Ok, a couple of big shows at Dux Live this weekend; firstly Goodshirt returned after what seems like a decade, playing material from their to-be-released comeback EP plus a string of their catchy earlier singles.
Sleepy Age we’re just phenomenal in support, playing in a new line-up with three (sassy) backup singers. Check out the photos here.
The 2nd show was saturdays final of the RDU 2012 Round-Up band competition, won by the talented up-n-coming lads Ipswich.
Only got the chance to see Ipswich, but they were a lot of fun, with the crowd moshing around to ‘Alien vs. Sexual Predator’. Choice. Photos here.
The Klap take it out! Excellent result and a tight fought contest with pre-show favorites the Klap victories in RDU’s annual (10th anniversary) band competition at the Dux de Lux. Tiny Paper Daggers were a close 2nd I reckon – the strength of their song ‘Unicorn’ just about taking it, but I think the Klap were a great choice. Runners up were blues showman’s Denmark Street, The Bizarre new Dave Mulcahy project Sexy Animals, and thebigcity favorites Jimmy Zoom and the Beytown Grifters.
The Hit-Machine are a quirky 4-piece rock outfit from Christchurch, comprised of four jokey friends with strong ties to the local underground scene of the late 90s and into the 00s. With Steffan Van Soest up-front, the rest of the band is made up of Simon Nunn (Drums), Paul Glubb (Bass) and Matt ‘Hatt’ Bullimore (Guitar) – a solid trio who encompassed the spin-off group the Excercise Machine when without Van Soest.
The group went through major changes with the departure of Glibb and Bullimore for overseas sojourns, Van Soest and Nunn performing then performing under the U.S.S. Hit-Machine moniker as a reduced power-duo (though they have played shows with various other replacement members).
The group are a bit of an enigma in the local scene – they managed to win the RDU (college radio station supported) Round Up band competition, using the funding for a production run on their Here Comes.. album, but otherwise the group has stuck with small cd-r releases. Their albums are full (and i mean full – with very little throw-away filler) of great, catchy and utterly bizarre pop songs, built on huge metal riffs, comical ballads and glorious (and gloriously silly) harmony vocals.
Live the group can vary from a complete triumph (such as 2005’s excellent reunion show at the Dux De Lux) to a complete sham – but they’re always entertaining.
Later in the 2000’s guitarist William Daymond joined the group, and with Nunn now playing gigs professionally, ‘Heavy Metal’ Simon McKenzie became the permanent drummer, although Nunn occasionally plays as a guitarist or bassist, depending on who’s in town – Daymond has also now relocated, joining Glubb in Wellington. A more recent spin-off of the group is Monsta Machine featuring prosthetic wizard Chester ‘Grubby’ Dextar on vocals.
Young, exciting and eclectic Christchurch indie-pop group that emerged during 2006 to dominate the local scene alongside popular screamo act Not So Experimental. Led by talented guitarist/vocalist/keyboardist Mark Holland, the group have a funky, dancy rhythm section in Ashlin Ross (bass and initially a little keyboards and vocals) and Andy Frost (drums). The group soon won the annual RDU Round-Up band competition, sneaking through the semi-finals as a wildcard to take the final.
After their ground-breaking victory the group took a swift turn – with Mark switching to keyboards permanently, guitarist James Grant was brought in in a hurry. Immediately the group took on an even more exciting, groove-orientated sound. Grant quickly became a big piece of their sound as their songs fleshed out and developed. After a period of lessened activity, the group released their debut (self-produced) album on Christchurch’s own Pinacolada records.
In 2010 the group fractured, with Grant leaving the line-up, and the remaining members relocating to Auckland. Tiger Tones gave way to Holland’s new recordings as Fistful of Gems (under the performing alias Mark Wundercastle), which is more electronic than the original group. Ashlin appears on the new groups recordings (singing under the pseudonym Dawn Marble).