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.

For Fringe Festival, we will transform a Dunedin shop front into a playful recreation of Roy Colbert's legendary Records Records, where lost moments from the history of the Dunedin Sound will be reimagined and interrogated. Visitors will step into strange and beautiful tableaux that tell the story of the origins of the legendary local music scene through an intriguingly fragmented, culturally diverse lens. We are treating the Dunedin Sound as a living, evolving entity, using the present to explore and reconsider the past, and using the past to inspire the present.

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 Mix Tape Gallery.

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

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