They took The Bombers’ sound and attitude a step further, and with drummer Larry de Zoete dispensed it around Auckland venues from 1983 to 1984. Flak released Monitor through Industrial Tapes, the Emigration EP (1983) with fellow Auckland post-punks’ Eight Living Legs, and featured on the 1984 live compilation The Last Rumba.
In mid-1984, Jansen (guitar, vocals) and Webster (bass, vocals) packed their guitars for Amsterdam and a fascinating few years as If. In an era when England and Australia drew the bulk of New Zealand’s post-punk diaspora, Holland seemed an unlikely destination.
With Swiss drummer Flavia Vasella on board, If’s confrontational and political sound found like-minds in Amsterdam’s post-punk scene as the trio performed in Holland and Switzerland. They recorded a three-song EP InFormation in early 1985, which gained a good review in NME (alongside The Chills), although it was little seen in New Zealand.
New drummer Rob Bleuze recorded the 14-song tape Bill at his Amsterdam squat in 1986, which the trio then released in a limited run of 120. It still sounds remarkably fresh and is chock full of the sonic art and adventure of the time. The extended reissue from 2011 features two additional tracks recorded at the InFormation sessions in 1985. There would be one more record in 1986 – the six song EP Terminal (currently unavailable) – before the trio split.
Mark Webster - bass, vocals
Dieneke Jansen - guitar, vocals
Larry de Zoete - drums
Rob Bleuzé - drums
Returning from Europe, Webster and Jansen formed Teeth with Birds Nest Roys’ drummer Peter Mourenhout. They released the Grate EP through Flying Nun Records in 1989.
Mark Webster started tape label Walking Monk and founded Stamp magazine. Webster wrote a history of car production in New Zealand entitled Assembly (Reed Books, 2002).
Mark Webster is now the Apple Mac columnist for the NZ Herald.
Mark Webster and Denieke Jansen's daughter Aretha Jansen is in bands Team Ugly and Ralph.
Mark Webster was co-founder of Loose magazine with 4 others (Paul Luker, Chris Knox, Gemma Gracewood and Phil Gregory).