Categories
Venues

Creation

NOTE: This post probably contains quite a few errors and an inaccurate timeline – there is very little info online about old Christchurch venues, so I welcome all corrections and additions!

Also known as: Metro Cinemas

Location: 103-5 Worcester Street, Central Christchurch

Center map

Current Status: Demolished post-earthquake

Active as a live music venue: 2002 – 2006

Capacity: Around 300?

Excellent multi-use space established by the Therapeutic Arts Trust in 2000 – Ciaran Fox was originally involved before Adam Hayward joined the board in 2001 and took over directorship in 2002.

Exterior of Creation – from Kete Christchurch / Darren Schroeder

The entire compound was composed of a few parts which served quite a few purposes:

  • The main brick-lined hall-space, which retained the projection screen behind the stage – formerly the Metro Cinema. Run by Marcus Winstanley until 2005, with Joseph Veale taking over until Creation closed in 2006.
  • A foyer used as an office, ticket sales and retail gallery run by Cas Simonsen. The first floor functioned as a shop housing retailers like Kate Wyrd’s Wyrd Clothing store, and the top floor was a drop in and artist studio.
  • A separate building down-stairs was a concrete bunker used as a band practice space, Project Legit’s graffiti workshop (managed by Miriama McDonald from 2004 – 2006) and at one stage a small gallery .

From the very beginning Creation was an All-Ages friendly venue, hosting early shows for Out of Kilter and show-casing many of Christchurch’s up-and-coming bands.

Creation’s Tiny Bar – from Kete Christchurch / Darren Schroeder.

Though they did have a small bar for limited alcohol sales, the venue existed on government funding – housing the Artist Wage (until the Ministry of Social Development was disbanded in 2006), and as such was opened up for a wide variety of creative exploits. From live music and movie screenings (often with the Canterbury Film Society) to dance, art, and graffiti.

Carpark and entrance to the Metro Cinema which became Creation, from Kete Christchurch

Creation’s main venue was previously the cinema itself, and as such had a large screen behind the stage. The stage itself was massive – one of the biggest in Christchurch, with the PA system well to the sides and fold-back speakers lining the front.

The space was flanked with long curtains covering a brick interior and there was a sound-desk around 2/3rd’s of the way back from the stage. The venue usually had excellent sound – no surprise considering that over the course of the venues lifetime Joseph Veale and Marcus Winstanley (both excellent local sound guys) were the in-house managers.

Creation hosted a whole swag of live shows with varying degrees of success. I saw touring bands play to an empty hall (excellent Napier/Hamilton pop-hardcore group Amy Racecar and spazzy Auckland group Body Corporate), local groups absolutely pack the place out (Christchurch’s own spazz kings Leper Ballet), even a handful of international performers (The Mountain Goats, Lou Barlow, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy) with thoroughly mixed audiences.

The Renderers at Creation, 2004

One of my proudest moments was a show I put together at Creation back in 2004 – I’d become friends with Mary-Rose and Brian Crook of The Renderers and managed to persuade them to put on a show along with The Terminals – who Brian was still playing guitar for at the time.

Though I figured this was a momentous show, things took on an even greater magnitude when I got a call a couple days before the show –  Hamish Kilgour had heard about the show and politely asked if he could join the bill! Absolutely stunned me – plus it was a terrific gig.

Hamish Kilgour at Creation, 2004

Unfortunately Creation followed a similar pattern to most venues that are dependent on NZ funding – with the disbanding of the Ministry of Social Development in 2006, Creation struggled to maintain financial viability. Only half a decade after it was opened by Prime Minister Helen Clark, Christchurch’s best multi-faceted community space now had to close.

Thankfully Creation signaled the beginning of a new era in Christchurch live venues – paving the way for many subsequent venues and promoters (such as All-Ages group Red Panda) to get moving with their own shows.

History

  • 1986: The Metro Cinemas opens at 103 Worcester Street – one of 3 cinema’s within the same stretch of Worcester Street (along with the Mayfair and the Little Odeon).
  • 2002: Creation opens as a shared-used performance space, though the screen remains. The Christchurch Film Society continues to show films here.
  • 2006: Creation closes due to a lack of continued funding.
  • 2010 / 2011: Damaged in the Canterbury Earthquakes, eventually demolished to make way for a car park.

