Hard News by Russell Brown


Love you too, man

I'll be listening this afternoon as Mikey Havoc departs both his regular Drive show and the 95bFM in general. Through Drive, Trailer with a Cage on Saturday mornings, and two stints at Breakfast he's been the single biggest on-air influence on the sound and style of the station. And ever since bFM started buying the ratings, it's been apparent that he's been the anchor of its audience whenever he's been on air.

By the same token, of course, the station has done so much to define Mikey and foster his talents. No wonder they've found each other a hard habit to break.

I had my doubts about his move from Breakfast to Drive, given that it would displace a group of promising young hosts who'd been taking a day each in the Drive slot. But from the moment he landed back in the afternoon, it felt right. He's been relaxed, funny and inventive -- and Vince is, I think, his best sideman since Newsboy. And those big club bangers sound a lot better at 5pm than they do at 8am.

But although his departure is at least partly a response to straitened times (as he put it, he'd leave "one less big handsome noisy North Shore mouth to feed"), it's probably also time to properly let go, as we all must, of bFM. Mikey turned 40 this year.

Drive will now return to a format with a different host or team ("average age 20", apparently) behind the mic for each weekday. The station will continue to develop stars -- like Charlotte Ryan, whose excellent Morning Glory show thoroughly deserved its place in Metro's new Best of Auckland issue.

None of this is to deny that Mikey has sometimes driven me nuts as a listener, or that he has at various times been difficult talent for those who've had to manage him. But I've no doubt that he genuinely loves the station whose culture he has been such a big part of creating.

So thanks, bro. Have a good one.


I know I always say something like this, but last's night's Media7 was a bloody cracker. It's a lively discussion about social media and their implications with Noelle McCarthy, Ben Gracewood and Press political reporter (and Julian Assange doppleganger, which must be fun in airports) John Hartevelt.

The show is here.

And the online-only Media7 extra is here, because we just couldn't contain ourselves.


Ride a bike in Auckland? Want to be safer? Come to Ride for Life at Queen's Wharf, 11am-noon on Sunday. See you there.


If for one am greatly looking forward to witnessing the Greats of New Zealand Cricket Tour, by Lawrence Arabia and the Prime Ministers. The tour dates are as follows:

Wednesday December 8 - Auckland - King's Arms

Thursday December 9 - Wellington - San Francisco Bath House

Friday December 10 - Christchurch - Al's Bar

Saturday December 11 - Port Chalmers - Chick's Hotel

And guess what? I have one double pass for each show to give away to a Public Address reader. Click the email icon at the bottom of this post and mail me your bid with your chosen city named in the subject line. First in, first served.


Update: Wellington and Auckland passes gone, only the south still stands.


Stinky Jim's Round Trip Mars label has brought forward some particular talent over the past decade -- not least, SJD and the Naked and Famous. And to celebrate 10 years in, er, "the business", they're doing something special:

Round Trip Mars is preposterously proud to announce INVADERISM, a free digital compilation celebrating over a decade of music industry irritation and consistently high quality, uncompromised, individualistic music. Featuring all of the core RTM fam, each of the ten tracks has been especially produced for this release. Really itʼs too good to just give away, but thatʼs what weʼre doing as a thank you to the labelʼs supporters since 1999, and a certifiably concussive heads up as to where weʼre at.

A new track from Invaderism will be made available every second day, starting from the 5th of December, on the Round Trip Mars website (www.roundtripmars.com). On the alternate days RTM head honcho Stinky Jim will be picking out an overlooked gem and personal favourite from every year of the label's history, also available as a high quality free mp3. Each download will only be up for 2 days. On December 25th the full Invaderism compilation will be made available in its entirety, for the first time on Bandcamp and Soundcloud. After all, everyone needs something they can rely on when socks from Aunty just don't cut the gift mustard.

Artists on the comp are: Sean Donnelly (SJD), Phelps & Munro, James Duncan, Jefferson Belt, Unitone HiFi featuring Coco Solid, Mo' Delay, Mycroft Holmes, Stinky Jim and the latest addition, Scratch 22, who heads soon to Paris to represent NZ in the Red Bull Thre3style Championships Final.


Also, I interviewed Miles McDougall, aka Pikachunes, for Public Address Radio. His self-titled debut album is streaming at the Lil Chief Records website.

I asked Miles whether he felt part of the Christchurch electronica scene, and he said, "well, those people are mostly older than me …" Heh.


Speaking of Christchurch scenes, one thing I forgot last week: this amazing YouTube video taken from some 1981 film of the Pin Group (and friends) recently rediscovered by Ronnie Van Hout:

I had forgotten how pretty Roy Montgomery looked …


And finally: Gil Scott Heron with Jamie from The Xx, 'New York is Killing Me'. Yep. Gotta like that.

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