Piemen are cookin’ up the blues


Wellington muso James Coyle likens his psychedelic blues band The Nudge to a well-made pie. 

“You can describe the sound like layers of a pie – there’s three of us, and a good pie has got three simple elements. 

“A simple pie is always the best,” he says. 

Coyle, a Fly My Pretties 2011 artist, plays vintage organ and bass alongside fellow Pretties, guitarist Ryan Prebble and drummer Iraia Whakamoe – and the trio have cooked up a swampy, deep resonating sound for their debut album Big Nudge Pie

“You can’t really pin a genre on us – it’s like we’ve got our fingers in many pies,” Coyle explains. 

The trio joined forces last year after being part of various separate projects. They’re embarking on a nine-gig South Island tour to promote their work, which draws inspiration from 1970s artists Jimi Hendrix, Can and Pink Floyd. 

“We’ve all come together at a time where we’ve got eight to 10 years behind us each and we’re ready to push on in terms of making our living and trying to make a go of it,” Coyle says. 

“The ingredients have worked, it’s been in the oven for just long enough and everyone’s enjoying the taste. It feels good, and we’re getting a great response.” 

Part of their tour includes a quest to devour as many pies as possible. 

Coyle’s looking forward to sampling Queenstown’s pies when they arrive in the resort on Saturday. 

“It’s such a solid sort of food. We really like our homemade pies, they’re our favourites, so anything that comes close to that is what we’re into.” 

Concocting their album title also relates to the group’s mutual love of pies, Coyle adds. 

“We were in the studio and we were eating quite a few pies. Ryan’s girlfriend is a really good pie-maker and she’d bring one in each night and we’d all sample it. Then one night she brought one in and it had Nudge written on it in pastry. The name Big Nudge Pie came from there. 

“Also, there’s an obscure distortion pedal that we use called the Big Muff Pi. It’s a famous pedal – Jimi Hendrix used one.” 

The group’s looking forward to playing a full gig at Queenstown’s Revolver after their first stint here last year, when they supported the Black Seeds at the Events Centre. 

They’re also playing in Wanaka on Sunday night – supporting the Black Seeds again – for the Winter Games Meltdown closing party.

Catch The Nudge at Revolver on Saturday from 8pm