I was rummaging around in the record cupboard under the stairs looking for a single I wanted to feature in the podcast when I came across a magazine in one of the record crates. It was Spunkzine, issue 4 of an Australian alternative music fanzine that usually went by the title Spunk Magazine. This particular issue included Startrackers, a giveaway cassette (remember those) featuring 22 bands from around the world, bands that were breaking through on the alternative scene of 1995.
Most of the songs on the cassette are exclusives, including the five contributions by New Zealand acts. Three of the kiwi songs are demos or early takes of songs that saw release by the artists - there's a rip roaring demo of 'Ritual Tragick' from the 3Ds, a song from Swarthy Songs for Swabs. The 3Ds are one my favourite bands of all time so any excuse to hear or play them is welcome. There is also an early take on 'Seed' by Shayne Carter, a song he didn't officially release until the Dimmer album I Believe You Are A Star six years later. The third early version is from Chug, something of a Dunedin superband featuring including Norma O'Malley (ex-Look Blue Go Purple) on guitar and vocals, Alf Danielson on bass, Gary Sullivan (ex-JPS Experience and Solid Gold Hell) on drums and former 3Ds and Goblin Mix member David Mitchell on lead guitar. Their Startrackers song 'Cat Bag' later featured on their 1997 album Metalon.
The other two are songs you'll only hear on Startrackers - there's 'Move It' some great home -recorded guitar squall from King Loser and a song recorded by Chris Knox especially for the compilation, a theme tune called 'Spunk Rock'.
Video: I've loaded an excerpt from The Heavenly Pop Hits doco on the video page that is virtually all about the 3Ds along with a clip from King Loser and the Dimmer video for Seed
Download the Counting The Beat - Out of Print: Startrackers podcast