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Ambivalence - Flying Out



Flying Nun

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Semi-mythical perpetrators of the first-ever Flying Nun record, the Pin Group were the archetypal band with a plan. This, combined with one of the lowest profiles in popular music, naturally makes them one of the hottest posthumous properties around. Two singles and one 12" EP, live shows only in Christchurch between May 1981 and January 1982, a reunion single in 1993; and that's all folks.

Now, all this has been bought together for a complete re-issue. Ambivalence sees all the Christchurch act's material fully re-mastered by band member Roy Montgomery and engineer Arnold van Bussell. Compiled by Bruce Russell, the reissue features the original version of their second single Coat, plus the 12" LP includes a bonus download of live tracks. All repackaged with reproductions of the original artwork by contemporary artist and Pin Group associate Ronnie van Hout.

Formed in late 1980, initially a trio of Roy Montgomery (gtr/vcl), Peter Stapleton (drms) and Desmond Brice (bass) - all veterans of various Christchurch pre-punk and punk bands. The addition of Ross Humphries on bass and vocals proved to be the missing link, his muscular yet minimally melodic playing was to mesh perfectly with Montgomery's determined droning raga-rock guitar and Stapleton's white-knuckled martial hammering.

"I can clearly remember hearing the black-on-black Ambivalence single when it came out in the midst of the 1981 Springbok Tour. I impatiently dismissed it as too murky. It was not to be until early the following year that I heard the Go to Town EP... and then my mind split open. If ever I get my genie in a bottle I will be back in a flash to the Gladstone in December 1981 to see the five-piece Pin Group with Mary Heney covering "Lady Godiva's Operation" For my money, that's the absolute ne plus ultra of Velvet Underground cover-version match-ups.

A big part of my wanting to see Flying Nun get off the ground again in a new century was to get the chance to re-marry the sonics of the Pin Group with Ronnie's silver Factory visual vibe of Brillo boxes and black helicopters. And this is it: a legend that defies time. Now you too have the chance to experience The Pin Group's irresistible blend of the puritanical with the libidinal wrapped in a point-perfect distillation of proto-hipster psychedelic reference-points from the dawn of post-modernity.

They were right our youth was soon past. But this endures.

-Bruce Russell.

Artist: Pin Group
Title: Ambivalence
Label:Flying Nun Records
Year: 2011
Cat #: FN520
Formats: Digital

Track List:

  1. Jim
  2. Ambivalence
  3. Coat
  4. Long Night
  5. Columbia
  6. Hurricane Fighter Plane
  7. Power
  8. Ambivalence 2
  9. When I Tell You
  10. A Thousand Sins
  11. Low Rider
  12. Coat 2
  13. Jim (Live)
  14. Ambivalence (Live)
  15. Power (Live)
  16. Assassin (Live)
  17. Blood Of Christ (Live)
  18. Columbia (Live)
  19. Coat (Live)
  20. Hurricane Fighter Plane (Live)


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