Jewel and Don Henley – TSB Arena, Wellington – 22 March 2017


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With a three-night stint in Aotearoa Henley rounded off his landed his four-decade time machine in the Capital with much ado and little fanfare.

Jewel Kilcher kicked off the evening with a simple solo set, beginning with a simple and stark a capella rendition of Somewhere Over The Rainbow. I haven’t see her perform since she performed in Wellington over 20 years. When she did that gig she was in her prime and she was very young, too. Her first album was out and she was enjoying the novelty of her first world tour. “This place is a barn” she remarked, noting the lousy sound and high reverberation. Back then the TSB really was a barn. Roll on a few years. Times have changed. Thanks to the shows like WOW (World of Wearable Arts) the place has come up to speed. And sound systems are definitely much better these days. All the better to hear Jewel. I’m still amazed at the purity of her voice. It’s still unique and so very clear. I don’t think it’s changed at all over the years. She still possesses the ability to jump octaves in a single song. The best example is during her big hits Who Will Save Your Soul and You Were Meant For Me. The latter she does with such aching passion that there’s not a dry eye in the place. She also rattles off a couple of others like Intuition, Hands, Standing Still and Foolish Games. Most of her material comes from the early albums. They all sound great in this stripped back format, as they were originally written.

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Launch of ‘Hit and Run’ at Unity Books 22 March 2017

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“On 22 August 2010 New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) elements, operating as part of a Coalition Force in Bamyan province, Afghanistan conducted an operation against an insurgent group…
Nine insurgents (not 12 as reported) were killed in the operation which targeted an insurgent group in the area where Bamyan province borders neighbouring Baghlan province.

Following the operation allegations of civilian casualties were made. These were investigated by a joint Afghan Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Interior and International Security Assistance Force Assessment team, in accordance with ISAF procedures….
The investigation concluded that the allegations of civilian casualties were unfounded.”
New Zealand Defence Force – Media Release – 20 April 2011.

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Album Review: Wire – Silver/Lead

As UK’s original post punk pioneers are about to enter their fifth decade they are still writing with a natural worn in a style that still has the flair of their first albums, if not quite the immediacy.  Despite many years of innovations and countless influence Wire’s best songs are still those that feature uncomplicated riffs, solid, if angular melodies and strong powerful lyrics that question modern day living and progress.

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Album Review: The Sadies – Northern Passages

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Introducing The Sadies, a group you may have never heard of – at least in this part of the world. But for well over two decades, this Canadian foursome have been firing off a cannon indie rock, tinged with psychedelia and the occasional nod to Americana. On their 10th studio release Northern Passages, singers/guitarists Dallas and Travis Good, bassist Sean Dean, and drummer Mike Belitsky return after a four-year hiatus with a product that feels like an updated amalgam of Nuggets-era garage rock and country.

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