Why Eddy Current Suppression Ring’s return is so important to the Australian music scene

Why Eddy Current Suppression Ring’s return is so important to the Australian music scene

There’s already been substantial hype around the traps since the Golden Plains organizers announced Eddy Current Suppression Ring for the 10th birthday of the festival, happening in 2016.

Specifically, it’s because it has been over five years since the four-piece played their last show together before the now dubbed “unofficial hiatus”. But here is the disturbing thing: you still find that a lot of people—even in Melbourne—still don’t know this much-loved band.

So for those who don’t get it or who may have missed out, here’s a brief on why cunts* are frothing at the mouth already.

It’s all pretty much been written and said about Eddy Current: the inception at Corduroy Records; the minimalist guitar driven albums; the gloves; the Stooges/Iggy Pop comparisons; the snagging of the lucrative Australian Music Prize in 2009 for their sophomore Primary Colours (2008); the six hours it took to make their last album Rush to Relax (2010); and so on. To sum up, in the few short years of their prime existence at the end of the last decade, Eddy Current were critically acclaimed. By the time they played their last show at The Palace in Melbourne in 2010, even Pitchfork were on board, giving the self-titled debut of 2006 an 8.1 — four years after the fact, as they do. The band was about as close as it gets to a modern Melbourne alternative musical institution, and had developed a fiercely loyal following nationwide, and support from abroad.

But then it abruptly stopped. While band members have continued to do fine work of a different mold in both Boomgates and Total Control, anyone who saw Eddy Current live has had to keep the fire burning with the three studio albums on rotation and the dream that, one day, Eddy is coming, Eddy is coming. That’s the point that drives home the love for Eddy Current fans: the guarantee of their shows. Always lively performances that matched the raw energy of the albums and, perhaps most distinguishing of all, you knew that you were seeing and hearing an Australian act. They are nothing if not uniquely that.

What’s more, the shows were genuinely fun — something that can’t be said about a lot of super-cool band’s live gigs. Eddy Current closed a Melbourne Zoo Roar Sounds show in 2009 (with supports from Tame Impala well before that band were playing arena shows), and quickly had kids and parents of all ages up and about amongst the pissed and stoned hipsters at sun down.

In the early Australian tours of both Black Lips and Thee Oh Sees—arguably two of the most talked about garage acts to see live at that time—Eddy Current were the band of choice to support for each respectively. Petey Dammit of Thee Oh Sees from then on was playing with an ECSR sticker on his guitar. Stories of the many and packed Eddy Current gigs like these are abundant.

Golden Plains is now considered by many to be as good a time as its older brother in Meredith because the organizers pride themselves on an eclectic mix of bona fide talented artists. Eddy Current have played and owned the supernatural amphitheatre in both festivals, and you have to tip your hat to Aunty Meredith for making it all happen again for the Golden Plains 10 year celebration.

*We’re talking Aussie, cunt.

Words: Ryan Veal