Record-breaking New Zealand tours, scene-setting appearances at festivals like Glastonbury, The Big Chill, Big Day Out and Parklife, sold-out performances across Europe, worlds-colliding collaborations with Symphony Orchestras, multiple music awards, four EPs and five LPs — three with platinum sales — and an army of fans who return to relive the experience time and time again: the towering achievements of Shapeshifter, the future-shocked soul outfit who hail from Christchurch New Zealand, were built by a living, breathing band of musicians, with all the form-changing sonic possibilities live instrumentation offers.
The players in Shapeshifter created their very own heavy soul, a stadium-sized sound which adds layers of drum & bass, jazz, funk, rock and electronica to solid bass culture foundations, capable of morphing from rolling drum & bass to pummelling guitar-driven jams to horizon-shifting electronic soundscapes. This genre-defying amalgamation of influences continues to draw from new source material and inspiration as Shapeshifter evolves, motivating dance floors worldwide and delivering audiences to the bleeding edge of musical possibility.
In the past year Perth-based duo Slumberjack have brought their music to new heights, turning out massive club hits like “RA” and carving out a more boldly challenging sound than ever before.
Since breaking onto the Australian electronic music scene in 2014, Slumberjack have tapped into their kinetic chemistry to guide their sound into new directions. With their synergy stronger than ever – and with multiple #1 tracks on Hype Machine now under their belt – Slumberjack are currently focused on prepping for upcoming shows, and aspire to deepen their engagement with each audience. “The show’s going to be about slowing down a bit and focusing more on what’s happening in the moment, rather than always looking to the next drop,” says Ehlers. “There should be moments where you just absorb something ugly or unusual, and then get the payoff later when you experience something beautiful. We don’t want to just have people going crazy the whole time – we want to give them a show that takes them on some kind of a journey.”
In 2006, Melbourne born Benjamin Stanford set off to Europe with a simple plan; live in a van, travel the world and street perform. Fast forward, Dub FX has sold over a hundred thousand records, rocked major festivals all over the world, racked up 150+ million YouTube views and organically acquired 600,000 Facebook fans. All completely independently.
His sound? Imagine you’re walking to work; you hear what sounds like a track from a CD played out of a Soundsystem. Instead, it’s one person making all the sounds from just his voice, an FX pedal and a loop machine. Lyrically Dub FX is as real as it gets, consciously projecting positivity and self-empowerment through his music.
Hailing from the mighty H-Town (Hamilton), Aotearoa, Katchafire have become a global roots reggae phenomenon. The all Maori band bring their pure classic sound to music lovers worldwide, delivering one of the most authentic reggae shows around today.
Four highly successful studio albums, multiple awards, platinum sales, highest selling singles, the list goes on. Their sound is built on the foundations of classic roots reggae with an R’n’B and funk rub, mashing modern dancehall and slinky reggae pop. Katchafire has crafted a universal vibe, capturing something truly special in a diversity of instrumentation and clarity of sound.
Their popularity and critical acclaim has seen them share the stage with artists from Damien Marley, Steel Pulse, UB40, The Wailers, to Michael Franti and Spearhead and many more.
Ocean Alley engulf you with an immense soundscape and visual performance through their unique and refreshing brand of psychedelic reggae fusion. Having released two EP’s, a debut full length album in 2016 with another on the way, Ocean Alley pride themselves on their DIY ethics, shaking the cage and making things happen on their own accord.
The six piece band produce a full and seductive sound. Hailing from the northern beaches of Australia, they have interpreted their laid back beach style into their music, mixing and matching genre’s to have a smooth and groovy feel to their songs, and combining 70’s psychedelia with mellow harmonies and soulful choruses. Being the best of friends, they naturally come together as one with their music and enjoy bringing their music to you!
Ask her where she comes from and she’ll tell you “All directions.” It’s an apt description of a singer who defies boundaries; culturally, musically and spiritually.
Nattali Rize is recognised globally for her unwavering commitment to using her voice and music for the global shift toward Full Freedom and the movement of Truth and Justice over the systemic exploitation of the people and our planet. The exciting evolution of the multi-dimensional artist sees the dynamic front woman leading out fresh with a new heavy five-piece international live band from Jamaica and Australia.
Known for their epic, high energy, thought provoking and uplifting live performances, Nattali Rize delivers a raw energy and vibe, channelling a deep reggae influence in a New Era Style. But this is more than genre labels. The music, message & intention transcends. Get ready to be moved!
Pierce Brothers have taken their music from busking on the streets of Melbourne to the world.
Their irresistible energy and world-class live show has generated a word of mouth buzz not seen for some time. Comprising of twin brothers Jack and Pat Pierce, the multi-instrumentalists have been shaking dance floors and selling out rooms across UK, Europe, Canada, USA & their native Australia.
