The Wellington Sound has arrived, and it is DARTZ. The Wellington party-punk foursome have recorded a collection of their fan favourite songs; their debut album appropriately titled The Band from Wellington, New Zealand. Their album is to be released digitally, on CD, and on standard black or limited edition ‘Lion Brown’ vinyl via Flying Nun Records on the 4th of November 2022. Like most Flying Nun releases, Holiday Records is the pressing plant proudly behind the vinyl manufacturing of this debut album.


Featuring tracks such as the firm fan favourite '40 Riddiford Street’ (video below) - a singalong anthem railing against the inherent injustices of New Zealand’s gruelling rental market. The single encapsulates the hellish living conditions of your typical beer-loving tenant. Featuring party-starting riffs and lyrics such as "an apple a day keeps the asbestos away" and "900 a week to live like we're squatting", this single is likely very relatable to the band’s fans new and old alike.

The four-piece, established in 2019 in New Zealand’s windy capital city, are a whirlwind of irrepressible personality who have quickly cemented themselves as one of Aotearoa’s fastest up-and-coming rock acts, having spent the past three years putting the foot to the pedal and building a diehard army of fans across the country.

After the award for Favourite Group at the inaugural NZ Student Radio Network Awards gave the DARTZ boys two free days of recording time at Auckland’s Roundhead Studios, the ciggy-chomping crew made their way up the country in early 2022 to embark on a Lion Brown-fuelled weekend of recording that saw them re-record eight of their fans’ favourite DARTZ hits, as well as lay down to tape two previously unrecorded songs that are similarly beloved by their live audience.

The result of that weekend is The Band from Wellington, New Zealand: a 26-minute showcase of DARTZ’s party-starting live energy; specifically recorded, mixed and mastered to deliver the elusive feeling and sound of experiencing the band in person. While many of the band’s previous recordings were whirlwind bedroom efforts that saw songs written and recorded within a matter of days if not hours, TBFWNZ is DARTZ at the peak of their performative powers.

Described as New Zealand's "politically aware class clowns with a reputation for bringing the party wherever they appear" in a recent New Zealand Herald article naming them one of the country's 10 future music stars to watch, DARTZ are Crispy on guitar, Clark on bass, Rollyz on drums and Danz on the shouts. We had the pleasure of sitting down them for a quick Q&A on their very first release on the beautiful medium that is vinyl. Check it out below.

Tell us a bit about yourself

We're DARTZ, the band from Wellington, New Zealand - Crispy, Rollyz, Clark and Danz. We started the band back in 2019 - although the music DARTZ makes is quite punk/garage rocky, our most cherished songs are your classic Kiwi anthems from the likes of Dobbo, Elemeno P, Dragon, Shaun's B'day - all the classics.

Tell us a bit about the album

'The Band from Wellington, New Zealand' is our debut album. Back at the start of the year, we decided that we wanted to press a bunch of our fans' favourite songs to vinyl for them to own, so in February we spent a weekend at Roundhead Studios smashing out live recordings of 10 songs (8 old favs + 2 new ones). The vibe/sound we were aiming for was just the best possible version of DARTZ live, and we're really stoked since we feel like we absolutely hit that with these songs.
The plan was always to put it out primarily on vinyl, but along the way, Flying Nun jumped on board and offered to help us release it - we said yes and here we are.

Tell us a bit about the album artwork

All the artwork for the vinyl covers + inserts was done by our singer Danz @yeehawtheboys. He drew it all primarily with vinyl in mind so there's a lot of details and little jokes throughout it for our friends/fans - obviously there's a little bit of a comic-book theme to the cover too since that's a major source of inspiration for Danz's art. You can read a little bit more about his design process for the album artwork here.

Tell us why you chose to press it to vinyl - What do vinyl records mean to you? Why did you choose Holiday Records? Any reasons behind the colour vinyl choice?

The main reason we decided to press this for vinyl was for the DARTZ fans - over the past couple years, a lot of people have asked us when they can get their hands on DARTZ vinyl, so we really wanted to do right by those fans by giving them the songs they love, sounding the best they can, in a tight vinyl package - with a Lion Brown themed brown vinyl for those of em who want it as well, as it is the greatest beer known to mankind. Danz and Crispy from our band are both huge vinyl fans/collectors so I think it's been pretty exciting for them to go through this process too.
We've been huge fans of everything Holiday has done over the past few years, and at this point a lot of our friends and favourite local bands have made records with Holiday, so there was never any choice about who we'd ask.

Any upcoming gigs we can plug?

We're playing with The Chats in Wellington and Auckland in December! Apart from that, we got a few other upcoming shows that we're going to announce soon - chuck us a follow on the gram @smokedartz to get in the know :)