Archives for posts with tag: Mick Elborado

Our Day 30 song for 31 Days of May Madness, attempting to post a New Zealand track every day of the month of May, is Negative Nancies with “What Would John Say”:

Some of the Dunedin songs posted this month have had a hint of anarchic anything-goes punk and Weird Dunedin, and Casio-powered Negative Nancies are another from that realm. “What Would John Say” is from the Dunedin trio’s not-quite-fully-released-yet first album “Heatwave”.

Its full release may have been complicated by uncertain pandemic manufacturing and freighting logistics, but almost everything else about the band and the album is unconventional and unpredictable so dive in and weird out. Check their thrilling 2018 12” EP “You Do You” as well.

Negative Nancies are Tess Mackay (Casio, vocals), Emilie Smith (drums, vocals), and Mick Elborado their wired guitar+feedback sonic alchemist. They are an intergenerational amalgam of musical explorers from different scenes, with Mick part of many great bands like The Terminals, Scorched Earth Policy and The Shallows released on Flying Nun Records in the 80s.

Minus 2 were an off-shoot of long-running Christchurch band The Terminals, made up of guitarist and singer Stephen Cogle, bassist/ cellist John Christoffels and keyboard player Mick Elborado. They recorded a couple of albums in the early 2000s, released as limited CD-r runs on small underground labels. This song “Crocus” is second of these Minus 2 albums “Joy of Return”:

Minus 2 recorded “Joy of Return” album about 2002 or 2003, but it wasn’t released until 2009 on 50cc Records. It has recently been made available again via Mick Elborado’s ‘Melbo’ Bandcamp as a free download. I would have happily paid generously for this – it’s an extraordinary collection of dark swirling folk-pop-noir.

The mix of keyboard and a weaving lead guitar line here means “Crocus” sounds like a demo for a mid-period Felt song, from the Ignite The Seven Cannons And Set Sail For The Sun album, the only to feature both guitarist Maurice Deebank and organist Martin Duffy. But instead of Lawrence we have the distinctive ominous vibrato baritone proclamation of Stephen Cogle.

Whereas The Terminals were often a multi-instrument wall of sound, the percussion free space of Minus 2 gives a different kind of setting for Cogle’s voice, and the resulting music has a character of its own. The whole album is glorious, and the epic title track closing the album – a duet with Nicole Moffet – is particularly wonderful: