i should tell you: coco solid

Well hello there, and welcome to volume eleven of I Should Tell You, where I interview musicians who are cool but who also respond to my earnest email. Same three questions about food every week, just to see what happens. This week I’m talking with the mercurial Coco Solid, who has already livened up this blog once before in the form of a guest post while Tim and I were roaming round America last October.

Multifaceted like an ethically-sourced diamond, Coco Solid manages to hold down a million schemes and creative projects. Like Parallel Dance Ensemble, with whom she was part of one of the best music videos of all time for their track Weight Watchers. There’s Badd Energy, there’s her own solo work, there’s more besides.  She’s currently back in Korea on an artist’s residency programme, but in the meantime – should you not happen to be in Korea yourself – you can follow her poetic ways with just 140 characters on Twitter, read her blog, and yeah, just watch the Weight Watchers video okay? 

I love this song.

Thanks, Coco Solid! The interview starts…now. 

Where’s somewhere you‘ve eaten that you kinda like to brag about or drop into conversation? 
I would say my fav meals around the world include: haloumi and satay pita in Berlin, cherry pie in New York, ramen in Tokyo, soft tacos in Guadalajara, ribs in Shanghai, any goddam thing in Korea. I also champion the food joints of my native Auckland, every suburb hides a deadly secret. 

What do you fix for yourself, or where do you go to eat, when it’s just you on your own?
This summer I cooked a recurring breakfast – roast garlic tomatoes with basil, olive oil and balsamic and bread. It’s fast, cheap and feels sorta flash.

I’m loving wandering around Seoul on my own, eating here is out of control. Because I rely on signage, body language or amazing smells, every night is a date with destiny lol.
What’s one of your favourite food memories from your childhood? 
My Mum is very quiet and unassuming but she is a ruthlessly talented cook. If you prepare anything for her you have to bring your A-game. I remember seeing her throw-down gourmet stuff on a tight-as budget when I was growing up, she was known for it. She taught me about good food minus the pretense. 
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i should tell you archives:
Watercolours (March 22)
Jeremy Toy, She’s So Rad (March 14)
Hera and Jed (March 7)
Eva Prowse (March 1)
Jan Hellriegel (February 21)
Dear Time’s Waste (February 14)
Flip Grater (February 7)
Tourettes (January 31)
Anna Coddington (January 24)

i should tell you: Michael Logie of Die!Die!Die!

Well hello there, and welcome to chapter nine of I Should Tell You, where I talk about food with cool musicians who will answer my deeply earnest emails. The same three questions every time, just to see what happens. And oh, does stuff ever happen. In that I’ve somehow managed to get away with making this thing exist for so long now. I took a largely unnoticed break from posting the interviews over easter but am back for the winter, this week with Michael Logie of Die!Die!Die!


Once you’ve paused to reflect on how excellent their name is, you should definitely use your attention span to absorb their music, especially if you like it swift, loud, and just a little uncomfortable. Which I sometimes do. If you’ve never heard Die!Die!Die! before, I recommend Wasted Lands from their 2010 album Form, and Sideways Here We Come from their 2008 album Promises, Promises. Which I presume, (but don’t rule out entirely) has nothing to do with the 1968 musical of the same name starring old-timey Broadway hoofer Jerry Orbach.

They also have a new-ish album, Harmony, which you can listen to in its entirety or purchase for your own good times. And if you don’t completely hate everything about this so far, then I definitely recommend you try to catch them live: they’re amazing. Incredibly energetic, so loud it’ll make you cough blood, and every scratchy, sharp note from the recorded music translates beautifully to the stage.


This is their newest video, for Erase Waves. 

It was very late at night when I wrote this and something strange happened when I copy-pasted the interview over here, but I decided to keep the hinky formatting in for dramatic effect. Thanks for obliging, Michael! The interview begins…now.

Where’s somewhere you‘ve eaten that you kinda like to brag about or drop into conversation?


Heart attack grill in Las Vegas. 

Two people have died there.

What do you fix for yourself, or where do you go to eat, when it’s just you on your own?

There is this amazing Scottish restaurant we have in New Zealand, they serve all sorts of food from all around the world, but

mostly they serve these amazing German sandwiches called “Hamburgers” and these sides of french potato cutlets called 

“French Fries”. Anyway, if you are ever in New Zealand the place is “Mc Donalds”

and if im making something for myself? STEAK STEAK STEAK STEAK STEAK

What’s one of your favourite food memories from your childhood? 

