Level 3!!

Well, the decision we have been waiting for, delivered by the PM, Jacinda Ardern and Director of Health, Dr. Ashley Bloomfield – with infection rates dropping, and the NZ public largely doing a very good job of doing what we are told, and staying at home to slow the spread of this nasty virus, the country moves to Level 3 on the Covid-19 alert system next Tuesday, the 28th of April!! Hoorah!! Progress!!

So what does this mean for us at Slow Boat, and for you, our faithful and loyal customers? Well, basically, it means we are able to do most of what we normally do, with the exception of opening our doors and welcoming you back into the store, which is a drag, but not insurmountable – we just need to get a little creative!

We will endeavour to have the store skeleton staffed for most of our regular hours, and will bide our time cleaning, pricing and sorting for when we are able to open up proper – presumably at Level 2. You are able to message us – either by email; slow.boat.music@xtra.co.nz, or on Twitter or Facebook, or you can call us on the trusty landline, 04 385 1330. From there we will help you however we can – send us want lists, orders, requests - we’ll have more time to track things down for you than ever before!

Payment-wise, you can either make direct debit payment into the bank account, or give us credit card (or some debit card) details, and we can either arrange for you to collect your music from the door at a prearranged time, or we will happily post orders out to you within NZ (we also have a PayPal account, if that makes it easier).

There are also our online stores at both MusicStack and Discogs – prices in USD, but well worth a peruse, and if you find anything that tickles your fancy, we’ll see what we can do on the price!

Did want to give a shout out to all those who ordered music or vouchers from us during lockdown, most of whom have paid already, and were happy to wait until we were able to send out – I had a few exchanges with people overseas still working in essential services, and you realise that, as it does for many of us, music creates a safe space and a haven from the world. I have certainly found that working my way through the piles of records that clutter our living room has been a great comfort at this time. Thank you so much for your support, and for your faith in people who are basically strangers, often on the other side of a planet in crisis.

Thanks, also, to our wonderful regulars, many of whom have reached out to make sure we were doing okay – we sure are, all fighting fit and well in these trying times, and ready to get back to what we do best – bringing you the best new and old music.

On that note – a few albums that have ‘dropped’ (ahem) on digital platforms (with the store closed, I have really seen their value as complimentary to what we do, rather than as an attempt to replace us) over the lockdown that have tickled my fancy; Radiohead-er Ed O’Brien’s solo debut as EOB, “Earth” is a fine collection of rhythmic singer-songwriterly fare, Phoebe Bridgers (who was to have toured NZ supporting The National in June) released the ace single “Kyoto” as a primer for her soon-come album “Punisher”, and, maybe best of all, the new Fiona Apple album “Fetch The Boltcutters”, which Pitchfork gave their first 10/10 in a decade, and which is being (quite rightly) heralded as a masterpiece.

As our suppliers swing into action, we will endeavour to let you know new releases each week – let us know what you are after and we will get it for you. No word yet as to whether our tri-weekly US orders are still on – will let you know when we do. And also – happy to take suggestions from you as to how you might like to hear from us – pics/ videos of new stock? A weekly mailout?

Finally, a huge Slow Boat thankyou to everyone who has been out there keeping the country running while we all took this unintended downtime – the carers, supermarket workers, drivers, healthcare workers, police, and to those, like our PM and Dr Bloomfield, whose decisions are literally life and death. The sacrifices we make will hopefully continue to reap rewards, and our country stands a very good chance of being the first to eliminate this deadly virus.

Hope everybody is doing well, feeling focussed and refreshed – we can’t wait to ‘see’ you again, in whatever fashion!! Hit us up – we’ll be here for you!!

Love to you all,
XX The Slow Boat Crew XX