Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The Sound of Music

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  • Max Rose,

    I've found James Blake's music attractive too, and those Alex Clare and Jamie Woon tracks sound good at first listen too. But I guess I've been confused by their characterisation as "post-dubstep". I know that dubstep is more than just wub-wub basslines and angry, spotty young men in hoodies who spend far too much time playing first-person shooters, but I struggle to connect these quieter tracks (along with a lot of tracks from other artists such as Burial) with the supposedly characteristic griminess, fiddly triplets and half-time snares of dubstep.

    I imagine that someone with a longer and less superficial aquaintance with the genre would see them as part of a continuous and broad tradition, but for me coming in relatively cold they seem to share more with 90s/00s trip-hop, ambient and downbeat. If that Jamie Woon "Night Air" track is post-anything, it sounds post-house to me.

    Which sounds all very nitpicky, and I'm not trying to put anything in a box, but I'm just a bit confused and intrigued about the musical strands that led to these new trends.

    Wellington • Since Sep 2011 • 81 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    I have some doubt about the music contributing positively to the atmosphere at teh games - I'd say that the W'gton Sevens over the past few years, and the enormous amount of fun people obviously have there, has been a much bigger factor in getting kiwi fans to loosen up.

    But I'll know more about that after the weekend as I'll actually be attending a couple of matches rather than sitting at home watching.

    Te Ika A Maui - Waitakere… • Since Oct 2008 • 572 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to samuel walker,

    It seems odd to me that out of the lanky, cleancut, pale, post dubstep contenders James Blake gets more press than Jamie Woon.

    I'm only just discovering Jamie Woon -- and actually via his intriguing remix of Lana Del Rey's 'Video Games'. BUt yeah, I plan to investigate further.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19019 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    This isn't relevant to anything except in a general Friday musicky way. Gaga actually singing and wearing an actual dress! Who knew??

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3470 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Webber,

    I’m generally of the view that the right music makes everything better. I get it that the IRB (and also the bozos running Super XV and Tri Nations games) think that there is a need to entertain the crowd and produce the best possible atmosphere. And I can see the point in playing music between games at a two-day long seven-a-side tournament. But, really, at a test match do we need music at all?

    Watching Ireland strangle Australia or (insert any of the various great stouches from this RWC) is the entertainment. A jam-packed stadium creates quite the atmosphere.

    The great games are not enhanced by the music. The dull games (and there have been surprisingly few at this RWC) are not salvaged by the music.

    In fact, I think the music probably interferes with the crowd experience. It would have been nicer to hear the Irish supports belt out Molly Malone or Black Velvet Band (as they did throughout the second half of their 50-point hiding from Auckland in 1992) or the Fijian bloke 20m from me get to finish his rant on Samoa’s unhealthy sexual attraction to taro before they were drowned out by generic anthem rock.

    But we should be glad of small mercies. At Eden Park at least the music volume has not been as injurious to aural health as the public address system at Waikato Stadium has been in recent years. And the IRB didn’t employ the local Cock Rock FM DJ to exhort us to scream our support of the home team, holler “Deee Fence”, etc. That was a truly awful experience.

    Since Nov 2006 • 18 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    I’ve always thought it would be great to have an actual live soundtrack, like the orchestra in old movie theatres, think of the build-up to a try. Maybe Tama Renata Once were Warriors styles with David Kilgore and how about Chris Mathews with grant Fell and Bevan Sweeney.
    Just not Haley Whatshernamer.

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4941 posts Report Reply

  • hamishm,

    If you want rugby music it has to be Tchaikovsky

    Since Nov 2006 • 345 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    I LOVE the idea of a live orchestra doing the music for a Rugby match. That would be so cool.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3434 posts Report Reply

  • Marcus Turner,

    I’m hardly an aficionado but, with the help of other people here, I think I’ve learned enough about some of the murkier points of rugby to enhance my appreciation of the game.

    As I watched the England/Rumania game in Dunedin’s new stadium, I had the distinct impression that most of the crowd didn’t understand much about the game, and weren’t really there to experience rugby as a sport displayed by some of its finest exponents; rather, they were there for the party. They showed their costumes, Mexicanised their waves, booed anything that seemed to disadvantage their team, roared approval whenever somebody made a run for the line, caught up with the recent activities of friends, and ate and drank.

    I gained respect for the players, who somehow managed to concentrate on their game despite watery people running on and off, doctors tending to the fallen every few minutes, teammates making training and exercise runs around the field, security people and photographers, TV crews, Mexican waves, huge screens showing all sorts of colourful things – only some of which related to the game – and the music. Sitting not far from one of the speakers, I found the music uncomfortably loud. Couldn’t hear the radio commentary in my earphones at all, really.

    It was an experience to see Jonny Wilkinson in the flesh, lining up a kick with his La Petomaine pose: but he looked really lonely. Both teams were having meetings at the other end of the field, and goodness only knows what the crowd were focused on. The referee seemed to be the only person in the stadium giving him any attention at all – until the ball actually got over the crossbar.

