Oblivians announce Down Under tour
Chuck Trend photo
For the first time in their 21-year existence, Memphis garage rock legends The Oblivians are touring Australia.
As well as the Golden Plains Festival near Meredith in Victoria, The Oblivians will play headline dates at Newtown Social Club in Sydney (March 4), Brisbane Hotel in Hobart (March 5), Barwon Club in Geelong (March 9), Wooly Mammoth in Brisbane (March 14) and a special three-night residency at Melbourne's iconic The Tote on March 11, 12 and 13.
The Oblivians came together in Memphis in 1993 when Greg Cartwright and Jack Yarber from the Compulsive Gamblers met Eric Friedl from Hawaii. They abruptly blew apart, letting loose with some of the rawest garage punk yet heard.
Their brand of unhinged rock’n’roll was loaded with the feel of the blues but seethed with the fun and desperation of the best punk, helping to kick-start an explosion of raw garage rock’n’roll bands around the world.
After their break up in 1998, their legacy has only grown, with artists like Jay Reatard, Black Lips and Ty Segall taking cues from the Memphis heroes and reaching out to audiences worldwide. Meanwhile, Greg Cartwright continued with Reigning Sound, reaching deeper into traditional musical strains and refining a more soulful approach in his songs for several fantastic records - the most recent of which came out this year on Merge Records.
In the years since Eric Friedl has focused his efforts on Goner Records – releasing records by Australians Eddy Current Suppression Ring, Cosmic Psychos and Ausmuteants in the US – and the annual Gonerfest, serving as a pilgrimage for countless touring Australian bands. Total Control, Royal Headache, Deaf Wish, The UV Race, Bits of Shit, Super Wild Horses, Straight Arrows and The Stevens have all blessed the stage there.
Last year saw the release of the first Oblivians album since their breakup, the Desperation LP on seminal LA-based In The Red Records, showing they’d lost none of their flair for raw punk-inspired delivery and top-notch song-writing.