The Log Cabin

Also known as:

Location: 448 Madras Street, St Albans

Current Status: No longer a venue

Active as a live music venue: 2000’s – 2010’s

Bar Manager: –

Bookings:

Website:

Capacity: –

Old and dilapidated wooden villa on Madras Street that functioned as a rather excellent venue for house parties and all-age events for a few years prior to the Canterbury Earthquakes in 2010 / 2011.

Occupied by a variety of individuals connected to Christchurch live music, student radio (RDU) and all-ages (Red Panda) scenes, the house was opened up for day time shows on the front-lawn or in the living room.

Chris Young of the Insurgents performing outside at the Log Cabin

The occupants lived through the 2010 / 2011 Canterbury Earthquakes, but eventually moved out – the owners then discovering how extensively damaged the building was – though the original building still stands as of 2017.

Former tenant, Red Panda member and RDU Sheep Technique DJ Eamonn Marra provided a (presumed) complete list of the acts that played the Log Cabin over the years:

  • Crackhouse 5
  • Ghostwork
  • Sleepy Age
  • (classic) Insurgents
  • The Hatemen
  • Valdera
  • Jeffrey and Jack Lewis
  • Wet Wings
  • Canterbury Rams
  • Body 125
  • Hypercolour
  • Thrill Collins
  • Tono and the Finance Company
  • Capsul
  • Delaney Davidson
  • Jack Hooker

History

 

Contact Details

Links

Crime Front

Also known as:

Location: 172 Kilmore Street, Central Christchurch

Current Status: Demolished post-earthquake

Active as a live music venue: 2000’s – 2015

Bar Manager: –

Bookings:

Website:

Capacity: –

A decrepit old wooden villa on Kilmore Street occupied primarily by Michael Boulden (who used the space as a recording studio / video editing office) and professional musician Simon Nunn, whilst other musicians (including The Pickups /  Terror of the Deeps William Daymond) came and went over the years – taking advantage of the 6 rooms and ridiculously cheap $200 rent.

Both Boulden and Nunn have strong connections to the Christchurch live music scene – particularly the Stefan van Soest Hit Machine (of which Nunn has been a long-time member), and as such hosted a large number of house parties over the years.

One room was set up as a practice space, so there was always an array of amplifiers and a drum kit available, and parties would often stretch far in to the early hours, particularly after the earthquake impacted neighbors gradually moved out.

In the early 2010’s, Boulden lent keyboards to Nunns drums, guitar and vocals, forming the duo Bergerac – an eclectic studio creation, forming the pseudo-label Crime Front Kilmore to release the material.

The house was heavily damaged in the Canterbury Earthquakes, however it was still habitable for quite a period after, until finally being marked for demolition in 2015.

History

Contact Details

Links

The Pickups

Biography

Long-running Christchurch trio (originally a duo under the name the Twin Towers… then the Distractions, finally settling on the Pickups in October 2003) fronted by William Daymond, with Isaac Mawson and Jared Kelly.

A fixture of the Christchurch and then Wellington live scenes for the best part of a decade before releasing their aptly titled debut/retrospective ‘Finally… The Pickups’ in 2010. Mawson’s then-girlfriend Bri Yaakoup (later of Frase + Bri) played keyboards for a period in 2005-2006

Taking elements of classic Flying Nun acts like the Chills and the Clean, psychedelic West Coast pop-rock and the free-wheeling fun of the Monkees and the Beach Boys as their primary inspirations.

Daymond and Mawson both moved to Wellington – Daymond is a member of both the Axemen and Terror of the Deep, whilst Jared Kelly has been a member of Palace of Wisdom and Coal.

