Archives for posts with tag: Christchurch music

SaturationsHere’s an atypical track called “Run Electro” from a new album called “Saturations” by New Brighton, Christchurch musician Blair Parkes.

“Run Electro” is an attention-grabbing song, bursting with luminous colour and surging along on an insistent rumbling bass line with phased distorted organ swirls, like a kind a super-charged Stereolab on steroids.

It’s a bit of an odd one out on a curiously sequenced album which seems to morph from reflective guitar folk-pop at the start into more effect-driven shoegaze territory before exploring even deeper into electronic synth-pop.  It’s not the sort of album you can dip into for a quick listen here and there and come away with a sense of what it is all about. It rewards the full journey.

“Saturations” is a curiously timeless collection of songs. The first 4 songs of the songs could fit comfortably in the late 80s/ early 90s NZ/ Australian reflective guitar pop scene, while the second half of the album crackles with more electronic energy, sometimes reminiscent of UK synth-pop band Frazier Chorus.  Both halves of the album are bursting with fine songs.


Listening to this Blair Parkes album has sent me on a trip back to NZ pop underground of the late 1980s. Keen students of obscure Flying Nun Records releases may recognise Blair from All Fall Down (FN0989) and The Letter 5 (FN169).

Parkes’ blog post here on the All Fall Down years is also a fascinating insight into the life of a young musician playing in an obscure ‘2nd wave’ Flying Nun Records band in the mid to late 1980s in New Zealand.

As a bonus here’s the Bats-meets-Triffids styled perfection of All Fall Down’s “Black Gratten” from 1987:




Misfit Mod (video still from 'Cars' video by Ed Lust)

Misfit Mod (video still from ‘Cars’ video by Ed Lust)

Day 27 of the song-a-day-May NZ Music Month madness is a quiet & reflective slice of almost-emptiness called ‘Tribes’ from Misfit Mod.

Misfit Mod provided one of my favourite singles of 2013 with ‘Sugar C’ and I don’t think anyone does languid desolation quite as well as sometimes Christchurch musician Sarah Kelleher under the name Misfit Mod.

Yesterday was a heavy day and a realisation that sometimes just shutting up and listening is the best & most helpful thing you can do when friends are angry, fearful & hurting.

So, when I looked at what to feature for the next post, I found myself back here last night with Misfit Mod’s 2013 album ‘Islands & Islands’ and this song ‘Tribes’. Just sitting quietly listening intently to the distance and space and simplicity in this was just what was needed at that time.

If ‘Tribes’ is just a bit too minimal and beautifully exhausted for you, skip onto the next song ‘Valleys’ for something more traditional in minimalist electronic pop. Better still just download the whole album here and put it on repeat for the rest of the day/ week/ month/ eternity…