Back in the day, I was a co-founder and contributing editor for a local fanzine called Blast!, We were essentially a small group of University of Melbourne students with some (emerging) Quark Xpress and Photoshop skills, who threw together a publication about culture, music, art and so forth. I pretty much concerned myself with the music articles, interviewing (mainly) Australian bands and reviewing (free!) CDs. I also organised launch and benefit gigs to help to fund our shoestring operation.
Issue number four, happened to coincide with a trip to New Zealand. Ostensibly, a trip to the ski fields of the South Island, it also provided me with the opportunity to harass Paul McKessar, at Flying Nun Records HQ, which at the time was in Auckland, to give me the contact details of some of his charges who lived in Dunedin, the spiritual home of the label. As I said in my editorial for that issue:
From New Zealand with love…As regular readers would know, I love to promote the local scene and Australian artists; just look at…the back issues of Blast! However this edition has interviews with Robert Scott of Magick Heads, The Bats and the Clean fame; David Mitchell and Denise Roughan of the 3Ds; Alf Danielson and Norma O’Malley from Chug; and David Kilgour of The Clean and Stephen.
November 2011, is the 30th anniversary of Flying Nun records. So in recognition of that, I have iPhone OCR’d my article from August/September 1995 and grabbed some photos from my photo album. Reading the article now, I realise I didn’t actually describe what the music sounded like. This is probably why my music journalism career didn’t take off. So I’ve added some 2011 notes and embedded some examples of songs, along with some minor copy edits.
For an overview of Flying Nun Records, here is their Wikipedia entry.
Here is a 2009 article from The Guardian about the label.
Here is an Oz/NZ playlist I have on Youtube which has a Flying Nun Records documentary on it.
Finally, here is FN’s “Greatest Bits” compilation. 30 years, 40 tracks, 20 NZ dollars!
I give you “A Pilgrimage to Aotearoa”. You can read it “after the jump”