Karl Steven – Tāmaki 5000: New Song Of The Day

Karl Steven treats us to his latest creation…Tāmaki 5000.

Karl (ex-Supergroove, Heart Attack Alley, etc) is planning to release a new album soon. Here’s the blurb with details:

Karl StevenOctober 12 2021Karl Steven is a composer and producer, currently based in Pārāwai (Thames). While working mainly with music to picture, Steven has also been a part of groups Queen Neptune, The Drab Doo-Riffs, Heart Attack Alley and Supergroove.

Today he shares Tāmaki 5000, the second single from All of Human Emotion on Microfiche, an album planned for release early in 2022.

Steven’s upcoming output is a collage of organic and electronic sources, synthesised down into an ambitious and enigmatic sound.

“Tāmaki 5000 was written when I was living outside the city and experiencing it from the periphery for the first time, coming and going from it often, and noticing all the energy that flows both into and out of it like a giant hive” says Steven.

Murray Bookchin writes about how cities crystallise our social structures and values, and I wondered what, if anything, the settler-colonial City of Auckland says about those of us who have lived in it.  Growing up there in the 80’s it was a constant churning of demolition and construction, a developer’s paradise where history was regularly being erased and written over by towering new office blocks that left the CBD cold even on a sunny day and empty outside of office hours, so that you had to be a bit careful about where you hung around so as not to get mugged or whatever (and have to walk home in your socks). It felt like a hard place then, and it’s interesting to consider how the form it took shapes us in turn.”

“The music was written and for the most part recorded in the context of some weekly jams with Caoimhe Macfehin (Queen Neptune, Heart Attack Alley and The Drab Doo-Riffs) and Andrew Halford (King Kaiju, Mothers of Darkness, and Don Julio) at Chris Stapp’s house, that eventually led to the formation of Queen Neptune. Caoimhe and Andrew are performing on it and helped write it, and the bulk of the rhythm tracks were recorded and sub-mixed by Joshua Lynn at the old Auckland dog pound.”

The visual accompaniment for Tāmaki 5000 was made by Mindfulness For Machines, the generative art practise of Marcel Bellvé (Crap Date, Lipsink).

He explains “This is basically a live recording, with the visuals driven by Karl’s song. It’s noise, chaos, and randomness, mixed with a few keyframes, and manipulated in real time by one fader that I was riding during the ‘performance’. Unlike Freedom Bells, there’s no comping or editing, it’s the first take I did after I finished setting it up.”


1. Acoma (Phase I)
2. Utterance and Inscription
3. The Message
4. Cold Day Light
5. Tāmaki 5000
6. Freedom Bells
7. Acoma (Phase II)

Released digitally on February 4 via Sunreturn