Golden Axe to grind

22:25, Jun 24 2010

Golden Axe to grind I can't get a song from Kiwi answer to Kraftwerk, Golden Axe, out of my head. The Auckland-based stars of bargain-basement synths and lo-fi disco trance are Chris Cudby and Daif Kent.

Called Free Time, it's the best video I've seen this year with the great line, `When you've got a lot of free time, you can do what you like'.

It stars props such as a Garfield cat-phone, a lift to somewhere called ``The Leisure Zone'' and stars a strangely attractive man in white trousers busting some great dance moves.

It's the first single of their new, and third, album Fantasy Footwork. The video stars Don Brooker as an 80s karaoke singer and lounge-style magician ``rehearsing before the wedding of two former Roxy Music fans who have just had a life-changing spiritual experience''.

Don, the dancing king of Free Time, is a friend of the video's director Simon Ward, who has worked with everyone from Shihad to Disasteradio and is currently making a video for Computers Want Me Dead.

``That's Don. He's just a big fan and a guy who can dance. He's so damn sexy but it's so not OK. I've had that said so many times. All the girls are swooning but turning around to see if they're getting mocked,'' Kent says.


Nominally named after an 80s arcade game, Golden Axe last played in Christchurch in 2007, when they spent a week constructing a giant head. They then performed inside it, visible to the audience through the eyeballs. ``The last time we played at High Street Project we had a week to build a giant stage, but we don't have that luxury this time around so it's going to be a standard show,'' Kent says.

Golden Axe started out busking on the streets of Auckland in 2001 and their sound structures follow the ``loud-quiet-loud'' aesthetic. Kent plays three keyboards on stage, one of which cost him $1.50, another he found in a bin in Britain, and another which he ``borrowed'' off somebody who has since gone overseas.

Fantasy Footwork was recorded over two years and mastered by Wellington's Disasteradio. The album is also available on cassette.

``Yeah, cassette and CD, the two most irrelevant formats for releasing pop music,'' Kent laughs.

See them here on Saturday night when they play in Christchurch at High Street Project with Secrets (aka Fraser Austin who makes music using a webcam) and Dorkwind.

Go to YouTube and search Golden Axe Free Time.

Go to

 to hear the B-side to Free Time called Like it or Limpet. Video of the day: Golden Axe, Free Time Golden Axe play at the High Street Project on Saturday night.

The Press