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A Cuppa Tea and a Lie Down (Bonus Track Version)

Able Tasmans

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Album Review

A major work from this New Zealand indie group, A Cuppa Tea and a Lie Down comes highly recommended to those in love with the sophisticated and delicate arrangements of the New Zealand rock scene's Flying Nun label sound. While some of their peers in the productive period of '80s and '90s down under produced edgy, loud guitar music inside the framework of pop, Able Tasmans temper their largely acoustic sound with keyboards and acoustic arrangements in place of corrosive guitars. The songs are built on the delicate threshold of complexity/simplicity, filled out with lush arrangements and dreamy atmospheres that call to mind Fairport Convention. A great album filled with sweet and crafty pop songs that will hold much appeal to fans of intelligent guitar pop; Yo la Tengo, Belle & Sebastian, the Bats, and Television Personalities spring to mind.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s

One of the many bright lights of the New Zealand pop scene of the 1980s, Able Tasmans formed in Auckland in 1984. Originally a trio comprised of keyboardist Graeme Humphreys, bassist Dave Beniston and drummer Craig Baxter, they initially offered a tongue-in-cheek, '60s-influenced aesthetic typified by songs like "Nelson the Cat?!!"; however, upon signing to the legendary Flying Nun label a year later to release their debut EP The Tired Sun, the Tasmans moved to a noisier and more colorful sound with...
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A Cuppa Tea and a Lie Down (Bonus Track Version), Able Tasmans
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