To celebrate their hit-laden career, legendary Aussie rockers Spiderbait have today announced a one-off show at Forum Melbourne on November 9, with tickets going on sale at 9am Thursday July 11. And another exciting announcement for long-time fans – the show will be paired with a brand new, limited edition 7" vinyl box set of singles, SPIDERBAIT – SINGLES and will be available exclusively at the show.
The story of Spiderbait is an unlikely but heartwarming one – three friends from a small Australian country town taking on the music scene, and emerging triumphantly 25 years later, friendship intact, and now one of the biggest and best rock bands on the national landscape. Taking inspiration from far-reaching influences from all sides of the musical spectrum (everything from Slayer to The Bangles), Spiderbait took their fervent thrash-pop from their tiny hometown of Finley in NSW down to Melbourne and immersed themselves in the rich, fertile creative scene. From there they quickly consolidated their status as national treasures, with their popularity spanning three decades with no signs of abating. Spiderbait have released seven acclaimed albums, which have all racked up gold, platinum or double platinum status and have combined Australian sales of over one million units. As if that wasn't enough, they have also racked up pretty much every accolade there is to achieve on the Australian scene, having taken home numerous ARIA Awards, chalked up a number one single (their 2004 cover of Leadbelly's Black Betty) and even topped the prestigious triple j Hottest 100 (for Buy Me A Pony, 1996).
The upcoming show at Forum Melbourne is sure to please old and new fans alike, as drummer and vocalist Kram enthuses, "For the first time we'll be performing every one of singles in order of release, from Circle K way back in 1990 to now. It's been great to look back at all these singles, from number 1s like Black Betty and Buy Me a Pony, to my personal faves like Calypso, Stevie and It's Beautiful.... They are like a diary of our lives bringing back memories from the whole time we've been playing together. The same three country kids who formed a band for fun and ended up having this fucked up, brilliant, unexpected adventure! So to all our fans, come celebrate with us at the Forum in November, it will be a special night."
Thrilled to be dropping the SPIDERBAIT – SINGLES 7" vinyl box set in conjunction with the show, complete with original mixes & artwork, Kram explains why they chose to add an unexpected song into the mix, saying,"We included Old Man Sam from 1991 - which wasn't actually a single back then but might as well have been, as weirdly and wonderfully it became our first big hit song! I'll never forget the first time we played the song at Big Day Out in Sydney. This was a big moment for us as we went on stage a bit nervous, it was a massive crowd of thousands at the Sydney Show Grounds and when we did Old Man Sam, the whole crowd sang it and went nuts. That day we came off stage a very different band than the one that went on 45 minutes before. It's amazing and dare I say fucking awesome how one song can do that."
Spiderbait are a very special Australian band with an abundance of fans across multiple generations and this exclusive show at the Forum Melbourne will be a victory lap for the group, and they're excited to be taking all their fans along for the ride.
Tickets to Forum Melbourne will go on sale at 9am on Thursday July 11 from https://www.ticketmaster.com.au
SPIDERBAIT – SINGLES vinyl box set will be available to preorder as a ticket & vinyl bundle, and will be available for purchase at the show.
Spiderbait is Janet English on bass, Kram on drums and lead vocals, and Damian Whitty on guitar.
Buy ticket + vinyl bundles
Spiderbait – The Singles Exclusive Shows
Presented by Triple M Melbourne
SAT 9 NOV | THE FORUM, MELBOURNE VIC | 18+
Tickets available from www.ticketmaster.com.au | 13 61 00 | All Ticketmaster outlets
FRI 27 DEC | KINGSCLIFF BEACH HOTEL, KINGSCLIFF NSW | 18+
Tickets available from https://tickets.oztix.com.au| 1300 762 545 | All Oztix outlets
SAT 28 DEC | TORQUAY HOTEL, TORQUAY VIC | 18+
Tickets available from https://www.eventbrite.com.au
SUN 29 DEC | GRAND HOTEL, MORNINGTON VIC | 18+
Tickets available from https://tickets.oztix.com.au | 1300 762 545 | All Oztix outlets
Spiderbait – Singles Vinyl Box Set Tracklist
1. Old Man Sam / Circle K
2. Monty / Jesus
3. Buy Me A Pony / Calypso
4. Glokenpop / Shazam
5. Black Betty / Fucken Awesome
6. It's Beautiful/ Straight Thru the Sun
Question: What's been happening recently?
