10 songs from the bubble: soundtrack for a trip to NZ

Liz Stokes fronts indie rock band The Beths.
If you fancy a real or virtual holiday in the New Zealand travel bubble, here are some tunes to get you in the mood. Here’s music editor Eddie Russell’s top 10 Spotify playlist

With the anticipated mass exodus of travel-hungry Aussies, there’s no better time to acknowledge that our cousins across the ditch can make some seriously good music.

And this time, let’s not pretend they’re ours.

Here’s a list of the best New Zealand artists of the last decade that you can listen to on your adventures. Then listen to the selected Spotify playlist (link at end).


Marrying the vocal melodies of Middle Kids and Ruby Fields with the manic indie guitar energy of The Strokes, Auckland band The Beths released their debut album Future Me Hates Me to critical praise in 2018 and have amassed a solid following since.

Top Tracks: Little Death, Dying to Believe.

10 songs from the bubble: soundtrack for a trip to NZ
BENEE has skyrocketed to the top with bouncy anthems.


Indie pop sensation Benee has managed to attain both critical and commercial acclaim at the ripe old age of 21 with groovy hits. With nearly nine million monthly listeners on Spotify and several New Zealand Music Awards, the world is her oyster.

Top Tracks: Supalonely, Glitter.

10 songs from the bubble: soundtrack for a trip to NZ
Proud Maori artist TEEKS.


Using soulful Motown sounds, Maori singer Teeks’ raw lyrics and soothing vocals connect on an emotional level comparable to Adele. The slow, smooth ballads provide an opportunity to reflect, yearn and desire, opening up emotional gateways with ease.

Top Tracks: Into You, First Time.

10 songs from the bubble: soundtrack for a trip to NZ
Unknown Mortal Orchestra have experienced several sonic revolutions.


The recording project of Ruban Nielson, Unknown Mortal Orchestra utilises the full power of the studio, with sounds spanning groovy rhythms, relaxed lo-fi guitars culminating in a pulsing psychedelic disco.

Top Tracks: Swim and Sleep (Like a Shark), Necessary Evil.

10 songs from the bubble: soundtrack for a trip to NZ
Marlon Williams with signature folk look.


In typical Kiwi tradition, indie-folk singer Marlon Williams has since moved to Melbourne to expand on his sound and audience. Williams’ juxtaposition of dreamy melodies and dark lyrics is a perfect soundtrack to unravelling the mysteries of the Land of the Long White Cloud. 

Top Tracks: What’s Chasing You, Death Don’t Have No Mercy.

The Spotify playlist