Christchurch-based pop-group, The Insurgents were the darlings of the all-ages scene courtesy of their involvement with Will Edmonds’ Out of Kilter. The original line-up of Young, Coffey and Ellis displayed a strong Brit-pop influence on Chris Young’s songs, whilst Mike Ellis added an element of US Indie-Pop to proceedings.
Ellis and Young have tremendous chemistry together, shaping their songs with perfect harmonies and huge hooks, whilst Coffey keeps things nice and tight.
The band spent a year on hiatus courtesy of guitarist/vocalist Chris Young’s other pop-tastic band Neil Robinson winning the Smoke-Free Rock-Quest in 2006, and eventually succumbed to the big OE, with all 4 members leaving Christchurch for an overseas experience.
Along the way the group recorded an EP with Jo Veale, added Will Edmonds on guitar and recorded what was essentially a post-breakup album for Rob Mayes Failsafe Records.
This release eventually saw them frequent New Zealand television with their song ‘Rather Be Dead’ in adverts for Canterbury University.
With the albums release the group hastily shot and released a handful of music video’s with director Peter Bannan, each filmed as largely continuous shots at the groups established suburban Sockburn House-Party flat with a huge number of Friends and fans.
Chris Young (Guitar/Vocals, 2004 – 2009)
David Coffey (Drums, 2004 – 2009)
Mike Ellis (Bass/Keyboards/Vocals, 2004 – 2009)
Will Edmonds (Guitar/Vocals/Keyboards/Bass, 2007 – 2008)
Excellent young Christchurch Noise-Pop / Post-Punk group featuring a trio of musicians that are becoming regular sites around local venues. Steven Marr (Guitar/lead vocals, also of Psych Tigers and Miniatures), Matthew Gunn (Bass/backing vocals, Psych Tigers), and Jamie Larson (Drums).
The group released their debut EP in late 2011, and then signed to Auckland-based independent label Muzai Records in early 2012, releasing a live album, then the full length studio album ‘Baby Factory’. Along the way the group were the 2012 champions of the coveted RDU (Christchurch Student Radio) Round Up band competition.
Discography (picks in bold)
Ipswich EP [May 2011 Self-Released]
Living In A Strangers Home EP [November 2011 Self-Released]
short-lived and bizarre christchurch industrial outfit from around 1992-1993, comprised of (at various times) robbie forrester (bass & vocals), simon mclaren (subliminals, loves ugly children – drums & vocals), david clark (ape management, dragastrip – guitar, bass, vocals), stefan jordan (clarinet), gavin shaw (tape loops), mike goodwin (vocals) and darius (vocals).
[from] december 1992 to june 1993 played 8 gigs in their six months together. their sound was based on robotic and repetitive beats, and their stage show included a two-headed guitarist, a clarinet player dressed only in tin-foil and glad wrap, and a singer in a chemical suit emblazoned with endless personal insultsrn- dave clark
the band recorded a couple of tape releases, and were included on the flat city and roadkill banquit, but never commercially released any other recordings, despite several songs recorded with dave whernham (4-track). their excellent posters (many of which can be found in the poster archive) were always highly graphic and usually repulsive. discography picks in bold
a caustic, chaotic, sprawling mess of a band. been around since the late 80s, putting out a pretty grotty (and not particularly good) self-titled album in the early 90s, back when they had more of a straight metal focus. since then the into the void ‘crew’ (which at times can feature as little as three people or as many as 6, including a phono-graph manipulator, mark e. smith impersonating lead singer and a second guitarist to the standard bass/guitar/drums format of their key 3-piece) have developed an extremely harsh, noisy approach to groove-rock. focusing on loud, sometimes improvised rythms, heavily distorted guitar and incendially primal, machine gun drumming – they always seem to bemuse and invigorate a crowd to action. a christchurch institution of the live scene, they can regularly be seen at the dux de lux or more cerebral venues such as the media club – but be warned – bring ear-plugs, especially when performing outside the dux. circa 2004 the band line-up is now jason grieg (guitar), mark whyte (drums), and dave imlay (bass), plus occassional performances from james grieg (guitar), paul sutherland (grammaphone) and ronnie van hout (vocals). discography picks in bold
the two-bit two-piece of lucy lurex (aka dianne smith) and duane zarakov (aka pat faigen), garage-rockers extraordinaire. with lucy’s impressive and powerful singing, heavily influenced by idol marc bolan (and lets not forget her bryan adams fandom), the international telepaths are as raunch as it gets. add in to the mix duane’s (king loser, spacedust et al) dexterous and off-kilter drumming and you’ve got a whole lot of cool in just a 2-piece. 2003 saw the pair play a number of gigs in their home-town of dunedin, and eventually released their self-titled debut on lucy’s own lurex rekkids label. discography picks in bold