I once went to a buffet and ate only pork, and then had a bowl of
whipped cream for dessert. I went to the bathroom and threw up very
loudly.
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I Should Tell You archives:

Watercolours (March 22)
Jeremy Toy, She’s So Rad (March 14)
Hera and Jed (March 7)
Eva Prowse (March 1)
Jan Hellriegel (February 21)
Dear Time’s Waste (February 14)
Flip Grater (February 7)
Tourettes (January 31)
Anna Coddington (January 24)

i should tell you: Watercolours

Well hello there, and welcome to volume nine of I Should Tell You, where I interview musicians who comfortably straddle the venn diagram of being both cool and answering my earnest emails. The same three questions about food every time. Why? Just to see what happens. 
This week I’m talking to the super swell Chelsea Jade, aka Watercolours. Every time I go to write something elegant and encapsulating, all my brain can come up with is “swoon”. But I’ll write something further than that, for the sake of not being unhelpful.  

Watercolours’ music is way dreamy, summoning that moment just before I wake up and I’m trying to grasp onto the dream that I’m having but the effort of fighting off waking up overpowers that. (Side note: depending on the dream, isn’t that such a let-down?) It’s also dreamy in a more general, reviewer-pulling-a-nice-word-out-of-the-air-or-thesaurus sense as well. Dreamy squared. I’m significantly infatuated with her single Pazzida, not least because the music video features a tap dance break (my favourite instance of a music video with tap dancing in it since Mya’s important 2003 song My Love Is Like…Wo) but also good to listen to is Over and Under, a remix E.P of some of her older tracks by cool people like Haz’Beats and Jeremy Toy. I saw Watercolours in concert recently when she opened for Cat Power and she was excellent, and that night she tweeted me a photo of an ugly donut which, if those aren’t the actions of a person whose music you should be listening to I don’t know what is.

Finally, if you’re one of those lucky Auckland types living in the city where most of the stuff happens, Watercolours is having an album presale event on April 3 at Alleluya Cafe in St Kevin’s Arcade on K Road. Which sounds like fun, although the precise nature of the fun to be had will likely unfold on her Facebook page, so go like it if you like.

Thanks Watercolours! The interview will start…now. 


Where’s somewhere you‘ve eaten that you kinda like to brag about or drop into conversation? 

Last night, with mostly strangers in my periphery, I bellowed at a television because I had dined on honey-laden pizza at a Girls season 2 finale location – Roberta’s in Bushwick, NYC. Which could qualify as a less than elegant brag. Another awkward brag would be that once I was in Brooklyn looking after Carlen Altman’s demon bunny in her bunny palace/apartment and every night I would buy a tub of Ben & Jerry’s and eat it alone in her bed while the rabbit ran rampant, gnawing on any dipped limb. I mean, have YOU ever been terrorized by a rabbit whilst eating Ben & Jerry’s? Did I mention I’m a self-diagnosed lactose intolerant?
What do you fix for yourself, or where do you go to eat, when it’s just you on your own?

I’ve aleviated my diet of meat recently and will now exclusively cook spinach, coconut cream, paneer curry until it is absolutely vital that I learn a new thing (I get bored of the flavour/there is a world paneer shortage/I have an altercation with a coconut)

What’s one of your favourite food memories from your childhood?

Once my well-meaning aunt prepared fish-fingers and placed me alone in a room with them. Somehow I percieved that they were meant to be hidden around the room? They were discovered days later and everyone was pretty disturbed. It’s a good memory because it still makes me feel really bad and I suspect I’m some kind of masochist. Later in life, I yelled at a fish stick over a chicken nugget that had fallen on the floor: “IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN YOU!!” So I think there are still some underlying issues there.
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I Should Tell You archives:

Jeremy Toy, She’s So Rad (March 14)
Hera and Jed (March 7)
Eva Prowse (March 1)
Jan Hellriegel (February 21)
Dear Time’s Waste (February 14)
Flip Grater (February 7)
Tourettes (January 31)
Anna Coddington (January 24)

i should tell you: she’s so rad

Well hello there, and welcome to chapter eight of I Should Tell You, where I interview cool musicians who will answer my emails. The same three questions about food every time, just to see what kicks we can kick up. This week it’s Jeremy Toy from the band whose name is also a lovely compliment: She’s So Rad.