Members

  • William Daymond (Guitar/Vocals, 2002-2010)
  • Isaac Mawson (Drums, 2002-2010)
  • Jared Kelly (Bass, 2004-2010)
  • Bri Yaakoup (Keyboards, 2005-2006)

Discography

  • Finally… The Pickups (2010 Worship the Owl 001)

Links

Cassels and Son’s The Brewery

Also known as: The Brewery, The Tannery

Location: The Tannery, 3 Garlands Road, Woolston

Current Status: Running as a bar and restaurant with Blue Smoke next door

Active as a live music venue: 2011 – 2015

Bar Manager: –

Bookings: –

Website: –

Capacity:

Now a restaurant and bar and originally constructed as a craft brewery, the Brewery functioned as a live music venue at a time when there were few operating in Christchurch – immediately after the February 2011 earthquakes.

A large, narrow venue with good food and a fair amount of outside seating, the Brewery has also been a popular spot for regular quiz nights and other events.

There wasn’t any stage to speak off, just an area near the Western entrance to the venue with a small PA and a mixing desk near by. As a result (and the fact the venue functioned mostly as a restaurant), shows were fairly sedate and low-key.

Mikey Summerfield playing a solo set at the Brewery

With Blue Smoke replacing Gustav’s next door in 2015, it appears that the Brewery no longer operates as a live music venue.

History

1874: Building constructed as part of the Woolston tannery complex.

1994: Alasdair Cassel purchases tannery site.

2009: Alasdair Cassel opens the Cassel and Sons Brewery as part of his new retail complex on the old Tannery site, brewing beer and distributing to local outlets.

2010/11: After the Canterbury Earthquakes, the Brewery re-opens as a venue.

2013: Gustav’s Kitchen and Wine Bar re-opens as a new venue within the Tannery site.

2015: Gustav’s becomes Blue Smoke, now a bar and live music venue, The Brewery no longer seems to be a live venue.

Contact Details

  • Cassels and Son’s The Brewery
  • 3 Garlands Road, Woolston, Christchurch

Links

https://casselsbrewery.co.nz/ [Main Venue Website]

https://www.facebook.com/casselsandsons.thebrewery [Facebook]

https://www.instagram.com/casselsbrewery/ [Instagram]

Al’s Bar

Also known as:

Location: 31 Dundas Street, Central Christchurch

Current Status: Demolished post-earthquake, replaced by commercial buildings

Active as a live music venue: 2004 – 2011

Bar Manager: Al Park

Bookings:

Website:

Capacity: –

Mid-sized venue on the South side of Central Christchurch operated by long-time fixture of the Christchurch music scene – Al Park. Al’s Bar had (at one point) two stages at opposite ends of the venue and a small outside courtyard.

Al’s Bar exterior, taken from Al’s Bar facebook

This was a popular venue up until the Canterbury Earthquakes of 2010 / 2011, with touring bands, popular local acts, and even double-header shows by A Low Hum using the ample space. Legendary US grunge act the Melvins played Al’s on February 21st 2011, the day prior to the fatal earthquake which eventually claimed the venue itself. Trouble seemed to follow the group, as immediately after Christchurch they traveled to Tokyo, just before the Japanese earthquake of 2011 struck.

Along with Al Park, sound-guy Dave Mitchell was usually on-hand, and the bar was known among local performers for being a bit of a struggle when it came to asking entry fees – thanks to a large volume of ‘regulars’ that insisted their connection to Al got them free entry!

The venue had some nice features, with a good not-too-expensive bar, polite bar staff, a decent, high-powered PA system with great monitors and stage sound, and a projection screen above the larger stage, which made for some pretty great photos:

Mike Ellis of the Insurgents at Al’s Bar

History

2004: Opened as a live music venue’

2010: Damaged in 2010 Earthquakes, but re-opens soon after’

2011: Earthquakes permanently close the venue.

Contact Details

Links

All Plastics

Also known as:

Location: 430 Tuam Street, Philipstown.

Current Status: No longer a venue/studio.

Active as a live music venue: 2004 – 2012

Bar Manager: –

Bookings:

Website:

A former plastic manufacturing business located in industrial Philipstown, All Plastics was originally leased by Nick O’Keefe of the Undercurrents some time in the 2000’s. O’Keefe, along with his band members (which included local sound-men Marcus Winstanley and Mikey Summerfield, plus Phantom Billstickers’ Jamey Holloway) began using the site as a recording studio and practice space.

