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Hero image for There is No Depression in New Zealand

There is No Depression in New Zealand

Blam Blam Blam, Music Video – 1981

This track by Auckland post-punk trio Blam Blam Blam became a theme song for the long, troubled winter of 1981, as New Zealand was wracked by division during the Springbok rugby tour. Poet and playwright Richard von Sturmer wrote the lyrics; the music was by Blams drummer Don McGlashan. The video features the band after dark on the roof of TVNZ’s old Shortland Street studios in Auckland, alongside fleeting shots of Kiwi celebrity lawnmowing. The dancing Marmite and Vegemite jars were originally created for a piece of political theatre written by von Sturmer.

It was a reaction to the really grey, repressive Muldoon years. I wasn't prompted by a single event; it was more the general atmosphere. I wrote it a year or so after I'd returned from the punk scene in London. It's an ironic song.
– Richard von Sturmer on writing the lyrics to 'There is No Depression New Zealand', Sunday magazine, 10 September 2015

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