Links

Categories
Record Labels

A Low Hum

A Low Hum is the music journalising and tour production monolith of one Ian ‘Blink’ Jorgensen; who became a big part of the New Zealand independent music scene throughout the 2000’s with a never-ending array of tours, zines, cd releases and events – usually each of impeccible taste and quality, whilst still maintaining a DIY ethic.

Blinks’ zine’s expanded to include original EPs and then CD compilations, and eventually he was distributing full albums for bands as bonus CD’s. However in October 2007 Blink celebrated the arrival of his A Low Hum label complete with the release of Disasteradio‘s excellent Visions and the Enright House‘s A Maze and Amazement – two top-notch releases from artists that have been tied to Blinks’ various endeavours for some time.
Compilation Discography
picks in bold

  • Volume: Wellington Turns Down [2003]
  • A Low Hum CD1 [may 2004]
  • A Low Hum CD2 [june 2004]
  • A Low Hum CD3 [july 2004]
  • A Low Hum CD4 [august 2004]
  • A Low Hum CD5 [september 2004]
  • A Low Hum CD6 [october 2004]
  • A Low Hum CD7 [november 2004]
  • A Low Hum DVD1 [dec 2004]
  • A Low Hum CD8 [march 2005]
  • A Low Hum CD9 [march 2005]
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD1 w/ Xanadu‘s self-titled bonus album
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD2 w/ Dead Pan Rangers‘s self-titled bonus albumrn
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD3 w/ Dana Eclair‘s / Ghostplane‘s ‘The National Velvet EP’ and unrelease material bonus cdrn
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD4 w/ Disasteradio‘s ‘Synthtease’ bonus albumrn
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD5 w/ Urban Tramper’s ‘Best Of, So Far’ bonus album
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD6 w/ Looma‘s ‘III’ bonus album
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD7 w/ Ejector’s ‘Two Thousand and Three’ bonus albumrn
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD8 w/ Enright House‘s ‘Broken Hands EP’ bonus albumrn
  • A Low Hum Series 3: CD9 w/ Dark Beaks ‘Spill Your Heart’ bonus album
  • A Low Hum DVD2
  • A Low Hum DVD3
Categories
Record Labels

Arch Hill Recordings

Biography

Small Auckland-based independent label that sprung up out of Flying Nun Record’s corporate changes in the late 90’s and run by (former Superette bassist) Ben Howe to release material for his own band Fang, along with associated other musicians (fellow ex-Superette members Dave Mulcahy and Greta Anderson, and Jim Laing’s Lanky).

Characterized by having quirky pop moments (Pine released their debut in 2002 on the label) and a simple / flexible approach to recording, they’re a promising label to look out for.

In June 2004, Arch Hill Recordings announced that Kiwi music legend David Kilgour would be releasing his latest album (tentatively titled Frozen Orange) in September of the year, adding to a band roster that now also includes Ghostplane and Australian outfit Dappled Cities Fly.

Arch Hill Recordings also offer their recording facilities for non-label artists, with reasonable charge out fees. Arch Hill Studios record digitally onto Pro-Tools24, but has a well used selection of off-board analogue pre-amps, EQ, compressors, effects and other equipment.

– Arch Hill Studios

Using a pretty standard Pro-Tools/Focusrite/Genelec monitors setup along with what looks like a pretty good selection of microphones, along with solid-state and valve compressors and effects, they currently (July 2004) offer an NZ$50 per hour engineer-included rate, or NZ$350/$400 per weekday/weekend day, which isn’t bad for an Auckland-based studio.

Compilation Discography

  • Introducing Arch Hill (2001, AHR006)
  • The Hill Is Alive – Compilation 2 (2003, AHR009)

Contact Details

  • Arch Hill (Official Website)
  • Ben Howe (Label-Head / Email Contact)
  • +64 9 360-0772 (Phone Number)
  • Arch Hill Recordings
  • 331 Great North Rd
  • Po Box 68-194
  • Newton
  • Auckland
  • New Zealand (Postal Address)

Links

 

Categories
g artists

Ghostplane

4-piece wellington melodic pop-rock outfit that spawned out of dana eclair in 2003. created quite a bit of critical interest with their debut ep ‘panther valley country club’ on ben howe’s arch hill label. a very tight live unit with nice touches (guitarist achilles botes showing off some fine licks) formed around dana eclair members botes, mark dryburg (guitar / vox), andrew grayson (drums) along with newcomer ash hammer (bass).
discography
picks in bold

  • panther valley country club ep [2004 arch hill AHR010]
  • beneath the steel lagoon [2005 arch hill]