The Scavengers Profile

Andrew Schmidt
28 May 2013

Auckland punk pioneers The Scavengers blazed a controversial trail through the New Zealand music scene, inciting tabloid outrage in 1977 after drunken early appearances at the Moody Richards club, the Universities Arts Festival in Wellington, and on children's TV show Nice One Stu and the chart show Ready To Roll.

As The 1B Darlings, they tapped glam rock, pub R&B and New York street rock. As The Scavengers, the renamed Mike Lesbian (Mike Simons), Johnny Volume (Ken Cooke), Mal Licious (Marlon Hart), and Des Truction (Simon Monroe), amped it up another notch and set the New Zealand template for punk rock with fellow first wave punks, Suburban Reptiles.

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Des Truction does his bit during True Love, Globe Hotel 1978
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Zwines, 1978
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The Scavengers mid 1977 - Des Truction, Mal Icious, Johnny Volume, Mike Lesbian
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The Scavengers at Wellington's Victoria University in August 1977. Various Suburban Reptiles are seen dancing.
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Ronnie Recent, Johnny Volume, Des Truction - Windsor Castle 1978
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Mike Lesbian and Johnny Volume at the RipItUp farewell to writer Jeremy Templer, 1978
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Mysterex
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Des Truction at Zwines, 1978
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The Scavengers at Auckland University Cafe, with extra member, Buster Stiggs
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Outside the Windsor Castle, 1978
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The 1B Darlings in 1976 - Johnny Volume and Mike Lesbian
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Des Truction
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Ronnie Recent
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Ronnie Recent
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Ronnie Recent, Zwines 1978
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Zwines, 1978
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Marching Girls 'Plain Jane' EP poster from 1985
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Ronnie Recent, Des Truction, Johnny Volume
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Auckland University with Buster Stiggs (left) guesting, 1978
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Brendan Perry interviewed on Give It A Whirl
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The 1B Darlings - Ken Cooke & Mike Simons, 1976
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Crofts Nightclub (later Moody Richards), the first club in Auckland to allow punk bands
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The 2004 Scavengers reunion show. Dion from The D4 stood in for Brendan Perry (Ronnie Recent)
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The Scavengers with Mal Licious, mid 1977
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Ronnie Recent and Buster Stiggs, Auckland University 1978
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Des Truction - Moody Richards, Airedale St, 1977
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Mike Lesbian, 1978
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Labels:

Ripper


Propeller


Raw power

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Members:

Johnny Volume - guitar

Ronnie Recent - bass, vocals

Des Truction - drums

Mal Licious - bass

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Trivia:

The song Mysterex was written about former lead singer Mike Lesbian.

Johnny Volume, Ronnie Recent lived in a flat in Remuera where The Scavengers practised on the front lawn. Noise complaints killed this idea after a couple of rehearsals.

Ronnie Recent returned to the UK in the early 1980s, where, as Brendan Perry, he found global fame with Dead Can Dance.

The Scavengers reformed for shows in Auckland in 2004 and 2008. Their music was compiled and released in 2003 by New Zealand music archivist John Baker.