Downbeat upbeat – this is the segment where you can experiment and help keep the music playing. The idea is simple – choose one song that’s downbeat – slow, sad, dirgy, deep, slow or dark, and another that’s unfailingly upbeat – a song or piece of music that always leaves you smiling or feeling that little bit better.
Show 1 it was Pink Frost and Every Day is Sunday.
In about 1970 composer Douglas Lilburn had to make something he didn’t have – the sound of the huia. You can imagine him, moaning to his colleagues over morning tea at Victoria University – you’ll never guess what the boss wanted – bring the dead back to life … kind of thing. Luckily, he had a room full of kit at Victoria University to help him out. And as you’ll hear, the result was no frankensound, but something fascinating and believeable.
You can listen to him describe how he did it, with analog signal and a razor blade. These days it sounds retro and futuristic all at once. The piece was recorded for a performance at Expo 1970 in Osaka. Expo is a world trade fair which also had a large rock from the moon, a spherical concert hall which played three dimensional music from multi-track tape, plus early examples of mobile phones, local area networking, and hover train technology. Read more about Expo 1970.
For many people the early Flying Nun bands were when New Zealand music came of age. They were also the inspiration to pin your musical ears back and have a go at making your own songs. The Christchurch label and the Dunedin sound led an explosion of Kiwi culture.
In terms of guitar and bands and recording they fired a whole non-mainstream creative industry at a time when half the country was closing down. It’d be fair to say Not everyone liked the sounds, especially some of the regular patrons of the pubs the bands played at, but the energy and the creativity of the DIY ethic couldn’t be ignored.