Greetings from Chengdu,
Out of the grey, smoggy winter, spring is emerging. The days are getting brighter, the air is clearing, street side sweet potatoes have metamorphosed into pineapple skewers and the promise of sunshine is teasing at the horizon.
With warmth comes glad tidings! This year, I am ecstatic to announce a ten-date China tour for Womb and Strange Stains in June/July!
I have your arms,
You have my love
Could I ever get enough
Here we lie as the sun dies
Here we bend to smell the dirt
Here we bend to break and burn
Womb are a magical embodiment of whānau. I’ve been lucky enough to see them perform several times around Wellington over the past five years, having obsessively followed everything they’ve released on Bandcamp from 2013’s A Cliff At Dawn by Haz and Charlotte’s precursory musical incarnation Athuzela Brown, to the lo-fi bedroom demos that heralded the start of Womb and of course the unspeakably beautiful Like Splitting the Head from the Body released with the Wellington collective Sonorous Circle last year, complete with a flesh coloured vinyl and hand-drawn album art by jiějiě (big sister), drummer Georgette.
I play their record when I’m feeling contemplative, sad, or just want to feel something at all. I put their tracks on a mix CD for an ex. I cycle around the city, zoning in and zoning out, listening to them with headphones. I am a massive Womb fan. Their music calms me. A Womb-liever? A womb leaver? If that’s the case, then aren’t we all.
Rooted in folk while reaching to the edges of the sonic stratosphere, Womb blend effortlessly into a myriad of settings, comfortably snuggling into line ups of hardcore punk and dance-floor werking techno, blissing out audiences upon grassy knolls, dive bars, or encapsulated in an astronomical observatory.
Seeing Womb live is an affecting experience. You see it in the people swaying with their eyes closed, the loved ones lying in each other’s arms. You hear it through Charlotte’s heart-on-the sleeve delivery of lyrics, the synchronicity of the trio’s sound built upon the strums of a hauntingly beautiful “pretty much B flat” guitar tuning, delay drenched synthscapes and half-brushed, half-sticked understated drum lines. Womb evoke deeply personal connections, producing huge swells of emotion that say that it’s okay to be vulnerable, it’s okay to feel what you feel… Womb bring people together.
_ THIS IS SO GREAT / MAKES ME SO HOMESICK I WANT TO CRY
I am writing from China, where in a few months Womb will be sharing their music alongside the incredible Strange Stains, with love and support from Laura Duffy and Christopher Ulutupu. The excitement is palpable, yet it is no small feat to transport this mega crew of brilliant people across the Pacific…
Tonight, Womb and Strange Stains have prepared an enchanting evening of absolutely banging sound, vision and vibes at Meow, uniting beloved friends DJ snakelegs, Ursula Le Sin, crone and Laura Duffy into a fundraiser show for the ages, with proceeds going towards this epic China adventure. For the benefit of audiences in China, I implore you to get down to Meow tonight and support your fellow amazing Wellington creative beings on their journey to the Middle Kingdom!
Click the poster for event details!
Words from the tour crew:
Strange Stains (SUPPORT):
I pretend I’m also from the same womb cos it’s such a magical womb, I cant believe it’s produced such cuties! I have never been to China before!!! I can’t wait to go, I don’t think I’ll want to leave, it kind of blows my mind! The hype level is 110 for sure! We just saw an incredible doco made by Dan Harris (aka Illojgali) that showcases touring in China, it is beautiful and give a taste of the amazingness we are about to behold in China!
Christopher Ulutupu (VIDEO):
Womb ignites the feeling you get when you’re sad then something miraculous happens and you smile for the first time. Not a full blown smile but a smirk that continues to lift your spirits. I am looking forward to seeing Womb on the world stage and in a different environment than their usual. Hoping that the tour evolves their sound and grows their demographic.
Laura Duffy (VISUALS):
Womb’s music makes me feel like crying because it’s so beautiful and sexy and sad, I love seeing them play live because their connection between themselves is so beautiful and soft and kind. I’m a video artist and I would explain my style as ‘hot and yuck’ haha, I’m not too sure how to explain it because I’m still working on how to VJ. For tonight’s set the VJ Style is more about complimenting the mood. Womb will be accompanied by moving images of abstracted glitching green seaweed
Words from tonight’s performers:
I’m Alexa Casino, I write and produce sad pop music which I sing live. I also DJ, I have a monthly residence at internetpublicradio.live, which is a Mexican radio station. When I DJ parties as DJ Snakelegs I just want to play the music that makes me bounce! I mostly mix house with jersey club and baile funk remixes of RnB bangers, mostly catering to Haz because he is one of my favourite dancers and has had a big part in shaping my tastes. WOMB are dear friends of mine, we have so many great memories together and to be honest I’m obsessed with them. Their music is really special to me and I know all their songs off by heart. As a DJ I do have immaculate taste in music and they are my favourite band so obviously everyone should come and bask in their magic!
Ursula Le Sin
Being at a Womb show is being entangled in a web of love and wonder. Sticky entrapment occurs slowly, as the strength of connection between band and audience blossoms throughout the set. It is Womb’s ability to invite and speak to individuals, rather than a room, that induces a warm feeling of closeness for all who are open to it.
*Is it you, or is it me?* Home girl Ana Te Kotiro got the call up from the emergency unit at Shortland Street and unfortunately won’t be able to attend tonight. She does however send mega vibes from Auckland to the Welly whānau! Bless up!
WORD FROM WOMB:
Hype levels maxing out at 10/10! We are so excited. It still feels quite surreal for us. It probably won’t sink in properly until the moment we start play our first show in Guangzhou.
We have been to Asia only a few times and never for very long. When our family moved from Australia to America at the turn of the millennium we stopped in Japan for a few days, which was beautiful. Georgette and I did a stopover in Guangzhou, China a couple of years ago, and had a pretty crack-up time. Our bodies were tuned to the totally wrong time-zone, so we stumbled around the city for three nights, ate lots of noodles, watched horror movies on the TV in our hotel room at sunrise, and then slept through the days. Guangzhou is the first place we will be playing, and we are really excited to properly see this city and hopefully not be too jet-lagged this time!!
We are super excited about tonight’s line-up, which includes Ursula Le Sin, crone, and DJ snakelegs, as well as us and the phenomenal Strange Stains.
Ursula Le Sin will be starting off the night with their mesmerising dark techno and no doubt a hot af look to match. Long time friend and muse Strange Stains, who we are lucky enough to be travelling and playing with alongside on our tour of China, will be bringing their usual transcendental magic energy to the stage to transport us all to the dancefloor in the sky. crone, a next-level two-piece that have moved up to Pōneke from Ōtepoti, will be blessing us all with their slick beats and ominous melodies. DJ snakelegs, AKA THE Alexa Casino, will be finishing off the night with their amazing DJ powers, mixing the hottest tracks and getting people sweaty on the dancefloor. To top it all off, the night will be accompanied by local angel and artist, Laura Duffy, who will be bringing her stellar visuals to the stage, a little sneak peak of some of the offerings she will be bringing as she VJs her way throughout China with us.
Meow, tonight, doors from 9pm!
Womb + Strange Stains China Tour Fundraiser w/ Ursula Le Sin, crone, DJ Snakelegs & Laura Duffy Friday 15th March 2019 Meow, 9 Edward St, Wellington Tickets at Just the Ticket, here!