Music rocks Masterton

By Rose Gawn

Masterton residents could be forgiven for thinking there was tectonic activity shaking their town on Saturday night as New Zealand's newest music venue was rocked by award-winning Kiwi artist Tiki Taane.

Anticipation for King Street Live's first major event had been building for months as pre-sales for the performance sold out weeks before and door sales sold out within 15 minutes on the night.

Two hours before Taane was due to take the stage, a crowd had formed in King Street. As one punter in the line for the door said: "I never thought I would queue for anything in Masterton except at the supermarket."

Up-and-coming soloist Tama Pira, who featured in the Maori Television documentary Songs From the Inside, opened the Saturday night show.

Taane showcased his talent on the night with a range of instruments including his signature conche shell and a small whistle that summoned up haunting sounds from Taane's platinum-selling album from 2007, Past, Present, Future. His unstoppable energy was infectious, with young and old dancing up a storm and the state-of-the-art sound system sending tremor-like bass lines through the purpose-built facility.

After an energetic acoustic set, Taane launched into an explosive electronic set with drum and bass maestro DJ Sambora, Sam Trevethick from drum and bass act Shapeshifter. The pair sampled tracks from Taane's early days in Concorde Dawn and more recent Shapeshifter sounds.

After a successful opening night on Friday, owners Warren Maxwell and Carl Schdroski took a more behind-the-scenes approach with Maxwell tripping out on the lighting desk and Schdroski tripping the light fantastic among the crowd.

Their vision for an amplified and vibrant music scene in Wairarapa has been realised and excitement is now growing for the next big acts booked to play the venue. Tickets are already selling fast for NZ music legend Dave Dobbyn, playing King Street Live on May 26.



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