Paddy Free
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Paddy Free

Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand | INDIE

Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand | INDIE
Band EDM World


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"From Elsewhere: A Weblog by Graham Reid"

Paddy Free: Karekare: Te Reo O Te Whenua (Dub Conspiracy) | Elsewhere By Graham Reid

Despite being one of the founding fathers of New Zealand electronica -- in the ambitious multi-media outfit Pitch Black with Mike Hodgson -- Paddy Free is perhaps largely unknown to a new generation of musicians.?I believe he makes much of his living off-shore these days and has always struck me as preferring to be out of the spotlight if he isn't performing (which has been infrequent as Hodgson too is stacking up frequent flyer points).?Paddy still lives out on the West Coast of Auckland, and the title of this, his first solo album, confirms it. So does the sound.?Imbued with te reo and Maori spirituality, and with assistance from Richard Nunns (playing traditional instruments), Tiki Taane, Waimihi Hotere and others, this one has a brooding and sometimes windswept quality that conjures up the environment around Karekare in the centuries before Europeans arrived.?Very much a sonic landscape (or providing a backdrop for a Maori dance company, which would also make sense), the album opens with the mysterious call of flute then pounds through harder, trancelike sections before the loving title track which possesses an eerie stillness at its heart.?Maori flutes can be melodically limited but of exceptional emotional power and it is Nunns' gift that he can bring that quality out in projects such as this.?Karekare: Te reo o te whenua is also ambient music in the most positive meaning of the phrase: it is an aural environment in which Free creates the sounds of the bush, birds and Maori instruments in a way which evoke the timelessness of the West Coast.?It is also, on repeat listenings, an album of telling small detail which get a bit lost on a first hearing in the rather more grand sweep of its conception.?It took Paddy a long time to get this solo album out of his system, but it was worth the wait.?Expect to hear many of these pieces in intelligent docos, movies and theatre productions for a very long time to come.
Added: 26 Aug 2008 -

"From Global Noize - Bob Duskiss"

Free Download - Paddy Free with Richard Nunns: "Kohatu"

Today we are pleased to be featuring what I think is a stunningly beautiful track from a project by Paddy Free (one half of the great electronic dub duo, Pitch Black ) in collaboration with Richard Nunns. The record, Karekare is a fusion of electronic music in combination with traditional music of the Maori people (the indigenous people of New Zealand) as played on traditional Maori instruments. Paddy's production is expansive and lovely and is always sympathetic to the many ancient instruments utilized by Nunns who is considered a living authority on nga taonga puoro (traditional Maori musical instruments). The end result is a sound that is both ethereal and deeply rooted in nature and the sounds of the earth and one that rewards repeated listening by revealing increasing depth. So many electronic fusions these days are all about the pounding rhythms of the dance floor and while there's nothing wrong with that, it's refreshing to find a project that takes the time to find the quiet beauty in the sound of two cultures coming together.

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As Paddy Free:
Karekare: Te Reo O Te Whenua (2008)

With Pitch Black:
Futureproof (1996)
Electronomicon (2000)
Ape To Angel (2004)
Rude Mechanicals (2007)

As Producer:
Salmonella Dub - Killervision (1999)
Inside The Dub Plates (2001)
One Drop East (2004)



Paddy Free is one of New Zealand's best known electronic musicians. He has written music for television, film, theatre, dance and multi-media art, as well as acting as producer and engineer for many world-renowned New Zealand bands.

Paddy first came to prominence in 1996 as a founding member of Mesh, the Auckland-based "live organic techno" band that combined dancefloor technology with traditional Pacific instruments. Firm favourites in Auckland's emerging dance scene, Mesh impressed punters with their high energy live gigs and innovative sound. Paddy's love of Pacific music has seen him perform at WOMAD with Mesh and Henry Taripo, and in 1998 he travelled to Tonga to perform at the Heilala festival with the group A Pride of Lions.

Paddy was the co-producer and co-engineer of Salmonella Dub's Killervision and One Drop East albums, and producer of Inside the Dub Plates which has sold over four times platinum. He has been twice-nominated for Best Producer at the Tuis - the New Zealand Music Awards - and in 2002 was awarded Best Engineer.

As a producer/engineer, keyboard player and general studio boffin, Paddy has worked with a diverse range of New Zealand bands such as Crowded House, Neil Finn, Supergroove, Emma Paki, Moana and the Moahunters, Oceania, Stellar* and The Exponents, to name but a few.

As a composer for arts and contemporary dance projects, Paddy has worked with Atamira Dance Collective, Mau and Black Grace. He has composed several soundtracks for installation works by multi-media artist Rachael Rakena. Rachael's latest work, Aniwaniwa was shown at the Sydney and Venice Biennales in 2007.

However it is Pitch Black, with Michael Hodgson, for which Paddy is best known. Since forming in 1996, Pitch Black have been at the forefront of New Zealand electronica, renowned for their mind-blowing multimedia live performances and four sonically cutting-edge albums. Since 1996 Pitch Black have played all over New Zealand and toured to Australia, England, Scotland, Ireland, France, The Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Austria, Croatia, Japan and the USA. Twelve circumnavigations of the globe with three more to follow in 2010.

Pitch Black have just completed an epic 12-minute remix of the Laya Project's "A New Day", and are stoked that the track has been chosen as the first track for the double remix album.

Paddy has been performing a live solo set of Pacific-influenced electronica since 1999, and his debut solo album, a collaboration with renown taonga puoro expert Richard Nunns, entitled Karekare: Te Reo O Te Whenua was released on July 14 2008, on Dub Conspiracy Recordings. Combining electronica with taonga puoro and vocals in te reo Maori from Tiki Taane and Waimihi Hotere, Karekare represents a uniquely New Zealand sound, truly The Language of the Land.

Karekare has seen much love from luminaries such as Bob Duskiss at Global Noize and has been receiving extensive airplay on Pathaan's Musical Rickshaw show on UK BBC6.

Karekare was represented by Creative New Zealand at WOMEX 2008, the World Music Expo in Seville Spain, and many tracks from Karekare have been used in New Zealand films and television programmes.