Australian indie pop trio the Lucksmiths teamed singer/percussionist Tali White, guitarist Marty Donald, and bassist Mark Monnone, longtime school friends who initially bonded over their mutual admiration for the Smiths. After going their separate ways to attend university and travel, the threesome reconvened in their native Melbourne in early 1993, playing their debut gig that April opening for the Sugargliders. The Lucksmiths' debut tape was soon released, and in 1994 the group resurfaced with an EP, Boondoggle. After signing with the local Candle imprint, the Lucksmiths released their first CD effort, The Green Bicycle Case. What Bird Is That? followed a year later, and in 1997 the band made its American debut with the single "The Invention of Ordinary Everyday Things," released via the small Michigan label Drive-In Records. Following the release of the 1998 full-length A Good Kind of Nervous, the Lucksmiths played a handful of European dates in support of Belle & Sebastian, a frequent reference point not only in light of the Lucksmiths' wispy folk-pop sound but also their self-effacingly witty lyrics.
At a subsequent gig, Monnone survived a near-fatal on-stage electrocution, and the road-weary trio rounded out the year with the release of a new single, "Untidy Towns." While White spent the next several years living in London, the Lucksmiths toured and recorded only sporadically, cutting a handful of tracks in such far-flung destinations as Washington, D.C., and Paris. Both the Happy Secret collection and the Staring at the Sky 10" appeared in 1999, with the superb "T-Shirt Weather" single and the tongue-in-cheek "Greatest Hits" cassingle following a year later. The outstanding Why That Doesn't Surprise Me, the Lucksmiths' first full-length studio record in close to four years, was issued in early 2001. They released a record every couple years after that with Naturaliste in 2003 and Warmer Corners in 2005, and continued touring the world. (During this time White also formed the Guild League, releasing Private Transport in 2002 and Inner North in 2004.) Before the recording of Warmer Corners, the band added a second guitarist to the lineup. Louis Richter played and sang on that record and also on the follow-up First Frost, which was released on Matinée in late 2008. ~ Jason Ankeny