When Wolfmother added Wollongong to their national tour schedule it was a no-brainer to book local legends Tumbleweed as the support act.
Fuzzy-haired frontman Andrew Stockdale noted he has some of their biggest hits on repeat when he’s on the road.
“When we were booking this tour I just thought, we could get the new … up and coming bands, or I could just reach out to some people that I really dig,” Stockdale said.
“I like their film clips back in the ‘90s. That long hair, standing on the rocks, it’s so Aussie. A lot of harmonies, the backing vocals. I like kind of good sludgy riffs, I really like it when people can bring in good song writing and great melodies.”
After Tumbleweed bassist Jay Curley suddenly died in 2014 the group (often regarded as one of the best stoner bands of the 1990s) has mainly sat on the sidelines.
Lead singer Richie Lewis said they did a string of shows last year to celebrate the re-release of their album Galactaphonic but didn’t expect the reformation to last.
Good mate Luke Armstrong was filling but decided to remain focused on his main ensemble Hy-Test.
“We felt that we wanted to let it sit for a little while because we didn’t really want to go through a process to replace our bass player,” Lewis said.
It wasn’t until Kram from Spiderbait (another popular ‘90s group) phoned to ask them to play in Melbourne with them and got the reformation ball rolling.
Tumbleweed’s new bassist is long-time friend Jamie Cleaves, a long-time friend since 1991, when they used to play regulaly at the North Gong hotel.
“We didn’t want to really ever replace [Jay Curley] which I suppose is why we’ve been using close friends to play bass,” Lewis said.
“I was not really sure whether we’d ever play again and had no inclination to do that, but after getting in the practice room and rehearsing for these upcoming shows it’s been really enjoyable.
“Steve, our drummer, has built a new practice room under the house and there’s a new vitality. It feels like it’s fun … we’re all open to new opportunities and new adventures.”
Meantime Wolfmother has also gone through a string of lineup changes over the years, mainly everyone but it’s lead singer.
Stockdale says it’s the fans who have kept him motivated to continue.
“You turn up to some place in the midwest of America … and this girl’s got [the album cover] of Cosmic Egg tattooed on her back. And I just like think, ‘wow I’ve made this music that has given people hope and got them through life’,” he said.
“If a [band member] doesn’t want to do a tour for two weeks I feel, like, more committed to the vision of it the music.
“I think we should all be free to do whatever we want. If someone doesn’t want to do something we should be able to keep going regardless.”
Wolfmother, supported by Tumbleweed, play Waves in Towradgi on April 21. Tickets via www.moshtix.com.au