acoustic

Phantasticus Acousticus

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Phantasticus is a 5 piece high-energy gypsy-flavours ensemble hailing from Wellington, the Gypsy-Balkan capital of New Zealand.

 The lineup combines the fearless fiddling skills of Ana Christie and Alex Hills, matched by the awesome forces of Michael Kingston and Rick Shaw on guitar, all wrapped up in the powerful bass boutique of Jacqui Nyman.

With an album of delicious original tunes under their belt, Phantasticus are taking the world by storm.  These musicians are so well-seasoned they will leave you asking for ‘Kiwi-hot please’.

Mike Kingston is a key member of The Winter.  He plays guitar or cello on several fiffdimension tracks

A Visit to the Beehive

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A pleasant surprise this week to get a small (single figure) royalty payment from APRA for radio airplay for the shortest track from The Marion Flow, recorded back in 2001!

That goes some way towards recovering the $600 or so I spent recording the album (a lot of money for a broke student back then). I can’t claim it’s a prescient political satire that predicted this week’s news events, but maybe like the album as a whole it’s just timeless…

It’s also, for fans of Wellington avant-garde music, a rare opportunity to hear Simon O’Rorke play a straight rock beat on drums!

The Beehive is the nickname for the Executive Wing of New Zealand’s government building in Wellington .

Free mp3s 2014 – 2015

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New free downloads 2014-2015 !  Pay koha / what you want for

Ngumbang

the first collaborative album by New Zealand artist/musician/filmmaker/ethnomusicologists Dave Black & Snake Beings – performed on guitars, bass, banjo, percussion, saxophones, clarinets, harmonicas, synthesisers, Indonesian gamelan, Okinawan sanshin, ukulele, violin, loop pedal, piano, drums and spoken word.

and

ネオン列車の風景 Neon Train Landscapes

(2014) Japanese psychedelic rock by Dave Black & Nat da Hatt – two New Zealanders living in Japan.

plus

The fifth album from New Zealand free improvisation trio of Mike Kingston, Simon Sweetman and Dave Edwards

and

Free-jazz & improv from Wellington, New Zealand 1999/2014 – in collaboration with simon.ororke.net

and a video clip of

Gamelan Taniwha Jaya

rejection-dryrot-ripple-gombageand Dave and Cylvi contributed to Postmoderncore‘s first volume of Dada Songwriting Compilation, Rejection dryrot ripple Gombage.

 

Enjoy!

We’ll take a break from more releases for the remainder of this year while some new ideas percolate – thanks for listening, see you at the New Zealand Fringe Festival in 2016!

The Winter: Exit Points

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Today is the last day of winter in the southern hemisphere – so to celebrate, here’s the fifth album from The Winter – a New Zealand free improvisation trio of Mike Kingston, Simon Sweetman and Dave Edwards… with a sound that swerves from acoustic folk/blues with hints of Asian, Celtic, and Balkan influences, to electroacoustic soundscapes, abstract dissonance, and pots & pans percussion.

Mike Kingston: guitar, bass, clarinet, electronics
Dave Edwards: guitar, bass, banjo, harmonica, ukulele, sanshin, electronics
Simon Sweetman: drums and percussion, electronics

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Mike Kingston

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Mike Kingston is a multi-instrumentalist front man and composer in ‘Bella Cajon‘ , ‘The Wagtails‘, and Phantasticus.  He continues to perform regularly throughout Wellington and New Zealand.

He plays guitar on After Maths & Sciences

and cello on Loose Autumn Moans

and is a key member of The Winter

www.mikekingstonmusic.com

Scratched Surface

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“Worth searching out coz this lo-fi singer/songwriter oddball has a unique take on the genre. He’s pissed off, a tad fucked up (as usual), but not full of lugubrious self-pity (as unusual) and is happy to get raucous & obnoxious in just the right kinda way.”Chris Knox

The debut album from fiffdimension – a genuine 1990s teenage no-budget lo-fi post-punk singer-songwriter artifact from the Taranaki, New Zealand underground, recorded on analogue reel-to-reel tape.

Online reissue includes download-only bonus tracks and previously unreleased material.

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From these folk/punk beginnings my style evolved into the more complex/impressionistic/visionary approach of The Marion Flow, Mantis Shaped and Worrying, and Loose Autumn MoansThese combined songwriting with an interest in free jazz and poetic modernism that sunk my commercial chances.  I stopped writing words entirely with The Winter and Ascension Band, and eventually lived abroad in Australia and Asia and reinvented myself again as Dave Black.

As of 2015 I’m back in NZ where my latest project is Ngumbang, which comes full circle – weaving together these various strands, in collaboration with Emit Snake-Beings who was one of my early influences!

Gamelan Taniwha Jaya 2015

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Thanks to everyone who came to see Gamelan Taniwha Jaya play in Wellington recently!

Gopala

Tabuh Telu

In 2015 we’ve also performed at the Newtown Festival, the Southeast Asian Night Market, and Indonesia Day.

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Indonesian news article, 31/08/15, http://nasional.kompas.com

Here are a couple of recordings of two of the pieces we played:

https://soundcloud.com/user521325057/margapati-rehearsal-feb-2015/s-rQW6u

These are in the Balinese gong kebyar style of gamelan, which is loud, fast, intricate and modernist.  For more info see http://gamelan.org.nz/

Gamelan Taniwha Jaya is a group of New Zealand musicians dedicated to the study and performance of Balinese music. They specialise in contemporary music for Gamelan Gong Kebyar, and frequently incorporate western instruments into the ensemble.  Read the rest of this entry »