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""The Right Life""

Five long-haired men from Brisbane deliver an appetising riff-centric rock album with pleasing results

Riff rock has never sounded so good in the hands of an up-and-coming band in a very long time. 1989 funnel the inspirations of dozens of legendary bands in the genre and mostly come up trumps; the frenetic riffing on Showgirl propels Simon Vermeulen’s Paul Stanely-cum-Axl Rose wail superbly; A Time And A Place borrows from Black Sabbath’s Children From The Grave without sounding like imitators; the intro blast in The Long Road is quite possibly the best riff that The Bronx are yet to write. However, the saccharine ballad of Together Forever sours the energy of The Right Life; featuring an acoustic version of the same song as a bonus track was probably not the best idea either. However, overlook that blight, because with The Right Life, 1989 have delivered one hell of a debut.

"1989 at The Zoo"

When the words "I Sold My Soul To Rock'n'roll," are sprawled across the backs of peoples 1989 t-shirts, you can almost guarantee we're in for an 80s metal-rock revival from hell.

Tommy Drake is busy wailing his guitar like a man possessed for their opening track 'I Wanna Be', as a small-yet-energized crowd gather up front and the synchronised headbanging gets into full swing. Simon Vermeulen delivers an epic vocal performance reminiscent of the great Sammy Hagar of Van Halen. The brazen power ballads persist and audience members break into air guitar competitions for the standout track 'Don't Care', while the time warp continues as 'Leave Me Alone' finishes off a sinful set.


Time off

"1989 at Sands Tavern"

Hard rock outfit 1989 was the first cab off the rank. The Brisbane boys played all of the songs off their six track EP in addition to material from their forthcoming debut album. Their musical style is influenced by bands such as KISS and AC/DC. Yet, 1989 do not sound like a stereotypical 80's rock band, they bring something new to the table. In fact, I can't even think of any vocalist past or present that sounds similar to 1989s front man Simon. When 1989 played the venue was far from capacity and the crowd was fairly sheepish standing towards the back of the room. Overall, the band did well trying to get the crowd involved by clapping their hands; on one occasion Tommy, Mark and Jason even pulled out a timeless rock move (see picture) in unison which did not fail to impress. The only thing that might have let 1989 down on this occasion was their lack of movement during a large portion of the gig. Just to be clear, I do not mean that they were unenthusiastic. There was plenty of lyric miming, toe tapping and heading banging; Steve in particular played with a lot of intensity with his teeth gritted most of the time. Never the less, this seemed to pale in comparison to the bold rock show you might have expected from a band of this genre in its hay day. Despite this, 1989 are a group of talented musicians who put on a great show with screaming guitar solos and perfectly triggered drum lines. This is certainly a band to look out for in the future. - Kelli Anderson

"1989 support Budgie"

"Time-travelers 1989 step out of their decade of choice, the Brisbane five-piece filling the stage with some epic power stances and synchronized hair-whipping, each member getting the chance to show case their moves from the outset. Democracy established, the short set is highlighted by the soon-to-be released single Don't Care, the heavy riffs and high notes creating a classic vibe….." Rave Magazine, February 2008 - Rave Magazine


1989- Self titled 6 track EP 2007
The Right Life - Full Length Debut Album 2008



Rewind a few years and we find 1989’s members playing around Brisbane in bands going nowhere fast. Today frontman Simon Vermeulen and bassist Jason Fuller recall a time when they were playing music that they thought people wanted to hear, not what they were driven to play.

It was time to go back to their roots, and 1989 was to be the vehicle that got them there.

With guitarists Tommy Drake and Mark Haddon, and new drummer Regan Ireland on board, this group of mates shared a love of classic, big riff guitar rock. To them, 1989 was the last year of a great era in music the 70’s and 80’s.

The idea was simply to get together and have a jam, but the more they played, the more they realised that just maybe they were on to something. They grew up listening to the likes of Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, and AC/DC and pretty soon those influences started shining though.

They call it “New Age Old School” and since first walking on a stage, it’s a sound that has been building the band a rapidly growing fan base.

They’ve played just about all of Brisbane’s key venues, chalking up shows alongside the likes of Screaming Jets and legendary UK rockers Budgie while headlining a run of their own gigs.

And it seems they never fail to make an impression thanks to a live show that bristles with energy and attitude.

Having recorded their first EP in 2007, 1989 has now taken the wraps off their impressive debut album The Right Life. The album is an irresistible slice of high-impact guitar rock that’s earning them fans around the globe.

Having already picked up overseas distribution with heavyweights EMI and ATTACK Records, the album is now available throughout North America and Canada, and is available for download everywhere.

Don’t expect this band to rest on its laurels though. With plans to make a new record and tour interstate for the first time, 2009 is shaping up as a big one for 1989.

It’s only a matter of time before audiences around the country realise that this is a band that simply rocks…end of story.

Get on board now at www.1989.com.au or www.myspace.com/1989band

CONTACT 1989: contact1989@1989.com.au

Bookings: promotions@1989.com.au