Anthony Drenthe playing inside All Palstics in 2012

O’Keefe eventually moved out of the premise, with Summerfield the prime occupant for a period – during this time more and more groups started using both the recording and practice facilities.

John Harris and Ben Dodd performing outside All Plastics in 2012

 

 

Several house-party type shows were put on both inside and outside the studio space, before the last occupant (Rhett Copland of Doctors etc) left around 2013.

History

2004: Nick O’Keefe of the Undercurrents rents the former plastics factory at 430 Tuam Street, starting construction of a home studio to record his groups material.

2007: Mikey Summerfield (also of the Undercurrents) moves in, becoming the main occupant. More bands begin using the practice and recording space, and subsequently house parties with live music are held at the site.

2012: Rhett Copland (the last occupant) moves out.

Contact Details

Links

Blue Smoke

Also known as: Gustav’s

Location: The Tannery, 3 Garlands Road, Woolston

Current Status: Running!

Active as a live music venue: 2015 –

Bar Manager: –

Bookings: bluesmokebookings@casselsbrewery.co.nz

Website: http://bluesmoke.co.nz

Capacity: 200

Lovely live music venue that replaced Gustav’s Kitchen and Wine Bar within the Tannery complex in 2015. Adjoined to the Tannery complex and next to the Cassels and Son’s The Brewery, Blue Smoke is a reasonably-sized traditional bar with a nice all-wood interior, plus some outside seating.

Regularly holds live music events (taking over from The Brewery, which now appears to function mostly as a bar and restaurant) and has hosted some great events in its short history, including most notable Fred and Toody Cole of legendary US underground group Dead Moon in December 2016.

History

1874: Building constructed as part of the Woolston tannery complex.

1994: Alasdair Cassel purchases tannery site.

2009: Alasdair Cassel opens the Cassel and Sons Brewery as part of his new retail complex on the old Tannery site, brewing beer and distributing to local outlets.

2010/11: After the Canterbury Earthquakes, the Brewery re-opens as a venue.

2013: Gustav’s Kitchen and Wine Bar re-opens as a new venue within the Tannery site.

2015: Gustav’s becomes Blue Smoke, now a bar and live music venue.

Contact Details

  • Blue Smoke
  • 3 Garlands Road, Woolston, Christchurch

Links

http://bluesmoke.co.nz [Main Venue Website]

https://www.facebook.com/bluesmokemusic/ [Facebook]

https://www.instagram.com/blue_smoke_music_bar/ [Instagram]

Dux de Lux

Also known as: Llanmaes, Canterbury College Student Association

Location: 41 Hereford Street, Central Christchurch

Current Status: In Repair

Active as a live music venue: 1978 – February 2011

Bar Manager: Ross Herrick

Bookings:

Website:

Capacity: –

Long-running Christchurch live-music venue based out of the Christchurch Art Center as part of a multi-use building, along with a vegetarian restaurant and an upstairs bar / private venue and office spaces.

The Dux was notable on a few fronts:

Live shows at the Dux were almost always free, a tradition they kept going through-out the venues 30 year history. The Dux was actually a very good spot to see up and coming music acts too – due to connections to student radio station RDU (now a private enterprise), regular ‘Battle of the Bands’ nights played out, with heavily biased judges promoting those groups that fit in to the current indie / underground trends.

Due to the Dux’s restaurant connection the pub food on offer was always terrific – the best nacho’s and wedges in town for many a year. This also coincided with excellent international food stall offers during the weekend, as the Art Center’s food trucks were just a few meters away from the Dux’s outdoor seating. A 3rd crown in their culinary jewel was the excellent locally brewed beverages on tap –  the Dux’s own Ginger Tom alcoholic ginger beer was a particular favorite.

