Hard News by Russell Brown


In the Music

I was having a yarn to Don McGlashan after last night's SJD show, and he reckons that Auckland's music scene is becoming more like Wellington's: meaning it has become more fluid and collegial.

The topic arose when I observed that everyone in the SJD band is a personally gifted individual, and wondered at the fact that there don't seem to be any ego clashes at play. Don pointed out that nearly everyone in the band has something else going on: James Duncan alone also does Dimmer, his own solo work and another duo, SJD's new drummer is the drummer in Don's band. Just to make it really complicated, Don will be stepping in for Paul McLaney on the SJD tour starting next week.

Anyway, it was a great gig with a big crowd, if one with a few gaps where the lovely Sandy Mill would normally be. She had been extremely keen to perform, but at the time was off, like, totally having a baby and everything. (She had her baby boy around the time of the encore.)

As someone pointed out to me, SJD uses Sandy's voice less as a backing vocal than as an extra keyboard. It's the rich, warm tone you hear in the likes of 'Beautiful Haze'.

You can still get the free Karajoz coffee with the new SJD album.

Elsewhere in the wonderful world of music: new Kylie! Apparently deliberately leaked tracks turn up on MP3 blogs. The remix is the one.

Much weirder: Prince gives away his new album: attached to the front of the Mail on Sunday.

Bob Lefsetz says the most beautiful song ever written is not in fact the Kinks' 'Waterloo Sunset', but Split Enz' 'Message to My Girl', and declares that the Finn "magic is back" with the new Crowded House Record.

Peter M notes Simon Grigg's fine job of work in compiling a discography for Trevor Reekie's Pagan and Antenna labels.

My interview with the justifiably legendary Bill Direen is in the podcast today.

And, finally, where might a chap get a deal on a couple of lights to make his lounge look more like a discotheque for an evening?

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