Dick Diver are a band from Melbourne. They released their debut album last year titled New Start Again. I love this band because there’s something inherently Australian about their sound, which is something that not many Australians like hearing anymore – so they embrace the twang of their own diction. If you like Flying Nun […]
Back in the day, when I was a skinny teenager on the great pedestal of life, I had a real obsession for the understated, low-fi, deliciously melodic and somewhat blurry sounds of the New Zealand Flying Nun bands. I would pool my meagre savings and canvas the local record shops, scouring the racks for the latest cassettes from The Bats, The Chills, The Clean, and, later, The Straitjacket Fits.
When I was teenager, I was obsessed with the bands that seeped out of sleepy Dunedin, in New Zealand’s ruggedly beautiful South Island. There was an absolute contrast back then between those acts on the Flying Nun label, presided over with paternal wariness by the godfather of low-fi pop, Chris Knox, and the slicker bands […]
So I’ve had this one track ingrained in my inner-ear iPod for the past two weeks. A lush, smoldering track that rolls and rolls and kicks up during the chorus into an almighty swelling torrent of harmonies, all underpinned by this desolate sense of longing. Pure. Real. The song is called Wall Poster Star and it’s by Kiwi duo, The Brunettes. We spoke recently to Jonathan Bree, one half of the group: Growing up in New Zealand, were you into the South Island Flying Nun sound or the more polished North Island bands and recordings? ‘I was introduced to and loved a lot of early Flying Nun when I was growing up but also liked a lot of the more commercially successful ones too. Never really saw the division between North and South Island bands being a kid. I just liked them and knew they were from my country, and were therefore better than Australian bands’.
There was a time, many moons ago, when I would only listen to bands off New Zealand’s Flying Nun label. Yup, I would strap myself into a comfy chair, put my headphones on and, armed with a chunk of chocolate coated Peanut Slab and a can of L&P, soak up album after album of wonderfully self-indulgent low-fi melancholy.
I spent the formative first six years of my life in Wellington, New Zealand, a beautiful windswept city framed by a magnificent harbour in one direction and a stunning collection of green, rolling hills in the other. It was here, on a return visit many years later and deep amongst the clipped accents and ruddy faces of the weather-beaten locals, that I stumbled upon the vast catalogue of the then Dunedin based record label Flying Nun. And what a roster of acts they housed — The Chills, The Bats, The Clean, Tall Dwarfs, The Verlaines, and my favourite guitar-pop band, Straitjacket Fits.
Melbourne duo Children Collide are a restless shake of indie pop, all skewered melodies over tapering, restless basslines. We recently exchanged emails with singer and guitarist Johnny. How do you feel the Australian music scene is going at the moment? It tends to go through troughs and peaks. Which is it in now? ‘Hard one to answer really. There are a lot of amazing bands around at the moment. However, it is a weird time with a very tentative music industry not always willing to take chances; and most interesting music is seen to be a risk. By that I mean that anything decent is going to be slightly original and hence slightly untried and unpredictable in it’s appeal. So I’d say it’s in a creative peak but a slump as far as industry faith and support is concerned’.