Awesome Feeling 7: Space Ventura ‘Pins and Needles’

Space Ventura

Brought to you by The Corner and NZ On Air, Awesome Feeling 7 is an online event running through NZ Music Month 2013, culminating in the release of a free downloadable compilation of 20 New Zealand songs and the words written about them. Each weekday for 20 days we’ll post streaming+downloadable tracks from emerging local artists, accompanied by artist and track profiles authored by Corner contributors.


Reverb is one of music’s great bandaids. Sometimes the only difference between an unimaginative melody and something that’s praised for being dreamy/minimalistic is the virtual room size. It’s a great way to obscure yourself, a bushel for the lamp of your voice. So to hear Manon Revuelta’s friendly, guileless hand with a melody amongst the hazy guitar pop of Space Ventura is pretty great. It’s a simple but very effective piece of phrasing that feels familiar but hard to place, and her voice has a beautiful lightness and innocence. Dreamy is sort of a synonym for “I can’t really discern the lyrics”, which is partially true here but sometimes a melody tells you all you need to know.

The first time I saw them they made me think of Blonde Redhead and it felt like they had a bit of a shoegaze thing going on, with all the reverb and some whammy bar applied to chords. The recording of ‘Pins and Needles’ isn’t a world away from what I heard at the time, but it feels a little more immediate. And for all that it’s actually a pretty dry mix in a lot of places, while the jangly guitars and enthusiastic drumming give it a little requisite Flying Nun flavour. Time spent in Cool Rainbows and Ghost Wave by guitarist Rikki Sutton seems to have been well spent and Space Ventura is starting to stack up well in the space between that company.

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Download previous Awesome Feeling compilations:

Download: Awesome Feeling 5
Download: Awesome Feeling 6

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