Hero photograph
Photo by Otago Daily Times

Rock Band

Albert Baeumer and John Dodd —

The rock bands at Logan Park have been very active and won a few awards this year.

Firstly, a wonderful solo performer, Trent Hawthorne came second in the solo/duo section of the Otago regional Rockquest finals. Trent plays ukulele and uses loops and electronica to build up imaginative textures to deliver his beautifully crafted songs. Trent has also been very busy throughout the year playing many gigs (including supporting the Big Bad Big Band at the Botanic Garden), and has found the time to release his first album ‘Caprice’. Check it out folks!

Paper Frogs, which consists of Melicen Barber and Mathew Schack, continue to develop their sound, skills and original repertoire, and have also played many gigs throughout the year. Melicen even played the support for Nadia Reid at her Port Chalmers gig, and the Frogs wowed a large audience at the Music Festival in the Town Hall. They were awarded second in the band section of the Rockquest regional finals.

Solid Merit and Band Substance also made it to the regional finals but didn’t place. Trent Hawthorne, Paper Frogs and Solid Merit were also called upon to submit a video to be judged nationally by Rockquest.

Solid Merit have gone from strength to strength this year. The winners of last year’s Rockquest, they have further honed their sound and their shows display chops aplenty. With Abe leading the band from behind the drumkit, vocals and wild beats, and the full-throated trombone of Finn Mac, their songs demonstrate a wide variety of influences, ska, Zappa, contemporary jazz and out-on-the-edge rock.

There have been some other wonderful bands at school this year. Band Substance, featuring the sublime voice of Sam Lawrence and the Hendrixy guitar of Michael Stephenson, have been impressive. Equally so, two year 11 bands, Typical Melanoma and Bliss Point, both full on affairs. Typical Melanoma win the award for hairiest band of the year, and play up-tempo tunes, ably fronted by Milo Long. Bliss Point have grown immensely over the year, and have developed an impressive sludge rock sound putting them firmly in the Port Chalmers mould! Both of these bands got to perform at the Cook in July, supporting Soaked Oats.

The other thing Logan Park bands have been up to is Amped. This is part of the fringe festival and helps high school bands get gigs as well as hold workshops on how to do home recordings, hold your own gigs, write music, etc. Logan Park bands that were a part of this consisted of Paper Frogs, Trent Hawthorne, Solid Merit, Typical Melanoma and Bliss Point.

For junior students Rock School on Wednesday afternoons has seen the arrival of some new talent. Pigeon Propaganda in particular are showing great early promise.