What do Cold Chisel, Rose Tattoo and The Angels all have in common? All three bands were pioneers in the pub scene during the ’70s and ’80s. Their ability to sell out venues night after night, and unite entire crowds in chorus, is the stuff of legends. They are the hard-working, hard-partying icons of the past. Dirty, fast and built to last. Taking a leaf from their book, the Australian Kingswood Factory have become part of the new generation, proud to carry on the torch one Aussie rock anthem at a time.
“For us it’s [playing live] the be all and end all,” says guitarist/vocalist Lindsey Bush. “Even if we’ve gotta work crappy servo jobs or at a bar, we will do that because we absolutely love doing it. The energy and reaction we get from the crowd is everything to us, and I know we’re going to be doing this in one form or another for the rest of our lives.”
Originally from Canberra, Bush says the AKF has been around in one form or another for over a decade. “Our current line-up has been together for two years, but the band has been around for 11. I’m the last founding member, but our bass player Chris has been with the band for nine and a half years. Carl [drums] is only a recent addition.”
As a trio, the band has become a favourite in the Victorian pub and club circuit as well as drawing large crowds at shows up and down the East Coast. They’ve been hand-picked to support bands such as Hell City Glamours, The Meanies, Airbourne, The Meteors and, one of Bush’s influences, The Angels. “We’ve played some amazing shows, and we’re one hundred and ten per cent crowd-fed – although obviously alcohol helps!” Bush laughs. “But the main focus for us is getting the crowd worked up and excited, and having as much fun as we are.”
To celebrate the release of their debut record, 245 (out now), the loveable larrikins have packed up the Holden for a run of shows this month that will see them play Bendigo’s Musicman Megastore on Friday March 18. “We wanted to have a big hurrah, so we thought, what better way to do that than to put all of our mate’s bands on?” Bush smiles.
“So we’re taking Ramshackle Army with us, who are very good friends of ours. It’s so rare we get to play with the Ramshackle Army these days because they’re bigger than we are, they’re playing shows all over the world now, but we got lucky with this time.”
Bush says Melbourne lads The Balls will also be appearing at the show. “We’ve done a few tours with them now – they’re also very good friends of ours. In fact, both of our drummers used to work together in the same call centre! We love partying with those guys – they’re great fun, and we’ve been all up and down the East Coast with them now. We’d like to get them on the road as much as possible.”
While Bush admits that life as a touring musician is a dream come true, he is the first to admit that being a musician in an independent band today is a hard slug – but he wouldn’t change a thing. “As long as I’m able to hang up my work boots at five o’clock on Friday afternoon and go to a rock ‘n’ roll show and play some guitar, I will die pretty bloody content.”
Written by Natalie Rogers
When & Where: Musicman Megastore, Bendigo – March 18