Go Girls – go Gold Medal Famous! Plus Nick Raven US vinyl release

GMF live colourfulThe music of Gold Medal Famous will be hitting the small screen (or big screen, depending upon your home entertainment set up) when their song “100 Years of Rock” will be heard in of Episode One Series 5 of Go Girls. The show, featuring an all-new cast, will screen on TV2 at 8.45pm on April 30. http://tvnz.co.nz/go-girls The track is the title song from their 2011 album ‘100 Years of Rock’.

The prolific team have also just released three new remixes of “All the Shining Lights” from the same album, with the promise of more to come. If you like what you hear, you can also check out the latest album from Gold Medal Famous, ‘100 % Pure’.

Nick Raven also has some exciting news – his album ‘Love&Lomography’ will be released on Vinyl in the US by Virginia Beach-based label Custom Made Music. Labelmates include Ringo Deathstarr. You can find out more about Custom Made Music in this feature on the blog When The Sun Hits.

Love&Lomography has also just received a glowing review:

“The songs of Nick Raven’s album Love and Lomography have haunted my stereo, beckoning for repeat plays, working their way into the room almost by stealth.” – Simon Sweetman, Off the Tracks

Another great review of a couple of Powertool Records’ releases – Transcendental Learning Collective ‘Shift’ and Gold Medal Famous ‘100% Pure’ is to be found on the Porky Prime Cuts blog by Craig Haggis: A good workman credits his Powertools.

Our latest release is a most excellent album from UK/US duo Factory Kids entitled ‘Cried Off’. They’ve also presented a free mixtape for you, to give you an idea of some of their own favourite music, with some unreleased tracks thrown in for good measure. If you like any of these artists: Girls – Pink Mountaintops – Suicide – She’s Hit – Gliss – Dead Skeletons – Pete Molinari – The Buff Medways – The Wildhearts – Redd Kross – Galaxie 500 – then Factory Kids may be just what you’re yearning for.
Check out the mixtape here.

Listen to the album ‘Cried Off’.

Keep an eye/ear out for forthcoming releases on Powertool Records by:

Ghosts of Electricity
Michael O’Leary
A J Sharma
Matthew Bannister

…plus the 2nd edition of the US/NZ CD/zine ‘Drill/I Have No Idea’.
Factory Kids ‘Cried Off’

factorykidsturnpinkFactory Kids are a long distance duo, currently based in the UK – but in different towns. Factory Kids are musician/artist Christina Marie (formerly of The Modern Hour/Audn; originally from Minnesota and now living in London) and singer/songwriter/producer Tim Chaplin (solo/Luminous; from Warwickshire in England).

Formed in 2008, their initial releases were via compilations and blogs, before their self-titled debut album was released through Powertool Records in 2009. Factory Kids have continued to appear on compilations, and unleashed a series of further EPs and remixed material.

Their new album ‘Cried Off’, out now via Powertool Records, mixes a strong indie-pop songwriting sensibility with a cinematic approach to arrangements – ear-catching tunes are swathed in swirling layers of sound.

Here’s a sample of the lovely layered tunes they have to offer: http://powertoolrecords.bandcamp.com/track/she-he

Extra goodies: Videos and Mixtapes for your viewing/listening pleasure

Factory Kids are a generous and busy team – for a start, they’ve made a couple of videos especially to give you a taste of some of their styles.

New York After Midnight, pt. 1

Holiday Crease

And this video was directed by Dylan Mulick,  who’s worked with Marnie Stern, A Place To Bury Strangers, Pop Levi, The Meek and The Black Lips amongst others.

As a special treat, they’ve also made a special free mixtape which features a couple of unreleased tracks of theirs, plus a selection of their own favourites and influences.

