Sedative was an ambitious attemp to form an improvisational project utilising primal-industrial sound textures. Featuring Brendon Mably, Ed Wilson and Nigel Cooper; Sedative only lasted roughly the length of 1997 but managed to leave behind a half hour recording, utilising the unaccustomed luxury of 16-track facilities of Nga Mata Waka sound engineering course that Ed was attending at the time. In true kRkRkRk style, the only mixdown of this studio session sat on a cruddy tape for a couple of years before being revived to the CDR medium.
As far back as 1993 the then Dunedin-based Ed and Nigel had been experimenting with feedback improvisations, inspired by the likes of Sonic Youth and the Dead C, the latter of whom could then be occasionally seen performing live around the town. Though Ed and Nigel exhilirated in the sheer joy of abrasive, piercing noise, this element was largely lost when it became time for the two to form an actual punk band: Junkyard Jesus.
After a year or so, tense band dynamics and boredom with obvious song structures set in. Nigel took part in the brief life of Einbildungskraft, a kind of continual noise big band which also featured Shaun Jury and Kerry Baser of Drugs vs. Grandchildren, Brendon Mably, Kevin Mably, Daryl Baser and, for one performance, kRkRkRk's J-mz Robinson, then living in Dunedin. When Ed and Nigel next collaborated it was this, more 'experimental' approach to music that inspired them.
First came the short-lived Kerosene, featuring Ed, Nigel, J-mz and Greg Tozer. Following this groups demise Sedative was first discussed towards the end of 1996. Ed, now living in Christchurch, had been enjoying the final-era leonard Nimoy performances and became inspired to include metal percussion in a project. Thus the elements were now in place for Sedative: Ed and Nigel, soon joined by Brendon; along with a rusting collection of metal; guitars, to be played with motors and knives; whatever else happens to be available at the time.
In their few live performances and only recording, the ethos that resulted was to create a series of 'waste-scapes': extended and evolving sonic textures evoking hollowness and despair. An underlying intention was to confront an industrialised society with the results of its own alienation and pollution - Sedative was to do anything but sedate, unlike its diametric opposite: the glossy, sensory overload of corporate advertising culture; with its ultimate aims of deceit, deflection and pacification.
Of course, such a project as Sedative could not bear up the weight of its own agenda. Across two cities, with increasingly divergent approaches to music, and without taking the time to really delve into the possibilities of the techniques they were claiming, the band never really achieved its goals. Nonetheless, there were some intriguing results, and the experience contributed greatly to the musical development of its members. Ed further developed some of the techniques and themes in his solo album Fragmentation KRK104, and collaborations with other kRkRkRk members, notably BOCCTAHNE. Nigel carried on to form the band Dissident, and Brendon, now Wellington-based, is one of the foremost contributors to New Zealand's Dark and Electronic music scenes with acts such as Gugonix and NUTE.
Other soundclick links by members of this band: