If someone told you about a guitar duo operating out of that beautiful, culturally rich hub of tourism we call Rotorua, chances are ‘punk rock’ won’t be the first genre that springs to mind. Yet one listen to The Prophet Motive ’s debut album ‘Manifest Density’ ought to be enough to convince you that such a marriage, like a bubbling hot pool, is one of the most natural things in the world.
The Prophet Motive is Mitch Cookson and James ‘Tittez’ Fox-O’Connell, and together, armed for the most part with little more than an acoustic guitar each, they make one hell of a racket.
The album was recorded and produced over two afternoons in the bedroom of friend Dave McMahon, with further mixing and mastering from Andrew Taylor. If that seems like a lightning speed to lay down some 13 tracks, it was a pace born of a desire to maintain a raw live feel – which ensures none of the hard-edge attitude or natural sneer gets lost in translation.
With the album being released during election week it seems fitting that it opens with Proof, complete with its references to ‘the truth’ and John Key, right there in the same sentence. Few targets are spared across the short, sharp, bursts of pure velocity that make up the album. Even local entertainment royalty Tem Morrison gets special attention. But the best thing on this humdinger of an album is the more existential and inward looking Born To Feel Down, which features one of the more memorable electric slide solos you’re ever likely to hear.