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Christchurch City Council Media Release

Top line up of Kiwi music

at free rock event.

SummerRock, 1.00pm, Saturday 7 March, North Hagley Park

Christchurch’s most eagerly awaited annual rock event will be an all New Zealand affair this year. SummerRock, one of the biggest events of the Christchurch City Council’s SummerTimes festival of free outdoor entertainment will showcase some of this country’s finest current rock bands.

The afternoon concert will feature five bands over five hours, including three Christchurch-based bands. One of New Zealand’s finest rock exports of recent years, The Mutton Birds, will headline the concert which will be their first Christchurch gig for some time. The band are currently based in the UK where they’ve played at several European festivals including Glastonbury, Womad and Reading and experienced a healthy amount of media attention.

Their three albums The Mutton Birds, Salty and Envy of Angels have each spawned a number of hit singles. Frontman Don McGlashan says of the band’s music: “There’s a strong sense of place about our songs. Music should taste of somewhere, I think.”

Auckland-based band Headless Chickens will precede The Mutton Birds. The band have recently released their third album, Greedy, a dramatic album featuring songs “wrapped in a blend of scary samples, crunching loops and lyrical nightmares”. Since the departure of Fiona McDonald after recording the hit single George, the band have had a number of line up changes but guitarist/singer/songwriter Chris Matthews remains at the helm and the band’s sound has become more rocky - something which is likely to go down well with the SummerRock audience.

Formed in the early eighties, The Bats are one of New Zealand’s most enduring indie-rock acts. Since the release of their fifth album Couchmaster in 1995 members of the band have been working on individual projects, although a ‘best of’ compilation is due for release sometime this year. 1998 marks the second time The Bats have performed at SummerRock.

Former JPS Experience frontman Dave Yetton will perform with his new band Stereo Bus at this year’s SummerRock concert. The band received much critical and public acclaim following the release of their debut album last year. While the album is introspective and melancholic, the band’s live performances are surprisingly raucous.

Last year’s opening band, The Puffins, have the honour of opening the event again this year. The four piece are well known in Christchurch for their live performances which involve make up, costumes and lots of tongue in cheek rock choreography. The Puffins are currently recording material for their first CD release.

SummerRock is a SummerTimes event presented in association with MTV. Parking is available in North Hagley Park off Harper Avenue for $3. Gates open at 11.00am and close at 7.00pm. Food and refreshments will be available on site. If wet the concert may be postponed to the same time the following day.

For further information contact the SummerTimes Publicity Co-ordinator,

Katie Macbeth, on (03) 941 8495, fax (03) 941 8262, (025) 22 72 916

or email: (

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