Saturday, July 05, 2008

Just in case you haven't noticed

Legendary in death but now walking the earth again, The Visitors are playing a select series of Australian gigs in August and September, including their first-ever Melbourne show.

The Visitors arose from the ashes of Radio Birdman in 1978, providing a musical outlet for that band's guitarist-songwriter Deniz Tek, keyboard player Pip Hoyle and drummer Ron Keeley. The original lineup featured Radio Birdman sidekick Mark Sisto, on vocals and teen prodigy Steve Harris on bass

The band left behind a self-titled EP - drawn from demo's - that drew rabid reviews and now changes hands for $500 on eBay. The full sessions were later released on LP by Australian label Citadel, and remixed/remastered on CD by Red Eye / Polydor Records.

The Visitors returned in 2005 for shows in Newcastle and Sydney. Two more sightings occurred in February this year, including a Brisbane support to American punk-and-soul sensations The BellRays.

Tek, Hoyle and Sisto remain at the core of The Visitors with former Tumbleweed and Deniz Tek Group drummer Nik Rieth and ex ME-262 bassist (and teenage Visitors fan) Andy Newman now filling the engine room. Saxophonist Jack Shanley (Vindicator Smooth, Detroit Actual) is part of an expanded line-up.

To mark the Return to Earth Tour, the band's original long-out-of-print album will be re-issued on Citadel.

And in a special coupling, ex-Screaming Tribesmen band leader Mick Medew will join one of the bills with his Brisbane band, The Rumours, for his first appearance in the Harbour City in nine years. That show - Saturday, August 30 at The Empire in Annandale - will be the only city gig for The Visitors and The Rumours and will be opened by locals 25th Floor.

Ticketing details soon.

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