Release of the Vengeful Millennial

Electro Rock, INDIE, Indie Rock, Rock

Pop in your air-pods and grab your avo-toast, Hazza Making Noise’s Debut EP Vengeful Millenial is here, and it’s solving the housing crisis.

Harry Platt, the face behind Hazza Making Noise, has been releasing a string of singles since 2018. Each track takes a unique spin on re-imagining the grunge era through electronic music. Singles such as Do You Wish To Print A Receipt cracked the algorithm to break into a hallowed Spotify editorial playlist. Regular single release shows with backing band, The Ellice Road Boys, have helped build up a loyal fan base eager for the first debut EP.

NoMoreGaps is the opening track of the EP, and it starts tentatively. A mellow take on the lead riff begins to fade in with samples taken from the countdown self-checkout aisle, a subtle node to an earlier single. The track then swells in with its catchy synth lead and builds to a fast pasts chorus with off kilter rhythms and shouted vocals. “The duelling riffs in the verse is probably one of my favourite things I’ve stumbled into” says Harry, “The bass and guitar really groove out, and the beat just sews it together”. The track continues bouncing between ambient verses and bridges and its “bipolar punk rock chorus” which talks of liberating oneself to all sorts of vice to fill the gaps.

Boomers is Disguise is a punk rock football stadium chant that comes in hard straight out of NoMoreGaps. The track previously came out as a single with artwork showing ol’ Winnie Peters sporting a fantastic pair of Groucho glasses. The track goes hard with mellow verses teasing the reckless pace and chanted vocals of the chorus. The track came from an old flatmate who dared Harry to write a “rock-opera about baby boomers”. This becomes clear in the bridge where the chorus fade back for a chorus of Harry’s to slowly sing the mantra “Blame the Baby Boomers, Blame the Goverment, Blame the Baby Boomers, It’s all their fault”. Its a hard hitting tune, definitely slaps.

After the two fast paced singles, we’re lead into a reprieve with a slightly western guitar riff over some ambient instrumental loops. Harry starts with introspective lyrics with self doubt and wistful thinking of the past. This builds with a heavy kick groove then proclaims the track title, Rewind Time, Return Desire, in true stadium rock fashion. The instrumentation does a fantastic job of setting the tone of pining for a passion now lost.
“How can a treasure become a monotonous curse?
We follow each other’s lives like two satellites orbiting different Earths””

The ambient instrumental loops begin to speed up as a the bass guitar takes the lead in A Ship Came Into Harbour. The catchy riff is backed up by a soft guitar with a delay that almost makes it sound like a robotic cello. The track takes a twist on the drinking game, describing people as ships struggling to retain control in the ocean, holding the precious cargo of their hopes and dreams. The track builds into a big guitar solo distinctive with its heavy delay, which gives way to a strings led bridge with a final iteration of the chorus in a hard hitting half time.

The music suddenly drops into a menacing groove with the same guitar tone with heavy delay, electric drums and a soft piano line, reminiscent of Gorillaz. NoMoreCows is a scathing critique of people ignorant of their privilege and selfishness from a self proclaimed “Doctor Truth”.

“The diagnosis is not looking good,
with medium to high chance you’re an ignorant fool
Roaming around this stolen land,
All that bastard freedom, can you not give a helping hand?
But alas it’s the divine meritocracy,
a product of your own making that you foolishly believe”

The track also includes some self reflection considering Harry’s own privelege stating he is “Riding [his] bike in a tailwind”. After proclaiming that “this race must be rigged” the track drops, and lets anticipation build. This finally drops into a filthy heavy riff which takes the prize as THICCest groove on the EP.

Vengeful Millenial was a switch up from HMN’s usual exploratory singles to form a cohesive body of work. “I always wanted to do a project where each song blends into the next” says Haryy “I like the sense of journey that is created when the record doesn’t break between songs, and there is relationship between themI mean it’s probably a f*cking terrible idea in the age of streaming and the dominance of single tracks and playlists … but sh*t sometimes you gotta just do want you want first.”
Personally I’m a big fan of through album listening. It’s good to finally have a cohesive bit of HMN to delve into. Here’s to many more.

