Mice on Stilts & Estère & Kédu Carlö & Speech Act Theory & Chris Dent!!! K Road was exactly where I wanted to be last night – at Whammy and the Wine Cellar.
All our reviewers were off taking in the “big” shows – and lord knows Auckland has been over-blessed lately with too many big shows to count, and I’ve shot a fair few of them. But there’s something special about shows in the small clubs – the intimacy, the fans, the love of the music. Along with the terrible lighting, the Whammy pole and running up and down those ridiculous steps. Which I did many times, running back and forth between the two clubs – the kind of stupid fun photographers love, and love to complain about.
So here are my photos and some thoughts on the shows – they’re not reviews. I did love them all, but I have a habit of falling in love with every artist I shoot.
Mice on Stilts
This sold out show celebrates the release of the band’s critically acclaimed new album, I’m Proud of You. Folk-y prog-rock that’s getting noticed everywhere, especially in the jam-packed Wine Cellar. Seven musicians squeezed onto the tiny, dimly lit stage, while a live video played on the wall behind them. Beautiful music played for an adoring audience. Unfortunately I couldn’t stay for their whole set because Estère was due to start about 5 songs in.
This woman should be playing in Arenas! Her sound continues to evolve and her latest EP Makara Peak is a richly textured soundscape, that she translates into a visual feast! My favourite shoot of the night. As if she wasn’t mesmerising enough – she brought along a pair of extraordinary dancers performing some otherworldly choreography. I just kept shooting – over 350 photos! Well, a lot of them were a bit blurry cos I couldn’t keep from dancing! These are my favourites.
Jess Penson and Carly Gill are Kédu Carlö, an electronic duo who are festival favourites. Great seeing them in a small club. Jess Penson’s dynamic stage presence kept the Whammy crowd dancing and hooting and hollering!
Speech Act Theory
Back in the Wine Cellar, we were treated to Speech Act Theory – where electronica meets guitar and drums! A lovely, dreamy set, the kind you can just sink into and lose yourself in the moment. Sadly, a photographer’s nightmare when it comes to lighting… apologies if the set looks a bit washed-out.
Best known for his work with Albi and the Wolves, Chris Dent treated us to a solo set, kicking off my night. Singer, songwriter and master storyteller, he kept us thoroughly entertained, even got us into a singalong! A lovely man, a lovely set. In the dark, or nearly in the dark – fortunately I have my ways of seeing in the dark, so you can, too.
- Mice on Stilts & Estère – Shooting Up K Road on a Saturday Night, 25 March 2023 - 26 March 2023
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