: sleeping on a friend's floor in Sydney; working up to five nights a week in sweaty bars and clubs, and sometimes in big theatres with headliners like Keane and Snow Patrol; hauling themselves around from Sydney to Adelaide to Melbourne to Brisbane ...From the comfort of your couch at home it all sounds arduous and - when you... > Read more

BONES HILLMAN INTERVIEWED (2004): Talking the good Oil

10 Jul 2004  |  5 min read

Bones Hillman's CV wouldn't get him a nice job in a bank, but that was never the point. The bassist/singer born Warne Stevens started here in a punk outfit called the Masochists back in '77, then joined the seminal Suburban Reptiles. In the Reptiles he met former Split Enzman Phil Judd and Buster Stiggs and they split off to become the Swingers. Their hits One Good Reason and Counting... > Read more

RICK BRYANT INTERVIEWED (2003): Following his own stupid good advice

19 Jun 2004  |  6 min read

When Rick Bryant got his university results he knew he could get A Good Job, maybe in Treasury or Foreign Affairs. "But I never had any aspiration for that kind of appointment," he says, unleashing a lung-rattling laugh. It is a voice which matured in smoke-filled pubs and, despite pending legislation suggesting otherwise, sounds the better for it. Even before... > Read more

DIZZEE RASCAL INTERVIEWED (2004) Out of da corner to centre of da ring

5 Apr 2004  |  6 min read

Dizzee Rascal (aka Dylan Mills), out of London's tough East End, crashed into view with his terrific Boy in Da Corner debut album last year. It made "best of the year" lists everywhere for its compelling stories of real life which, like The Streets, weren't afraid to be heartfelt and emotional when necessary, but without losing the tough edge. What makes Dizzee Rascal... > Read more

JAMES GARDENER, INTERVIEWED (2001): From Buzzcocks to Jack Body

8 Feb 2004  |  3 min read

James Gardner, director of the contemporary classical ensemble 175 East, downplays his former musical career. Despite being in "teenage bands of doubtful competence" and becoming a keyboard player "because I was the least worst at it," he can claim some pretty good post-punk credentials.In the mid-80s he played in the backing band for Pete Shelley, formerly (and latterly... > Read more

TRINITY ROOTS INTERVIEWED (2004): Songs for the heart and homeland

24 Jan 2004  |  4 min read

Hailed as a gentle but potent love song to Aotearoa and its people, TrinityRoots' Home, Land and Sea is a celebration and call to unity which shines in contrast with most other offerings currently topping the album chart. Guitarist Warren Maxwell, bassist Rio Hemopo and drummer Riki Gooch have built on their debut True to create a mystic soulful album in which the band... > Read more

NESIAN MYSTIK INTERVIEWED (2003): For their people

22 Dec 2003  |  3 min read

For Te Awanui Reeder and the rest of Nesian Mystik, yesterday was downtime and a chance to rest before opening for Duran Duran and Robbie Williams at Western Springs tomorrow. But there's downtime ... and there's downtime. For Nesian Mystik - back from London where they did a showcase for media at New Zealand House and public gigs in Soho and Brixton - downtime still... > Read more

DION OF THE D4, INTERVIEWED (2003): Rock'n'roll soldiers

16 Oct 2003  |  5 min read

We catch him at the unglamorous and very un-rock'n'roll Ponsonby Food Hall but Dion of the D4, the North Shore band that has captured hearts and imaginations in Europe and Japan, is only too happy to chat.The band goes on tour this month but for most of the year it wouldn't have been uncommon to run into various members of D4 around the shops and foodhalls of their hometown. Big in Europe... > Read more


9 Oct 2003  |  4 min read

It's a week ago and you have to imagine the scene backstage in a room at Toronto's Guvernment Entertainment Complex. Peter Hayes of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club has just come off stage. It's 1am and he has run into some musician friends - but also has a phone interview to New Zealand scheduled. Now most people at this point - weary, slightly slurry of voice from whatever - might ignore... > Read more

SALMONELLA DUB INTERVIEWED (2003): This touring life

1 Oct 2003  |  7 min read

For two guys who have done 27 interviews back-to-back in Sydney, arrived in Auckland at midnight and got up early for a Mike Hosking interview on Breakfast, Tiki Taane and Andrew Penman are surprisingly chipper. Taane is playing a Tony Hawk skateboard game on a laptop, and Penman is looking through a scattering of CDs, vinyl and posters on the coffee table of this suite in the upmarket... > Read more

JACK WHITE INTERVIEWED (2003): The heat on the rising son

10 Sep 2003  |  6 min read

As a measure of how mighty or mundane Jack White's life has become, consider this: It made news in Hollywood gossip magazines that he had grown a moustache. Now for him, that's either great fame or a great pain. No two guesses needed about what he thinks. The man who is one half of the White Stripes with Meg White -- his sister or ex-wife, believe what you will -- and largely... > Read more

The Air Near My Fingers

COUNT DUBULAH INTERVIEWED (2003): Music from the Temple

26 May 2003  |  3 min read

Few bands were as exciting, but as irritating, for world music purists as London's Transglobal Underground, who emerged at the start of the Nineties with clubland hit Templehead. A meltdown of big-beat dancefloor, Indian instruments and rock guitars, funky bass and the voice of Egyptian singer Natacha Atlas, TGU had their roots in the tiny basement room of Nation Records in central... > Read more

MICHAEL BUBLE INTERVIEWED (2003): From Sinatra to Queen

15 Feb 2003  |  6 min read

The invitation for dinner-hour drinks and a show in an Auckland hotel ballroom by Michael Buble was clear: dress to impress. Some did, but for many a denim jacket or T-shirt apparently fitted the bill. It can be hard to convince Kiwis some things are worth a little effort. And Canadian singer Buble - pronounced Boob-lay - was well worth it. The singer who locates his heart... > Read more

BRYAN ADAMS INTERVIEWED (2003): Lights, camera, sing . . .

30 Jan 2003  |  6 min read

It's below 40C and Bryan Adams is heading to the improbably named Chicoutimi, 200km north of Quebec, for a gig. It's only a 5000-seater and for someone who has played stadium shows for more than 100,000 this seems a small deal. He laughs and admits it isn't premier-league stuff, but the cost of touring means he has to pepper in a few other shows around the main ones, in this case dates... > Read more

DUBIOUS BROTHERS INTERVIEWED (2002): Hip-hop through a prism

20 Aug 2002  |  5 min read

Pinang in Malaysia, about 1998, was the last time. "Some dude tried to stab me with a meat cleaver. After that I thought, 'Well, no one's going to walk up to me in New Zealand and try to kill me with a meat cleaver'. So I came home. Although lately ... " Taina Keelan pauses. It's been quite a time for headlining homicides, and maybe playing music in bars around Southeast Asia... > Read more

OPETAIA FOA'I OF TE VAKA INTERVIEWED (2002): World famous, except in New Zealand

31 Jul 2002  |  7 min read

From the semi-rural side street, the home of Opetaia and Julie Foa'i in Laingholm is unremarkable other than for its size. It sprawls across the property and boasts a high A-frame, but other than that you would drive past without a second glance. However, this is the spiritual home and business centre of Te Vaka, Auckland's pan-Polynesian group whose celebratory and exotic... > Read more