Big Day Out newcomers: The Aesthetics

By Joanna Hunkin

We'll be covering the Big Day Out this Friday with regular updates, blogs and photos throughout the day at nzherald.co.nz/bigdayout.
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WHO: Matt Middleton (guitar, synth, sax, vocals), Jason Barrett (guitar, vocals) Morgan Oliver (bass), Malcolm Deans (drums)

WHAT: Alternative, new wave garage band who once played with Sonic Youth in 1998.

WHEN THEY'RE PLAYING: Green Stage, 10.15 to 10.45am.

FROM: Dunedin

FORMED: 1995

AGE: Late 20s-mid 30s

When did you find out you would be playing at the BDO?

"About a week ago now. It was confidential for a few days until bFM announced it on Monday."

Have you been rehearsing or practising any new moves?

"Nah. We have a new set of stuff we've been working on over the last couple months. It's a very short set we're playing so we're going to do a blistering bunch of shortish songs and then end with a free-form noiseathon."

Has it always been a goal to play the BDO?

"I think it was something in the back of our minds but not really. I've always wanted to at least be part of one. But it's not a top goal. I think a bigger goal would be to become well known overseas. The BDO is a great opportunity for us and I'm bloody glad about it."

Do you remember your first BDO as a punter?

"I haven't even been there once. It will be a new experience for me. I've been talking to a few people who have been to BDOs before and who have performed there. They tell me to take advantage of my backstage pass and that there's a nice bar that I can go and feel important at."

Why should people make an effort to come and see you early in the day?

"That's a good one. It is early. I think if they want to experience a band from the South Island that you ordinarily wouldn't be able to see in Auckland, that has played some legendary shows in the past. If you want to be shaken early in the day with some cool punk rock songs and see the innovative use of a vintage synthesiser, you should come early."

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at this year's gig?

Dizzee Rascal. I'm a fan of his work. It ain't a rock band but that doesn't matter. I'm not so interested in Rage Against the Machine.

If you see them backstage will you go and talk to them?

"Perhaps. If it's a natural thing. I don't like situations that are forced. If I run into the guy and we have something to talk about then yeah, I would. But if not I won't."

Can you tell us what year the first BDO was held? Bonus points if you can name at least one of the performing acts

"Was it 1995 with the Red Hot Chili Peppers?"

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