Summer’s almost here so Shapeshifter are hitting the road again. We catch up with Nick Robinson for 10 quickfire questions.
1. Tell us who you are and where you’re from.
My name is Nick Robinson, I’m from Otautahi and I’m a founding member of Shapeshifter since 1999
2. Describe your sound (performance/dance/art) in one sentence.
Shapeshifter is live experimental drum and bass, encapsulating bass music and rave vibes while incorporating live drums and synthesizers for maximum sound.
3. What does a wonderful festival look, feel and sound like to you?
Beautiful surroundings, varied line up of new and established artists, great food, lots of non-musical activities. We’ve done festivals in the past overseas that have killer lineups, but half the festival is made up of other things like fairground rides, workshops, stunt performers, circus things etc. It just gives that balanced feeling you can rave hard then easily chill somewhere while you catch your breath.
4. What can audiences expect from your live performance?
We always try to balance playing old favourites with pushing the boundaries and doing something people might not expect. I think we’ve got a very Kiwi style of drum and bass and we had good success playing Womads around the world.
5. What is your top festival tip/hack?
There’s probably a few. Get to the festival safely and look after your friends. And look after those strangers around you too. Spread the love and the good vibes will always make for a good time.
6. What are the top five songs on your playlist?
- Back to basics - Alix Perez
- Rave out - Turno
- Good morning- Shy Fx and Nile Rodgers
- DJ turn it up - Dimension
- On your side - Shapeshifter
7. What song of yours would you recommend to someone who has never heard you before?
I think we all strive for high energy and good vibes so i would maybe recommend Electric Dream or One from Soulstice. Stars from Stars LP or Runaway, one of our latest releases, would suit the high-energy good vibes label.
8. What does success as an artist mean to you?
Success as an artist to me is doing what you love, and being productive. When I first started out I tried to put a finger on success and quickly realised that if I was just out there doing it- that was enough to be happy. Money or no money if you’re an artist the art is more important than business, and if you spend enough time just doing it and at the same time honing your craft, money will just come in a karmic sort of way.
9. What tips would you give upcoming artists?
Make sure you are enjoying it and having fun. Surround yourself with similar-minded people. Have a hobby that is not your art, it really freshens your mind and helps you to step back and see the bigger picture. Never say no to opportunities even if you’re not sure you’re good enough. Fake it till you make it.
10. What is your dream New Zealand holiday destination?
Wow Aotearoa is filled with those. We spend a lot of time in the Coromandel that’s magical. The Abel Tasman area in the Tasman district is next level. Torrent Bay being one of my favourites. But I can’t go past Okains Bay in Banks Peninsula - my all-time dream destination.
Shapeshifter have a new single On Your Side. See Shapeshifter live this summer:
- Rock The Bowl, Taranaki - December 29
- Beach Break, Whangamata - January 5
- Electric Avenue, Christchurch - February 24
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