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2015 REVIEW: FLYING NUN RECORDS

Matthew Davis

The end of the year is nigh, and it is the time where we get all reflective on what has happened.

We thought it best to document these reflections, and to start us off we reflected back on the year for our good friends and label buddies - Flying Nun Records. It's like a school report but with great records.

Not only did they moved their offices in above the Flying Out store, apparently their spreadsheet planning docs are looking pretty flash. More importantly they continued to unleash more of the back catalogue re-issues in partnership with Captured Tracks in the US. They also teamed up with Captured Tracks to bring some new releases to New Zealand, while sending some new New Zealand albums out to the wider world.

And here they are, in no particular order (though vaguely based on type and chronological)....

  

 

"The Stones were a Dunedin band: 1981-83. During the cultural highpoint of southern New Zealand music these three Romans with a 1970s Falcon station-wagon floated it with the best..." - Bruce Russell.

Curated by New Zealand/Noise legend Bruce Russell, this compilation features Flying Nun originals, The Stones - contribution to the legendary Dunedin Double, their Another Disc Another Dollar EP as well as never heard before live recordings. 

SHAYNE CARTER & PETER JEFFERIES - RANDOLPH'S GOING HOME 7"
 

The first ever re-issue of the Shayne Carter and Peter Jefferies 1986 collaborative 7” - Randolph’s Going Home, was made available again for Record Store Day 2015.

Featuring two tracks written by Shayne Carter (Bored Games, Straitjacket Fits, Doublehappys) and Peter Jefferies (This Kind of Punishment, Nocturnal Projections) the song was Carter’s first recording following the sudden, tragic death of his Doublehappy’s band mate and friend Wayne Elsey.  

SNEAKY FEELINGS - SEND YOU (2xLP, CD, DL)

Filled with lush pop harmonies and southern psychedelia, Send You saw the the Sneaky Feelings expand their songwriting and sonic ambition beyond their early four track recordings.

This deluxe edition of their debut full length gives a further detailed look at the band's early material, with the album expanded to include a remastered version of Send You, plus songs from 1985's Be My Friend 7”, Husband House EP and bonus tracks from their 1990 session at Dunedin's Radio1.

ABLE TASMANS - A CUPPA TEA AND A LIE DOWN (2xLP/CD/DL)

After nearly two decades Able Tasmans 1986 debut album - A Cuppa Tea and a Lie Down was made available again! The deluxe 2xLP re-issue was re-mastered and expanded to include their first EP The Tired Sun (complete with pull out replica sleeve), three bonus tracks plus liner notes from songwriter Graeme Humphreys all housed in a gatefold set.

Beautiful baroque indie pop!

CHRIS KNOX - SEIZURE (LP/CD)

Chris Knox, godfather of alternative New Zealand music. A true renaissance bloke from down under. Debut solo full length Seizure - re-issued and remastered from the original tape, also featuring the original art work.

Crucial for any record collection. Do I need to say more?


Another Knox-related re-issue, this of his and Alec Bathgate's Tall Dwarfs duo. Released in 1990 Weeville is filled with the Tall Dwarfs’ eclectic mix of homespun psychedelia, densely textured pop songs and a wallop of hard nosed punk.

Re-issued again on LP and CD, Weeville is wired with hypnotic tunes, weird and wonderful instruments and brilliant songwriting. It's pop music just how they like it.

Released in tandem with Fire Records, this is aa magnificent and comprehensive collection of all of the Christchurch acts releases alongside bonus tracks and booklet featuring interviews with the band.
  

PRINCESS CHELSEA - THE GREAT CYBERNETIC DEPRESSION (LP/CD/DL)

We teamed up with NZ indie label Lil' Chief for this 70's synth-inspired album from Princess Chelsea.

Her sophomore release weaves unconventional song structures with very dense “wall of synth” arrangements to create a sound that has been described as “retrofuturistic”. Sounds like the future.


Flying Nun's last physical release for the year - Hurtling Through sees Tiny Ruins and Hamish Kilgour (The Clean) join forces for a seven track EP of varied folk-based, including two W.B. Yeats poems set to music, as well as a field recording of a late-night Brooklyn walk.

Out last week, it's already picking up 4 and 5 star reviews and is on high rotate in the office.

AVOID! AVOID - LOW EARTH ORBIT (DL)

Debut EP release from the Auckland trio - Sonya Waters (Fang/White Swan Black Swan), Stephen Reay (the Subliminals/the Haints of Dean Hall) and Brendan Moran (the Subliminals/Hasslehoff Experiment).

Krautrock inspired psychospheric drone at its finest, this three track EP is a taster for a forthcoming album out next year. 

SURF FRIENDS - DREAMS ARE REAL (DL)

Attention all froth dogs, the duo are back out of their surf cave with a new EP available to download

Filled with shimmery shoe-gaze guitars and driving grooves, the 5-track EP has songs about everything from the surf to Luke Skywalker. Dreams Are Real see Surf Friends yet again cleverly combine sun-kissed melodies, motorik rhythms and roaring sonic fuzz.

MOURN - MOURN (LP/CD)

Young Spanish quartet, Mourn's debut was the first album Flying Nun released from Captured Tracks in New Zealand.

Mourn is a brilliant treatise of indie rock that has stunned those who have heard it.The band’s self-written motto states; “Four nerds playing music and shit at the doors of hell.” Thankfully for us, this moment was documented and we have the self-titled debut to enjoy for years to come.

MAC DEMARCO - ANOTHER ONE (LP/CD)

Flying Nun also release Captured Tracks' main man Mac's EP Another One in New Zealand.

Conceived and recorded entirely by himself in a short period between a relentless tour schedule, Another One is at times haunting and warm, and a bit more refined and sophisticated, but still plenty playful, retaining the guts and soul of classic Mac.


So there you have it, another banner year for Fuzzy, see you next year, the boss says all I can tell you that there is some mighty fine records planned.



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