Music at Elsewhere

Subscribe to my newsletter for weekly updates.

Oneohtrix Point Never: Good Time, original soundtrack (Warp/Border)

23 Oct 2017  |  1 min read

This electronica-cum-contemporary art music continues the association New York-based composer OPN (aka Daniel Lopatin to his parents) has had with movies. But this aurally scouring soundtrack won best of the year at the recent Cannes Film Festival so we should pay serious attention. And as a piece of brutal sound design, staggeringly abrasive electronica (he cites Tangerine Dream as... > Read more

The Pure and The Damned (ft Iggy Pop)

Bill Lake and the Right Mistake: As Is Where Is (Melrose)

20 Oct 2017  |  1 min read  |  1

If Bill Lake had done nothing else he would still be a hero in this happy household for his witheringly accurate Banana Dominion (about the Muldoon years) on the album 8 Duck Treasure by the Pelicans way back in '83. But of course Lake has done so much more: in the Seventies he was in Original Sin alongside Rick Bryant, there has been the Living Daylights, the long-running Windy City... > Read more

Juliet and Romeo

King Krule: The Ooz (XL/True Panther)

16 Oct 2017  |  2 min read

The previous album under Londoner Archy Marshall's King Krule moniker – and he goes by a bewildering array of noms de disque and personae too diffuse for us to worry about – was the fascinating and highly recommended 6 Feet Beneath the Moon released four years ago on his 19th birthday. He seemed a precocious if unfocused and wayward talent who was by turns a late night... > Read more

The Locomotive

Auaha: Te Pari o Auahatanga/The Flood of Inspiration (Te Aio)

16 Oct 2017  |  2 min read

One of the nominees at the recent Waiata Maori Music Awards in the Maori Traditional Album category, this immensely moving collection of waiata, taonga puoro and ambient noise from its sometimes in situ recording beside the Whanganui River (not long after it was designated a legal entity under the Treaty) was born of as much hardship as celebration. When that river flooded in one of... > Read more

E Moko E

RECOMMENDED REISSUE: Gil Scott-Heron; The Revolution Will Not Be Televised . . . Plus (Flying Dutchman/Border)

16 Oct 2017  |  1 min read

The late Gil Scott-Heron was a jazz poet whose work remains interesting and timeless because he directed his messages to his own people more so than to the white audience. His famous title track here Revolution – despite its period references which now make little sense – wasn't as many think a warning to the white establishment but to black folks who weren't going to... > Read more

Whitey on the Moon

Greg Fleming: Working Poor Country (all main digital platforms)

15 Oct 2017  |  2 min read

In a recent Facebook conversation I instigated, I questioned how little political comment there has been in New Zealand popular music. As expected, many people weighed in with particular songs . . . but my point was that these were largely one-offs. Committed and consistently socio-political songwriters are thin on the ground, although we immediately acknowledge early Herbs, Moana... > Read more

Move to the Side

Alargo: Primacy (Pacific Echoes)

12 Oct 2017  |  1 min read

Alargo are multi-instrumentalist/vocalist Kingsley Melhuish and keyboard/synth player Alan Brown, and both programmes loops. Brown has appeared at Elsewhere a number of times under his own name (and he did an Elsewhere Jazz Questionnaire in 2015), but most notably for his beautifully ambient-cum-understatement album Silent Observer. Melhuish – here on lots of things you... > Read more

Warning Signs

Liam Gallagher: As You Were (Warners)

9 Oct 2017  |  1 min read  |  1

Quite a few were dismissive of Liam Gallagher's previous post-Oasis incarnation in Beady Eye, but round this way their debut Different Gear Still Speeding and the slightly lesser follow-up BE were greeted with some pleasure for their widescreen guitar rock (Oasis in other words) and Liam's jibes at his brother Noel. They weren't great, but then again the final few Oasis albums were... > Read more

For What It's Worth

Chris Hillman: Bidin' My Time (Rounder/Southbound)

9 Oct 2017  |  1 min read

An inevitable pall of sadness hangs over this reflective collection by the former-Byrd/Burrito Brothers etc Chris Hillman. It was the final album the late Tom Petty produced, and he appears here – in an instrumental capacity – alongside a roll call of greats from Hillman's past: they include fellow Byrds David Crosby and Roger McGuinn; Heartbreakers keyboard player... > Read more

Such is the World That We Live In

Various Artists: Lovin' Mighty Fire (BGP/Border)

9 Oct 2017  |  1 min read

And this is why we still need CDs. Subtitled Nippon Funk Soul Disco 1973-1983, this enjoyable 14-song collection -- from the same source as these and this -- comes with a thorough liner note essay by Howard Williams who offers a fascinating cultural history of post-war Japan, the emerging technology and mostly the impact of black music there. A jazz writer Yuchi Shouichi quotes argues... > Read more

Banana, by Kay Ishiguro

IN BRIEF: A quick overview of some recent international releases

9 Oct 2017  |  3 min read

With so many CDs commanding and demanding attention Elsewhere will run this occasional column which scoops up releases by international artists, in much the same way as our SHORT CUTS column picks up New Zealand artists and Yasmin does with EPs. Comments will be brief. .   Various Artists: Erased Tapes Collection VIII (Erased Tapes/Southbound) Cool, another... > Read more

RECOMMENDED REISSUE: JD Blackfoot; The Song of Crazy Horse (Sisapa/Border)

9 Oct 2017  |  1 min read

One of the more rare, unusual and acclaimed albums from the early Seventies, The Song of Crazy Horse by American singer-songwriter Blackfoot has been in and out of availability, and the vinyl commands a pretty decent price on e-Bay. Blackfoot's full story is at his website here. But the shorthand is that after an impressive if not especially profitable early career in the US... > Read more

Comin' Down

The Horrors: V (Caroline/Universal)

2 Oct 2017  |  1 min read

Live at the 2010 Big Day Out, the Horrors were impressive as a rock band of the old style: black jeans, skinny legs, loud and full of familiar tropes which they delivered with affection and passion. Some of that translated onto their albums and now on their fifth they reset the direction a little, veering slightly away from their melange of garageband, heroic stadium krautrock and a... > Read more

Weighed Down

RECOMMENDED REISSUE: Golden Harvest; Golden Harvest (Frenzy/Key)

2 Oct 2017  |  <1 min read

With their glistening pop-rock sound deftly touched by disco and funk, the four Kaukau brothers and singer Karl Gordon delivered some of the most enjoyable music of their time . . . which was unfortunately far too short. They left behind just this excellent '78 album with the memorable songs I Need Your Love, Love is Everything and Mrs G plus a couple of singles -- and they are all on this... > Read more

Arthur Ahbez: Volume II (soundcloud/bandcamp etc)

29 Sep 2017  |  <1 min read

Elsewhere has long had an affection for slightlydelic and drone-based folk which comes with sitars and such. We remain unwavering in our enjoyment of the Incredible String Band and Shawn Phillips for example. So in that regard local singer-songwriter Arthur Ahbez - who we interviewed back in 2014 -- is one we are always going to find some pleasure in. Even more so than his... > Read more

Neil Young: Hitchhiker (Warners)

26 Sep 2017  |  1 min read

In a recent issue of Uncut, a diligent writer Tyler Wilcox looked at the “Lost Albums of Neil Young” and pieced together the track listings for nine albums Young recorded but never released, although most of the songs in one form or other turned up on other albums. One of the unreleased albums was entitled Hitchhiker, a 10-song solo collection recorded in a single session... > Read more

Give Me Strength

Neil Finn: Out of Silence (EMI)

18 Sep 2017  |  3 min read

Even if you don't much care for Neil Finn's music – and there might be one or two who don't – you can't help but admire how he has successfully negotiated (at perilously close to 60) the troubled waters of becoming a senior statesman in a pop-rock culture which has the Youth Audience as its default position. Finn has constantly pushed himself into subtle new directions... > Read more

Terrorise Me

The National: Sleep Well Beast (4AD)

14 Sep 2017  |  1 min read

On the fashionable foreshore in Copenhagen at a prime spot just around the corner from the busy Nyhavn tourist-magnet area is a cluster of up-market restaurants and bars in a beautiful building with views across the water. Among them is the Michelin-starred pair of Almanak and Studio. We mention this because they are co-owned by Aaron and Bryce Dessner of The National, a band... > Read more

Day I Die

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

11 Sep 2017  |  3 min read

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, in the same way it does IN BRIEF about international releases and Yasmin Brown does for EPs.... > Read more

IN BRIEF: A quick overview of some recent international releases

11 Sep 2017  |  3 min read

With so many CDs commanding and demanding attention Elsewhere will run this occasional column which scoops up releases by international artists, in much the same way as our SHORT CUTS column picks up New Zealand artists and Yasmin does with EPs. Comments will be brief. .   Graham Reynolds: A Scanner Darkly (Fire/Southbound) Elsewhere has frequently referenced Miklos... > Read more