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23 New Zealand Musical Artists You'll Fall In Love With

There's more to NZ than Lorde. Who knew?

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However, there's loads of New Zealand music that goes unheard outside of its own borders. Here are a few.

1. Avalanche City

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For fans of: Of Monsters and Men, The Lumineers

Avalance City, AKA Dave Baxter, releases upbeat indie folk. With a couple of No. 1 singles under his belt, Avalanche City's newest album was mixed by Chris Walla, formerly of Death Cab for Cutie.

2. Kimbra

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For fans of: Lykke Li, Ellie Goulding

OK, so you probably already know who she is, just maybe not for her solo work. Since featuring on that Gotye song a few years ago, Kimbra has put out 2 albums that showcase just how strong and creative she is on her own.

3. Broods

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For fans of: Banks, London Grammar

This brother-sister duo makes glacial electro pop. They're getting some recognition globally after a couple of US talk show live performances, but you should be paying more attention to them!

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4. The Checks

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For fans of: The Strokes, The Black Keys

The Checks were heavily influenced by the early 2000's garage rock revival, spearheaded by bands like The White Stripes and The Vines. An accomplished live act, they released three catchy albums until their break-up in 2012. Members are now in bands such as Splashh and Racing.

5. The Chills

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For fans of: Pavement, R.E.M.

In the 1980's, revered label Flying Nun played host to a plethora of indie bands that would go on to be name-checked as influences by celebrated American acts like Yo La Tengo and Dinosaur Jr.

6. Cut Off Your Hands

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For fans of: We Are Scientists, Buzzcocks

Cut Off Your Hands have almost entirely disappeared from view as of late. Their energetic live show is something to behold, and their two albums of stunning melodic post-punk revival deserved more attention in the '00s.

7. David Dallas

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For fans of: J. Cole, Chiddy Bang

Auckland, particularly South Auckland, has a healthy rap and hip-hop culture, buoyed by its high proportion of Polynesian and Māori inhabitants. At the forefront of this is Savage (yes, he of "Swing" fame), but far more interesting is David Dallas, whose positive Kiwi-accented rap has appeared on a FIFA video game and as an entrance theme in WWE.

8. Doprah

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For fans of: Grimes, Portishead

Chosen by Lorde to support her on her triumphant homecoming show in early 2014, Doprah are an inter-island collaborative duo (expanded to a full band for live shows) that make woozy, minimalist pop with a sinister edge. Producer Steven John Marr is a restless musical soul, recording noisy punk with Ipswich and slacker rock with Nakey.

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9. Fat Freddy's Drop

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For fans of: Lee "Scratch" Perry, UB40

New Zealand's capital city, Wellington, is a hotbed for its own particular (and at times derivative) brand of dub music. Fusing reggae, folk, rhythm & blues, and funk, Fat Freddy's Drop are the pick of the crop, innovating while most of their contemporaries choose simply to replicate. Their live shows can go on for Greatful Dead level lengths.

10. The Mint Chicks

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For fans of: Wavves, Death from Above 1979

The Mint Chicks imploded in 2010. Guitarist Ruban Nielson has found great international success as Unknown Mortal Orchestra (more on them later), while brother Kody's projects include Opossom and Silicon.

11. Opiuo

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For fans of: KOAN Sound, Glitch Mob

NZ is always pretty quick to cotton onto electronic music trends, embracing drum and bass and dubstep reasonably early on in their heydays (or revivals). One of the most innovative artists is Melbourne-based Opiuo, whose infectious glitch-hop is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

12. The Phoenix Foundation

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For fans of: Grizzly Bear, The Flaming Lips

The Phoenix Foundation have put out six albums of accessible psych-prog in 12 years. They've made festival appearances all over the world, and been at the cusp of making it huge abroad, but their new album Give Up Your Dreams suggests they're content with staying at home and going about their business.

13. Princess Chelsea

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For fans of: Bat for Lashes, CocoRosie

You may recognise Princess Chelsea from her cult hit "The Cigarette Duet", which went viral in 2012 thanks to its fantastic video. But Chelsea has two albums of sweet pop to her name, as well as collaboration history in The Brunettes.

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14. Shihad

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For fans of: Killing Joke, Alice in Chains

Quite possibly New Zealand's biggest rock band, they've been releasing albums for nearly 25 years with barely a sniff of the outside world's attention. They briefly tried to spread their name in the US under the name Pacifier.

15. Sinate

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For fans of: Death metal.

Former Prime Minister Helen Clark (now Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme) likes them on Facebook, and that is enough reason to give them some recognition.

16. Street Chant

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For fans of: Big Black, The Jesus and Mary Chain

Street Chant make music that's simultaneously bubble-gum and abrasive. Frontwoman Emily Edrosa's solo work is also well worth checking out.

17. Tiny Ruins

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For fans of: Iron & Wine, Sharon van Etten

The alias of Hollie Fullbrook, Tiny Ruins play exquisitely crafted folk music. The sort of stuff you listen to late at night with big headphones while drinking red wine and being all wistful like you're in a Noah Baumbach movie.

18. Titanium

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For fans of: Boy bands.

Yes, New Zealand has a boy band. Just one, mind. After a disastrous endeavour to try and create one in 2006 (they were called Boyband), radio station The Edge tried again in 2012 and came up with Titanium.

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19. Unknown Mortal Orchestra

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For fans of: Tame Impala, Real Estate

This one surprised most New Zealanders, who initially didn't realise that he was a) one of their own and b) one of The Mint Chicks' Nielson brothers. After relocating to Portland, Oregon, Ruban started putting out new lo-fi psychedelic pop anonymously, and has been getting bigger and bigger ever since, gathering new fans and accolades along the way.

20. The Veils

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For fans of: Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, The National

Revolving around the tortured baritone of Finn Andrews (whose father was in new-wave legends XTC in their early days), The Veils craft supremely beautiful and cathartic alternative rock, and count filmmakers Tim Burton and David Lynch among their fans.

21. Gin Wigmore

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For fans of: Paloma Faith, Adele

Whether or not you like the poppy soul offered by Gin hinges entirely on your opinion of her voice. An undeniably talented, yet divisive figure, Gin's entire selling-point is constructed around her unique (think a chain-smoking Joanna Newsom) vocals, earning her accolades and derision in equal measure. It's your call.

22. Marlon Williams

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For fans of: Josh Ritter, Roy Orbison

Still only in his early twenties, Williams is part of an intriguing scene coming out of Lyttleton, a port town decimated by the earthquakes of 2010-11. Often recorded analogue in converted home studios, Williams (recently relocated to Melbourne, Australia) and his ilk make a particularly DIY brand of country-folk. Plus apparently he looks like Miles Teller, if that's your thing.

23. Yumi Zouma

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For fans of: The xx, Washed Out

Ten years ago Arctic Monkeys showed just how useful MySpace was to emerging artists. Now airy, retro soul-pop group Yumi Zouma might just do the same for Dropbox. The group of NZ natives collaborated and shared files from their bases in New York, Paris, and Christchurch, before meeting up a week before their debut gig. The internet, eh?

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