Sheen of Gold

“All the good music is made by outsiders, whether they come from Liverpool, Seattle or… Palmerston North.” — Roger Shepherd

Director: Simon Ogston
Year: 2013
Country: New Zealand
Running time: 81 mins
Censor Rating: M - content may disturb

Producer/Photography: Simon Ogston
Editor: Jason Pengelly
Sound: Nick Roughan
Music: Skeptics
Blu-ray

With: David D’Ath, Robin Gauld, John Halvorsen, Brent McLachlan, Nick Roughan, Don White, Chris Knox, Roger Shepherd, Sarah Fort-D’Ath, Stu Page, Tone Cornaga, Chris Matthews, Russell Brown, Bob Sutton, Jon Toogood, Jed Town

World Premiere

Director Simon Ogston continues his excavations of underground Kiwi rock, with a tribute to one of New Zealand's most influential and eclectic rock bands of the 80s: the incomparable Skeptics. Improbably originating from small-town, late-70s Palmerston North, they began as a cacophonous high school punk band. Bassist Nick Roughan admits their earliest recordings ‘should stay dead and buried’, but with charismatic frontman David D’Ath, Skeptics soon gained a cult following and outgrew their provincial roots. Wellington beckoned, as well as a new spare, electronic sound. Ogston compiles interviews with all surviving band members and a wealth of rare archival footage, including Skeptics’ controversial ‘AFFCO’ video – which cut too close to the bone for TVNZ – and their remarkable, emotional final live performance at Auckland's Gluepot in July 1990. D’Ath died just months later following a short battle with leukemia. His death signaled a premature end for the band but not their music, which will shortly see a long overdue re-release. — Michael McDonnell