Anticipation is building. Local band Rear Wheel Drive is launching their much-awaited first album on Saturday night at the Federal Hotel Bellingen and fans are brimming with excitement. For the very few who may not be familiar with their work, Rear Wheel Drive is a 5 piece indie rock band home grown in Bellingen.
Bass guitarist Steve Coates is enjoying his last few days of relative anonymity- but knows that things are about to get crazy. His very definition of success is “making a shiny black thing with a hole in the middle.” And the band’s fan base agrees.
Steve took time out from a busy recording schedule to have a chat with Rod.
When did the band get together?
It’s complicated. We’ve all been playing in different configurations for many years but most of our current line-up have been in a relationship for around five years.
What brought you all together?
Music. Friendship. Escape. Destiny. Delusions of grandeur.
Why “Rear Wheel Drive?”
We forget. Something to do with being old school/analogue/like a grumpy old car that needs a bit of coaxing to get going.
Rear Wheel Drive has earned the reputation of being a highly skilled outfit. Would you agree with that statement?
Phil can fix your house.
Mark can fix your anything.
Victoria can stand on her head. And sort out your children.
Simon can mediate your divorce.
Greg can fix your noxious weeds.
While I can fix your website. And correct your spelling.
What can you tell me about the album?
It’s black and round. There’s a small hole in the middle. We’re really proud of it. Not the hole, the songs.
All of us.
What can you tell us about the recording process?
Songwriting took quite some time. The recording took place over a weekend. Artwork, mixing, mastering, pressing, remixing, remastering and all the boring stuff took ages.
Where was the album recorded?
At Rous Mill Studios with the marvellous Steve Reynolds. We ate a lot of curry.
Can we expect Vinyl, Cassette, CD or Download?
We have all of the above. (Actually we’re lying about the cassette, because we’re not hip enough for those).
Has the band drawn inspiration from or modelled itself on any other bands?
Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass. Napalm Death. Milli Vanilli.
Can we expect any covers in the mix?
We’re not really a covers band and the album is all originals, but there’s a chance we might pull something from Nick Cave, the Rolling Stones, Blondie and/or PJ Harvey out of the bag on the night.
Can you explain why drummers never seem to know where the camera is?
Confusion. Embarrassment. Poor lighting.
Who choreographs the stage performance?
Playing on the stage at the Federal with six people and 432 instruments offers limited scope for movement.
Favourite Rock n Roll movie?
Fiddler on the Roof.
And I was sure you were going to say Spinal Tap. What’s your definition of success?
Hanging out with friends being creative. Making a shiny black thing with a hole in the middle.
Favourite venue to play at?
The Federal Hotel. The practice shed.
What does the future hold for Rear Wheel Drive?
More of the same. We’re just here for the music.
Good luck with that Steve- your life may never look the same!!
“Perfect for off-road but struggles a bit in the wet.” Wheels Magazine.
“Best band to come out of West Kalang in years.” Rolling Stone Magazine.
“This is their greatest album so far.” Womens Day.
“I think they will be big in China.” D Trump.
Saturday April 6 at the Federal Hotel. The album will be available on vinyl and CD on the night.
You can also get it on vinyl, CD or digital at rearwheeldrive.com.au. Or hit us up on our Facebook page. So many options.