Creative shape-shifters


The Peacekeepers are ready to cut shapes with their Queenstown audience this weekend.

The band’s made up of three Shapeshifter members: Nick Robinson, known by his stage name Nicky Research, Sam Trevethick, known as Sambora, and Paora Apera, aka P Digsss.

For Saturday’s Snow and Bass Queenstown Part II gig, only Sambora and Digsss will take the stage as The Peacekeepers.

The usual trio came together about five years ago as an offshoot of Shapeshifter, Digsss tells Mountain Scene.

He initially says he can’t categorise the style of music they perform but then changes his mind.

“It’s bass-heavy music and everything we drop is a mixture of everything we’ve grown up with over the years.”

This includes reggae, electronic jungle music, drum ‘n’ bass and dubstep.

Because they’ll be playing alongside Tiki Taane and The Upbeats, their set will be bass-heavy.

But depending on who they play with at other gigs they’ve got other softer sides of their music, including dub and roots.

During their Queenstown gig, Digsss will mainly sing/MC with a little bit of DJing while co-star Sambora will DJ most of the time.

All three lads live in separate places, which seems to work for them.

“What we’ve learnt through the years is just live where you want to live and be comfortable and that tends to make us create better.”

They then come together either as Shapeshifter or The Peacekeepers and fuse their creative ideas.

Sometimes members of Shapeshifter will do a DJ set.

Digsss says when that happens the crowds usually only want to hear Shapeshifter music.

Getting over the constant nagging from crowds, The Peacekeepers were born.

This allows them to have a little more musical freedom when they’re performing a DJ set.

“It’s a win win for music in general and it’s really healthy for Shapeshifter as well because you think outside the Shapeshifter box and that also inspires stuff that’s inside that box.”

The Peacekeepers still play Shapeshifter tunes but can play around with whatever else they feel like on the night.

All of the five Shapeshifter lads have their own solo and group projects on the side of their main gig.

“We’ve got a lot of stuff inside of us to get out so you’ve gotta have side projects to play other music.”

Digsss is now a regular in the Queenstown gig scene as he moved to Cardrona Valley at the start of last year’s ski season.

Catch The Peacekeepers at Snow and Bass Queenstown Part II, alongside Tiki Taane and The Upbeats, at Loco Cantina, Saturday, 10pm, R18, tickets $41.95 on Eventfinda