It may have been around for almost forty years, but as a rock venue
there's nothing inspiring about the Logan Campbell Centre in Auckland. The venue's reputation as a dank concrete barn in the middle of a carpark, with bad sound and endless queues for a drink, is difficult to shake off. But the place does have history, and to add to a
string of legendary shows over the years (Ramones, the Clash,
Nirvana, Lou Reed, Lee Perry, New Order, Beck . . . ) we can now add
PJ Harvey and band on January 24 2017.
Simon Kay was there, and took these photos as 'just a fan
photographing from the crowd' but they capture something of the
compelling performance by this great musician and her excellent band.
Just Like Heaven? Well, pretty close. The ever popular, and insanely loud Dinosaur Jr, with Hex, at the Studio, Auckland, on Monday 23 January 2017.
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Vector Arena 18th Jan 2017
In an out of character move for Vector concerts, I decided to get tickets in GA. Usually nowadays I can manage about half a set standing up and then need to sit down (lie down).
But the chance to camp at the front with the eager punters was too tempting, and for the first four songs we got the best view in the house.
During Higgs Boson Blues he leapt onto a platform at the back of the barrier and leant into the crowd, who adoringly held him up and felt his heart beat at the appropriate moments. What a performer.
So many highlights on the night, but dancing like nobody was watching to Mercy Seat was right up there.
My only regret is I can't fly to Sydney to see them do it all over again.
Thursday night was the launch for Volume: Making Music in Aotearoa. Russell has covered this on his Friday Music blog, with a few photos he and I took.
To try and give you a taste of this excellent exhibition, here is the full set from the night.
Also notable when you walk through are the photos by some of our friends and contributors on Capture, in particular Murray Cammick and Jonathan Ganley. You can even get a postcard of Jonathan's iconic shot of Straitjacket Fits or the old Gluepot as you exit through the gift shop.
Generally though, you should just get the hell along.
We all like to make our mark. But who would dare put a mark on a gallery wall?
This Winter, Dunedin people were invited to make marks all over an installation by Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. Kusama specialises in dots of colour, and in her installation Obliteration Room , we applied her dots wherever we chose.
The Obliteration Room looked like a domestic interior: an open-plan kitchen, dining, and living room. The room was filled with familiar objects: benches, sink, toaster, electric jug, chairs and table, plates and bowls, bookshelves, couch, guitar, TV, fireplace, desk, desk-lamp, computer. Everything was white, to match the floor, walls and ceiling. When the exhibition opened, only shadows hinted there was anything there at all.
Set in the walls were window-frames containing windows, but there was no view out: only mirrors reflecting the interior. The room was at once homely, claustrophobic, and void. There were no personal touches, no signs of occupation.
It was a blank canvas.
Each visitor was given a sheet of coloured-dot stickers, in a range of sizes. The only restriction was that we couldn't take the dots out of the exhibition. Objects were soon touched all over with bright spots. Dotted names and patterns appeared on walls and floor. By consensus, the sink filled up with blue, and the fireplace with orange and yellow.
Holding my sheet of stickers and pondering where to put them, I found myself grinning like an idiot. Everyone else was grinning too. Putting stickers all over the gallery was delightfully transgressive fun.
I visited the Obliteration Room when it was somewhere between blank and coloured: bright dots swarmed in the whiteness, dissolving the space.
You can see how drab we look in our winter clothes, while the room pulses around us.
So, Happy Spring, everyone! Please
share what's making your life bright and exciting right now.