I’m not even going near the hornet nest that is trying to write a bio, since I’ve seen them described as a four-piece and a duo but She’s So Rad definitely does contain Jeremy Toy and Anji Sami, and I definitely adore their music. You can listen to their album In Circles in its entirety on bandcamp, and you can even buy a copy of it on vinyl, which I totally intend to do soon. The whole thing is effing dreamy, although I do favour the track called Ice Block. Posssibly because I just really like ice blocks. Their single Confetti is all gorgeous too, all swishy and light-reflecting like taffeta. Just listen to everything, okay? But perhaps most of all I recommend losing yourself several million times over in their cover of that pinnacle of utter dreaminess, Rockin’ Back Inside My Heart. (From Twin Peaks, so important.)

They also have a new video coming soon and a fresh EP out on Japanese label Wonderful Noise ere long. What! Heard it here first. If you heard it here first. But till then…the interview starts now. Thanks, Jeremy!

Where’s somewhere you’ve eaten that you kinda like to brag about or drop into conversation? 

I took a trip to LA with a couple of mates and one lunch they were on a mission to find this place I knew nothing about. What  we ended up trawling backstreets for (pre-iphone) was Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles. This place is an institution and has fed many a celebrity (Kanye, Alicia, Biggie, Snoop). I foolishly ordered the chicken salad thinking it would be the healthy option however when it came out from the kitchen my initiation to Roscoe’s began as before me lay 2 deep fried chicken breasts sitting on a humongous bowl of lettuce and topped off with so much processed cheese that you could barely see the lettuce. My mate did a much better job of ordering and got the classic Chicken and Waffles, 2 pieces of fried chicken, whipped butter, maple syrup and 2 waffles. Amazing. I usually don’t like to entertain myself with the trash aspect of Los Angeles as there is so much more to the place than Hollywood and Disneyland but Roscoe’s is the one place I recommend to everyone going to LA as it is totally extreme food.


What do you fix for yourself, or where do you go to eat, when it’s just you on your own?

Bian at 183 Symonds St in Auckland is my go to place. They do a real good half serve of salmon and rice that gets the job done every time.


What’s one of your favourite food memories from your childhood? 

My old man used to do these amazing charcoal barbies. More often than not everything would come out looking like charcoal itself. After one night of brutal inedible sausage charring he took us on a mission with one of his charcoaled sausages and we posted it in his mate’s letterbox. 

i should tell you: hera and jed

Well hello there. Welcome to the seventh I Should Tell You, where I interview musicians who are both cool and answer my emails. Same three questions about food every time, just to see what happens. This week – in lieu of the so rad She’s So Rad who will now be next week – it’s Hera and Jed! I first saw Hera a million years ago in Christchurch in 2008 when I was working at the Southern Amp festival (it’s 6.30am, don’t make me do maths or logic please). She was making music long before then and has continued to work away making music ever since.

A fun fact about Iceland: sometimes, when things are all too much, Tim and I will say to each other (sometimes adorably/really grossly in unison) “let’s make a new life in Iceland”. Where no-one can call us on the phone and no-one can bother us and we won’t be able to read the horrible letters to the editor and everything will be wonderful. Another fun fact about Iceland: it’s where Hera is from originally. However Christchurch has become her home, as with Jed, who also plays with the band House of Mountain, and it’s from there that they’ve been making music together since 2011.

Their song Issues, which I adore, is out now. It’s sweet and spiky like a friendly cactus and the video is very endearing. I’m not just saying this so you watch to the end, but the end is my very favourite part.

Find ’em at Fledge.co.nz | herasings.com | facebook.com/JedParsonsMusic

Thanks Hera and Jed! The interview starts…now.

Where’s somewhere you’ve eaten that you kinda like to brag about or drop into conversation? 

