The Dark Beaks
Untouched by any process of the music industry, the debut album by The Dark Beaks comes to you, literally, from the basement room in a house in a Dunedin, New Zealand where it was recorded in 2005 and 2006.

Dunedin is on the south east corner of the South Island of New Zealand, elbowing it's way into the sea where the south west Pacific Ocean and the Southern Ocean meet. Next stop, Antarctica. It is known for producing alternative guitar bands and musicians, also being the home of The Clean, The Bats, The Chills, The Verlaines, Straitjacket Fits, Snapper, The Great Unwashed, The Renderers, The 3Ds, Sneaky Feelings, David Kilgour, Alistair Galbraith and many more.  The Dark Beaks grew from this tradition; their sound shaped by Dunedin's DIY attitude, indifference to musical trends and the isolation of living on the edge of the world.

Andrew Jamieson has been writing songs and playing music in Dunedin for about 15 years. First with a band called Munky Kramp in the 1990s. Then with The Dark Beaks. Folk rock, maybe, "folk and roll" even. Guitar-pop will do.  Just ordinary everyday stuff. Life, love, separation, loss, anxiety, reflection and optimism. No manifesto. No stance.

They record at home on simple gear.  Although they don't have any previous experience or expertise in the art and science of recording, they soon learn by trial and a fair bit of error.  A Dunedin tradition perhaps. If it was good enough for The Clean to do this in the 1980's it's still good enough for the Dark Beaks today. Mid-way through recording the album they recruit a bass-player and complete the remainder of the album in live takes mostly on Sunday nights.

It's not perfect but it is real and it's what the songs sounded like in their heads before they started so they are satisfied.  Taking the DIY approach to its illogical conclusion they decide to release the album on their own label and distribute it themselves too.

The Dark Beaks continue to create and record new songs and play and look forward to recording and releasing another, more ambitious album next year.

"Warm, dark bubbling alt-guitar rocking...The Dark Beaks like to crowd their mixes with warm, dark brown, almost Van Morrison tones and then fast forward them to... late Beatle territory, but in a cool way, with odd joints and juxtapositions and effects making hay with the mix." (Unpeeled Magazine, UK)

"Guitar-pop trio The Dark Beaks have delivered the surprise pick of the bunch with debut album Spill Your Heart, which shows glimpses of the same kind of offbeat charm that made Bressa Creeting Cake so appealing." **** (The Otago Daily Times)

"In a Coalmine is reminiscent of early Flying Nun band Sneaky Feelings with its rolling rhythms while other tracks conjure up comparisons with The Bats... Spill Your Heart is a welcome new addition to the rich catalogue of sounds that have emanated from Dunedin's frosty corridors." (The Southland Times)

"Spill Your Heart is reminiscent of The Verlaines or Sneaky Feelings: their beautiful shy sound that's evocative of those Dunedin days where the cloud lifts and the autumn leaves lay all around... Definitely one to watch." (The Dominion Post)

"A tidy blend of their Dunedin hometown's drearier sounds, and a more awkward clashing Alt. Rock bellow:The Dark Beaks really are worth spending some time mulling over." (Real Groove magazine)

"A mad plate, with which there is new to discover again and again. Clearly rather Pop as rock. In strange kind dreams and unreal. Beautifully." (German fanzine Guitars Galore March Album of the Month)

"Beautiful sounds...Small weird pop pearls... The music is agreeably old fashioned, has corners and edges." (Schallgrenzen, Germany)
[German reviews translated by AltaVista Babelfish].

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Name: The Dark Beaks