Anthony Albanese gifts New Zealand Prime Minister with three of his “favourite Aussie records”

Deep cuts and EPs by Thelma Plum, Gang of Youths and Alex The Astronaut constitute some of Albo’s “favourite Aussie records”

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has presented his New Zealand counterpart Chris Hipkins with an assortment of his favourite Australian records. The gifting session took place in Canberra yesterday (February 7), during Hipkins’ first overseas trip since assuming the NZ prime ministership from Jacinda Ardern last month. “Kia ora and g’day to New Zealand’s new Prime Minister [Chris Hipkins],” Albanese wrote on twitter. 

The PM went on to reveal that he’d given Hipkins vinyl records including Alex The Astronaut’s 2022 album How To Grow A Sunflower Underwater, Gang Of Youths’ 2015 debut The Positions, and Thelma Plum’s 2022 double-EP When Rosie Met Monsters. For his part, Hipkins gifted Albanese a native, hook-shaped Pounamu, which symbolises strength and prosperity in Māori culture. 

Anthony Albanese and Chris Hipkins press conference
Credit: NCA NewsWire / Gary Ramage

It means a lot to me that Australia is [Hipkins’] first international visit as PM,” Albanese wrote. “I’m looking forward to continuing to build our relationship as friends and neighbours.” Hipkins took office on January 22, following Arden’s resignation due to burnout and “no longer [having] enough in the tank” to fulfil the role.

Last year, Albanese similarly gifted Arden with a trio of records, including albums by Midnight Oil, Spiderbait and Powderfinger. Responding to the selection on Instagram, Arden’s partner, Clarke Gayford, cheekily commented: “What is this, 2004???” In return, Arden gave the then-newly elected Albanese records by Aldous Harding, The Clean and Reb Fountain


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A post shared by Jacinda Ardern (@jacindaardern)

Albanese’s Gang of Youths gift for Hipkins is perhaps unsurprising, given his notable enthusiasm for the band during their show at Sydney’s Enmore Theatre last year. After being spotted in the audience at the gig, which formed part of the band’s Angel In Realtime tour, the prime minister was seen chugging a beer to rapturous crowd applause.    

Meanwhile, last December, Albanese traded the Hillsong and gospel music of his predecessor with a stellar list of his all-time favourite musicians, naming the likes of The Triffids, Bruce Springsteen and AC/DC as his top picks. A month prior, the PM — who is himself a DJ hobbyist — invited Australian bands Amyl and the Sniffers and Lime Cordiale to parliament house, where he posed for pictures with the artists and was gifted with vinyl copies of their respective albums.  


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