Turns out I wasn’t the only one a bit mystified by Sony NZ’s big local signing Maala. It seemed the mystery was strategic, but who exactly was he? Melody Thomas’s Music 101 interview with Maala (real name: Evan Sinton) explains a lot.
I'm so glad he's out! I worked out his secret identity when the Silver Scrolls long list was announced but I kept quiet because I figured it was being kept a secret because NZers can be such bitches about contestants on TV talent shows.
From the RNZ interview, it's encouraging that Sony have given him time to develop his sound (the TV show was three years ago). This ain't no Jackie Thomas/Beau Monga quickie covers album for fans of the TV show. The result - "Touch" is easily the best New Zealand pop song of the year (so far).
And the video for his new song "In the Air" has been released today. So good!
Why does NZ on Screen always have to post things at such a low resolution?
I think it might just be down to what the standard res was when the site was built back in 2008. But it might also have something to do with some rights holders not wanting high res versions of their shows online.
It is frustrating when YouTube sometimes has better quality videos than NZOS.
I'm stoked to see "Asian Paradise" online. It looks gorgeous! And weirdly enough, the colour palette, lighting and general style of the video is the sort of thing enjoying a bit of a revival at the moment. Go, Sharon!
Inspired by the Randa video, here's another one that was set at the Point Erin Pool, "The Pool" by the Reduction Agents. The Parnell Baths are a more popular location for music videos, but the Pt Erin videos tend to be weirder.
Contact FM was my first experience with alternative Hamilton - the other side that wasn't obsessed with rugby and convenient parking. And with it came that mind-blowing idea that there was maybe actually more to life than just mainstream culture.
BTW, for those worried that New Zealand music isn't selling (or whatever), the No.2 album this week is the brilliantly titled Give Up Your Dreams by the Phoenix Foundation, only kept from No.1 by Dr Dre. And there are seven other albums by New Zealand artists in the top 40, which is brilliant.
It's less encouraging in the singles chart - only two songs by NZ artists, but it's been a surprisingly weak year for local chart hits. Hurry up with your new stuff, Lorde!
I had a play with Apple Music, but it just seemed too much, too complicated. And all the recommended playlists were really off the mark. "Introduction to Katy Perry". Er, I am well familiar with Katy Perry's oeuvre, thank you.
Meanwhile, Spotify's Discover Weekly playlist has the uncanny ability to always deliver music that I like. And I've heard similar from friends. Maybe their lists are full of '90s indie rock and modern alt rock, but it's exactly the kind of stuff they're into.
My other fave is Spotify's Fresh Finds playlist, which is compiled from new tracks that are played by "tastemakers". That is, it figures out what the cool kids are listening to a lot.
Another thought about music videos - I'm going to be bold and say that today music videos are primarily made for the web and not television. The fact that "Can't Feel My Face" by The Weeknd has spent over a month in the NZ top five and the video was only released a couple of days ago suggests that videos aren't even all that necessary anymore.
Also - thanks for the nice comments about 5000 Ways. I took a break from it but I'm going to be starting back up on Monday. (Ok, I've set myself a deadline so I'd better do it.)
It just doesn’t tell me when it’s on, do you know?
Sorry, no. I just discovered that The Edge TV's NZ shows are the only music television that NZ On Air Music now gives money to. (That's not including music-related programmes that get arts/cultural television funding.)
I guess my question is why would it just need to target “the youth”? They seem like the least likely demographic to actually pay for music and being honest, look around you.
So a new New Zealand music video show aimed at middle-aged people who haven't got time to mess around with YouTube? I feel like this is almost aimed at me (I have plenty of time to mess around on YouTube, though). Why not write to NZ On Air and a few broadcasters with your idea. If there's a strong audience in there - and an audience who has money to spend - people will be interested.
BTW, this might interest you - NZ History have a history of music shows on New Zealand television. The final paragraph says this, with my notes in brackets.
"The number of music shows on the main channels has decreased steadily since then, and none screen regularly on these channels in 2010. Viewers are now getting their music fix from Juice TV [closed], C4 [now The Edge TV] and the internet."
Plus! I'm also going to pimp my own website, 5000 Ways, which is a long-term project where I'm attempting to watch every NZ On Air video ever made. Ever.
All this talk of ways to support local bands reminds me of how things were in the early '00s, when there was a big idea that you had to "support New Zealand music!!!"
The problem is, "supporting" a band isn't very rock 'n' roll. If I'm going to give an artist some money, I want it to be in exchange for some sort of worthwhile experience - whether it's recorded music, a live show, a cool tote bag, etc - and not just indifferently supporting a band just because they're from New Zealand.
So I’m wondering if anyone can tell me when the music show is on, I’m sure there must be something as funding a bunch of music videos for air play without also funding a show to present them would just be ludicrous.
The Edge TV plays New Zealand music videos. But the thing is, there's now no need for music videos to have their own little broadcast ghetto. With YouTube, etc, it's now possible to watch videos whenever you feel like it.
Yeah, it's not the same as it was 10 years ago, but the way people watch music videos around the world isn't the same either. If you were to put a youth-oriented Friday night music video show on TV2, chances are the youth being targeted would instead be watching videos on their laptops. That's why NZ On Air's focus now includes digital media.
TBH, a video getting several million views on YouTube is a greater achievement than all those videos in the '90s and '00s that only managed to get broadcast on the telly once or twice.
Online is so much better. If I want to see the new MAALA video, it's there on YouTube. No need to sit around in front of a TV, hoping it might be screened.