160 different languages are spoken in New Zealand. If you think that’s diverse, cue the music... hip hop, reggae, thrash metal, EDM, rap, folk, pop or good old rock ‘n’ roll. New Zealand has it all going on.
From Lorde to Crowded House, New Zealand is full off talented musicians that pop up all over the world. In the past year, 104 Kiwi artists played 1,440 shows across 45 countries, and that figure looks set to rise again this year.
So just who exactly are these artists intent on world domination? Let’s take you on tour with some of the movers and shakers.
From the waves of Waipū beach to making waves in the metal world, this teenage trio is on the up. Their music is a masterful fusion of Te Reo, Māori language with thrash metal. Alien Weaponry’s first gig as a trio was at Bream Bay College, in Ruakaka. They followed that up with being the youngest ever act to play the world's biggest metal music festival, Wacken Open Air in Germany which draws about 80,000 metal fans.
A folk singer-songwriter of musical stock, Aldous was first ‘discovered’ by fellow musician Anika Moa. Since then her career has snowballed in the global music press, with her recently released album ‘Designer’ called “the audio equivalent of a Picasso; both dramatic and imaginary”. Enough said.
Benee continues to buzz around the world as the rising New Zealand pop sensation. The 19-year-old has just finished a tour of Europe, the UK and USA and is coming hot off the heels of her latest single ‘Glitter.’ She’s getting loads of press from publications like Nylon who said “I’m pretty sure I just found my new favourite thing” to widespread attention from the UK’s The Times, iD and LA’s Ones To Watch. This girl has got the world listening.
The Beths first met as jazz students at the University of Auckland. Now Rolling Stone magazine calls their latest album ‘A wonderful little record that never lets up, piling on unassumingly buzzy fun until you start realising you might be in the presence of a true power-pop monument.’ From ten shows at SXSW, to a Billboard-announced 22-date US jaunt, The Beths are on a roll.
Church & AP
Church & AP are an Auckland rap duo who are moving up in the music world, here in New Zealand and abroad. They've had international acclaim across the board from the likes of The Fader, i-D, VICE, The Line Of Best Fit, Complex, Dummy and featured on BBC 1Xtra with tastemaker Jamz Supernova. It’s no surprise that their latest track 'Roulette' is popping up on ‘Best of the Week’ playlists across the globe.
Miss June’s new single ‘Enemies’ has achieved massive exposure of late. Not bad for a band that only formed when vocalist Annabel Liddell decided last minute that she needed a band for a gig. Miss June recently premiered on BBC Radio 1’s Playlist alongside the likes of Cardi B. Miss June’s music is described as “a hard-hitting explosion of fuzzed-out punk riffs and wailing vocal melodies." Miss them at your peril.
So, if you’re looking for beats that are world-beating…we know a place.
Stream it. Follow it. Play it. Buy it.
Thank you to the artists and their management, NZMC, Radio Hauraki, and RNZ who helped with this story.