The Dreadsquad project has put Poland on the map for creating dancefloor friendly riddim and bassline madness. From the Superfly Studio in Lodz comes tune after tune combining Jamaican sounds of Reggae, Dub, Dancehall, Ska and Rocksteady with the modern sounds of Breakbeat, Jungle, Dubstep and Garage.
Dreadsquad was launched during 2001 and what followed was a flurry of mashups, remixes and Polish Sound Clash victories which gave confidence to turn a passion into a way of life for the man at the controls, Marek Bogdanski. Hundreds of gigs in Poland turned into European tours and now Dreadsquad has toured as far as the USA, Canada, Brazil & India.
Always in demand, Dreadsquad has worked with plenty of top Jamaican and European artists including Ward 21, Tenor Fly, Top Cat, General Levy, U Brown, Milion Stylez, Lady Chann, Tipa Irie, Jah Mason, Perfect Giddimani and Dr Ring Ding.
The Dreadsquad sound is a worldwide sound taking influence and inspiration from all walks of life. It is glued together by Jamaican Soundsystem culture and modern Bass music culture and is a force to be reckoned with.
From deep in the South Pacific, Cornerstone Roots pay respect to the colossal world of Jamaican reggae, while confidently bringing their own influences and uplifting messages to the mix.
This approach of classic cool & future consciousness has helped set the tone for reggae in Aotearoa New Zealand since 2001 when vocalist/guitarist Brian Ruawai and bass player and partner Naomi Tuaopepe established Cornerstone Roots.
Based in Raglan/Whaingaroa in Waikato (NZ), they bring the power of Maori and Samoan culture with a deep knowledge for authentic roots music, dub and ska to the stage and studio.
Playing alongside the Cornerstone Roots founders, is the current line up, which features Brian Ruawai on Vocals/Guitar, Naomi Tuaopepe on Bass, Aaron Bush on Percussion, Nick Stevens on Keys and stepping up in their parent’s footsteps, 17 year old Reiki Ruawai on Vocals and 19 year old Kaea Ruawai on Drums.
New Zealand’s Onehunga has nurtured some of the best Aotearoa Hip Hop for over a decade, a legacy of style and lyricism upheld by the new 5 man collective SWIDT. SWIDT, which stands for “SEE WHAT I DID THERE?”, broke onto the music scene with their independently produced single & video “No More Parties In Onehunga” in early 2016. Comprised of five members, producer SmokeyGotBeatz (producer credits for TDE / HS87), rap duo SPYCC & INF, JAMAL and Boomer-Tha-GOD. The crew from 312 lit a fuse in the underground, which saw the up-starts from Stoneyhunga have a breakthrough year!! Culminating in the release of the crew’s debut album SmokeyGotBeatz Presents “SWIDT vs. EVERYBODY”, nominations for the prestigious “Critic’s Choice Award” and winning the “Best Urban/Hip Hop” Album of the year at VNZMA. Collecting over 100k+ views for their independently released videos, including the neighbourhood anthem “312, Baby, Baby” (OOOHHH), The Hawaiian Shirt Mafia have recently released their sophomore crew album for 2017, an uncompromisingly Onehunga themed affair, set to be the defining local Hip Hop album of the year.
A collaboration between producer Barnaby Matthews and vocalist Conor McCabe, Fortunes. began 2015 with the release of their debut “Hoodie”EP and went on to support the likes of JMSNandShlomho, and Oddisee, gaining a reputation for their engaging and energetic live show along the way. Since then the electronic/R&B duo have been busy. After opening 2016 with a spot at Let Them Eat Cake, the release of their follow-up EP “Jacket” followed close behind. With the single “Energy” on Triple J rotation, the duo went on to play sold-out headline shows in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide, support international acts LapsleyandKilo Kish, as well as land slots at Splendour in The Grass, Paradise and Strawberry Fields. Fortunes. latest offering “501’s” is a day-dreamy, sunset jam with syrupy synths, lazy grooves, and stacks of vocal harmonies that builds on a sound uniquely their own.
Teenage thrash metal band Alien Weaponry shock and surprise audiences on a number of levels. Their songwriting is complex, developed and highly political. Their live performance energy is startling, with just two fifteen year olds commanding the front of stage as effectively as four and five piece bands three times their age. But perhaps most surprising of all, given their blonde flailing locks and Viking appearance, many of their songs are in Te Reo Māori.
In fact, guitarist/lead singer Lewis de Jong (15) and his brother, drummer Henry (17), are of Ngati Pikiāo and Ngati Raukawa descent. Ingrained in their early learning were stories of New Zealand history from a Māori perspective – giving rise to songs like their first two singles ‘Urutaa’, ‘Raupatu’ and latest, ‘Rū Ana te Whenua’.
