Various Artists – Not Given Lightly, A Tribute to the Giant Golden Book of New Zealand’s Alternative Music Scene

11.23.2009

Not Given Lightly

I generally hate cover compilations. Number one, it screws up the “artists” tab on my itunes browser and makes ipod navigation a pain, number two, you generally buy the set for 2 good songs, and the rest are filler done by bands that feature the nephew of the executive in charge of the compilation. But Morr Music has taken their roster of artists and knocked this tribute to the vibrant New Zealand music scene out of the park. I can’t tell you anything about the music scene of New Zealand either…i don’t know the history and honestly this is the first time i have heard these songs. What i do know is that entries by B. Fleischmann, Electric President, American Analog Set, ISAN, and all the others make this a compilation not filled with heavyweights, but several welterweights that you probably have heard of before. I’m not going to tell you what to like, but standouts for me are the title track “Not Given Lightly” by B. Fleischmann (i am unable to find the vocalist at this point), “You Forget” by Electric President and “Happy Chord Whore” by ISAN. Not to mention the “sufjan-esque” “In Case of Harmony” by It’s A Musical and the guitar driven “Kudos” by Surf City. Those are just a few songs, and i had trouble cutting down my “like” list to those 5. Like i said, i can’t give you the history of the original songs, (this blog is cool, but not that cool). What i do know is that this is 34 tracks of goodness, and enough gold dust to make you dig into the artists on the compilation as well as the New Zealanders who inspired it all.

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– Dave

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