The Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire

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THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Ken Matsutani of Marble Sheep

11 Jan 2013  |  3 min read

Okay, a rather different series of answers here because obviously Ken's first language isn't English and he had to run most of this through some kind of English-Japanese translation machine. But here the mainman behind Tokyo's cosmic space-rock outfit Marble Sheep – which he has helmed since the late Eighties – answers (most of) our Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire in... > Read more

Mana

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Ryan Munroe from Band of Horses

10 Jan 2013  |  3 min read

Band of Horses are an American group which a select but growing audience in New Zealand has embraced, largely on the strength of them touring here early (earlyish) in their career . . . and then coming back. And they make great records: Their Cease to Begin was in our 2007 "best of Elsewhere" list, their follow-up Infinite Arms was equally acclaimed in these pages (and Grammy... > Read more

A Little Biblical

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Mike Noga

25 Dec 2012  |  4 min read

Mike Noga is a singer-songwriter. Mike Noga is a drummer. Mike Noga is a tour manager. Yes, the drummer for Australia's noisy rock outfit the Drones has released a fine and slightly twisted solo album The Balladeer Hunter under his own name (think about the title, it's not The Ballad Hunter, but hunting the singer of ballads) and as a result he's having to organise his own solo shows.... > Read more

The Cold Year

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Spyros Charmanis

21 Dec 2012  |  3 min read  |  1

Elsewhere is frequently approached by musicians from all over the planet to review their work and perhaps interview them. But prog-rock maestro Syros Charmanis was the first from Greece and, given the poor nature of his country's economy and that he did a self-made and self-produced concept album, we were keen to hear what he was up to. That album Wound is an impressive piece of work (it is... > Read more

Our Time Expires

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Danny McCrum

5 Dec 2012  |  3 min read

New Zealand's Danny McCrum is one of those serial musicians: it's just what he does and he keeps on doing it. And at Elsewhere that is an admirable quality, especially when -- if like McCrum -- you can craft a good song with an intelligent lyric and deliver like you mean it. McCrum has done that with great consistency -- although when his album Awake and Restless came along in 2007 these... > Read more

Monday

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: SJD

3 Dec 2012  |  3 min read

With his new all-electronic album Elastic Wasteland picking up unanimously favourable reviews, it is timely to look back on the career of Sean James Donnelly, aka SJD. Elastic Wasteland -- which is far from that, it is a nuanced and rich tapestry of sound, see here -- is Donnelly's sixth album and follows such diverse and mature collections as Lost Soul Music, Southern Lights, Songs from a... > Read more

On the Driveway

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Plum Green

26 Nov 2012  |  3 min read

There is still a thrill in putting on an album by a hitherto unknown name and being taken aback. That's exactly how many might feel when they listen to Rushes, the debut albm by New Zealand's Plum Green. She has a fire inside, a way with a lyric which can twist up imagery and she isn't afraid to get raw. The album is reviewed here, and a little of her backstory is there too. But because... > Read more

Wait Here

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Delaney Davidson and Marlon Williams

5 Nov 2012  |  4 min read

On paper Delaney Davidson and Marlon Williams (the latter of Unfaithful Ways) have very divergent taste as you can see below, but put them together in a recording studio for their Sad But True album and something unique happens. The album – on the newly established Lyttelton Records label – is subtitled “the secret history of country music songwriting” and... > Read more

Bloodletter

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Neill Fraser of Villainy

29 Oct 2012  |  3 min read

Auckland alt.rock band Villainy scored a major coup for the cover of their debut album Mode Set Clear -- see below -- they had the famous Storm Thorgerson (renown for his Pink Floyd album artwork) design it. And how did that come about? They just asked. The contents however are at some distance from Floyd's tripped out moods. Villainy deliver a very focused fire-storm of tough-minded... > Read more

Gather Yourselves

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Trevor Reekie and Tom Ludvigson of Trip to the Moon

25 Oct 2012  |  4 min read

Jeez, where to begin with these two? The pocket edition story of Trevor Reekie would mention he spent time in the UK in the Seventies, back in New Zealand in the Eighties he played guitar in and produced the innovative electro-pop outfit Car Crash Set, helmed Stunn then Reaction Records (producing the Mockers aong others), founded his own Pagan Records which gave a first start to... > Read more

The Landscape Listens

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Dave McArtney of Hello Sailor

