Gig of the week: Phoenix Foundation


Phoenix Foundation’s Samuel Flynn Scott says three words describe the state of music TV and commercial radio – dull and duller.

Scott, who’s set to bring Phoenix Foundation to Revolver tomorrow night, reckons times are getting tougher for left-of-centre bands in this age of the single download. He’d like the music-buying public to use a bit more nous when shelling out for tunes.

“Now more than ever it’s important we celebrate people who are doing things really differently and who really care about music,” he says.

“As music sales go down, I hope people are less inclined to buy the manufactured pop rubbish that really doesn’t contribute anything to the canon of music history.

“It’s really strange that what constitutes pop music now is a very processed music that has to have the right sound for the month.

“Music TV in New Zealand has become dull, and commercial radio is incredibly dull.”

Phoenix Foundation are part-way through recording a follow-up to 2007 album Happy Ending, which reached well over gold sales without any major commercial airplay, Scott says. Recent honourable mentions in the British music press, and a planned UK release of Happy Ending later this year should see the band tour Europe in 2010.

Results so far suggest their fourth album, slated for release at the end of 2009, will continue to push the pop envelope.

“It’s possible the next record will show us doing something that’s a little more avant-garde – a little more arrangement-based than song-based.

“We’re just trying to go with our first ideas and treat them with the same respect we would if they were more conventional ideas.”

Scott cites the Mint Chicks, Lawrence Arabia, Cassette and Liam Finn as examples of Kiwi acts that deserve kudos for following the same “free spirit” that guides Phoenix Foundation.

“I feel like there’s a little group of musicians who have almost become fluidly interchangeable with each other.

“You’re always learning new tricks from your friends, but I think more importantly you take a little bit of their energy and they take a little bit of yours.”

Catch the Phoenix Foundation at Revolver tomorrow from 10pm



Congratulations to Helen Reed!
Helen is the winner of a double pass to see The Phoenix Foundation play this Friday, compliments of 
Mountain Scene.