Courtney Hate (pictured) made up of Xanthe Brookes (drums), Marieke Van Orsoy De Flines (bass guitar, vocals), Ruby Colwell (guitar) and Jami Kerrrigan (vocals), is a rock band that’s making important statements through their music. The four-piece  “Space princess rock” band from Green Bay High School, Auckland, is definitely a rad, talented group. We can’t wait to see the girls rock the SFRQ stage.


Tell us a little bit about your band. How would you describe your musical style? What makes you different?

We are Courtney Hate, a four piece space princess rock band from Auckland, New Zealand. We like to regard ourselves as ‘Space princess rock’ mainly because it sounds cool but it also encapsulates the extraterrestrial feel that we are kind of going for – and hopefully achieving. We guess something that makes us different is that we use our music not just as an artistic platform but also as a platform to express and spread important ideas, opinions and messages we think are stimulating. In other words, most of our music isn’t really about your classic monday experience as a teenage girl.


Who are your musical influences/role models?

Collectively as a band, we really look up to a lot of local artists, including: The Big Gus, The Soda Boys, Miss June and Mermaidens.


Favourite song to listen to at the moment?

Jami: Karen Don’t Be Sad by Miley Cyrus.
Marieke: Crimewave by Crystal Castles.
Ruby: Otitis by Mourn.
Xanthe: Touch The Leather by Fat White Family.



Why did you enter Smokefree Rockquest?

I guess we wanted to carry on from last year (winning people’s choice) and go in with possibly more of a competitive stance. For the experience and the dollars!


What are you most excited about for the finals?

Probably, meeting other bands and artists, and using that to grow as musicians.


What do you think about New Zealand’s music industry currently?

We are all quite involved in the New Zealand music pool because we are lucky enough to get to play with a lot of our musical friends and heroes. In our experience the New Zealand music pool has been supremely supportive and generally seems to support young artists. It’s really nice to see growth in the number of female musicians in the New Zealand music pool too! New Zealand is quite progressive in some aspects so it’s really cool to see a slow but steady bridging of that gender gap. The New Zealand music industry is also (in our eyes) becoming huge in it’s campaign for a lot of important issues such as mental illness or transphobia.


What’s your advice to people wishing to enter Smokefree?

Be yourselves, stay true to your music. Use it as an oppurtunity to grow by meeting other like-minded artists. Learn to use SFRQ as a tool to not feel alienated in your position as a young artist, because you will realise you are not the only people trying to create and trying to make music. MAKE FRIENDS, don’t use the competition as an excuse to pit yourself against the others! You’re all rad, don’t focus on your flaws, or other bands’ flaws.