Hoodoo Gurus ready to rock at Riverboats

BIG AND BOLD: The Hoodoo Gurus aim to make every show their best performance. Picture: SUPPLIED
BIG AND BOLD: The Hoodoo Gurus aim to make every show their best performance. Picture: SUPPLIED

When Aussie rock legends the Hoodoo Gurus play at Echuca’s Riverboats Festival in February, nothing will have changed for the band.

Famous for songs including What’s My Scene, Come Anytime, Leilani and Miss Freelove 69, the band formed in 1981, broke up in 1998 and reformed in 2003.

Frontman Dave Faulkner said the band always tries to rock hard and make each gig their best one.

“We’re big and bold, we jump around and have a lash. If you don’t get close and see the wrinkles, we are the same as we were in 1984,” he said.

“We want each show we play to be the best of our lives. We know which songs are welded on to set list.

“You have to have those songs and like playing them because they lift the crowd’s energy when people hear them and that lifts our energy.”

Since reforming in 2003, the band has released two albums – Mach Schau and Purity of Essence. Drummer Mark Kingsmill only recently decided to retire.

Faulkner, guitarist Brad Shepherd and bass player Richard Grossman still play in the band.

“Mark retired about a year ago but agreed to do A Day on Green (earlier this year),” Faulkner said.

“Then he came back but became then unwell and decided he had to stop playing. But we have stayed stable (as a line-up) for a long time.”

When the band went its separate ways in 1998, Faulkner said it was because they felt people were looking for the next new thing.

“It was about these young and and hot new things, so we felt overlooked and almost brushed off. Like people were saying ‘you’re still here?’,” Faulkner said.

“You feel like you’re almost told to move along. That made us say we should quit before we run out of gas. It was stupid because none of those things are true.”

When the band played together five years later, Faulkner said the chemistry was clearly still there.

“We were asked to come and play at Homebake. It was like hadn't missed anything. The energy was still there,” he said.

“When I stepped away, I released the incredible sort of alchemy there was between four people. It didn’t sound right with other musicians.”

Faulkner said Mach Schau was a different sound to other Hoodoo Gurus albums.

“It was nice to try that and it was an interesting record but it was a bit harsh for some people's ears,” he said.

Purity of Essence was an amazing experience. The songs worked straight away and everything we tried was gold.”

The Riverboats Festival is on February 17 to 19. For details visit www.riverboatsmusic.com.au