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Hoodoo Gurus

Like most bands, Australia's Hoodoo Gurus were largely the product of their influences; unlike most bands, however, the Hoodoos channeled their inspiration from the vast entirety of the American pop cultural landscape, drawing on such disparate sources as B-movies, bad sitcoms, and junk food -- in tandem with the usual suspects like garage rock, power pop, and surf -- to create a distinctly kitschy and catchy sound. Formed in Sydney in 1981, Le Hoodoo Gurus (as they were originally dubbed) were led by singer/songwriter Dave Faulkner, who along with drummer James Baker previously served as a member of the short-lived Perth punk unit the Victims (best known for the autobiographical single "Television Addict"). Ex-Scientist Rod Radalj and Kimble Rendall rounded out the group's initial lineup, and their unique sound (three guitars, no bass) -- along with Faulkner's infectious songs -- quickly earned them a record deal. After issuing the 1982 debut single "Leilani," both Radalj and Rendall quit, and were replaced by former Super-K guitarist Brad Shepherd and bassist Clyde Bramley.

In 1983, the Hoodoo Gurus (having dropped the French article) recorded their excellent debut record, Stoneage Romeos; dedicated to luminaries like F-Troop's Larry Storch and Green Acres' pig Arnold Ziffel, the album offered such trash-pop treats as the single "I Want You Back," "In the Echo Chamber," and "I Was a Kamikaze Pilot." Mark Kingsmill replaced Baker in 1985, leaving Faulkner the band's sole founding member. He responded by writing an even stronger batch of tunes for 1985's college radio smash Mars Needs Guitars!, an album highlighted by the superb single "Bittersweet" and marked by a widening scope that touched base with demented hillbilly humor ("Hayride to Hell") and crazed surf ("Like Wow -- Wipeout").

With 1987's Blow Your Cool, the Hoodoos appeared poised for the big time; their tourmates, the Bangles, even contributed to the singles "What's My Scene" and "Good Times." However, the album failed to register beyond alternative radio, and Bramley exited, replaced by onetime Divinyl Rick Grossman. Released in 1989, Magnum c*m Louder didn't fare much better -- although the singles "Come Anytime," "Another World," and "Baby Can Dance" all garnered significant airplay -- while 1991's Kinky featured "Miss Freelove '69," a smirking look at flower-power romance that was the latest in a long line of near hits. After a three-year hiatus, the Hoodoo Gurus returned with the harder-edged Crank, produced by Ed Stasium; Blue Cave followed in 1996.

In 1998, the Gurus announced they were splitting up, and the career-spanning compilation Ampology was issued in 2000. Two years later, Dave Faulkner, Brad Shepherd, and Mark Kingsmill were working together again as members of the garage-influenced the Persian Rugs, and in 2004, after Faulkner had reworked "What's My Scene" from Blow Your Cool as a theme song for an Australian football team, the band reunited (with Rick Grossman returning on bass), staging a successful tour down under and releasing a new album, Mach Schau. In 2009 the Hoodoo Gurus inked a deal with Sony Music Australia, resulting in their ninth full-length album, 2010's Purity of Essence. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

schmoopfeur
Leilani
schmoopfeur
Leilani
nicko252008
AWESOME!!!
I wish I knew about these guys a long time ago.
auto-censor? OK. fine. V
and the C-word in the title of their fourth album is Latin for with, as in Magna C*m Laude. Great band, nice blokes.
just discovered these guys they are sick
could've sworn MARS NEEDS GUITARS! included a song called SHE
i was a kamikaze piolet really rocks
Saw them in SLC in about 1983. Loads of fun. Great sounds. Very Memorable.
doug.south
... in 2004, after Faulkner had reworked What's My Scene from Blow Your Cool as a theme song for an Australian football team...

That's not quite correct. He re-worked the song to That's My Team as a theme song for the *entire league* (NRL), not just one team.
Awesome band. I started listening to them back in the mid-80s...th e y have such a unique sound. I saw them live back in '96...they put on a good show
One of the catchiest bands ever.
Beyond Blazing Boards was surf movie and they used a bunch of HooDoo music in. It was perfect! Great memories!
glensurf
Always have been and always will be a Hoodoo Gurus fan
probably been 25 years since I last listened to 'em
great name for a band. like i want you back. killer pop
lol middle management. "lets get the hoodoon gurus on the redeye to {large midwestern university} stat, there's some white kids need a band to get drunk around"
92tcm3
Dependable middle management power pop.
My favorite college band
sounds like midnight oil

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