Local Produce: BO And the Constrictors

Local Produce: BO And the Constrictors

If you’re a breatha and spend your Thursday through Saturday nights at Dunedin Social Club, then you’re probably already familiar with BO And the Constrictors, who describe their sound as “modern vintage pop rock.” Hot off the release of their EP ‘Love’, Critic caught up with frontman Boaz (Bo) Anema.

BO And the Constrictors have been making music together since 2019 and first formed out of an amalgamation of bands. Right now, their lineup is Bo (vocals and rhythm), Dean Armitage (bass), Jack McRae (drums) and Jacob Rutherford (lead). Bo studied composition at Otago Uni, wrapping up in 2018, doing his music honours in audio production. He provides the lyrics, while the band is highly collaborative in creating their material. “As a solo musician, I was always scared of working in a collaborative style with another songwriter…but I’ve found that, especially working with BO And the Constrictors, we can just throw ideas together. No one’s like ‘nah I don’t wanna do that,’ we at least try it out and see what happens. It makes the process really easy.” 

Last Friday, the band released their first EP titled ‘Love.’ The EP is three tracks, with all the songs unpacking a certain aspect about the experience and theme of love.  “‘Love’ is the title track and it’s all about love, creatively. How it makes you feel good sometimes and you don’t want to let it go. The second track is called ‘Suzy’, which is [about] pining for someone’s love and feeling rejection. It’s a bit of a juxtaposition to the first track,” says Bo. “The final track ‘Twelve More Years’ breaks from the former thematically, but at the same time is sonically the second movement of ‘Suzy’.” Essentially, the pair of songs are BO And The Constrictors’ ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ moment, melding together from their vast experience playing live. The song is about environmentalism and the dread from the increasingly visible marks of climate change in our daily lives. “There was an article saying that we had basically twelve years left before the world was ruined. It was after the Aussie fires, when we had that New Year’s period where everything was dark and orange in the night sky. That’s where the lyrics of the song were inspired.”

Just over a month ago, BO And the Constrictors played Wellington’s ‘Beervana’. The craft beer and food festival seems like the natural level up from DSC, just surrounded by fancier beer and slightly fancier revellers. The band were handpicked along with two other local bands, to travel up as part of the Emerson’s entourage. They had the privilege of headlining Emerson’s stage on the Saturday night, where their covers of classic drinking songs pulled about five hundred listeners, the biggest crowd they’ve played to yet. Bo describes it as a beautiful experience. “It was that little taste of touring life as a band, for just a weekend… I think it’s the biggest achievement we’ve had as a band so far.” 

You can stream ‘Love’ by BO And the Constrictors on major streaming platforms and follow the band on Facebook or Instagram (@boandtheconstrictors). To celebrate their release, the band are playing at Ombrellos on the 13th of October, before another release gig up in Ōtautahi. They’ll also be playing amongst an incredible lineup at the Waitati Music Fest on the 5th of November.  On a final note from Bo: “If you like the sound of the EP, the live version is much better. Come along to Ombrellos.” 

This article first appeared in Issue 25, 2022.
Posted 5:05pm Sunday 2nd October 2022 by Jamiema Lorimer .