Powertool Mix by Factory Kids

1. Ghost Mouth – Girls
2. Execution – Pink Mountaintops
3. Engine Jones – Factory Kids
4. Keep Your Dreams – Suicide
5. Lustless – She’s Hit
6. Beauty – Gliss
7. Ballet Shuffle – Factory Kids
8. Dead Mantra – Dead Skeletons
9. I Don’t Like The Man That I Am – Pete Molinari
10. Troubled Mind – The Buff Medways
11. Sky Chaser High – The Wildhearts
12. The Forest – Factory Kids
13. Monolith – Redd Kross
14. Tugboat – Galaxie 500

Factory Kids on the Internet:






Powertool Records Easter Show – at Golden Dawn, Tavern of Power

GMF Easter generalIf you’re in Auckland and some Easter Saturday fun sounds tempting, we might have just the thing…

Powertool Records is holding a wee listening party from 7pm on Saturday March 30 at Golden Dawn (corner of Richmond Rd and Ponsonby Rd) just before the Gold Medal Famous and Huf FREE show. We’ll play you a few tunes from our new releases before the bands take the stage. Oh yes, and it’s free entry for both too. So please feel free to join us for an evening of great new music and live entertainment.

We’ll be spinning tracks from the new US/NZ collaboration Drill/I Have No Idea, also tunes from UK/US duo Factory Kids, plus a swag of our lovely local artists.

Then the live action fun begins, with Huf and Wellington’s own avant-garde pop performers Gold Medal Famous.

Facebook event page


Gold Medal Famous bring live Easter treats on a North Island tour; first stop: Wellington

If you’d like a musical break from hot cross buns and chocolate bunnies this Easter, Wellington avant-garde pop group Gold Medal Famous are taking their inimitable live show on the road as a special performance treat this Easter.Doing a short, sharp burst of shows over Easter weekend starting in their hometown of Wellington and closing in Tauranga, Gold Medal Famous will showcase tracks from latest album ‘100% Pure’, plus selections from their highly diverse back catalogue.  This album, plus their previous Powertool release ‘100 Years of Rock’, will be available at the shows.

The tour kicks off at Wellington’s Mighty Mighty on Thursday March 28, stopping off at Lucky in Hunterville on Friday 29th, before landing in Auckland for a second Friday show at UFO New Lynn, then an Easter Saturday extravaganza at Golden Dawn on March 30 – proudly adding special guest Huf to the bill. This will be the first time in several years that the whole Gold Medal Famous band will play in Auckland. To cap it all off they’ll be playing as part of a festival under a bridge in Tauranga at midday on Easter Sunday, with a bonus solo set from GMF band member and pop genius in his own right, Vorn.

Gold Medal Famous Tour Dates

28 March Mighty Mighty
29 March Lucky, Hunterville (midday)
29 March UFO,  Auckland
30 March Golden Dawn, Auckland (with Golden Axe)
31 March Under the Tamatea Arikinui Drive Bridge Tauranga at 12.30 with Vorn, The Prophet Motive, Wheatbags Anonymous and Super Narco Man.

*GMF cartoon courtesy of Carl Jensen

Powertool Records
is very excited to announce the next step in NZ-US relations: the first issue of Drill/I Have No Idea magazine – two magazines in one!

Drill I Have No Idea covers 400

Drill, a quarterly music magazine published by Powertool Records and now in its 9th year, has teamed up with I Have No Idea, produced by Crazy Caveman Productions in the US, to create a truly trans-national music venture. Each magazine covers attention-worthy artists from the indie/underground scenes in both New Zealand and Los Angeles, and a tasty album is available help bring the articles to life. The magazine is FREE, while the album is a highly reasonable $10.  Amongst the New Zealand artists on the CD are Nick Raven, Come Down Kid, Gold Medal Famous and Sandra Bell, with US representation courtesy of Rough Church, Seasons, Black Watch and Amica Rose plus many more.

The US launch party, Best Bands of Los Angeles, was held on February 16 at the American Legion, with Seasons, The Black Watch, Greg Franco’s Rough Church and other LA-based bands celebrating the birth of the ‘zine.

A New Zealand launch party will be announced shortly – stay tuned to Powertool’s Facebook page for the announcement.

Kiwiphile Greg Franco is the man behind I Have No Idea. Born in Los Angeles and raised musically in the LA ’90s music scene, Greg Franco has shared bills with artists such as Beck, Possum Dickson, Perry Farrell and Lutefisk.

