A Flight To Blackout


Excellent instrumentalist trio from the garden city formed by Matt Craw (Guitar), James Musgrave (Bass), and Jared Kelly (Drums) in early 2005. Taking cues from a variety of informed directions, the group were prolific features of the local live scene, and attached themselves to both R18 and all-age crowds with varying success. Playing an involved instrumental sound heavy on dynamics, the group enlisted ex-Substandard bassist Gareth Heta as a 2nd guitarist for a short period before reverting back to their original configuration. However, this was soon broken when Kelly left to play with the Pickups full-time, so Cam Walker was recruited to carry on where Jared left off.

Throughout later 2005 and early 2006 the group had a strong association with fellow garden city instrumentalists Coal, with Walker sitting at the throne for both groups for a period – however this was halted by problems with the tendons in Walker’s wrist, which caused him a great deal of pain during a show with the touring groups Jakob and American outfit No Funeral.

After losing Walker, Craw and Musgrave added Thomas Lambert (synth/guitar – aka i.Ryoko) in order to create a fuller sound than the rock trio lineup. Through him they found a great replacement drummer in Adam Jack, who picked up the groove of the songs quickly and added his own heavy hitting style. At this time, Gareth Heta again showed an interest in being part of the band, so he was recruited on guitar (and bass when James swaps to guitar). These changes have lead to further creativity within the group, with new songs eventuating at the start of 2007 (including for the first time, a song with vocals provided by Musgrave).

More live shows followed, a highlight being a gig with The Enright House, Pandora’s Bucket, and Wellingtonians Donatello. Towards the end of 2007, A Flight To Blackout entered the RDU Roundup band competition without any expectations of success, and came away with 2nd place, pipped by the more RDU-friendly (but by no means lesser) Bang! Bang! Eche!

As seemed to be the rule by now, Jack left the group at the end of 2007 to travel to Canada, and Lambert left for Wellington. This allowed the remaining members to focus on the tracking of their debut release, which is currently being mixed and produced by Thomas for release on his and partner Matt Faisander’s Sonorous Circle label before the end of 2008.

In early 2008 Hayden Williams and Josh Black (both also of Neil Robinson) made fine replacements on drums and synth respectively, their first show with the band being the farewell/fundraiser of friends The O’Lovelys.


  • Matt Craw (Guitar, 2005 – 2008)
  • James Musgrave (Bass/Vocals/Guitar, 2005 – 2008)
  • Jared Kelly (Drums, 2005?)
  • Gareth Heta (Guitar/Bass, 2005?, 2007?)
  • Cam Walker (Drums, 2005? – 2006?)
  • Thomas Lambert (Keyboards/Guitar, 2006 – 2007)
  • Adam Jack (Drums, 2006 – 2007)
  • Hayden Williams (Drums, 2008)
  • Josh Black (Keyboards, 2008)






Auckland based 2-piece electronic instrumental Band (i.e. they play live electronic instrumentation with no computers).

The group formed in Grey Lynn in 1998, with Bev taking up drum machines and a sampler and Hamish using loops to compliment his past as a punk drummer (rock’n’roll is still a big element of their music).

Former Meterman drummer Jasper De Roos took over the live drumming role on their 2003 release ‘Billion’, put out on Kog side-label Midium, and they have toured with the likes of Jakob.


  • Bev Painter (Drum Machine/Sampler, 1998 -)
  • Hamish Walker (Loops, 1998 -)
  • Jasper De Roos (Drums, 2003)


  • Looming (1999, Kog Transmissions)
  • Illooming Maxi Single (2001, Kog Transmissions)
  • Wait and See 7″ (2002, Self-Released)
  • Billion (2003, Midium Records, MID008)
  • Selected Tracks CDr Sampler (2004, Midium Records)
  • Nothing But Surrender 7″ Single (2005, Midium Records, MID011)
  • Freezeover 8″ Lathe (Self–Released)




hawkes bay based mostly-instrumental (textural, in the mogwai style) rockers maurice beckett, jeff boyle and jason johnston. three low-run releases have seen them gather quite a bit of interest through-out new zealand, and their live shows are usual well-attended. though lacking a bit of the diversity and melody that made substandard‘s debut such a bright light, they are still a highly worthwhile band, grounded in excellent musicianship.
originally forming in napier, the trio achieved attention through fairly lef-of-centre sources for an instrumental rock out, mainly as a support act for touring dub and electronic acts salmonella dub and pitchblack. subsequently the band was signed to kog transmissions new start-up indie off-shoot midium and worked with the likes of label-mates avotor.
picks in bold

  • jakob ep [1999 venn]
  • subset of sets [2001 midium 99492]
  • cale: drew [2003 midium mid006]

Operation Rolling Thunder

Tight instrumental (drums and guitar) outfit in the High Dependency Unit or Jakob vein based around Dunedin-born brothers Rob and Adam Falcolner. 2 years after the release of their debut EP ‘White Light’ in 2005 the group recorded a 3 day session with Dale Cotton, which eventually surfaced 3 years later as their vinyl/download only full length ‘III’.

Discography (picks in bold)

  • White Light EP [2005 Monkey Killer Records]
  • III [2010 Monkey Killer Records]