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.
In New Zealand music the words “melting pot” bring to mind the 1988 When The Cat’s Away cover of Blue Mink’s absurd feel-good assimilation ditty. The term “yellow chinkees” isn’t the only thing problematic there and Melting Pot Massacre could not be more perfect as an update for tired word association and concept.
This week the Auckland-based all-Asian feminist hardcore band released their Diaspora EP, which is streaming over at Under The Radar. Identifying as 1.5/2nd generation migrants they are socially conscious, their music being a platform to literally thrash-out malformed attitudes, highlighting issues like racism and the struggles of people of colour, including indigenous people.
Despite the heavy staging in ‘Migrant & Refugee Solidarity Song’, there’s a necessary clarity to the vocals. The lyrics command attention and the sound is uncomplicated, forming an accessible, robust punk song that urges you to consider your privilege and the status quo, together with the history that formed it.
While the songs are intentionally frank, they are also (most-importantly) empowering. There’s a middle finger being given on one hand but a thoughtful, positive dedication to change also at play, evident in cries like “Are you ready for migrant refugee solidarity?”
The band has been playing since 2011 and will be on stage at C.L.I.Tfest, a feminist festival being held in Wellington this weekend. Standing alongside peers including Wellington punks Fantails who often sing in Maori, and “ethnicalypse” genre-discarders Badd Energy, there is like-minded community representing within New Zealand music. This is great; voices like these are not only exciting but necessary.
Download previous Awesome Feeling compilations: