Every so often the bones under my skin ache and long for the throbbing beats of a super-jacked PA with rooomshaking bass tones and screechy mids. Saturday night we traipsed into the Auckland Town Hall and shattered our eardrums with soaring decibel readers for some twenty year old, vintage rock’n’roll with kiwi troopers Shihad.

Dinner first though – at the ever delightful Mezze bar, where the Spanish aromas of tapas, coffee and cocktails warm the senses almost as much as the bronze hues and retro lights. The night outside was just damp enough and cool enough to make the Mezze on durham seem almost tropical… The lamb was so good, the chicken spicy and nutty.. and my favourite discovery of the night was a normandy apple cocktail – whisky, caramelised apple liqueur and some other secret ingredient that remains secret because I can’t remember it right now!

New entry of the night was Luger Boa – with reformed D4 frontman Jimmy Christmas. I suspect more trading on their lineup than the repertoire, they were still a solid rock show.

The Mint Chicks launched their collection of new songs to the delight of the crowd. For the old songs click here. Hardly ones to put on an outta control stage show – the now three piece did create epic wall of sound moments that against the backdrop of the organ at the Town Hall were still visually stunning.

Shihad managed to rock through a collection of tunes from just about every album – including the crowdpleaser “one will heal the other” from the new offering “Beautiful Machine”. I haven’t been an album listener really – since The General Electric way back in the day. Some of the more obscure tunes from Love is the New Hate intrigued me, but this album is a fresh sound that just gets under your skin a little bit.

I just like talking to you, even when it’s late at night and we’re really tired… I like the refreshing honesty and the ability to laugh about things that everyone else we know takes soooooo seriously… thanks.

Happy Marko Day
Tuesday was Happy Marko Day. A convenient and roundabout trip to World Youth Day meant we had seven great hours (minus luggage hassles and the 5 minutes spent talking to the NZ Herald reporter) to hang out and drink latte bowls. We went to circus circus for lunch and coffee, hung out at the office and then prevailed upon Soul for dinner, where the view was watery, the wine was a smooth chardonnay from Matariki, the duck & dory were delightful and the desserts divine. Good food, good friends and an amazing stroke of luck that we get to be friends even from halfway around the world.

It was good for my soul to reconnect and remember all that is yet to be in the journey of life.

my author writes to me like a brother
a deep true friend his words like ink and truth in a tattoo
surround my mysteries and hold them up to light
eerie like examination photographs in uv light
longing that feels like a blanket of warmth and my heart full
i’ve been on a long road home from indiana
leaving behind the synergy and chemistry
of a man with machinery and cigarette smoke and silent words
that brings a wordsmith out to life in a welding arc
smoke heat heart spark
he knows my longing for main st nashville and barbeque
late night blues clubs on the mississippi
gruhns guitars and like all cities i love in the south
the mississippi runs through them
my hunting fishing smoking travelling river
through the deep slow South at the side of a calloused man
gold leaves and falling stars in wide ocean skies
a bluesmaster deville ’68 and all in silence, with the author.