Sunday, 30 December 2012

She's On Heat: The Neo-Kalashnikovs (with extras)

Click on the cover for your free instant download


Hi Guys just wanted to tell you that I have re-organised the instant download of "She's On Heat" so its a far smaller download. It also now contains the official artwork of the album and I also named the songs. The band will be recording the new album "Selfish Love" very soon and having a massive release party for both albums.
Two of our music videos are also back from the lab and will be  sent to broadcasting in the new year.

The Neos

Thursday, 20 December 2012

The Neo-Kalashnikovs: Recording they're next record "Selfish Love"

Hi guys sorry for the delay in an update from The Neo-Kalashnikovs, early in the week we were tracking some new songs from our back log of material on our portable studio. We were actually lucky enough to get our hands on Dicataphone Blues awesome Neve pre-amp courtesy of Stuart that really lifted our production value. I've been bumping down some rough mixes and playing them through my cd player and it's sounding really good in my opinion lol. We've even decided to do some covers of The Black Keys and Justin Townes Earles music for our upcoming release. 

We originally started off trying to complete 10 tracks in 2 days but got bogged down in fatigue  so instead managed to track all the drums for the songs and overdubbed bass and multiple guitar tones. 
Volita also tracked a lot of vocals that sound smooth as haha. I'm not sure if were gonna rip the latest material off and finish it in the studio or if I'll try to mix it all and just get it mastered, depends on how it sounds of course. Thanks to everyone for downloading "She's On Heat" getting over 600 downloads and giving away close to 150 is bloody brilliant.

The name of our upcoming album is "Selfish Love" and it will be indie rock and roll to the max with some electronic surprises. The Neos will also be dropping two final videos for "She's On Heat" and playing some shows around the country and generally mis-behaving.

Bring on 2013 The Neos!!

Sunday, 16 December 2012

The Hobbit (Official Movie) : A Visual Spectacular

The Hobbit is easily the most anticipated film across the globe in 2012. Unlike the Twilight saga "The Hobbit" was a masterpiece of literature that was an instant classic from J.R.R Tolkien who inspired Led Zeppelin among many notable artists. There was a lot of controversy surrounding this movie and the problems with actors in NZ suffering over wage problems but I really like what has been achieved by Jackson even if Warner Brothers stopped him from speaking out, unless he wanted to risk losing arguably the biggest movie franchise in the world. If you liked the Lord of The Rings movies the latest release from Middle Earth doesn't disappoint.

To avoid ruining it for people who haven't been lucky enough to see it yet I will only offer some well placed critiques on my favorite components of. Firstly I adored the Dwarves as the central focus of the movie that functions as a pseudo fellowship accept everyone is below 5 feet as opposed to LOTR. My brother Charlie also really liked the inclusion of the wizard Radagast the Brown who looks after every woodland creature he comes into contact with. Saruman may say that Radagast has eaten to many magic mushrooms in the woods and suffers long term damage, but honestly I think Saruman is just a bit jealous of the free spirited wizard who is strong enough to fight Twilight Ringwraiths .

The special effects of "The Hobbit" are also second to none with the amazing world of Goblins brought to life to startling effect. The falling wooden bridges and fire spitting out goblins from every direction is stressful to watch even if the dwarves are an indestructible force of power lol. The individual actors of the dwarves also bring a new dimension to the movie as opposed to LOTR poor acting. The trolls and their comedic attire is truly thrilling and entertaining on the big screen. Martin Freeman who acts as Bilbo does a fantastic job even when battling Gollum in a high stakes game of riddles were there is much to be losted and gained. By far my favorite part of the film were the trolls whos cooking prowess will amaze as well as their stupidity.
The tone of "The Hobbit" is light hearted and down right funny making for a film that never lags and always entertains.

Rating 5/5      A Must See

Friday, 14 December 2012

Spycc's "Self Progression" Mixtape: Holding Down Onehunga in WildStyle

Discovering the prodigious talent of Spycc was a real shock to my system. As an individual that went to Onehunga High I recognized his face and had no idea he was a much buzzed about rapper from that area. I have to admit that when I hear of rappers from NZ i've been somewhat blunted. Not withstanding the likes of Ddot Dallas the gangsta rap facade is something I have no time for. If a false reality is something your looking for smoke up tree because acting is sad if it's not at the very least on Shortland St.

To even contemplate being a gangsta rapper in Auckland, Nz is like a person trying to understand West coast gangsta rap without actually stepping foot in the U.S.A. One should really think about going to California or N.Y.C before rapping about all the hoopla that is associated with the gangsta genre that I do like, just not done badly. Inglewood and Brooklyn can really open ones eyes to where gangsta rap came from, and in all honest it came from desperation out of having nothing while being surrounded bt the wealth of Wall St or Hollywood. The streets are all the normal people have so why not song about and glorify them to the masses because thats where it's at.  In New York City even the smallest kid has a hunger that could eat most kiwi's alive it's one hell of a place to live thats for sure. 

Spycc in stark contrast to silly posers or NZ hardened criminals turned amateur rappers is a man that drops rhymes in every direction that resonate with the people, "the everyday New Zealander" as we like to say lol. I'd go so far as to say that he is 'the Proust' of Onehunga in direct parallel to Jay-z and his admiration of Brooklyn that offered the bulk of his inspiration for his raps. When I listen to Spycc zapping all the inspiration from the outskirts of the AK into his songs theres a genuine love for Onehunga that is hard not to like.

