Sounds of Sum­mer fi­nale

The Tribune (NZ) - - ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT - RICHARD MAYS

While it hasn’t been a great sum­mer for out­doors en­ter­tain­ment, Ac­cess Manawatu get full marks for per­sis­tence.

The fi­nal in the free Vic­to­ria Es­planade con­cert se­ries brings out some big guns, with four lo­cal rock groups set to shake awake any sem­blance of sum­mer siesta in the gar­dens.

It kicks off with Bearskin, an­other band that has come out of the UCOL con­tem­po­rary mu­sic di­ploma.

Formed last year, the four-piece al­tindie rock band cite in­flu­ences such as Queens of the Stone Age, Jimi Hen­drix and Weezer, fo­cus­ing on orig­i­nal songs and the odd cover or re­vamp, Ac­cess Ra­dio’s com­mu­nity devel­op­ment co­or­di­na­tor Sam Gor­don said.

The band played the an­nual Feed Back The Food Bank at The Stom­ach in De­cem­ber.

Sec­ond up is Bright­side, an es­tab­lished clas­sic rock cov­ers band. The five­piece backs lead vo­cal­ist Mandy Smith with a set list that spans from the 60s to the present day.

That paves the way for the Devlin broth­ers. Neph­ews of 50s Kiwi rock ‘n’ roll pi­o­neer Johnny Devlin, Jeremy and Ja­son with drum­mer Damien Jensen are Mid­night Switch.

Last at Sounds of Sum­mer in 2015, the band has played sev­eral re­cent gigs around the North Is­land, and ac­cord­ing to their Face­book page, the boys have sev­eral new songs to in­tro­duce.

Di­a­mond Su­tra, fea­tur­ing the dis­tinc­tive vo­cals of Tracey-Lynne Cody over heavy elec­tronic lay­er­ing, are also Sounds of Sum­mer veter­ans, and will pro­vide a fit­ting fi­nale for the con­cert se­ries, which will be live-streamed and Periscoped.

‘‘It’s sure to be a high-en­ergy, high­im­pact con­cert,’’ Gor­don said.

As that se­ries ends, an­other be­gins with a week of free Ac­cess Lunchtime Con­certs in The Square un­der way on Mon­day, Fe­bru­ary 13.

Each of the five hour-and-a-half per­for­mances will fea­ture two artists in 45-minute sets each.

‘‘We’ve tried to pair an acous­tic act with a band, open­ing soft and build­ing from there,’’ Gor­don said.

On Mon­day, gui­tarist Daniel Web­ster is on with rap pair­ing Dirty Lover.

Tues­day fea­tures the lay­ered acous­tics of Soren Ol­son with clas­sic sounds from duo Catch 22.

Wed­nes­day fea­tures an­other duo, String Fu­sion with UCOL formed band Rip­ple Ef­fect.

PHOTO: DAVID UN­WIN/ FAIR­FAX NZ

Jeremy Devlin and Damien Jensen of Mid­night Switch.

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