Music at Elsewhere

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Alan Brown: Composure (

12 Feb 2018  |  <1 min read

This very welcome release is another installment from improvised ambient sessions recorded on a Steinway by pianist Brown in the concert chamber of the Auckland Town Hall in August 2014. The first pieces released from that day appeared as Silent Observer in 2015 and at the time Elsewhere had very positive things to say, among them that we'd like to hear more from those hours of... > Read more


The Wild Kindness: Happy Now (all main digital outlets)

12 Feb 2018  |  1 min read

When singer-guitarist Mike Alexis from the four-piece San Francisco band The Wild Kindness got in touch about this, his band's debut album, he freely acknowledged that Sneaky Feelings and other bands associated with the “Dunedin Sound” were a profound influence . . . and through a search of those names he'd come across Elsewhere. Perhaps if he hadn't mentioned those... > Read more

Trace Yr Veins

Liminanas: Shadow People (Because/Southbound)

5 Feb 2018  |  <1 min read  |  1

This duo from Perpignan in Southern France near the Spanish border impressed with their previous Malamore in 2016 and now, on their fifth album, they again bring a kind of French ennui-cum-menace in songs midwifed by Brian Jonestown Massacre's Anton Newcombe in his Berlin studio. Which means in places there are shivers of his neo-psychedelic style in the archetypal and distinctive... > Read more

Le premier jour

The Price of Fish: The Price of Fish (

5 Feb 2018  |  1 min read  |  1

The hub of this group are Rob Sinclair and David Bowater who appeared at Elsewhere previously when Bowater's label reissued the 3 Voices album from the early Eighties, like this an album featuring the two of them and a roll call of accomplished, sympathetic guests. If 3 Voices – one of many avant-garde and innovative albums of the era, most of which have... > Read more

Keeper of Your Heart

Charcoal Burners: Charcoal Burners (Charcoal Records)

5 Feb 2018  |  1 min read

Charcoal Burners out of Dunedin are at core singers/multi-instrumentalists Andrew Spittle and Shane Gilchrist (both of whom have prior form) plus guests like pedal steel guitarist John Eugenes on the tension-release folk-rock of Chance, violin player Flora Knight (of The Eastern), drummer Steve Cournane (on the final piece Mid-Flight Man) and backing singer Molly Devine. But the nub of... > Read more

Elevator Shaft

Jas Josland: See What You Did There (bandcamp/iTunes etc)

1 Feb 2018  |  1 min read

The opening bracket of songs here by newcomer and world traveller Josland are very much in the frame of buzzing and catchy indie guitar-driven pop-rock. This debut album was recorded in Lyttelton by the estimable Ben Edwards and early up harks back to a point between the Breeders, shoegaze and elevating, hook-filled power-pop of the Eighties. If you haven't heard of her... > Read more


Arran Fagan: Weight of Time (soundcloud)

29 Jan 2018  |  1 min read

Portland remains the home of an acoustic, often downbeat singer-songwriter tradition some 15 years after the death of Elliott Smith who made his name and reputation there before moving into a larger and more damaging world. Singer-guitarist Arran Fagan, here three albums into a career, offers deeply personal observations in songs of depth – and sometimes an elegant simplicity... > Read more

The Well

Circuit Des Yeux: Reaching for Indigo (Drag City)

27 Jan 2018  |  1 min read

If we were brutally honest we'd say that most albums don't break new ground. They simply conform to genre tropes, be they in, hard rock, trip-hop, r'n'b or whatever. Artists seldom step beyond the genre or style they are identified with – so few you can almost list them: Bowie, Bjork, for a while U2, Radiohead, Kate Bush etc – and it is an even more rare album... > Read more

Falling Blonde

Various Artists: How is the Air Up There? (Frenzy/RPM)

26 Jan 2018  |  3 min read

Given how assiduously Grant Gillanders has been compiling New Zealand pop and rock from the Sixties – at least a dozen, probably closer to two, CDs – you'd think the well would be running dry. But this superbly packaged three CD set subtitled “80 Mod, Soul, R'N'B & Freakbeat Nuggets From Down Under” manages to include a couple of dozen tracks which haven't... > Read more

No More Now by the Smoke

Khruangbin: Con Todo El Mundo (Night Time Stories/Southbound)

26 Jan 2018  |  <1 min read

In very late 2015 Elsewhere shone the spotlight on the hypnotic, summery and almost wistfully psychedelic debut album – which rejoiced under the title The Universe Smiles Upon You – by this trio originally out of Texas. Something in those wide open spaces combined with the ambience of a beach in Thailand and gentle wafts of soul-funk made for a delightful opening... > Read more

