Get to know these kiwi rockers
Yet another representative of the diversity in New Zealand’s burgeoning music scene, Popstrangers are definitely worth getting to know. A far cry from the bright synth anthems of The Naked and Famous, the grungy trio’s EP Happy Accidents sucks the serotonin straight out of your brain with murky rock that calls up Seattle of the ’80s and ’90s.
Like Pac Nor legends Wipers and, yes, Nirvana too, these Auckland boys like their jams dark and dissonant, yet melodic and memorable. But, thankfully, it’s not all blurry American bludgeoning either. The band can get quite loud but even their fattest bullroarers feature the articulate bass lines and musical perversity of British post-punk bands like Wire and Gang of Four. They take everything all the great aforementioned bands gave us and then give us twice as much of it twice as loud. What more can you ask for in this day and age?
Happy Accidents has made Popstrangers the toast of alternative radio in New Zealand, taken them to CMJ in the US, and gotten them signed to legendary NZ label Flying Nun. Their debut full-length is due out early next year, but they’ve released the single “What Else Could They Do?” to give us an inkling of where things are headed. It’s hooky and haunting, kind of like Radiohead or a toothier Yuck. Based on this data, the debut will be bigger, louder — and more nuanced. Can’t wait to meet it.
Image courtesy of Popstrangers