Bret McKenzie

Flight Of The Conchords: The Complete First Radio Series
  • Flight Of The Conchords: The Complete First Radio Series

  • The complete BBC Radio 2 series from Perrier Award-nominated duo Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement, featuring Rob Brydon and Neil Finn.

    'Hello, I'm Rob Brydon. Join me on an exciting musical journey in the company of a band who have come to mean an awful lot to me. They're probably my fourth, or maybe even third, favourite novely music act - Flight of the Conchords.'

    Flight of the Conchords are Bret McKenzie (guitar and vocals) and Jemaine Clement (vocals and guitar) and they're New Zealand's fourth best folk guitar-based jazz, techno hip-hop duo. In this series, we follow their attempts to crack the UK’s novelty music scene with songs such as 'Frodo, Don’t Wear the Ring (Magical Bling Bling)'; 'Fudafafa'; 'Hiphopapotamus' and 'Think About It (Think, Think About It)'.

    The Conchords have travelled the world and become one of the best-loved double acts on the circuit. Having secured the talents of Rob Brydon, Daniel Kitson, Greg Proops, Nina Conti, Rhys Darby and Neil Finn, they can - for the first time - tell their story...

Flight of the Conchords are Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement, and they are New Zealand’s fourth most popular folk parody band. Jazz, techno, hip-hop or rap, the Conchords are stylistic chameleons with a catalogue of songs that need no introduction: 'Fudafafa'; 'Hiphopapotamus', 'Robots', 'King Kong', 'Think About It (Think, Think About It)' and last, but not least, 'Frodo, Don’t Wear the Ring'. Sadly, 'Frodo...' never made it to the final cut of The Lord of the Rings trilogy (though submitting it before the films came out would have helped its chances). Over six parts, the Conchords attempt to crack the UK music scene, via accidents at the Tower of London and over-eager fans. They even get the opportunity to support a panda on stage. But band pressures meant it was only a matter of time before Bret and Jemaine fell out. The crisis point came during episode five, when Suzanne (aka ‘Yoko’) ultimately splits the band apart. A heated pie fight later and the Conchords were left as shattered as a chicken-and-mushroom pasty. While losing a member can be very damaging at the best of times, the Conchord(s) had to go on and thankfully they could turn to ‘the white Bob Marley of Wellington’ – Neil Finn. From the Pig and Whistle, via the Albert Hall (almost) then back home to New Zealand, they toured full circle in a classic case of they came, they saw, they Conchord. In an incredible musical odyssey, at least Bret and Jemaine made up… The Conchords first landed on BBC Radio 2 on 1 September 2005 and received great critical acclaim: ‘Lots of deadpan gags and clever folk pastiches’ (Sunday Times). Not bad for an improvised comedy series recorded almost entirely on a portable mini-disc machine around London and recorded at locations including Hyde Park, the Tower of London, Piccadilly Circus and even the first aid room at the BBC’s Broadcasting House. All the music was written and performed by the Conchords with the assistance of music producer Neil Pickles, whose credits included Basement Jaxx, Groove Armada and Turin Brakes. The guest list is particularly impressive, being a veritable Who’s Who of the British stand-up circuit. And who better to act as narrator? Rob Brydon first saw the Conchords perform at the Edinburgh Festival in 2004 and has been a fan ever since. A self-confessed music fan, he watches Top of the Pops while having his tea, quite likes ‘the Blur’ and has a collection of over 100 CDs. In 2003, Flight of the Conchords were nominated for the Perrier Award at the Edinburgh Fringe and, a year later, won Best Newcomer at the Melbourne Comedy Festival. In 2005 they were named Best Alternative Act at the Aspen Comedy Festival. But the last word on the Conchords should come from Jemaine: ‘It’s kind of like the Beatles, how they put the “Beat” with the “les”. We put “Con” with “chord”. So, we’re up there with some pretty big bands who also used pun names.’

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