System Corporation – Apathy is Easy

New Zealand rock outfit System Corporation have announced their new maxi-single ‘Apathy is Easy’, following up their widely acclaimed debut single ‘Dismal Universal Hiss’. Here they give us a second taste of what is to come on their anticipated debut album ‘Fiction Dept.’, expected in late 2018. System Corporation are Scott Newth, Kent Newth, Ben Cole, Phil Somervell and Andrew Newth

System Corporation began in 2011, based on a conversation between Phil Somervell (The Datsuns) and their long standing engineer Scott Newth about swapping demos. The two were sharing a flat in Stockholm while The Datsuns were working on their fifth album ‘Death Rattle Boogie’. The two were eventually joined by Datsuns’ bandmate Ben Cole (also in The Joint Chiefs) on drums, and Andrew and Kent Newth (Rumpus Room).

The new single was inspired by poor voter turnouts at elections around the globe. “This touches on how political leaders try to sway you one way or another.  But the idea that Apathy Is Easy stems from the growing number of people who don’t vote, as they don’t feel they can make a difference, or none of the leaders speak to them or for them, or they just don’t understand politics and so do not participate,” says Scott Newth.

“The chorus “Apathy is easy, Our numbers are growing, All we have to do is sit and wait” sums up the futility of the situation.  That the apathetic have the numbers to make a change, but just don’t due to their own apathy. It’s a catch 22.”

Influenced by Sonic Youth, The Clash, The Rolling Stones, John Dwyer (Thee Oh Sees), Ty Segall, The Stone Roses, and New Zealand’s The Subliminals, they also take particular inspiration from music that is “beautifully calculated”, as well as music that is, on the contrary, “beautifully uncontrolled”.

While most of the band’s production work happens in Hamilton, they hail from Thames (Phil), Hamilton (Andrew, Scott and Kent) and Wellington (Ben).

The name System Corporation is a translation of Systembolaget, a state-owned liquor store chain in Sweden. The band were inspired by the fact that, through Systembolaget, the government is able to effectively control alcohol sales and identify problem areas in order to divert profits back into social services. System Corporation is an ironically corporate name for an organization promoting a very socialist ethos.
“The original idea was inspired from a complete obsession with the band Pond from Perth. The way they can start a song somewhere;  start a groove or a melody, and have it turn you around; twist your neck muscles toward the speakers where the sound is coming from and then finish it up somewhere completely unexpected, taking you along for a ride,” recalls Phil Somervell.

“I started writing and recording a lot of music with the idea  that there could be songs within songs, that you’d have to listen a bit to get to the good stuff, or that maybe different ideas could merge together and be seamless with each other no matter what or how weird the transition.”

The new single is accompanied by a radio edit and the Apathetic Remix by Southern Tribe, the solo project of Andrew Newth dedicated to sonic explorations of atmospheric downbeat and ambient territory.


1 System Corporation – Apathy Is Easy
2 System Corporation – Apathy Is Easy (Radio Edit)
3 System Corporation – Apathy is Easy (Apathetic Remix by Southern Tribe)
‘Apathy is Easy’ by System Corporation
Written by Philip Somervell, Scott Newth and Andrew Newth.
Produced by Scott Newth
Recorded by Scott Newth and Phil Somervell
Mixed By Scott Newth and Andrew Newth
Mastered by Dan Howard
Artwork by Andrew Newth
Ben Cole: Drums
Philip Somervell: Bass, Guitars
Andrew Newth: Guitars
Scott Newth: Vocals
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