HERA: There are lots of really special places around Iceland that I love, Hotel Framtíð – in Djúpivogur (a little seaside village, about an 8 hour drive from Reykjavik) has the most amazing langoustine soup.. all garlicky and buttery and comforting.. 
I also had the most perfect meals while touring in Italy – not at restaurants, but backstage in the kitchens of a few of the venues I played, there would be a really big table and everyone would gather for a late dinner, amazing pizzas, salads and yummy cheeses…

JED: There’s a really lovely local restaurant called McDo Nalds, they serve delicious gourmet burgers. You have the choice to upgrade your burger to a “combo” (I think that’s Italian for “even yummier” or something) where you can get a bunch of thinly sliced potatoes and a freshly poured beverage of your choice. 

What do you fix for yourself, or where do you go to eat, when it’s just you on your own?

HERA: I can be absolutely useless when I’m on my own, I forget to eat until I don’t function properly, then I eat badly.. but I do love to make pizza, and I have a few favorite salads (lentil and beetroot salads) and I really enjoy baking (much better at baking than cooking..)

JED: Luckily I still live at home and my mummy is the best cook in the world. However, If I’m home alone and I’ve managed to get over the tears and the fear of baddies coming to get me, I can usually nail a meal of 2-minute noodles. I prefer to put as much tomato sauce as possible over top, and then I like to grate half a block of cheese (edam if I’m feeling healthy – I find it is the lowest in fat out of all your standard cheeses) on top of that. 

What’s one of your favourite food memories from your childhood? 

HERA: I’m from Iceland, where the traditional food is a little ‘’different’’ We eat dried fish and rotten shark (traditionally served with ‘’Black death’’ an Icelandic liquor) When I was very young, I’d prefer rotten shark over chocolate..  (it’s a pretty amazing thing, think strong smelly cheese but with the texture of squid.. sort-of) 
Also, summer trips to the swimming pool in Iceland were sometimes followed by Ice cream, dipped in licorice sauce and rolled in candy… 

JED: Alphabet spaghetti. That was only on very special occasions. I also ate 25 weetbix in one sitting once (with 2 litres of milk). That’s not really a favorite memory because I felt pretty sick, but I thought I should brag about it anyway. OH, one more… Santa used to bring my brothers and I a tube of condensed milk each and put them in our stockings, that was yummy! He doesn’t come anymore though because one of my brothers swore once. 

(HungryandFrozen’s note: omg me too with the noodles and the tomato sauce and the ton of cheese. And I mean like, tomato sauce that you put on a pie or a sausage roll or something, not even pasta sauce.)

i should tell you: Eva Prowse

Well hello there, and welcome to the sixth (what!) edition of I Should Tell You, where I briefly interview musicians who are both cool and will answer my emails, about food. Same three questions every time, but what will the answers be? Therein lie the mild thrills. So far I’ve been lucky enough to talk to Anna Coddington, Tourettes, Flip Grater, Dear Time’s Waste, and Jan Hellriegel. This week…well.

This week there was a total kerfuffle, which I guess I could blame on tiredness except I feel I should stop talking about how tired I am because it’s like, we’re all tired Laura, stop trying to replace your lack of zany personality with talking about your lack of sleep (NB: am so zany.) I usually post this on a Friday, and was planning an interview with Jeremy Toy of She’s So Rad, but totally forgot, and then they’ve got some delicious news which meant I’d be better off posting their interview next week anyway, so I brought next week’s interview with Eva Prowse forward a week. At which point I feel like I should link to a picture of Jesus with his thumbs up saying “cool story, bro“.

Instead, a picture of Eva Prowse! Wait, did I just imply she was better than Jesus? We’ll never find out, because I’m so not going there. Even though – nah, actually not going there. Will inevitably offend.

Apart from being friendly and obliging about me moving round her interview suddenly, what else can I tell you about Eva Prowse? Well, I love her music. Her album, the excellently titled I Can’t Keep Secrets, was released in 2010, filled with pretty, folky songs sung in a self-assured, gorgeous voice. You can listen to, and purchase, the entire album on Bandcamp, but if you’re looking for just one to start with, the lead single Youngest Child is instantly charming. Eva Prowse has been living in London for a while but is back and working on an album to be released later this year. And she has also been absorbed into the Fly My Pretties family, which is pretty fancy.

Also fancy: Eva drinking a coconut in South East Asia.

Thanks Eva! The interview will start…now.

Where’s somewhere you’ve eaten that you kinda like to brag about or drop into conversation? 

