AMERICAN DREAM: Newcastle-Central Coast band October Rage have built a US fan base, but are relatively unknown in Australia.FOR Newcastle’s Kai Chambers it all began with a “horrendous” advertisement for a drummer in the window of Muso’s Corner four years ago.
He never believed answering the ad would lead to fulfilling his rock’n’roll dreams, travelling around the US in a tour bus. Yet that is the situation Chambers, and fellow Novocastrian guitaristJohn McMullen, will find themselves in come May when they fly out fortheir third American tour with hard rock band October Rage.
The four piece wereformed in 2008 by Central Coast brothers Nick and William Roberts. They received their big break in 2010 when their single Silver Line won a Triple M radio competition to support Bon Jovi on their Australian tour. Contacts madeled to an opportunity to perform in the US.
However, the Roberts brothers’ ambitions burnt out their formermembers, opening the door for Chambers and McMullen to be recruited. But not before Chambers, whose father Terry was thedrummer in English rock band XTC, believed the ad was a hoax.
“The ad was like ‘international touring band seeks drummer, we’ve played with Bon Jovi andSteel Panther, must be able to tour and have current passport’,” Chambers said. “I was thinking you’ve got to be kidding me. This ad is horrendous. It’s got to be some guy whose dreaming, but I later thought what if it’s real?”
October Rage have released three EPs and are preparing to record their debut album Victory or Valhallawith Newcastle producer Rob Taylor (The Whitlams). The album will be released through Salt Lake City-based label Aircastle Records.
Each US tour and EPhas increased their fan base across the Pacific and led to support slots with Alien Ant Farm,Sevendust andPuddle Of Mudd. However,October Rage remain relatively unknown in Australia.
October Rage – Valkyrie“It’s got a lot to do I reckon with the saturation of Australian radio with old stuff that’s been played for 30 years and nobody else can get a look in,” Chambers said. “Everyone wants to go see Midnight Oil and Jimmy Barnes and nobody wants to see anything new I guess, whereas in the States they have dedicated stations to specific genres.”
Chambers is also October Rage’s booking agent and has secured the band’s biggest shows this American summer, including an appearance alongside US bandsBlack Stone Cherry andAlter Bridge atRockin’ The Rivers in Montana.
“We played there 1pm on Thursday last year, which is the opening day, and this year we’ve been promoted straight to the main stage,” he said.“Everywhere we go it’s building more and more and everyone seems to want to help you chase your dreams, opposed to cut you down at the knees.”
Catch October Rage at the Newcastle Leagues Club on April 22.