The Chills - 'Snow Bound'
The Chills - 'Snow Bound'

The Chills - 'Snow Bound'

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The Chills’ ever-present songwriter Martin Phillipps has a checklist.

  1. Establish band as much-loved New Zealand legends. Check.
  2. Release the greatest summer single ever in the shape of ‘Heavenly Pop Hit’. Check.
  3. Go on lengthy 19-year sabbatical out of the public eye. Check.
  4. Return to recording and cock a weary eye at politics, the environment and other social issues with an infectious earworm in mind. Check.
  5. Sonically weld your “spindly guitar sound” and psyche roots to a new found angst about, well, just about everything on a brand new “grown up” opus called ‘Snow Bound’. Check.


The latest postcard from The Chills’ epic journey is an album about “consolidation, re-grouping, acceptance and mortality,” claims the chief Chill. “Hopefully a kind of Carole King ‘Tapestry’ for ageing punks.”

On ‘Snow Bound’ lost heroes are lamented, relationships are re-evaluated, atonement is sought, mortality is mulled over and fake news is undercut. It’s serious stuff, the thoughts of a dysfunctional 50-something wrestling with maturity and discovering that their post-punk DIY beliefs still have a real voice that resonates between the fans of their early years and which can now pass down to the next generation.