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The Transistors

The Transistors

Monday 9th August, 2010 1:51PM

We catch up James from Christchurch based trio The Transistors.

Been around since?

2002 in one form or another. We got a bit more serious a few years ago.

Where are you based?


Current line-up?

Olly - Drums/Vocals
Colin - Bass
James - Guitar/Vocals

How did you get together?

We were in the same class in third form, we picked up instruments and we formed a band.

How would you describe your sound?

Fast and raw.

Your debut album Shortwave was released last year. Can you tell me a bit about it?

We were lucky enough to get to do the album with Bob [Frisbee] who has recorded some amazing bands. He helped us out heaps with so many aspects of our music. We’d never really practiced or worked on our vocals before and we naively thought we could tear through the songs in a weekend and be done with it, which we did but when it came to doing the vocals it was another story...

What were your hopes for the album before you recorded it?

That we wouldn’t sound like shit on record.

Were your hopes realised?

I think so, we’re stoked with it.

Your Myspace says that you’ve already got album no. 2 in your sites. How much new material do you already have?

We have heaps of new bits and pieces! About fifteen new songs and a bunch more that are nearly done.

Is there anything that you want to do differently when it comes to recording your next album?

It might be a double album, it’s going to be a lot longer than the first one, not that that would be hard. We want to have songs completed and rehearse the shit out of them before we go in this time.

You’re touring through March. What’s your favourite thing about touring?

Playing to new people in new places.

Your least favourite thing?

Our car breaking down outside Dannevirke at 10pm after driving all day and having to spend the night in the car and nearly freezing to death cos it’s pouring with rain and we didn’t dress for the conditions. Then checking the news to see the headline “Gunman on the loose near Dannevirke”.

What are the three things you always have to have on you when you tour?

Sleeping bag, toothbrush and a positive can-do attitude.

What’s the best or most memorable gig you have played?

We’ve played some pretty mean shows at Goodbye Blue Monday in Chch. House parties are always fun, we ended up playing an awesome one at one of the DHDFD’s house with F In Math, Wilberforces and our BFF’s Street Chant, it was ultra choice. We had a great show with the Situations at Mighty Mighty that almost didn’t happen cos our van got stuck in a blizzard on the Rimutaka Hills, we got there at midnight and it was packed!

You were fined for playing on top of Cosmic Corner to promote your album. What happened after that?

Some little man from the council apparently waved the fine around and demanded to speak to us. Then a bunch of people complained and another little man at the council waived the fine and claimed we weren’t actually fined in the first place but since we were holding it in our hands, I kinda think we were...

Was the Facebook group you set up to fight it helpful?

I think the Facebook group was the only reason it got dropped, a bunch of nice people got pissed off and complained and they backed down. We thought it was pretty funny. To be fair we did get 20 complains in the 20 minutes we were playing but we thought we’d at least get a warning!

What is your Dream Collaboration?

Hall and Oates

What’s the best concert you have ever been to?

Neil Young at BDO last year, the Mint Chicks never disappoint.

If you could share the stage with anyone (band or person) who would it be?

Hüsker Dü

What are you listening to at the moment?

HEAPS OF STUFF!!! Wipers, Bad Brains, Half Japanese, Death, Love, Everly Brothers, Zeros, Pere Ubu, Can, Exploding Hearts, The Creation, Stone Roses, Mission Of Burma, Big Star, Ice Cube...

The future holds…?

A whole lot I hope, we want to head overseas if we can just agree on a country to go to...

The state of music in NZ is….

Dire, dismal and depressing. Depressing when you look at what bands get recognition and attention and what bands get overlooked. There are some amazing bands out there, you’re just not going to find them unless you dig.

Gareth Meade


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