Live performances, events & recordings

→ ↑ → was formed by Philip Brophy in late 1976 when he was 17. Over the following 10 years, it would be regarded as a group, a collective, a band, a theatre troupe, a multi-media ensemble, a filmmaking entity, a video art production house. It was and wasn't all these things. The oft-used tagline used in official → ↑ → promotion was "somewhere between art and pop". All → ↑ → projects were driven by a conceptual interest in something (anything, really) which intellectually stimulated Philip. The idea would then be made manifest in some form: a music gig, an 'art performance', a film or video. Programme notes usually accompanied all → ↑ → projects. And nearly all projects were presented in multiple contexts - particularly places where the work 'didn't fit in' (taking a leaf from Warhol's dictum to "do the right thing in the wrong place and the wrong thing in the right place"). In this sense, → ↑ → never followed a 'professional' path, and never located its identity or concerns in any one field or industrial pathway. One week would entail playing muzak in a punk club; the next week performing mixed-media theatre in an experimental/'new music' setting; the following week screening a film in a cafe. Galleries were often used, but they certainly weren't the prime concern. Philip designed all the flyers and posters, most of which were printed under the technical guidance of Maria Kozic. Maria also fortuitously took hundreds of deliberately amateurish photos of → ↑ → using her Kodak instamatic camera. Without them this web archive would be visually thin.

Philip Brophy, Maria Kozic & Ralph Traviato © 1981

The Made By → ↑ → book covers the initial phases of the group's existence between 1977 and 1982. Most productions bore an amateurish aspect - what → ↑ → openly declared and embraced as 'militant dilettantism'. Pretentiousness was celebrated, audiences were disregarded, and intellectual appeal was flaunted in the wonderful anti-intellectual climate that makes Australia what it was and still is. While over 60 'members' (friends, acquaintances, invitees, random ring-ins) were involved during this period, a core group featured predominantly in many projects: Philip Brophy, Maria Kozic, Ralph Traviato, Jane Stevenson and Leigh Parkhill. Earlier key members included Anthony Montemurro, Alan Gaunt and Tanya McIntyre.

Between 1983 and 1986, → ↑ → became less involved in live events and more involved in recorded music (shifting from Innocent Records, co-run with David Chesworth, to Present records). The touring → ↑ → Installation presented the earlier phase of the group as part of a re-think about how to move forward producing 'products' more than 'events'. Consequently, the Stuff series of publications paralleled Philip's increasing interest in critical writing for a wide range of publications. Philip also embarked on directing films and videos bearing his name as director, culminating in the featurette Salt Saliva Sperm & Sweat released in 1988. The final official live project for the group was the UK/European tour of Stills.

Jane Stevenson & Leigh Parkhill © 1981; Sydney Tour T-Shirt © 1981

The name → ↑ → comes from Philip's perverse interest in linguistics. The concept was to assert a name for the band by finding something written which negated verbal articulation, and something spoken which negated written correlation. Hence the use of arrows (which direct the reader, but have no single word to name them) and the 'tsk-tsk-tsk' utterance (which is possibly the only communicative sound made by western culture where breath is inhaled rather than expelled). This sound also related to the admonishing parental disapproval that → ↑ → attracted by older counter-culture types who negatively evaluated this bunch of arrogant uppity punks in the artworld. The three-arrow formation comes from the only sculpture Philip made when he was 15 in art class: he simply stuck 3 arrows in the corner of the classroom near the floor, so that they demonstrated height, width and depth. All → ↑ → was intent on being similarly demystified, unromantic and perversely entertaining. Notions of how this materialized in the music of → ↑ → at the time are documented in Philip's answers to a mail interview conducted by longstanding colleague Adrian Martin, in Texts & Gestures (1982).


Chronological listing

  • Minimalism

    Live

    1977-1981

    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide

    → ↑ → EP

    1980

    7" EP
    Innocent Records, Melbourne

    1983

    Included on Muzak, Rock & Minimalism, Innocent Records, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images
  • Feminimalism

    Live

    1977-1979

    Various venues - Melbourne

    Info Images
  • A Punk Band

    Live

    1977-1978

    Various venues & parties - Melbourne

    Info Images
  • Andy Warhol's "a"

    Live

    1977

    Theatre performance
    Menzies Theatre, Melbourne

    Info Images
  • Venitian Rendezvous

    Live

    1978-1981

    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide

    Venitian Rendezvous EP

    1979

    7" EP
    1st & 2nd pressing on Innocent Records, Melbourne

    1983

    Included on Muzak, Rock & Minimalism, Innocent Records, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images $ Poster
  • Nice Noise

    Live

    1978-1981

    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide

    Nice Noise EP

    1979

    7" EP
    1st & 2nd pressing on Innocent Records, Melbourne

    1983

    Included on Muzak, Rock & Minimalism, Innocent Records, Melbourne

    One Note Song

    2001

    Track from Nice Noise EP
    Included on Can't Stop It!, Chapter Music, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images $ Poster
  • Kaboom!

