Since we have just completed a tour of good ol’ South Island, NZ, I thought it fitting for this blog to have a middle earthy title. Is it a copyright infringement? I’m sorry, Mr Jackson, if that is the case (resisting the urge to write “I am for reeeeeal” after that. Oh woops I already did).
So how was it?
IT WAS GREAT
We played with some rad bands, sold some merch, caught up with friends and family and even had some relaxation time. Highlights include a keytar legend by the name of Hong An of The Laon rocking Hey Joe, a security guard showing us pictures of his 50 guns whilst doing door duty and fitting all of our gear into a Daihatsu Cirion. Luckily we are small people.
The car is smaller than Drew, almost
This is the backseat. There was a small space for Peter to sit.
We flew into Christchurch on 13th February and after spending half an hour waiting in line for customs we were good to go. That evening we played with The Laon and Stomping Nick and his Blues Grenade. The Laon of course were fantastic, wonderful dudes and we were stoked to play with them. Hong has now gone back to South Korea, good luck to you, good sir. Stomping Nick is a man of many talents, as a one man band he rocks guitar, drums, vocals and harmonica all at once and rules at it. He blew us all away and everyone at Dux that night, if he comes to your town be sure to check him out. You can listen to his music online here

Stomping Nick does his thang
The Laon

We played too

Valentines day dawned bright and early and we set off for our home town, Dunedin, to play a show at Queens that night (not to be confused with Queens High School). Drew and I gifted each other V for valentines, while Peter’s gal Tash was in Melbourne, so I assume he sent her a text or something. Romance ay. The road from Christchurch to Dunedin is long and uneventful, but the farmers leaving their muddy gumboots outside the Oamaru Subway made me tear up a little. Good ol’ NZ. Never change.
We played Queens along with Bad Juju, Iron Mammoth and Black Sky Hustler that evening to an awesome crowd. Queens is a newish venue in Dunedin (new to us in any case) and it’s a perfect little bar with vintage couches and even mirrors in the girls toilets. That gets my vote. Bad Juju are a ‘drinking band with a singing problem’ and are just incred. Their keyboardist Sarah definitely brings the sex appeal in a crocheted bikini, and you should probably never ever miss one of this bands shows, cause you’ll probably regret it.  Black Sky Hustler played a set of badass loud as fuck rock and we loved it. Queens loved it. The world would love it. And so would you. And of course the great Iron Mammoth were just fucking awesome. Drums, organ and trumpet/glockenspiel combine to make one hell of a band. We love them a LOT. Melbourne would love them too, so you cats in Iron Mammoth should get over here soon!

Black Sky Hustler

Bad Juju 
Drew and Peter and their guitar/bass

About halfway through our set, Drew (in typical guitarist fashion) had some technical difficulties, so Peter and I embarked on our version of Spinal Tap’s ‘Jazz Odyssey’. One girl did some sexy coyote ugly style dancing down the front to that, so it must have been good.

We played the Waitati Music Festival (in Waitati, a 20 minute drive from Dunedin) the next evening after Drew and I attended a hens night and stag do respectively. The weather was cold, windy and rainy (welcome home, Honeybone) and I was sure people would leave before our set at 10 that night. But not only did people stay, but it seemed more people were around by the time we played (or maybe it was just dark). We finished the night with ‘Rocking In The Free World’ and got an encore. It came to our attention most people thought we were an Australian band, so we quickly assured the people of Waitati we were from just over the hill.

This kid wanted to punch ALL THE BUBBLES
Crowd at Waitati. All wicked cool people.

The Invercargill and Oamaru shows were both fantastic, it appears that the smaller NZ townships harbour a great love for live music. We played with Iron Mammoth and the Sparrow Thieves in Invercargill at Tillermans and the amazingly groovy Reed St Posse (who swap instruments!) in Oamaru at the Penguin Club. We loved playing both shows (Both venues had a drum riser!!) and the crowds were rad. The Invercargill show included a midnight/very early morning drive back to Dunedin, as we needed to organise things there early the next morning. I believe we arrived back in Dunedin at around 4am, and got up at 8am. Rock and roll indeed. We played Oamaru that night, so we were a little worse for wear, but it ended up being a great evening with the Reed Street girls and some sweet as Oamaru hospitality.

Peter at Tillermans setting up

Doing the door at Tilly’s

Iron Mammoth!
The Penguin Club
Reed Street Posse at the Penguin Club!
Behind the drums

The next day we celebrated with Drew’s sister Mal and her now husband Geoff as they were married in Moeraki. Drew played at the ceremony, was MC for the reception and we were also the wedding band. It was a wonderful afternoon/night and everything went pretty smoothly. Weddings ay. Tis the season.

After that, Drew and I went up to Alexandra for a few days to spend time with my parents, and it was a very relaxing 4 days. Peter hung out in Dunedin, and he enjoyed his time off too. Drew and I went on one of those paddle tricycle things at Lake Wanaka and two burly shirtless European boys came to drag us out of the water when we were done. Classic.

Romance

The last gig of the tour was ‘Who Killed Dr Glam’, a final glam rock show by the Doctor of Glam himself, (aka Ian Chapman), Honeybone and Kill Martha (along with Khamzin Tribe belly dancers and  poet Proff Goff). It was incredible, amazing, and glittery. Ian is a lecturer at Otago Uni in the music department, so he taught Drew and I a few years ago. I was in the Dr Glam band back then, so when he was organising the last ever Dr Glam show it was awesome that he made it so I could play drums for him again. The venue (good ol’ Refuel, where we used to play a lot back in the day) was packed, the beer was flowing and the glitter was being spread by stage manager and sex appeal artist Sarah. Somehow this same glitter is now on my bedroom floor in Melbourne. Glam will never die. Honeybone played directly before Dr Glam, so I played drums for around 2 or so hours that night. I was dirty and sweaty, tired and glittery by the end of it, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I was home.

Glam band – me on drums.

Thus ended our first South Island tour. It was probably the best trip I’ve ever had. Thank you to everyone who made it possible, our parents/families, the bands, everyone we borrowed gear off, and of course everyone who came to the shows. You are the reason bands like us exist, and we are so stoked to know all of you. I can’t wait for the next trip home.
Our next gig is the Red Hill Music Festival on March 22nd. We are so excited about this gig, and it’s for an awesome cause, as all profits from this festival go to the Shitbox Rally and the Cancer Council. If you can make it, we’ll see you there!
xxx
This still hangs in the Refuel girls toilets. Our second ever gig. Pretty rad.

NB: I tried to change the blog design to reflect our new album artwork, but can’t figure it out. Just pretend it’s all updated and pretty 🙂

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