15 Oct 2012  |  3 min read

So where do we start with Dave McArtney? Well, with Hello Sailor of course which he co-founded in the Seventies, help take to great heights and some darks depths, wrote wonderful songs for and so on. Then there was his career with Pink Flamingos . . . But Sailor never really went away and just last year they were inaugurated into New Zealand's music Hall of Fame. And now there is a... > Read more

Bric A Brac Shop

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Matthew Pickering

1 Oct 2012  |  3 min read

Wellington's Matthew Pickering is probably very glad to be going out on the road for a month in support of his third album Up at the Bunkers (see dates below). His day job is as the editor of Hansard in New Zealand's parliament, the aural record of what has been said in the House. Pickering is an unashamed folkie whose weapons are acoustic guitar, piano, banjo Ukulele and such. On the... > Read more

Fumble for Change

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Shane Warbrooke of the Bemsha Swing

1 Oct 2012  |  3 min read

The Bemsha Swing album Against Friends and Lovers arrived unannounced but any band which names itself after a Thelonious Monk tune is going to catch Elsewhere's ears. And this duo of Shane and Andrew from Auckland not only catch ears but sear them with grisly guitar noise which is exciting in its intensity (see review here). Not quite what Mr Monk had in mind but . . . However as you... > Read more

Coherence

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Stix Zadinia of Steel Panther

27 Sep 2012  |  2 min read

If KISS were every anime-loving teenage Japanese boy's idea of a rock band, then California's Steel Panther are every glam metal fan's idea of a cliche. And Steel Panther revel in it. Formed a decade ago, they began by playing hair-metal covers as Metal Shop, morphed into Steel Panther (claiming they formed in the Eighties but had been ignored at the time) and began playing originals which... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Dave Rowlands of Clap Clap Riot

24 Sep 2012  |  2 min read

Clap Clap Riot's debut album Counting Spins registered under that "long overdue" category. But when it came out a few months back it went straight into our Favourite Five Recent CDs page after a week for its smart combination of taut rock, sophisticated power pop manoeuvres and a slightly weary, over-it attitude in places. It was as if they had not just assimilated some... > Read more

Growing Up

THE ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: University of Auckland songwriter winner Sam Springett

21 Sep 2012  |  3 min read  |  1

Every year many of the students in Auckland University's popular music course enter a Songwriter of the Year competition in which they perform their original songs backed by a professional band (and often with some fellow students pitching in). This year's final was at the Raye Freedman Arts Centre on Thursday Sept 20 and Elsewhere thought we should throw the same questionnaire at the... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Francesca Mountfort (aka Nervous Doll Dancing)

17 Sep 2012  |  2 min read

As Nervous Doll Dancing, Francesca Mountfort is cutting a unique path for herself. Formerly of Wellington but now Melbourne-based, the cellist and composer graduated from Victoria University a decade ago and has explored electronics, ambient music, classical of course, and . . . puppetry? Yep, in 2003 she won a NZ Fringe Festival award for her multi-media show which included dance, film and... > Read more

Sneaky

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Kasey Chambers

14 Sep 2012  |  2 min read

Award-winning Australian singer-songwriter and alt.country star Kasey Chambers has long been an Elsewhere favourite for her astute lyrics and passionate delivery, and her earthy sense of humour in person. With her husband Shane Nicholson -- and often with her singer-songwriter dad Bill on hand (interviewed here) -- she has presented some of the most enduring country music of the past... > Read more

Kasey Chambers and Shane Nicholson

THE ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: APRA Silver Scroll winner 2012 Stephanie Brown

14 Sep 2012  |  7 min read

The annual APRA Silver Scroll award acknowledges excellence in songwriting, so at Elsewhere we modified our Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire and tailored it to be specifically about the craft of songwriting for this year's five finalists. Here is the winner, Brooklyn-based Stephanie Brown for her song Everything to Me which she performs as Lips. The first song which really affected you... > Read more

Everything to Me

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Ray Woolf

10 Sep 2012  |  3 min read

Ray Woolf has had a long and diverse career in New Zealand show business, half a century of it in fact from the time he was a young rock'n'roller, a regular on Sixties television shows such as Happen Inn as a sharply dressed pop singer, then filling out the Seventies in cabaret, hosting his own television series, later exercising a few jazz chops with the Rodger Fox Big Band . . . and most... > Read more

Little Things That Happen (1967 previously unreleased)