    The music is part of something that’s more to do with the packaging of a show than the enhancement of a sport. From what I could tell, it seemed to be achieving that very well – like loud music at any party, I guess.

    Since Nov 2006 • 203 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Howies and the Boys "My old Mans an All Black" would have been good to let the IRB know how far we have come.

    Sample here.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1502 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah,

    I've been very impressed by the choirs singing the national anthems. Much better than the usual overblown cabaret warbling.

    Manawatu City • Since Nov 2006 • 1326 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    I LOVE the idea of a live orchestra doing the music for a Rugby match. That would be so cool.

    There's an amateur/fan brass band which plays at England soccer matches - around a dozen instruments in it. They play the theme from the great escape. Then they play it again. Then they play it again. Then they play it again. And when they're bored of that, they play it again.

    Be careful what you wish for. You might end up screaming and sobbing for another Jordan Luck chorus.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    like the orchestra in old movie theatres, think of the build-up to a try.

    I gather the old-time silent-movie pianists often didn't get a practice run so had to keep an eye on the movie so they could extemporise the music to fit the scene. Must have added a whole other dimension to the viewing experience.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3470 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I've enjoyed the mariachi trumpet but have not been able to afford to endure it at a stadium. The experience may well be more palatable diluted through the telly. Wafts of Black Eyed Peas certainly are.

    I guess there must not have been any stipulation by RWC2011 Ltd about NZ music when they tendered the contract. Shame they've let down the focus on local throughout the tournament's visual branding and opening ceremony.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16838 posts Report Reply

  • James Butler,

    My daughter loved the music at the match we went to; me, not so much. So as long as the IRB's target market is 7 year old girls and not 28 year old men, they're doing a good job.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 801 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    I've enjoyed the mariachi trumpet but have not been able to afford to endure it at a stadium. The experience may well be more palatable diluted through the telly. Wafts of Black Eyed Peas certainly are.

    In our South Stand seats at Eden Park, it was impossible to ignore the shithouse ZM rave-pop because it was really, really loud. The trumpet, I'm fine with -- it's a bit of fun. Ditto the pulse while the TMO deliberates.

    I guess there must not have been any stipulation by RWC2011 Ltd about NZ music when they tendered the contract. Shame they've let down the focus on local throughout the tournament's visual branding and opening ceremony.

    We were told it was chosen for "international appeal", but it seems they really went for "very cautious and extremely obvious".

    Apparently the guy brought in to run it at one stadium was enthusing about one particular tune: Blur's 'Song 2'. i.e., the most overplayed ground music in all sporting history.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19019 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Deborah,

    I've been very impressed by the choirs singing the national anthems. Much better than the usual overblown cabaret warbling.

    Me too. Although Dan Slevin harshed my buzz by telling me that most of what you hear on the telly is recorded, with a little live voice over the top.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19019 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    chosen for "international appeal"

    Those foreigners would never appreciate NZ culture. Oh, wait..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16838 posts Report Reply

  • Pete Sime, in reply to Marcus Turner,

    I went to England-Romania too and I really enjoyed it. As a Kiwi I wasn't going to sing Swing Low, Sweet Chariot, so the Mexican waves were a fun part of crowd participation. Going to a sporting event these days is not a passive activity and the biggest roar of the night was when the Romanians scored their sole 3 points. The result was a foregone conclusion, but that's why you back the underdog. You're right about the music playlist, it was rubbish, but the live performances - the Army Band and the choral national anthems were top notch.

    Dunedin • Since Apr 2008 • 144 posts Report Reply

  • James Butler, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Me too. Although Dan Slevin harshed my buzz by telling me that most of what you hear on the telly is recorded, with a little live voice over the top.

    My understanding is that the orchestra is pre-recorded, but the singing is all live - might be wrong though. Could find out, I haz contacts.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 801 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Lilith __,

    I gather the old-time silent-movie pianists often didn't get a practice run so had to keep an eye on the movie so they could extemporise the music to fit the scene.

    Oh yes, it was quite a job apparently. As it happens, Eric Clapton did the background incidental music for Edge of Darkness in a single take.

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4941 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to James Butler,

    My understanding is that the orchestra is pre-recorded, but the singing is all live - might be wrong though. Could find out, I haz contacts.

    Could you? I'd love to know for sure.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19019 posts Report Reply

  • Richard Grevers,

    Why Why Why?
    At Wales vs Namibia we had at least four different Tom Jones songs. If I'd been a Welsh fan I think I'd have been offended by that summation of the culture. The fans around me clearly weren't, because they sang Delilah themselves several times.

    I had been fearing that we were going to get the Feelers' cover of Right Here Right Now at every possible occasion, but I haven't heard it once, thank gawd. Did that bad idea actually get squashed?

    New Plymouth • Since Jul 2011 • 139 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Fan fear...

    I know it's lost argument but at what point did it become
    necessary to play music to entertain the crowd ...

    I'm with you on this one, it's makes even
    less sense, to me, with cricket...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5092 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    Edge of Darkness

    Brilliant series. Haven't mustered the courage to check the US remake.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16838 posts Report Reply

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