Rip It Up reviewer Francis Stark wrote of the single: “The Instigators’ Battle of the Bands’ prize of studio time was overseen by the Blams’ Don McGlashan and these two tracks are the result. ‘Not Really Bad’ and ‘In Line’ are both dense, with something of the Pop Mechanix about them. ‘Bad’ wins out on the strength of its vocal.” (Rip It Up issue 50, September 1981)
Their second single for Auckland indie Ripper Records added the fine staccato punk of ‘Hope She’s Alright’ to their legacy. "Hard edge punk, strong guitar lines, vicious singing all make for their best effort ever,” wrote Murray Cammick (Rip It Up issue 62, September 1982). The song can be found on the Propeller compilation Bigger Than Both Of Us.
The Instigators also polished up the high stepping Desmond Dekker hit ‘Israelites’ for one of NZ ska’s best releases, the track appearing on the Ripper collection Goats Milk Soup.
They toured New Zealand regularly in 1981 and 1982 on the busy club and pub circuit, with regular gigs at the Island Of Real, the Rumba Bar, the Reverb Room, and Mainstreet Cabaret. They also performed at Sweetwaters in 1982, before splitting in late 1982.
Sonya Waters released a solo mini-album for Ripper in October 1983 (the last record on the label) and after spending several years overseas was later in The Broken Heartbreakers, White Swan Black Swan and Fang. Eddie Olsen drummed for Auckland Walk and then The Exponents before moving to the UK where he reverted to his real name of Eddie Rayner (he had changed his name to avoid confusion with the Split Enz keyboardist). Ed Geddes played on Dominic Blaazer’s 2017 album The Lights Of Te Atatu.
Don McGlashan produced The Instigators first single Not Really Bad for Ripper Records in 1981.
Sonya Waters released a solo EP No Pain through Ripper Records in 1983. She is a music teacher in Auckland and has played in Fang and White Swan Black Swan.
Ed Geddes - sax, vocals
Sonya Waters - keyboards, vocals
Tarewai Wesley - bass
Eddie Olsen - drums
Tom Rothsey - guitar