April 14-20: Including Around the World in 80 Tunes

by Fiona Rae / 14 April, 2012


Sharpie Crows/the Raw Nerves Recorded Live at Roundhead Studios (95bFM, 11.00am and Friday, 2.00pm). Sharpie Crows, from Wellington, were described in Victoria University of Wellington rag Salient as “a slightly deranged, loud and brilliant band” that is making a name for itself with its “angry, distraught, frenetic, never cheerful but always unique garagey rock music”. The band also labels its music as “industrial” and “tropical”, which would seem to be self-contradictory. Young people, eh? Aucklanders the Raw Nerves, on the other hand, claim to play “garage/punk/emotional toughguy music” and recently put out a poppy little number called Nazi. There will be live streaming and podcasts on 95bfm.com; scroll down for video of Sharpie Crows.

A Flat City: Voices of Christchurch Music (RDU98.5FM, 2.00pm). Today’s programme is devoted to Christchurch’s dubstep and drum’n’bass community and features Damien Bimler of Joint Forces, Andre Fernandez of Truth and Michael West and Levon Maeder of Sickcycle.

Around the World in 80 Tunes (Radio New Zealand National, 4.10pm). Nick Dwyer seems to have lost his sidekick, Barnie Duncan, somewhere on his travels but he is soldiering on solo in this series about lesser-known forms of world music. Today, he’s off to Mongolia, where he witnesses the odd phenomenon that is throat singing, but also discovers there’s far more to Mongolian music than that. Dwyer meets members of folk band AnDa Union, recent guests at Womad, who are keeping their ancient song traditions alive. And he goes to the capital, Ulan Bator, where he discovers an emerging indie rock and underground scene in one of the most unlikely places on Earth.

Music Alive (Radio New Zealand Concert, 8.00pm). American mezzo Sasha Cooke is the soloist in tonight’s NZSO concert, conducted by Pietari Inkinen, direct from the Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington. The programme features Douglas Lilburn’s Third Symphony, Mahler’s song-cycle Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (Songs of a Wayfarer) and Stravinsky’s explosive Firebird Suite, which turned the Russian composer into an international sensation.


Composers of the week (Radio New Zealand Concert, 9.00am today and weekdays and 7.00pm Monday). This week, RNZ Concert focuses on some of the lesser-known winners of the Prix de Rome, a scholarship established in France in 1663, during the reign of Louis XIV. It was sponsored by the king and originally for painters and sculptors only – open to students of the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture. The successful applicants won a three-to-five-year stay at the Académie de France à Rome, located in the Palazzo Mancini. In 1720, the Académie Royale d'Architecture introduced an architecture prize, then in 1803 music was added, and engraving the following year. Well-known composers who took up the music prize include Hector Berlioz (1830), Charles Gounod (1839), Georges Bizet (1857), Jules Massenet (1863), Claude Debussy (1884) and Louis Dumas (1906 and 1908). Maurice Ravel applied five times and the last unsuccessful attempt, in 1905, was so controversial it led to a complete reorganisation of the administration at the Conservatoire in Paris. The last Prix de Rome was awarded in 1968 but a number of other awards have been created in its place, including one that offers the winner an opportunity to study for up to two years at the Académie de France à Rome.

Extended Play: the Classic Flying Nun EPs (95bFM, 11.00am). Time to put on a tragic outfit from the 80s that takes you back to your Nun days, if you’re that demographic. This new 22-part series, brought to you by the Listener, looks at “classic” EPs from that era, highlighting the creativity and widely differing approaches taken by each band as they strove to find their sound. First up is the Gordons and Future Shock, which wasn’t initially a Flying Nun release or even issued on the 12-inch format but that became a key record in the label’s history. Two of the three Gordons, Alister Parker and John Halvorsen, talk about their watershed bit of vinyl and why Nun founder Roger Shepherd got so excited about it. Live streaming and podcasts at 95bfm.com.


Appointment (Radio New Zealand Concert, 7.00pm). It’s your last chance to listen to clever experts debate nebulous cerebral topics tonight and part six of Philosophy Talk is titled Digital Selves. Ken Taylor and John Perry look at Second Life and other online games in which users create digital personas. They are joined by Jeremy Bailenson, director of Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, who aims to answer such questions as what does your choice of digital self say about you, and what happens when the line between real and virtual becomes blurred? Perhaps he’ll also have some soothing words for the infuriated spouses who go ballistic  because their partners put all their energy into lives that don’t exist, instead of the ones they’ve got. Just a thought.

Wednesday Drama (Radio New Zealand National, 9.06pm). Tonight’s drama is a radio adaptation of Michael James Manaia, John Broughton’s powerful one-man show about a man haunted by his experiences in Vietnam. It was first performed at Wellington’s Downstage Theatre in 1991 and starred Jim Moriarty, who then toured it around the country and took it to the Edinburgh Festival. The show was revived by Taki Rua theatre company for the New Zealand International Arts Festival in the capital, and featured Te Kohe Tuhaka, under the direction of Nathaniel Lees. Now Moriarty is back with this pared-back version of the work, which was recorded in 1994, after he had clocked up some 150 performances of the original onstage.


Appointment (Radio New Zealand Concert, 7.00pm). South African-born soprano Elizabeth Connell died last month at the age of 65 and tonight RNZ Concert is replaying her interview with Christine Argyle recorded in 2007 when she came to this country to judge the Lexus Song Quest. Connell was considered one of the world’s leading dramatic sopranos in her day and was best-known for such heavy-duty operatic roles as Wagner’s Brünnhilde (Ring Cycle), Ortrud (Lohengrin) and Isolde (Tristan and Isolde).

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