Globetrotting DJ makes Nelson sweat

Nelson Mail, 26 May 1999

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Former Christchurch dance music DJ OB1 - alias Matt O'Brien - brought British and Japanese influences to his gig at Nelson's Artery on Saturday night. O'Brien was the main attraction at an all-night trance event attended by about 300 people.

He recently returned to New Zealand after spending the past three years immersed in the dance music scenes of London and Japan.

"The scene in London is huge," he said. "It's a fantastic place, but a lot of it is going on at mainstream level, so something like (New Year dance party) the Gathering in the UK would have a lot of mainstream people, while in New Zealand it is still quite alternative."

O'Brien has performed at nearly every Gathering held on Takaka Hill. He only stopped in Nelson for the weekend at the invitation of Gathering organiser Murray Kingi. He was headed for Auckland, which he intends to make his base after spending two years in Osaka, Japan and a year in London.

"I made a conscious decision to come back to New Zealand. I wasn't into living in London - Japan was far more stimulating."

O'Brien said musically, New Zealand had nothing over the European scene, but did have a fresh attitude, whereas the British scene was more mainstream. "I wouldn't be so bold as to say where music was headed, but I think the dance scene is only going to get bigger and become even more mainstream, with a strong electronic input."

Event organisers Kevin Yates and Amber Smith said they planned to donate the profits from the event to the Millennium Gathering.

Nelson Mail, 26 May 1999

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