Currently that’d be Vietnam – just the whole country really – although we did have some delicious vegetarian Pho (traditional Vietnamese noodle soup) at a place called ‘Pho Real’… 

Everywhere we ate the food was delicious and cheap – we mainly ate with the locals sitting on tiny plastic chairs on the side of the road. Noodles of any kind are always a winner for me, and the street vendors would sell an array of deep fried delights that I probably ate too many of. 

The bonus brag here would be that even though I ate a lot of food off the streets/local street vendors and had ice in my beers, I never once got a sicky tummy situation on the whole trip (I was in SE Asia for a month)! 

What do you fix for yourself, or where do you go to eat, when it’s just you on your own?

For cooking it’d be anything that’s a one-pot wonder, i.e. one pot to cook/make, same pot to eat. A vegetarian something or whatever with lots of chilli, spices, and salt.

Failing to cook (often the case) then it’d have to be toast – the best food platform of all time, with cucumber, tomato, avocado, and/or vegemite on top.

Oh and cereal for those hungry in between times…or anytime really…

What’s one of your favourite food memories from your childhood?

Fairy Bread – it was so pretty, had a magical name, and was full of refined carbs and food colouring – perfect.

When I was living in London last year, I told my workmate all about fairy bread (and other NZ whitebread party treats e.g. asparagus rolls) – she’d never heard of it, no one had over there had in fact. So when it was my last day of work, she made it for my leaving do. Only a handful of workmates tried it, and they all thought it was just weird and the texture was uncomfortable. I thought it tasted like a blissful memory, so I basically polished off the plate and was on some crazy sugar trip for my last few hours of work. 

I’ve just now realised that reading this interview a couple of weeks ago when Eva sent it to me was probably-definitely what influenced my subconscious to want Fairy Bread myself last week. So, double thanks, Eva! Also, thanks to Jeremy Toy from She’s So Rad for being understanding about my forgetfulness. His interview will be next week, hooray!

i should tell you: Jan Hellriegel

Well hello there, and welcome to the fifth installment of I Should Tell You. Every Friday I ask three short food-related questions of a cool musician who will answer my enthusiastic emails. Just to see what happens!

This week I am so happy to be interviewing Jan Hellriegel. She has been in what I (and…nearly everyone) call The Industry for a long time. And yet though I’ve always been aware of her music – to the point where I distinctly remember years ago, being a young intern and impressing a somewhat older member of staff simply by knowing who she was, what? –  it’s only relatively recently that I’ve been listening to it properly. And it is excellent. If you’re new to her stuff, I am sincerely obsessed with her 1995 song Pure Pleasure. It belongs in the canon of songs that I can and will listen to twelve times in a row without them losing their lustre. If anything: ever more lustre with every listen. I also recommend 2×2 from her recent album All Grown Up and It’s My Sin from her 1993 album of the same name. 

Jan is touring the North Island with Greg Johnson and some others in March – details here.  

Thanks, Jan! Here is the interview…here. 

Where’s somewhere you’ve eaten that you kinda like to brag about or drop into conversation? 

When I was recording my first album It’s My Sin with American producer J.D Souther at Airforce Studios he had food brought in from The French Café every day. I don’t know if they would do this now. It was brilliantly decadent and I was convinced my life as a recording artist would from then on would be a never ending parade of gourmet cuisine …boy was I wrong. Parkside Café in Mt Albert is a recent discovery I’m sharing. Such a wonderful surprise – by day a regular suburban Eggs Benne-style café, but at night, the most delicious and authentic Vietnamese in Auckland.

What do you fix for yourself, or where do you go to eat, when it’s just you on your own?

I am rarely on my own but when I am it’s sardines on toast. That ensures I will be remain on my own for a few hours. I can only remember eating alone at a café once in the last few years and that was Selera in Newmarket, Auckland near where I work  – they make the best laksa ever and I just had to sit down and have one for lunch one day recently.


What’s one of your favourite food memories from your childhood?

My Dad makes the best tripe and onions ever. When I was a student or feeling a little down in my 20s – I would ask him to cook some for me.  For many it may be chocolate  or ice-cream but for me, comfort food is Tripe and Onions.  Because life is pretty  sweet these days I haven’t indulged for a really long time. My fiancé promised to learn how to make it for me –  I am still waiting.