Various Artists “Phase Five NZ Music”

I picked up this one for two reasons: New Zealand is the only other country I have been to, and the first track was from Bang! Bang! Eche!, which was one of the first bands I reviewed for KSCU.
Bang Bang Eche, as they are called here (no factorial), are showcased on the record with “Fist Full of Dollars.” It makes sense because I had not heard of any of these other bands. The Naked and Famous do “All of This,” and it has a familiar ’80s modern rock sound.
Kidz in Space is an excellent happy hardcore name, but instead they are some sort of Everlast ripoff. “Ocean of Drugs” doesn’t impress me. Surf City presents “Kudos” and makes us long for some Catherine Wheel. It’s quite proficient at this. Collapsing Cities remind me a bit of She Wants Revenge in “Tazers.”
Motocade is the only act on a label other than Control (Mushroom), but this Duran Duran-inspired doesn’t seem to be any worse for the wear because of it. And the hidden gem that these comps always have? It’s from your good friends Kingston, who bring us “Good Good Feeling.” Pure power-pop happiness is found on this one.
David Dallas was inspired by westside rappers, and I feel comfortable saying this because I am 10,000 miles from him. It’s not bad. It sounds like the rap music that was in The Sims Online. Oh, the song is called “Indulge Me.” Smashproof picks up the rear with an East Coast rap-inspired “Ordinary Life.” I withhold comment why these two tracks are buried at the end. They are both layered a little bit too much, but there’s a vibe, and it’s not lame, and you wouldn’t think it was from New Zealand. It’s good for the Facos and Versatiles of the world.

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