Listen in to Vengeful Millennial and Follow Hazza Making Noise on Spotify, Apple Music, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Grab your safety hats kids, because Odds & Ends dropped “Picture” today and it hits hard

Uncategorized

Grab your safety hats kids, because Odds & Ends dropped a track today and it hits hard. After leaving us waiting for two years their much anticipated single “Picture” tackles the tricky subject of mental health. “Picture” is a gut-wrenching exploration of life on the brink, driven by musicality and power wrapped in an indie rock bow.

Powerhouse vocalist Koen Aldershof captures what it’s like to scream into the void. “Picture” boasts a stunning and emotional delivery of sensitive lyrics. The hookline “let’s take a picture by the edge… I’m not scared in case we fall down” promises to both rile you up and give you chills. It’s a timely reminder, with New Zealand’s latest lockdown to check in on your mates.

While this latest track takes on a “darker flavour” than the band’s tasty earlier work, it’s still characteristic of the Odds & Ends sound. “Picture” features cheeky verse licks and a monster guitar solo that shreds like a cheese grater. Josh Johnston delivers a heart palpitation of a rhythm section, while Jonathan Meyer (underscore) holds it all together with steady bass.

Don’t forget to support the lads on Facebook and Instagram, and raise those dreamy streamy stats on Spotify / Apple Music.

Never Coming Back – Underscore

Indie Rock, Uncategorized

After an enticing build up for their new single on Tik Tok, Underscore have finally released their sophomore single Never Coming back, and oh boy it slaps like a prima donna.


Unlike their first release Dirty Word, Never Coming Back hits hard and heavy with a lumbering blues groove that finishes on a crunchy chromatic descent. Front man Jonathan Meyer describes the track as a “bitter breakup song that draws on progressive rock influences”. Never Coming Back builds on this idea switching between sarcastic verses and emotionally charged choruses. A soulful solo leads into a fast paced bridge that carries the song into a final heavy iteration of the tracks iconic riff.

Underscore features Hon Manawangphiphat on bass guitar, Josh Johnston on drums, and Jonathan Meyer on guitar and vocals. The trio started playing music together as students at the University of Auckland, and have performed shows throughout Auckland ever since. While Jonathan is the principal songwriter and guitarist, the whole band brings together their backgrounds in pop, rock, metal, and jazz to create the one-of-a-kind sound Underscore is known for.

This track was a lot of fun to listen to, and we’re keen to see where Underscores following releases take them.

Make sure to follow them on Spotify, Facebook, Instagram and Tik Tok.

KITA – Self Titled Debut Album

INDIE, indie pop

KITA is the debut self-titled album by Wellington musical alumni Nikita Tu-Bryant, Ed Zuccollo and Rick Cranston. Between them, these talented musicians have played with such artists as Holly Smith, The Black Seeds and The Bushman. Combine this with Grammy award-winning producer Tommaso Colliva and you have an album heavily influenced by a wide range of genres and styles.

The overall feel of the album is very calm and down to earth, with rich instrumentation, warm tones and a rain motif featured in more than one track. I particularly enjoyed the solos and licks that showcased the skill of the musicians without overpowering the vibe of the track – KITA feels like the perfect album for a midnight swim, drive down an empty street or to have a quiet drink in a dimly lit speakeasy. Almost as though they are aware of this, KITA found a few moments to check if you’re really listening with massive musical moments. For this reason, a personal favourite was River in My Veins.

The single from this album is Everyday, released with a music video one week prior to the album release. The relaxed jazzy, indie pop feel of the song is perfectly portrayed in a music video of slow, dead-pad dancing and soft pink and blue lighting. This track is a great introduction to some of the more complex songs on the album. Tickets are on sale now for their album release tour and I reckon it will be one to catch!

