A little bit country

Boss Christ (aka Willie McKay) will rock The Crown Hotel tonight with his ‘‘Monsterbilly’’. Photo...
Boss Christ (aka Willie McKay) will rock The Crown Hotel tonight with his ‘‘Monsterbilly’’. Photo: Supplied
Born in Pahiatua in northern Wairarapa, Boss Christ has been unleashing his particular take of fuzzed-out drunken country rock ’n roll around the Manawatu region for about 13 years. Now he’s making the journey south to Dunedin for a rare appearance at The Crown Hotel.

I caught up with Boss Christ (Willie McKay) ahead of the gig to try to work out what to expect from someone who pioneered the "Monsterbilly" genre.

Q What sort of music do you play. What’s "Monsterbilly"?

Monsterbilly is pretty much mongrel drinking country songs splattered with wolf themes and the odd tender love song about tractors, especially the workhorses from Messers Massey and Ferguson ...

Q What instruments do you use and how do you use them?

I play a kick drum and hi-hat cymbals under my feet and strum an overdriven telecaster while yelling in a semi melodic manner, although I have been known to start a set by stomping bare feet on the floor to an acapellic conjuring of the wolves.

Q I don’t really know anything about the music scene in the Manawatu region. What’s it like?

The music scene in Manawatu was really vibrant in the 1990s when I started performing at pubs. There were a lot of really inspiring musicians playing free noise and wild rock ’n’ roll and plenty of great gigs happening. Unfortunately, around the late ’90s a lot of these musicians left town and the scene pretty much collapsed to the point where we had no decent venues and touring bands stopped coming through. However, now there’s an artist-run space, which is having BYO gigs every so often, which is great, and good wild original music is starting to come to town again.

Q Is this your first time performing in Dunedin?

I’ve played in Dunedin only a few times before. Back in 2006, at a place called the Jam Jar, the Crown Hotel a couple of years after and then the last time I played was at Queens back in 2013. So yeah, well overdue to come back.

Q What should the patrons expect from the gig?

No two gigs of mine are ever the same ... To back yourself as a one-man band you need to have a "plan B" to go to when coordination exits your limbs or you push the envelope too hard. The good thing about this is that you don’t have to make eye contact with other band members to take a diversion from the norm, so I guess I spend most of my time in "plan B" these days ... So a crowd should expect to see a sweaty beast on stage pushing himself to his limit, talking s*** and singing songs, blazing guitar solos with the occasional sweet falsetto that would make your dear old granny shed a tear or two ...

- For more from Fraser Thompson go to dunedinsound.com.


The gig

• Boss Christ plays the Crown Hotel, tonight with Cash Guitar and Alexander Griffin.

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