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The group formed at Otago University. The band members included Malcolm Black, Nick Sampson, Graham Cockroft, Brent Alexander, Annie Crummer, Kim Willoughby and the brass section of Otago University. The band's name is from a Roxy Music song "Spin Me Round" on their Manifesto, 1979: "A nether world dancing toy/I'm wired for sound…" .

In 1983, they played at Sweetwaters and in 1984 they supported Blam Blam Blam on tour and a double sided LP of the concert at Mainstreet, Auckland was released.

Don McGlashan produced "The Real You"/"Standing In The Rain"/"New Zealand Love Song" which was released in November 1984.

In 1985 "For Today" reached No3 in the singles chart and the Netherworld Dancing Toys won five categories at the 1985 New Zealand Music Awards. Malcolm Black and Nick Sampson won the 1985 APRA Silver Scroll for "For Today".

In the early 2000's their song, For Today entered the realm of pop culture by being used as an advertisement for New Zealand Post and at one stage for a driving safety campaign.

For Today is on the soundtrack of Sione's Wedding (2006).

Malcolm Black was a music industry lawyer. In The Mechanics of Popular Music, A New Zealand Perspective he says of the band's demise, "We were university graduates who had a number of different options and wanted security and a regular pay packet…"
Malcolm Black died in Auckland on 9 May 2019.

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