New Zealand's Dawn Raid Back In Business

South Auckland, New Zealand-based record label Dawn Raid has come out of liquidation and will return to the music scene.

The move, which became official May 8, was made possible by South Pacific Pictures CEO John Barnett and Michael Stiassny, chairman of Auckland's Vector Arena.

According to, the businessmen are now silent partners in the Dawn Raid labe and have installed Dawn Raid founders Andrew "YDNA" Murnane and Danny "Brotha D" Leaosavai'i to handle the day-to-day operations of the company, which now trades under the title Dawn Raid Music Ltd.

The decision to recruit Murnane and Leaosavai'i was a logical one for Barnett, who developed a relationship with the duo from their work on the soundtracks for the films Whale Rider and Sione's Wedding.

"Dawn Raid has provided lots of opportunities for young talent in the past and now it will continue to do so," Barnett said. "In the future it will grow further and be able to capitalize on that talent."

The reemergence of Dawn Raid is a turnaround from the company's status a short time ago.

In April, the label went liquidation as it owed more than $400,000 to the Internal Revenue Department in New Zealand.

Murnane and Leaosavai'i cited a shift in the local urban music market and illegal downloading of Dawn Raid music as the reason behind the company's demise.

As a result, artists under Dawn Raid were released from their contracts and the company's Papatoetoe, south Auckland, office and studio was cleared and equipment put up for sale.

"A lot of people believed in us and we had about 10 investors come forward after we went into liquidation," said Murnane. "John and Michael appealed because they understand what we do and will let us continue doing it -they'll be silent partners."

Efforts are currently underway for Dawn's Raid's musical return.

Murnane and Leaosavai'i have not only resumed their relationship with Warner Bros. Records, but have bought back all the company's assets, including the entire back catalogue and publishing rights.

"We're negotiating with the artists and they're all pretty positive about coming back," Leaosavai'i told "But it doesn't worry us if they have moved on - we don't want to hold anyone back. We've always been a label that develops new talent and we'll continue to do that. There are already several new artists I'm looking into and I'm always accepting demos."