    Live

    1978

    Mixed media performance
    Various venues, Melbourne

    Info Images
  • Pop Art

    Record

    1979

    Split 7" single
    Original release on Crystal Ballroom Records, Melbourne

    2012 + 2005

    Included on Inner City Sound, Laughing Outlaw Records, Sydney

    Info Audio Images
  • Suddenly - I moved

    Live

    1979

    Live music/video performance
    Various venues, Melbourne & Sydney

    Info Images
  • By The Light (Of The Silvery Moon)

    Live

    1979

    Live music/video performance
    Open Channel, Melbourne

    Info Images
  • More Tedious Structuralism

    Live

    1979

    Music theatre performance
    Clifton Hill Community Music Centre, Melbourne

    Info Audio Images
  • Texts

    Live

    1979

    Verbal/text performance
    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide

    Info Images
  • Narrative Music

    Live

    1980

    Live music performance
    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney

    Info Audio
  • A Non-Space

    Video installation

    1981

    4-channel video
    Various venues - Melbourne

    To be archived

  • Asphixiation

    'Live' performance

    1981

    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide

    L'Acrostique d'Amour/The Crush

    1980

    12" single
    Original pre-release on Missing Link Records, Melbourne

    2007

    The Crush included on Can't Stop It! II, Chapter Music, Melbourne

    2017

    L'Acrostique d'Amour included on Closed Circuits, Warner Music Australia

    "What is this thing called 'Disco'?"

    1981

    LP with 12" single
    Original release on Innocent Records, Melbourne

    2017

    LP with 12" single
    Re-issued by Chapter Music, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images $ Posters
  • Formula: Disco

    Live

    1980 - 1984

    Live performance
    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Perth, Paris

    Info Audio Images
  • Wartime Art

    Live

    1980 - 1981

    Live performance
    Various venues - Melbourne

    Info Images
  • New Music

    1978/79

    1980

    Compilation LP
    Compiled by Philip Brophy & David Chesworth
    In conjunction with New Music magazine
    Contains excerpt from More Tedious Structuralism by → ↑ →
    Released on Innocent Records, Melbourne

    1980

    1980

    Compilation LP
    Compiled by Philip Brophy & David Chesworth
    In conjunction with New Music magazine
    Contains excerpt from Narrative Music by → ↑ →
    Released on Innocent Records, Melbourne

    Info Audio Images $ Posters
  • Caprice

    Record

    1980

    7" EP
    1st pressing on Innocent Records, Melbourne

    1981

    2nd pressing on Present Records, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images $ Posters
  • Television Works

    Live

    1981

    Theatre cabaret
    The Met, Melbourne

    Info Images $ Poster
  • Spaces

    Record

    1981

    Soundtrack LP
    Innocent Records, Melbourne

    Info Audio Images $ Poster
  • Made By → ↑ →

    Book

    1983

    Book documenting 6 years of → ↑ → work
    Australia Council funded publication

    Info Audio Images
  • The → ↑ → Installation

    1983-1985

    Room installation displaying 6 years of → ↑ → artefacts & merchandise
    Various venues - Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Hobart, Perth, Paris

    Info Images
  • Muzak, Rock & Minimalism

    Record

    1983

    Compilation LP - first 3 → ↑ → EPs
    Present Records, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images $ LP $ Poster
  • Soundtracks

    Record

    1983

    Compilation LP of → ↑ → soundtracks
    Present Records, Melbourne

    Info Audio Images $ LP $ Poster
  • Still Rock'n'Roll To Me

    Radio piece

    1984

    Radio play
    ABC Radio Australia & Ars Radio, Vienna

    Info Audio Images
  • No Dance

    Record

    1985

    12" mini-LP soundtrack from the film
    Present Records, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images $ LP $ Poster
  • Club Video

    Record

    1985

    12" mini-LP soundtrack from the 2-screen video
    Present Records, Melbourne

    Info Video Audio Images $ Poster
  • Stills

    Live

    1986

    Live performance with 16mm rear-projection film
    International tour: London, Nottingham, Amsterdam, Utrecht, Eindhoven, Ghent, Brussels, Dusseldorf, Munich

    Info Audio Images $ Poster
  • The Box

    Volume 1

    1988

    Limited edition box of early → ↑ → records
    Contains the Made By → ↑ → book
    Released through Present Records, Melbourne

    Info Images
  • Graphics

    1977-1989

    For various performances, films, videos & records