The 48th Annual RIANZ Vodafone NZMUSIC AWARDS
Critics Choice Prize

Loui the ZU


Beach Pigs

Beach Pigs
Beach Pigs are a young high energy four piece guitar "dream punk" band from Auckland.

Formed in December 2010 they went about roping in followers and steadily gigging throughout 2011-2012. They recorded and released a 5 song EP with producer Bob Frisbee.

The EP proved popular, garnering rave reviews for its raw high energy melodic songs. Popular music website Under the Radar gave it 8.7 out of 10 and named it local E.P of the year. 2 songs off the E.P spent a long time in the BFM Top
10 "No work" reaching number one. They released a single ‘Catch Up in the Sun’ Released in late April, funded by NZONAIR

All this activity prompted the interest of record label Arch Hill Records (Street Chant, Surf City and Don McGlashan) who has released the E.P on 7” vinyl and a single online has been released online.

In their first year of existence Beach Pigs have played over 50 shows. These have ranged from house parties and sold out all ages shows to your usual pubs and clubs.

In May 2012 they went the notorious "Full Mango" tour around New Zealand, where they played at least twice a day for almost four weeks straight. They are working in the studio on more singles and ultimately towards an album.

WATERCOLOURS is the solo endeavour of Chelsea Jade Metcalf, a member of folk pop trio 'Teacups'. Described as ‘powerlines against the sky and freshly laundered sheets’, the analogy holds true with the fine hint of electricity suspended in the airy open space of the dreamy musical soundscapes each song is inhabiting.

Chelsea has been ferrying back and forth from NYC, working alongside Justyn Pilbrow (Elemeno P) to create a bank of dream pop tunes derived from gathered field recordings. These are quietly being crafted toward a release.

Loui the ZU
It's hard to believe Loui the ZU has spent a mere 18 years on this planet, such is the depth of his increasingly undeniable talent. Since moving from Zimbabwe to New Zealand 7 years ago Loui the ZU has been developing into an accomplished
songwriter beyond his years. Loui the ZU continues to surprise with a constant barrage of online releases. Late 2011 saw the release of his first mix tape 'Look Book Side A', and with little time to exhale in-between 'Look Book Side B' The
Fruits of My Labour' introduced a new direction earning critical acclaim for singles "Smokers Lung'' and ''Listen To Your heart''.

In what will prove to be an incredibly productive 12 months, we can also look forward to his first commercial release this October with the single 'Fake Friends'. Loui the ZU is artist, MC, and producer. In an increasingly banal and insincere hip-pop world, it's more than refreshing when someone real turns up on the scene. This is a new breed of artist.

The Critics Choice Prize Showcase recognises an artist that a panel of 13 top music industry critics believe is on track to becoming a Kiwi music success story and potentially a future Tui winner.

These artists must not have released an album prior to or during the 2011 VNZMA eligibility period and not been a finalist at any stage for any Vodafone New Zealand Music Award.

The night contains three 30 minute performances by each of the shortlisted artists. After all three acts have performed, in a final attempt to sway the judges, they will deliberate and finally the winner will be announced.

The Prize:
The winning artist will receive:
• 10k grant from NZOA toward a single recording or a music video
• 2k Gear Voucher from Rockshop
Expert advice from the following:

Music Managers Forum

A 12 Month Membership to the Music Managers Forum of New Zealand. This includes free attendance to all MMF Seminars, One on One mentoring and access to all the online resources via their website

Lynda Parsons Entertainment Accounting

Mentoring in running a business, what to keep in the way of records, what to claim, setting up as a partnership or company, and completing financials and tax return.

Brent Eccles Entertainment Ltd

Advice of furthering their career based on Brent’s experience as a musician, booking agent & concert promoter.


A tailored package around the winner’s intellectual property needs, imparting career building information to help them capture, protect and manage their own IP assets.

McLaughlin Law

Mentoring in respect of the legal issues and contracts encountered by an artist in the music industry.


Your Comments

  1. Interview: Beach Pigs | Sounzgood (about 3 months ago)

    [...] Hicks: In 2012 you were a finalist for the Critics Choice award. Did anything change for you after the [...]