August 10

Salad Boys: This is Glue (Trouble in Mind/Southbound)

26 Jan 2018  |  <1 min read

When Elsewhere reviewed the debut album Metalmania by this Christchurch band helmed by Joe Sampson we felt obliged to reference early Flying Nun bands like the Clean, because they certainly did. This time out however things turn blacker and harder in places, and they get away a terrific power pop-cum-hard rock droning opener Blown Up which immediately hooks you in. Later Psyche... > Read more

Right Time

Tune-Yards: I Can Feel You Creep Into My Private Life (4AD/Rhythmethod)

22 Jan 2018  |  1 min read

At some indiscernible moment in time (possibly in the early Seventies when the antennae were high) someone posited the notion that “the personal is political”. And a generation prepared to believe any slogan embraced it. And its converse position. The political is personal? Yep. Because that seems more true in the US at this moment than in era since . . . Well,... > Read more

Heart Attack

Gun Outfit: Out of Range (Paradise of Bachelors/Southbound)

20 Jan 2018  |  <1 min read

The bleached image of Monument Valley on the cover of this fifth album by a now LA-based five-piece gives you the physical and metaphorical reference for their spacious, slightlydelic desert rock of jangle'n'slide guitars, dusty vocals from Dylan Sharp and the keening folk sound of Carrie Keith, the deep mythology of literature considered on peyote perhaps . . . There is something of... > Read more

Sally Rose

IN BRIEF: A quick overview of some recent international releases

19 Jan 2018  |  2 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. .    The Selecter: Daylight (DMF/Southbound) One of the great bands of the 2-Tone era and with... > Read more

Noah Aire: Shine Brightest in the Dark (Distinction)

19 Jan 2018  |  <1 min read

Nigerian singer-writer and engineer/mixer here steps out with slightly dark and brooding “mixtape” debut album which however manages to bring together electro-pop, serious soul, synth-pop and trip-hop into a very listenable amalgam. He describes it as opening with a more chaotic and angry feel which morphs into a more confident tone . . . and certainly by the brittle... > Read more

U Don't Know My Story

Van Morrison: Versatile (Caroline)

18 Jan 2018  |  1 min read

Every couple of years Van Morrison delivers a new album and Elsewhere tunes in just to hear what he is up to. Usually it is looking back in the company of an excellent band and the material touches on r'n'b and jazz with a blues edge. Some of the albums are good, a few excellent and many – like this one of jazz standards and some originals – just pass by enjoyably but... > Read more

Start All Over Again

Bruce Cockburn: Bone on Bone (True North Records/Southbound)

15 Jan 2018  |  1 min read  |  1

In an amusing Facebook post last year someone noted that this great Canadian singer-songwriter and classy guitarist hadn't come back to New Zealand since I wrote a somewhat unfavourable review of his late Eighties concert at the Powerstation. That rather over-estimated the power of the press but did remind me of how much I had championed him (album reviews and a massive front page... > Read more

False River

ONE WE MISSED: Modern Studies: Swell to Great (Fire)

15 Jan 2018  |  <1 min read

As a measure of how release schedules mean very little these days, this debut album by this Scottish-cum-Lancashire band came out via bandcamp (and presumably the tiny Toad Records label) in September 2016 and picked up a top 20 best-of-the-year slot in Mojo magazine's annual countback. It was subsequently reissued by Fire Records late last year . . . and deservedly so, although it... > Read more

The Sea Horizon

Pete International Airport: Safer With Wolves (A Recordings/Southbound)

15 Jan 2018  |  <1 min read

The “Pete” here is singer/guitarist/bassist Peter Holmstrom, co-founder of the Dandy Warhols who takes his nom-de-disque from an old Dandy's track (on their '96 album The Dandy Warhols Come Down) and it appears on the A Recordings label out of Berlin run by Brian Jonestown Massacre's enormously prolific Anton Newcombe. Like some of Newcombe's work in recent years,... > Read more

Happens All the Time

Alex Lipinski: Alex (A Recordings/Southbound)

15 Jan 2018  |  <1 min read

And also out of Anton Newcombe's Berlin studio comes this British fish of a very different colour, an acoustic throwback to folk-rockabilly, angry young Dylan and across to the darker edges of recent fellow travellers like Jake Bugg (you can hear why Bugg-fan Noel Gallagher likes Lipinski) and Pete Molinari. Recorded in just six hours apparently with Lipinski on an old acoustic... > Read more

Sophie's Song