Can’t get Keeley Shade’s track off my mind

Ambient, Folk, INDIE, indie pop, Pop

Canadian born alt-pop-folk artist Keeley Shade seems to have materialised from nowhere. Her debut track On My Mind has sparked intrigue, featuring on the NZ top 20 and earning over a thousand streams on Spotify. The track is an impressive first release, establishing Shade as a force worth watching.

Keeley Shade’s On My Mind swells into existence like waves on the sand. The instrumental intro is built by fading piano and a crackling microphone. The producers use every ounce of sonic space. The simple melody in the first verse allows the dreamy soundscape to speak for itself, and Shade’s lyrics are mysterious, allowing for an open interpretation.

The introduction of high guitar in the interlude feels like your mind opening. One My Mind’s production is flawless and creative, experimenting with texture and painting colours. The empty space is always meaningful, building a pensive atmosphere. The purity in Shade’s vocal delivery is calming.

The bridge provides a low moment in the song, as Shade thinks about throwing it all away. The backwards vocals are otherworldly, giving the sense that we are caught in a trance as the piano plays reverberating scaled. The sudden shift in tone is a risk that pays off when the track returns to its original vibe.

On My Mind is an innovative first release, and I look forward to seeing where Keeley Shade goes next with her sound. You can keep up with here on Facebook and Instagram.

Finally some dirty words from Underscore

Indie Rock

Underscore has been kicking around the pop school indie rock scene for a while, playing shows, reviewing sandwiches and rebooting the Skype soundtrack. Despite this varied experience they’ve never had an official release until now, with Dirty Word.

The track starts with an infectious indie rock riff that Franz Ferdinand could’ve been proud of, and some juicy chords that could’ve taught them a thing or two. Underscore keeps you interested with constant rhythmic mix ups, changes in tone, and a cheeky lil modal shift in the chorus that gets the nerdy musos raising an eyebrow and nodding in approval. The bridge of the track lets lead singer Jono really open up his pipes and put on some gravel to belt out some big notes.

Despite my juvenile hope that the word in question would’ve been more dirty, I feel that Underscore has skilfully brought an important message into a fun and energetic song to improve awareness of mental health, and letting us all know it’s okay to ask for help. It’s really a message we as a community can’t hear enough of.

We look forward to hearing more from Underscore! And hopefully an EP will be on the way. Keep tabs on them on Facebook, Instagram and Spotify.

Ministry of Folk – Hoop, Jazmine Mary, Being., Looking for Alaska

Acoustic, Folk, folk rock, Live Music

Artists meet sporadically at the Ministry of Folk to deliver intimate live performances in an old church hall. The audience munches on snacks brought from home, enjoying the fairy lights and ambience. The event is hosted by the inimitable Hoop, who make the stage feel like the lounge of a family friend.

Running a little late, we stumbled through the door at 7.35 with a bottle of what we’d just realised was cork wine. Hoop’s talented and kind violinist Emily welcomed me into the kitchen where we found a rustic corkscrew, and their drummer used brute strength to release the stopper. The band was huddled in the kitchen for a pre show chat; it’s clear that they’re a well bonded and comfortable group of musicians.

Hoop opened the stage like the audience were old friends. Based on the Australian bush fires, Devil’s Choice is a stand out track written in 5/4. The violinist imitated an ambulance’s siren, and the band built the atmosphere with a jungle rhythm on the flute. Nick and Al’s voices blended impeccably, allowing for that classic “folk” sound riddled with harmonies. 

This Year was written from the perspective of a family who had battled COVID, cancer and chemotherapy throughout 2020. The song claims 2021 as a new and brighter year – a sentiment the room was holding on to with hope. It was a pleasure to watch Hoop perform again.

Jazmine Mary and Being. are a duo founded on the common ground of the name Jasmine. Both artists appeared comfortable on stage, drawing the audience in with sarcasm and a genuine friendship. The set began with Jazmine Mary’s latest release Dancer. The track is melancholy and features impressive vocal depth from Jazmine Mary. We rediscovered our love for Dolly Parton when the pair delivered a haunting cover of Jolene. 