His free mixtape "Self Progression" offers amazing production value which I first heard on "The Young, Broke and Talented" underground physical mixtape made by Homebrew's associates. I've listened to the whole mixtape quite a few times blaring through my computer speakers and dig "Self Progressions" vibe. His raps don't stumble over themselves like most and his flow is immaculately complimented by his producer carving out some sick beats. If you want to cop something that is fire and the future of Nz rap check out his mixtape below and his awesome video that looks like it should have been sponsored by Woodstock if it wasn't.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

The Grey Album Re-mastered and Banging

I recently downloaded the re-mastered version of Danger Mouse's break through debut "The Grey Album" were he mixed the Beatles' "White album" and Jay-Z's "Black Album" together into one mashed out grey masterpiece. The difference between this version and the first is the powerful sonic mastering that smacks with hard bass drums. Whereas the first official mastered "Grey Album" was arguably a bit thin and whimsical this is a solid re-issue. The low end is unforgettable and the top end of the audio has also had a serious shine. I will definitely be burning a cd to listen to this through some phat speakers because it bangs hard, and yes listening to it loud is a must.

I read somewhere that Danger Mouse was rumored to have spent 200 hours making "The Grey Album" and it shows in it's amazing creativity of looping samples with dispersed vintage drums buried in amongst classic rap flow. If your looking for a perfect match of acapella's to beats this album may be just a tad to raw for you but if you like the Gorillaz smashed with "Rock and Roll" and brought back to life by a heavy dosage of Jay-Z adrenaline I highly recommend downloading this album below.

I remember reading a quote from Danger Mouse saying that the hardest problem with making this record was cutting out Ringo's drums from the "White Album" I reckon Paul McCartney's bass playing must have been everywhere in the audio. Danger mouse has done himself proud in this ground breaking sample heavy record clearly referencing "Endtroducing" by Dj Shadow. The producers latest records being "Brothers" by The Black Keys as well as Norah Jones latest album are a testament to Dangers consistency.

 free to download here

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Making "Run My Way" with Ruth Bioletti

How did you come up with the concept of the music video? it seems very cinematic?

The Run My Way video is a crazy mix of my love of the films by the great Italian film director Michelangelo Antonioni and Hollywoods Roman Polanski.Its smothered with a big dollop of my romantic/realism imagery, mixed together with an alternative movie vibe...all propelled by the high octane lyrics of Ms Volita Neo Kalashnikov ...yeah thats it in a nutshell, I think.  
So how long did it take to create the video and who was involved and where was it shot?
Run My Way was filmed in Auckland, New Zealand a beautiful and exotic place in the South Pacific, beaches everywhere! Filming took five days and film editing four. The video is very intimate and sensitive and there was only myself, Volita and Nicolus Byron working on it. The first day on set I spent 3hrs filming Volita in the bath alone, just her and I. Its a pretty unusual thing for a director of a rock video to ask a musician to do but she was brilliant and brought a lot of attitude to those frames. On day two there was a cyclone in town but we had to film the beach scenes. Volita had to brave freezing water temperatures and gale force winds. We had to cut out all the frames of her shivering..but I must say the rough waves were dramatic and really added to the end product! The next day the weather was beautiful and sunny which is very Auckland at the moment!

How did you come up with the concept of the music video? it seems very cinematic ?

How did I come up with the concept for  Run My Way, I don't know ( laughs) kids say that I've watched too many film festival movies! Seriously I think that there is some truth to that...I like more challenging theatre, more alternative than the mainstream type of movie. I just wanted to do a little film rather than the typical lip-sync affair that you usually get with music videos. I didn't know how it was going to look and we did film some lip sync footage but it didn't fit into the over all look and we decided not to use it. I love the work of Michelangelo Antonioni and Roman Polanski and this is probably why it looks cinematic, their work has filtered through my brain and left its mark on this video ( laughs).

Was there any important underlining message to the video in terms of imagery?

The underlining message of the video? Well...I thought that it was self explanatory until a male friend message me and said that he couldn't make any sense of it so I better say something for those people that need me to decode it! What can I say, I like the interplay between couples and in this case between a man and a woman. Volita of the Neo Kalashnikovs is the songwriter of Run My Way.I spent about four hours talking with her about the song and what she was intending to convey to the listener.It became apparent to me that this song was a love story and that there was a series of dichotomies throughout.

It amazes me how much depth there was in Run My Way, in fact many of her songs are stories, where characters are living out their lives, almost like a novel but compressed into a three or four minute song form. Maybe this why the mini movie video really suited Run My Way, I could represent her lyrics through the use of cinematic images and tell the story of two lovers who are passionate about each other but who inevitably come to that crossroads of, ' where to now ' point.

I split the scenes into opposites like man/woman, love/hate, together/alone, modernity/nature, fast/slow and so on and found the images that reflected these states. The smashing of the mirror is pivotable, I used that image like short hand, to quickly communicate the essence of the conflict that was brewing up for this couple and how serious that it was and that it was make or break time for them. The following scene of the male character Jeremiah where he shaves, is my way of conveying the internal dilemma inside him and his growth as a lover. He shaves off his beard and becomes more open to her and her desire to more the relationship to the next level. These are real life issues for people in relationships and I like to use symbolism to express this because you only have three or four minutes to do so when you are talking about a rock video. 

What music videos are in the pipeline with you and The Neos?

Anymore videos for The Neokalasnikovs? Ha...that depends if they want me back again! I don't know but I would love to do another one  for them sometime. I would really like to see Heartstrings come to life but that would be another complex video because there is a lot going on in that song too, another love story but a bit more tortured. I don't know if it will have the same happy ending ( laughs) as Run My Way!

Get "Run My Way" Here instantly for free: