The 3Ds

The 3Ds were the band to beat in 1990s New Zealand. With their venerable pedigree, they were the supergroup of Flying Nun's third wave. They had the chops to cheer the chin-stroking set, but could wow the lads and gals and make ‘em dance too.

With their perverse hooks, main songwriters and guitarists David Mitchell and David Saunders dug in and crawled up the back of Denise Roughan's and Dominic Stones' subtle-to-brutal rhythms – like a Sunday Horrors creature from one of Mitchell’s drawings – only to curl up in front the fire for a cuddle.

The 3Ds reunite: David Mitchell, Denise Roughan, Dominic Stones and David Saunders, Sammy's, Dunedin, February 20, 2010
David Mitchell poster for The 3Ds and The Verlaines. NYE 1991
Photo credit: Design by David Mitchell
David Saunders explains - pre-show at Sammy's, February 20, 2010
Early Recordings Interview Part 3
Interview with The 3Ds, 1994. Directed by Ross Cunningham,
A 1995 3Ds Flying Nun publicity shot: Dominic Stones, Denise Roughan, David Mitchell and David Saunders
Sing Song (Live at Merge XX Festival 2009) Filmed by Jim Abbott
Early Recordings Interview Part 2
David Saunders, The Bedford, Christchurch, February 27th, 2010
Dominic Stones, Sammy's, Dunedin, February 20, 2010
Jane Davidson's cover for the 1990 12-inch EP Fish Tales, recorded at Fish Street Studios by Matthew Heine and Stephen Kilroy
Denise Roughan, The Bedford, Christchurch, February 27th, 2010
The 3Ds, The Bedford, Christchurch, February 27th, 2010
Bunny (Live at the Gluepot, Auckland, New Zealand, 14 September 1990) Bob Sutton Collection
The 3Ds in 1996: Denise Roughan, Dominic Stones, David Mitchell and David Saunders
Photo credit: Murray Cammick Collection
Dust - Bob Sutton Collection
Nimmo's Dream (Live performance at the Gluepot, Auckland, New Zealand, 14 September 1990) Bob Sutton Collection
Outer Space
Hey Seuss
1991's Swarthy Songs For Swabs EP with artwork by David Mitchell. It was the first recording co-produced by Tex Houston, who would work with the band thereafter.
David Mitchell's cover for 1993s The Venus Trail album
The 3Ds in 1993: Dominic Stones, David Mitchell, David Saunders and Denise Roughan
Photo credit: Photo by Darryl Ward
The 3Ds, The Bedford, Christchurch, February 27th, 2010
David Mitchell, The Bedford, Christchurch, February 27th, 2010
Interview & Man On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown video - Bob Sutton Collection
The 3Ds in 1996 - Dominic Stones, Denise Roughan, David Saunders, David Mitchell
Early Recordings Interview Part 1
1995 - Denise Roughan, David Saunders (seated), David Mitchell, Dominic Stones

In 1993, U2 came to NZ on their Zoo TV tour and Bono asked The 3Ds to open their shows in Christchurch and Auckland. An associate of The 3Ds lifted a bottle of wine from U2's dressing room and the band were told by the promoter that they would not be paid for playing. Bono insisted The 3Ds were paid – he doubled their fee – and they received an extra bottle of wine.

The wonderful pop art sets on 1960s NZ music show C'Mon were designed by Dominic Stones' father Anthony Stones.


David Mitchell - guitar, vocals, mandolin

Denise Roughan - bass, keyboards, tambourine, kalimba, vocals

David Saunders - guitar, slide guitar, acoustic guitar, vocals

Dominic Stones - drums, sticks


Flying Nun


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Mushroom Records

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