As a special appetiser for you, here are two tracks from the sampler for your listening pleasure:

Vorn ‘A Safe Pair of Hands’

Some words about Vorn:
Simon Sweetman wrote, “[Vorn] Colgan is one of this country’s greatest songwriters, never cloying or faux-romantic; these are direct songs; honest, cynical, sincere, hilarious and in many cases ridiculously catchy.” 
Grant Smithies
concurred – “Here’s a man capable of wringing great pop from the bleaker aspects of modern urban life … it’s the sharp eye for sadness that attracts me; his ability to use humour to expose pain, his affection for the underdogs.”

The Black Watch “Meg”
“The Black Watch is an absolute psych/janglepop treasure,” Michael Toland of Trouser Press observed in the band’s entry for that immortal indie rock resource, having seen the band play no less than three shows at the 2010 SXSW Music Conference.


Transcendental Learning Collective release debut album ‘Shift’ on March 9

TLC Shift 174Recent additions to the Powertool Records family Transcendental Learning Collective are gearing up to release their debut album “Shift”. They are rapidly picking up fans as their single memorably titled ‘Munt in E7’ has been playlisted on 95bFM and is hitting the airwaves around New Zealand.

Formed by DJN (DRONE/DRONEnsemble, Rome, Crane, AFL) around 2010, the band recorded “SHIFT” during 2011 – 2012 with the fluid production skills of Mike Hodgson (Pitch Black, Tinnitus) and extra extra guitars courtesy of Sean O’Reilly (King Loser, Ola, Sferic Experiment).

Aucklanders should note Saturday March 9 in their diaries for the release party, to be held at New Lynn’s UFO.

They played a cracking show alongside Cat and Sock at Auckland’s Audio Foundation in late 2012. Check out the TLC video: ‘MUNT IN E7’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKMLCJrr5AY

TLC will be joined by cult favourites Used To Be Apes.
“Ignoring traditional song structure, Used to be Apes create their own musical journey. Mostly instrumental with the occasional punk rock inspired vocal, UTBA explore the reductive and the intense, the melodic and the discordant, the simple and the complex to create a stimulating…. my god what a load of wank! We are a band. We play Rock.”
Live at UFO, 11 Veronica St, New Lynn
8.30pm Saturday March 9
$5 entry fee; albums available

Nick Raven is celebrating the release of his debut album ‘Love&Lomography’ at a free party at the Wine Cellar on Saturday March 2. The album evokes a sun-soaked, psychedelic fantasia, and what better way to get a feel for it than to experience Nick’s shimmeringly guitar-driven, honest songs live.

The songs Blindman and Butterfly High (But I Fly So High) may already be familiar to fans around the country – they’ve aired regularly on Nick Raven Cover 19895bFM, Radio Control, Plains FM, Fresh FM and Tractor FM amongst others – and Butterfly High soared to #2 on the 95bFM Top Ten. And the album contains a host of other gems set to steal the hearts of music lovers.

Raven will be joined in the Cellar by labelmate/songsmith Come Down Kid, and up-and-coming trio Oslo Brown.

As well as being able to pick up the ‘Love&Lomography’ album, copies of brand new NZ/USA magazine/sampler ‘Drill/I Have No Idea’ will be available on the night, also featuring Nick Raven.

Nick Raven ‘Love&Lomography’ Album Release Show
2nd March
The Wine Cellar
Support from Come Down Kid and Alec
8pm – FREE!


Surf Friends have a quick update for everyoneBrad’s Surf film-maker buddy Robbie Warden from the legendary Byron Bay in Australia has hooked up the Surf Friends’ track Edmund with this sweet surf clip of the pass at Byron…click here to view.   Edmund is from Surf Friends’ debut album ‘Confusion’, which was released on Powertool Records – check it out here. They were also selected to open for Bailterspace at their amazing Kings Arms show last week, and have a new album coming out shortly via Flying Nun.

Vorn touring the South Island from February 9           ????????????????????????