The band’s English material is equally controversial, with songs calling out everyone from teachers and friends at school to the media for variously glorifying and destroying the lives of television and sports stars.
Winning the national finals of both Smokefree Rockquest and Smokefree Pacifica Beats in 2016 (the only band ever to win both competitions) has put Alien Weaponry firmly on the global music radar as a force to be reckoned with.
Born out of the famed New Zealand School of Music, Tunes Of I are fast developing into one of the nation’s most exciting roots reggae acts. Featuring a solid backbone of drums, bass, vocals and guitars, and complemented by some of Wellington’s finest horn players, Tunes of I – or TOI as they are also known – are renowned around the country for their original, tight and refreshing live performances.
Music isn’t a product for Tunes of I, it’s an experience; let them take you on a musical journey through a varied set performing their special blend of dub, roots, soul and psychedelic flavours, and watch as they unexpectedly swell into a single, resonating entity where all seven members blend into one collective presence.
Few artists come new to the game with such a fearless and complete approach to music as Bailey Wiley.
Bailey filters neo-soul classicism through modern, righteous and true live musicianship, the star of the show, her golden voice – both effortless and organic. She has fast gained the respect from her peers & audiences alike.
Bailey has already racked up an impressive amount of live performances & features, sharing the stage & collaborating with some of New Zealand most well known musical talent. Now taking that a step further and has begun reaching out and collaborating with international artists.
Bailey’s live performance, solo with her producers is mesmerizing. Live on stage is truly where Bailey belongs.
There are some singers who command the utmost respect the very second you hear that first note. The voice grabs you; it holds you. You’ve discovered something rare and precious. You’ll always remember that moment.
Meet the new Kiwi singer-songwriter who is about to stop you in your tracks – Teeks.
With the release of his debut EP Grapefruit Skies, Teeks made a powerful statement that boldly introduced a young artist with exceptional ability.
Steeped in old-school soul and yet glimmering and shimmering with golden moments that capture Teeks’ strength of youth, the songs that make up Grapefruit Skies are no short of stunning.
Sit back. Imagine the sun easing up and casting a glow across the southern sky. You’ll get a glimpse of the sound that make up Teeks’ poignant soulful music.
Aroha is without a doubt one of New Zealand’s most accomplished all genre DJ’s and Tali is an internationally acclaimed vocalist and freestyle MC.
Together they are a formidable force on stage and unlike any other double act currently touring NZ.
The pair bring a set packed with deep, dirty, wonky House music, Aroha seamlessly mixing a selection that is pure fire for the dance floor – all with Tali’s soaring vocals and uplifting lyrics complementing the mix.
Their obvious chemistry and onstage energy is undeniable, as is their desire to engage their crowd – helping to take the party next level.
Sunshine Sound System formed when DJ Downtown Brown (aka Simon Hendl) and P Digsss (aka Paora Apera) got together for a jam in Queenstown in 2000 and we’ve been doin it on a casual and irie basis ever since, adding more souljahs on the way. MC KPZ (Kyle Popham) aka Killa Puha joined the family in 2001, followed by younger brother MC Switch (Staun Popham) in 2004.
A sunshine set typically includes lots of fresh bootlegs, a bit of reggae & dub, plenty of hiphop, but no trash understand?!, dancehall, original skool soul and funk including a few crate-digger breaks, plus if the mood takes us, a badbwoy fusion of old skool ragga junglism, breaks and D&B. KPz and Switch represent the sound of aotearoan sound system culture. With roots implanted in reggae, soul, hiphop and real conversation, they rule over any track downtown throws down, and a great deal of what u hear is completely freestyle, although it’s usually delivered with such freedom, musicality and instinctive understanding that nobody ever notices!
JessB is stamping her mark as the new Queen of Rap and Hip-Hop in New Zealand. 2017 is JessB’s breakout year. She is a high energy artist that takes influence only from the greatest female MC’s in Hip-Hop including Missy Elliot, Eve and Lil Kim. With her debut EP in the works (featuring production by legendary NZ producer P-Money) JessB is currently laying the foundations for her music industry takeover.
Known for taking his crowds on an up lifting heavy bass journey, Jamin-I is a true Bass Culture Lover!
His music selections showcase a great variety of tasteful genres. From sunshine Reggae to Hip hop, Mash ups, Global & Tropical bass; Jamin-I’s years of involvement in the dj/sound system culture and contagious happy vibe are a tribute to his dj/mc career.
Founder and host of New Zealand’s Raglan Sunday Sessions since 2010; he’s been sharing the stage with artists such as Mad Professor, Johnny Osbourne, Norman Jay, J Star, Mungo’s Hi-Fi and Ragga Twins just to name a few.
Join the Good Times & come check his set at Soundsplash Festival this summer.