solo alias of craig houghton (ride on estrada), who’s released a couple very lo-key, melodic, and occassionally country-tinged albums on the small stinkbuzz inprint, specifically in short-order lathe-cut runs. i ran into craig travelling to sonic youths’ fantastic 2004 gig in auckland, and on arrival back in christchurch discovered his 2nd album, the moody songs from a dead house is a charming album of guitar-murmurs and down-beat vocals, with opener ‘new years day’ being a particular stand-out. discography picks in bold
somewhere on a crooked road [2002 stinkbuzz]
songs from a dead house lathe-cut [2004 stinkbuzz SBLP001] rn
huge band line-up – nigel beckford, steve hinderwell, doloros hoy, marie salter, andrew downes, murray costello, john rnfletcher and brian nelson.rnfrom nigel beckford: “this wellington seven piece, a popular live band in the late 80s, early 90s, made two albums chocked full of some of the most absurd lyrics and songs ever committed to tape. the songs are a pastiche of styles, often within the same song. the first album (vinyl only) was straighter and even boasted some ballads, including a tribute to velvet’s chantreuse, nico and a reggae cover of the billy paul classic me and mrs jones. the second album is completely uninhibited nonsense. subject matter ranged from a vegetarian forced into cannibalism after crashing in the andes in a plane, to songs composed entirely from bumper sticker sayings, to a man sentenced to life imprisonment in a penal colony dedicated to teenage stardom, to an ode to the power station chimney in new plymouth (“you’re lunch is in your trousers but the world is at your feet”). despite the baffling subject matter and stranger stage attire and antics, (the lead singer often sported a chicken on his head and the band appeared in front of a giant mural of 70s icon craig scott), the band appeared live on several telethons, tv one’s prime time sale of the century and were due to sing the national anthem at a soccer international between new zealand and england. only bad weather averted what would have been deep national embarrassment. although the band has long since disappeared without trace, the tracks the last surviving vegetarian and hutt valley girl both aired on national radio last year. the police are investigating.” discography picks in bold
nudist on the beach of love [1990 henry boy HNB001]
infinitesimal is the electronic feedback/computer improvisation project of mark sadgrove (mhfs, hometown fielding, plains) and paul winstanley (sci hi, audible 3, dial, plains) who first rocked the reactivated auckland scene during the alt.music festival in 2004, their first gig. sadgrove uses linux-based c-sound software triggering self-scripted algorithms while winstanley sculpts digital feedback and noise from an effects processor, eq and mixer. subscribers to the adage of ‘machine knows best’, infinitesimal veers towards microprocessor directed soundscapes of turbulent quality. both artists have had numerous releases of their other projects published on labels such as pseudoarcana, celebrate psi phenomenon and scarcelight recordsrn-cmr
auckland hard-rock band comprised of dan young (guitar), val hunting (bass), aaron o’rielly and wolf – who released their debut in 2003, after it sat unreleased for quite some time (initial recordings were made back in late 2001) – new vocalist wolf re-recording some of their original vocalists (thomas henry bloomfield) songs. discography picks in bold
Started life as Tony Valens and the Incisions in the mid 90’s and were mostly concentrated on harsh primal dirges and noisy guitar flourishes – creating some absolutely brilliant sounds far outside the commercial scope of rock’n’roll.
Band competitions, a short-lived lead singer and the rock’n’roll revival brought changes to their sound, reverting to a more pop (but still incredibly loud) rock format, but Nick was unhappy and soon the band was changing again.
The result was the manic Let Terror Rain – Nick’s first attempt at adding vocals to his old blend of sonic mayhem, and it worked.
Thick guitar-dirges and sound-checking The Velvet Underground was the order of the day, and it looked like the band was onto a promising direction before Hodgson split the band (and Christchurch) to seek his fame with Auckland-based popsters The Brunettes, eventually settling with his own new band The Shocking Pinks.
The Incisions template did resurface again in 2004 as Black Albino, however this seems to have been a short-lived reunion of sorts (the group featuring Hodgson on guitar and MacDonald on drums played a support slot for Die! Die! Die! at the Jetset Lounge).