If you were kicking around in New Zealand in the mid-noughties, you would’ve been hard pressed to miss Elemeno P.
With a string of hits over three albums, the Auckland four-piece dominated the airwaves with classics like 11:57, Verona, Baby Come On, and Fast Times in Tahoe.
The band’s first album, Love & Disrespect, was released in 2002 and reached number one on the RIANZ albums chart. In 2006, they won Best Group at the NZ Music Awards.
And then they all but disappeared, branching off to pursue their own interests.
There’ve been a few shows over the past decade since the release of their last album, including a raucous reunion at last year’s Homegrown in the capital.
But now they’re hitting the road for what bassist Lani Purkis calls a
They’ll be playing Queenstown’s Sherwood on November 11.
Speaking to Mountain Scene during a few days’ break between gigs, Purkis says the response has been “amazing”.
“We wanted to see what would happen if we got back in a van and drove.
“It’s so much easier to do it now, there’s no pressure to be a successful band, we can do it for fun.”
Announcing the tour, Purkis said she couldn’t wait to visit some of Aotearoa’s “beautiful places” again.
“New Plymouth is where I got pregnant with my first-born, Napier is where Justyn threw our guitar tech in the pool, and The Mount is where we wrote 11:57. So many memories and poignant moments.”
They’ve all been busy in the intervening years.
Purkis has been working and has two kids, while lead singer Dave Gibson’s been touring the States and living in New York with his wife, who’s the inspiration behind one of the band’s biggest hits, Verona.
Guitarist Justyn Pilbrow’s been producing music in LA, and as for drummer Scotty Pearson?
“He’s not stopped drumming at all,” Purkis says.
“He’s probably the most stage-fit out of all of us.”
With a couple of shows done and dusted, Purkis says the average age of their fans still seems to be “about 23”.
“It’s a younger crowd, people who were five or six at the time,” she says.
“It’s a nostalgia thing for them.”
Now that they’ve got the band back together, the next question’s obvious – is there new music on the way?
“We have been talking about it,” Purkis says.
“We’ve looked at potentially doing an album, but I’ve definitely said those words in the past.
“Never say never, is what I’d say.”
To catch Elemeno P, head to Sherwood, Sunday, 8pm, $42