Back in a time before instant, easy access to music—when a fan might read about a record months or even years before hearing it—the gloriously idiosyncratic music of a small city in New Zealand managed to make itself heard around the world. From Los Angeles to London to Lisbon, those who were lucky enough to hear 'It Was Raining' by the Verlaines or 'Pink Frost' by the Chills in the early 1980s were immediately struck by a sound at once familiar and exotic; minimalist yet richly textured; avant garde but catchy as hell. This was the Dunedin Sound.

We will transform the Octagon Club into a playful recreation of Roy Colbert's legendary Records Records, where the legacy of the Dunedin Sound will be reimagined and interrogated. We are very pleased to feature performances by Martin Phillipps, Shayne P Carter, Francisca Griffin, Alastair Galbraith, Graeme Downes, Robert Scott, and Abby Wolfe. Connecting the dots between past and present, some of these performances will be collaborations with Dunedin's talented local high school musicians.

We're also thrilled to announce the world's first-ever Dunedin Sound Karaoke Party. We have commissioned artists and producers from Dunedin and Los Angeles to create custom karaoke tracks just for this occasion. Visitors should come ready to sing their favourite songs by The Clean, Straitjacket Fits, Look Blue Go Purple, The Bats, and more.

In addition, there will be satellite events at Machine Project and KCHUNG Radio in Los Angeles, California. Visitors to our Dunedin space are invited to bring along their favorite old cassettes and participate in Andrea McSweeney’s ongoing Mixtape Portrait Gallery.

Anything Could Happen: Strange Echoes of the Dunedin Sound

Tickets from
The Octagon Club
9 The Octagon, Dunedin

$10, 8-11pm

Shayne P Carter and Martin Phillipps
Robert Scott and Mike McLeod
Alastair Galbraith and Abe Baillie
Abby Wolfe and Painted Blind

Plus: Dunedin Sound Karaoke Party

$10, 8-11pm

Martin Phillipps and Samuel Bing
Graeme Downes and Molly Devine
Francisca Griffin and Beth Lynch
Abby Wolfe

Plus: Dunedin Sound Karaoke Party


Saturday 18th March Koha, 4pm 

A discussion about record stores, streaming services, and the joys of discovering new music then and now with Francisca Griffin, Ian Chapman, Graeme Downes, Amanda Mills, and Abby Wolfe

This project is made possible by the generous support of the DCC and the Urban Dream Brokerage.

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