Being. fronted the second half of the set. Her music was driven by modal shifts and a precise vocal performance. Count Me In was moving, arranged with sliding synths under a soft guitar. Beings.’s lyrics have a poetic quality to them, as she described the feeling of defeat as “dragging around a lifeless body. Truly, the clarity in her voice held the audience captive.

The final set for the evening was performed by the enchanting Looking For Alaska. What defined their time on stage was the mesmerising stories they had to share. Each song was driven by human emotion; frontwoman Amy told the tales of her late little cousin and a Grandmother who used to laugh so hard her teeth fell out. The duo’s trust for each other was tangible. It was a mesmerising set.

It’s difficult to pick any one piece that stood out, as each song boasted a certain ‘X Factor’. Where Have You Gone was a sultry slow jam with tight harmony that built to a phenomenal belted section. Home drew the audience to sing along and Hey You was a display of love coupled with a drinking game. Each song in the set was polished and precise, featuring flawless guitar playing from Aaron and out of this world vocals from Amy. The duo’s voices blended impeccably.

Part way through a song the room erupted into surround sound alert level 3 warnings. Despite the anxiety the sound always entices Looking For Alaska remained comfortable on stage, and soon had the audience yelling for several encores. I’m glad we spent our last night of freedom listening to such an astonishing display of musicality.

CHRIS PIDSLEY – Listen to Your Mum

Uncategorized

We like to think we know better than our parents, but sometimes we really need to listen to our mum.

With his latest single, Chris Pidsley talks through the confusion of navigating a relationship with struggle, and the value of just taking advice from your parents who often do know what’s best. The lyrics are beautiful and evoke a general nostalgia that leaves interpretation up to the listener. He takes the song in a similar direction to Cavetown, who also write looking back to teenage years. The sound is fitting and works well.

Chris collaborated with other musicians for the first time with this track, bring in brass from his friend Ryan. Lockdown hasn’t stopped Chris making new music, as this was all done virtually and has come together swell.

Listen in to the full arrangement or the acoustic version below.

Angry Girl – Vikae

electro pop, Electro Rock, INDIE, indie pop

Dropping this Friday is the kind of song that makes you want to hire a security team. Vikae has outdone herself with her latest single Angry Girl, featuring killer production and lyrics that will cut you back like a weed.

Beat one is ominous and expanding. The track utilises sinister synths and percussion to set the tone: she. is. livid. Vikae’s theatrical vocal control creates the believable character of a girl who’s been wronged. I loved the use of octaved vocals in the pre chorus; it’s an effect that’s always satisfyingly unsettling.

The drop into the chorus is perfect. The rhythms are super interesting, and the harmonies are epic. Angry Girl uses silence expertly to build tension, and a sense of foreboding. You can experience Angry Girl in all its rebel glory at Vikae’s Casette Nine release this Friday. Come grab a beer!

Set Me Alight – Georgia Maria

Folk, folk rock

Fire up your steampunk pirate ship surround sound, because Georgia Maria is back. Earlier this year the lyrical songstress impressed us with her complex rhythms and captivating storytelling. Born out of the hellfire of 2020 is her fiery new single Set Me Alight. 

The track begins with an almost theatrical build. The band bores into your mind, building a unison rhythm before falling into a “Celtic rock” groove. Set Me Alight lets you settle in the new feel before introducing Georgia Maria’s distinctive soaring voice. As always, there is an “other-worldly” feel to her composition. She seems to tell tales of another dimension, blending folk with distorted instrumentation. Her sound is unique and distinctive, inspired by the past and future. The middle of the song explores a tasteful distorted solo, paired with the swaying groove of Set Me Alight.  

Set Me Alight is nothing short of epic, which is what we’ve come to expect from Georgia Maria.