It would be hard to repeat the sense of shock and awe that S.P.U.D. brought to New Zealand ears and stages in the late 1980s and early 1990s. So much of what was fresh and underexposed then is now standard and expected.

S.P.U.D’s songs (and they were songs) were slammed down into the face of the crowd. Take that! And that! And that! they said, as front man Glen Campbell excised his inner demons with a bewildering range of guttural shrieks and psychotic half-howls and whispers that battered and enhanced his words.

Breakdown Town (1989) Directed by Stuart Page
Lance Strickland, Glen Campbell, Matthew Heine, unknown miner, Barnaby Curnow, Peter Buckton
Photo credit: Photo by Alister Reid
S.P.U.D. with Graeme Humphreys - What Was That Thing? (Live at the Powerstation, Auckland, 4/10/89) Green Eyed Owl Collection
Gnaw, issued in 1991, was produced at The Lab by Mark Tierney and Matthew Heine. The cover was designed by Barnaby Curnow with photography from Nat Curnow.
The November 1989 debut Flying Nun release, the 12" single Breakdown Town
S.P.U.D.'s Matthew Hyland at the Flying Nun Christmas Party, Box, High Street, Auckland 1989
Photo credit: Photo by Murray Cammick
Taken on the porch of The Clean / The Bats Bob Scott's flat, Dunedin, 1989. L to r: Lance Strickland, Peter Buckton, Matthew Heine, Glen Campbell, Barnaby Curnow
Photo credit: Murray Cammick Collection
Sour, the 1990 debut album, recorded at The Lab by Mark Tierney
Live at the Gluepot, 20 September, 1990. Bob Sutton Collection
S.P.U.D. at the Flying Nun Xmas Party at the Box, 1989. Glen Campbell and Matthew Hyland
Matthew Hyland, Peter Buckton, Lance Strickland (drums), Matthew Heine, Glen Campbell (vocals)
Motorway (Live at the Rising Sun, Auckland)

Flying Nun


S.P.U.D. stood for the Society For The Protection Of The Unborn Dog.

The S.P.U.D. presskit described the band as "driving, threatening, killer, pounding, seething, gutteral, lurching, sleazy, swampriddengunk music".

Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore said of S.P.U.D. in 1992, "Fuckin SPUD man - whooa".


Peter Buckton - bass

Glen Campbell - vocals

Barnaby Curnow - guitar

Matthew Heine - guitar

Matthew Hyland - guitar

Lance Strickland - drums

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