Making waves


She Shanties for Frank is a gift of merriment to raise the spirits.

The new album by Dunedin band Tiny Pieces of Eight is a nautical adventure, boasting broody bass sounds hooked together with lyrics pining for the sea.

It whips you away to crashing waves and wooden decks, seagulls squawking, the smell of spiced rum, and tattooed, leathered skin.

The album is officially released tomorrow.

The musicians making up Tiny Pieces of Eight include electric bass player Deirdre Newall, Rosa Cameron on double bass, guitarists Mitch Frew and Grant Ramsay, and Chris Schmelz on the drums and blues guitar.

Newall, Cameron and Schmelz all write the treasures that are the words.

The band members were born in different decades with ages ranging from 27 to 56, but they’re connected by a common appreciation for nature.

”We all tend to love the sea — the album, although it can get dark at times, is mostly inspired by the ocean,” Newall says.

”We are all pretty DIY punk rockers in a way … we aren’t really into making a video, and if we did, it would probably just be of the sea.”

And just as sea shanties were sung to stop boredom for seamen onboard ships during the age of sail, it’s easy to get lost in the midst of time listening to She Shanties for Frank.

Newall describes their music as textured and slightly psychedelic with strong vocals.
The band jokes “it’s doom folk played with a positive attitude”.

They practise once a week, usually on a Friday night in a “pretty haphazard” fashion.
But on stage, the set always comes together.

“We are quite a busy working band, but we are trying to slow down because you need time to write music.”

They’ve developed an inventive set of original songs over the last six years, and have gained a strong following at festivals in New Zealand and Australia.

They’re hoping to take their music across seas to Scotland in 2021.

Tiny Pieces of Eight play Sherwood, Saturday night, 7.30pm. Tickets $16 at eventfinda