NZ band Like A Storm make US radio history

Most Kiwi bands who make it big worldwide generally get their start by playing in pubs and clubs around New Zealand.

But for Like A Storm, the process has been a little different.

They're based in Canada, big in the US and Europe, and Homegrown will be their first real performance in NZ.

Oh, and one of their main instruments is a didgeridoo.

"This may be the strangest thing to anyone else's ears, but to us it sounds awesome," says band member Chris Brooks.

He picked up the instrument as a kid, after family trips to Australia with his two brothers.

All three went on to play music together and that's when they started experimenting.

"One of [my didgeridoos] was sort of standing up right in the corner.

"I was like, 'You know what? Let's just see how it sounds.'"

Today the didgeridoo-heavy rock juxtaposition has become their signature sound.

"To see Chris playing it, the way he does on stage, and to see a band working that into heavy music - it kind of blows people's minds a bit," says guitarist Matt Brooks.

And it works. Like A Storm has become the highest-charting New Zealand rock band in US radio history.

They've had four US Rock Top 40 singles, and even toured with the likes of Slash and Alter Bridge.

They got their start in Vancouver, playing any gig they could get, and that's where they got noticed.

"We've been able to build up a fan base in the northern hemisphere in a lot of ways before we built our fan base at home," says Matt.

"It's kind of the opposite of what you think would happen."

They're keen to build up their Kiwi audience by playing at Homegrown, but have a problem - the didgeridoo wouldn't fit on the plane.

So, with a classic dose of Kiwi ingenuity, Chris Brooks says he'll be visiting Mitre 10 before the concert on Saturday to buy some PVC plastic and make his own.