Kram: We've actually done a lot of shows in the past three to four years, it all started when we played Splendour in 2014 which was such a huge show for us. After that we decided to start playing again and we did six nights at the Corner Hotel and an Australia tour for the 20 years anniversary release of Ivy and the Big Apples. We recently played A Day on the Green and Hotter than Hell with Magic Dirt and whenever we played the shows were insane – we did a show, two weeks ago on Bribie Island at the Spring Loaded Festival.
We came up with the idea for The Singles show to look back on all of the songs that we've released – it seemed like a great idea. We haven't played at The Forum in a long time, so we thought we'd do a special one-off show for the fans in Melbourne. We can't wait!
Question: Can you tell us about the limited edition 7" vinyl box set of fan-favourite singles?
Kram: The vinyl release is one of the most exciting things about this because we're in an age where we Spotify everything. It is amazing to have your song, in your hand, as a piece of art.
My younger friends in bands love vinyl and it's great that the art form is coming back.
The way you listen to songs on record is different as when people listen to music on YouTube or Spotify there is a lot of impatience as they are constantly fast-forwarding to the next song, almost like they are flicking through Facebook or Tinder. A record makes you stop and listen to a whole album of one band songs recorded at the one time – it's a bit like going to a Gallery and being forced to look at all the paintings, in order. If you're into it, records have a great relaxed feel as it takes the expectation of choice away – it's person and record hanging out for 40 minutes, it's a beautiful thing.
Question: How difficult was it to narrow down the tracklist to twelve?
Kram: It was easy; we just ripped out all our singles.
Question: What can we expect from the show at the Forum, this November?
Kram: We'll play all the singles starting from Circle K which we released as our first single in 1990 (we only pressed 500 copies) through to It's Beautiful which was released in 2013. It's going to be amazing.
When we play a festival the sets are generally very short and there is a lot of emphasis on playing the hits, which I love doing. We often play Black Betty last because it's out biggest hit and it's such an epic song to play life – people go crazy! But, this show will be different as we want to perform chronologically; we'll be playing all the songs from start to the end, it's not so much about shaping the show for an audience as it is about literally doing an accurate representation of our songs.
Question: Which is your favourite song to perform live and why?
Kram: There are so many! There are a few songs that we haven't played for many years that we'll be doing at The Singles Exclusive Show. I always love I Gotta Know which is off The Unfinished Spanish Galleon Of Finley Lake which is a song Janet sings. Circle K is a classic, any band would tell you that playing your very first single is always a trip. Your first single is often a different type of song than you would write now. I still really love Circle K, it was such a breakthrough for us. As a band we love playing Old Man Sam – I remember we'd play it in the backyard at my parents' house in Finley and then a few years later we played it to 30,000 people at The Big Day Out. It's weird how songs can travel and change.
Question: How has performing changed for you over the past 29 years?
Kram: It's almost 30 years; I think its 30 years in November. Our very first jam was in 1989 and the world was a very different place, we setup in the shed on Janet's parents farm in Finley, her Dad was a rice farmer and he had to move his tractors out so we could setup our gear. We played covers of Dinosaur Jr. and AC/DC. There are a lot of similarities to that show as there is to now – we have the same sense of humour and play the same although we are better musicians now than we were then. The vibe of the band is identical; we did gain a lot of confidence through being successful as now when we go on stage to over 20,000 people we love it whereas once it was a freak out, now it's a joy. For me personally I interact a lot more with the crowd than I used to in my early days – I really try to make it a euphoric experience.
Interview by Brooke Hunter
Photo: Ian Laidlaw