The venue itself was always bustling – due to the combination of free entry, close-proximity to a healthy, bustling market located within a tourist attraction in its own right (the Art Center complex), and the venues word-of-mouth reputation with young international travelers. Booking agent / bar manager Ross Herrick was top notch and made setting up shows there a breeze; the Dux always had great advertising, and the likes of gear setup and soundcheck were always a breeze.

Fairly small and L-Shaped, it was fairly easy to make the place look packed out – though it had a reasonable maximum capacity (due to there being 3 easily accessible exits), which often led to people hanging out the doors on warm evenings. A prime spot for watching bands was sitting to each side of the stage under the windows that ran the length of the venue, or up front on the (usually freshly cleaned) carpet in front of the stage.

The PA was reasonably powerful and had great sound both from the audience and the stage – large main speakers that hung from the ceiling each side of the stage, plus a trio of feedback wedges up front and beside the drum-riser. The sound-desk was located next to the bar opposite the stage, and made for easy communication during sets – it was also convenient when trying to get drinks to the band! Also notable was the lighting system – full colour gels flanked each side of the stage, giving the room excellent ambiance and made for terrific live music photos.

A variety of bands played the main venue over the years, from young and unremembered to some of New Zealand more notable acts – with quite a few international groups over the years too. When the 2nd large earthquake struck in February 2011, the Dux de Lux was one of the most iconic parts of Christchurch that was lost. Though 2 bars (and a restaurant) using the Dux name have sprung up in recent years, none has come close to the feeling of the original.

History

1872: Canterbury College (which would eventually eventually become Canterbury University) is formed, with premise bounded by Worcester, Rolleston, Hereford and Montreal Streets.

1883: The Dux De Lux’s building is constructed as a private residence for John Lewis, given the Welsh name Llanmaes.

1894: Canterbury University Students Association is formed.

1921: The Students Association set aside a tea-room within Llanmaes.

1926: The Students Association purchase Llanmaes – the last privately owned building within the block, and over the next few years the site is redeveloped in a Gothic style and extended, eventually opening as the Student Union in 1929.

1954: A fire damaged much of the interior, over the next two years the site was repaired with a dining room and 3 meeting rooms added.

1978: Canterbury University is now permanently at their larger Riccarton campus, and the Dux de Lux is born as a bar, live music venue and restaurant.

2010/2011: Two major earthquakes cause significant damage, closing the Dux de Lux and the Art Center in its entirety.

Contact Details

  • Dux De Lux
  • 41 Hereford Street, Central Christchurch, New Zealand
  • Closed Permanently

Links

The Feelups

Biography

3-piece garage-rock group comprised of Palace of Wisdom and Ruling Elite duo Andrew ‘Ox’ O’Connell (vocals) and Chris Andrews (drums) along with Connie Benson (guitar). Made their debut in June 2017 with a short set at the newly re-opened Hellfire Club (formerly El Santo Porteno and originally the British Hotel).

Members

  • Andrew ‘Ox’ O’Connell (vocals, 2017-)
  • Connie Benson (guitar, 2017-)
  • Chris Andrews (drums, 2017-)

Discography

Links

The Ruling Elite

Biography

Originally formed as a regularly jamming group comprised of Palace of Wisdom‘s Andrew ‘Ox’ O’Connell (vocals), first-time musician David Branton (guitar) and Crimefront Studio’s Mike Boulden (drums), the group eventually took on a steady line-up with the addition of 2nd guitarist (and O’Connell’s Palace of Wisdom band-mate) Chris Andrews, plus talented free-form drummer Rory Dalley.

This 4-piece line-up quickly recorded the debut ‘Modern Beauty Standard’ with Boulden’s production, and continued to regularly produce new material through 2016 and 2017.

Members

  • Andrew ‘Ox’ O’Connell (Vocals, 2015-)
  • David Branton (Guitar, 2015-)
  • Michael Boulden (Drums, 2015)
  • Chris Andrews (Guitar, 2015-)
  • Rory Dalley (Drums, 2015-)

Discography

  • Modern Beauty Standard (2016, Self-Released)

Links