Vorn is touring the South Island from Saturday February 9 – it’s a rare opportunity to catch him live. Work has begun on his seventh studio album, and this tour presents an opportunity for fans to hear some new tunes, and for latecomers to become acquainted with possibly the finest back catalogue extant in New Zealand Music today.  Don’t miss it…

Indie Club open

Indie Club is a weekly showcase held at New Lynn’s UFO that promotes independent music – both live UFO Advertand recorded – and has been operating in and around Auckland for the
best part of a decade. During that time we have had hundreds of bands, duos and solo artists perform. Previous lineups have included the Neo-Kalashnikovs, Yolanda, Used to be Apes, Gold Medal Famous, Lion Eyes, the Brood, This Flight Tonight, Edwina Thorne, Nick Raven, the Come Down Kid, Kara Gordon Band, Fats White and the John Goudge Band, just to name a handful. If you would like to book a place in our weekly lineups, please email Andrew Maitai: aamaitai@gmail.com

Vorn J'villeIn case you missed it, our resident pop genius Vorn distinguished himself by winning the Tranz Metro “Metro Factor” Award for his Christmas song ‘Let’s Bring Christmas to Johnsonville’, and the news is spreading quickly via YouTube. Check out the video here and his Dominion Post appearance here. An anthem for our times, I think you’ll agree!

Gold Medal Famous is also getting into the Christmas spirit; they’ve contributed two tracks to a Christmas EP, alongside Cliché Guevara and Heat Like Me. Have a listen on Bandcamp.


Bulletholes 4: Exploring the Unknown – The album
Groundbreaking compilation ‘Here Come the Bulletholes’ came out in 2003, and while it wasn’t the first release on Powertool Records, it was undoubtedly the launching pad for what has become one of NZ’s finest underground indie labels. Hailed as “a great slice of the Auckland music scene” (The Press), it captured an exciting time and some great songwriting, with tracks by local heroes Mary, Cabbage Bomber, the Demi Whores, Voom and Rainy Days to name but a few.

Powertool Records has now reached number 4 in the critically acclaimed series, and 11 years on, with ‘Bulletholes 4: Exploring the Unknown’, the horizons have expanded considerably. In addition to an abundance of local tracks, the album showcases some of the international artists who have joined the Powertool Records family. Attics and Cellars (Jason Zumpano from Zumpano, Destroyer, Sparrow…), Rough Church, The Black Watch and Azalia Snail hail from the ever-expanding USA Powertool roster. New Zealand goodness can be heard from legends such as Sandra Bell, Brother Love, Gold Medal Famous, Vorn, A. J. Sharma and One Man Bannister (ex-Sneaky Feelings’ Matthew Bannister) – plus a whole toolbox more from the length and breadth of the country. And the songwriting remains great.

The album’s title comes from Wellington’s Cat and Sock – their track of the same name aptly expresses the album’s range. Most of these songs are seeing their first release here – but the collection of great tracks on this album means that they surely won’t remain Unknown for long.
Have a listen to Exploring the Unknown.

Powertool Records

We have over 100 releases under our toolbelts from the likes of Bill Direen/The Bilders, Vorn, Brother Love, Bored Gordon, Infinite Flying Kick, One Man Bannister/The Changing Same (Matthew Bannister, ex-Sneaky Feelings), Robert Scott (The Bats), Sandra Bell, Surf Friends, Gold Medal Famous and many more. Powertool also distributes selected international releases, including records by Rough Church (Greg Franco), Azalia Snail, The Black Watch, Sparrow (Jason Zumpano) and Lord Bishop – many of whom have also toured here.

You can get most of these records – and lots of other non-Powertool music – from our record  store, Alien: 11 Veronica St, New Lynn, Auckland.

UFO is our venue, with a focus on showcasing great live music – new bands, legends, local and international acts. UFO is situated next door to Alien at 11 Veronica St, New Lynn, Auckland. We have no liquor license, so if you want to drink, it is strictly byo. Indie Club has also relocated to UFO. If you wanna know what’s coming up…. check out the gigs page. We are also hiring UFO as a practise space.We are now taking bookings. Contact: Andrew at aamaitai@gmail.com

Check out our Catalogue.

Also find us…

Powertool Bandcamp:

Facebook for Powertool Records:

Facebook for Alien:

Facebook for UFO:

Facebook for Indie Club:

DRILL Magazine: