Bonfire Nights
Gig Seeker Pro

Bonfire Nights

| SELF

| SELF
Band Alternative Rock

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Feb
28
Bonfire Nights @ The Waiting Room

London, England, United Kingdom

London, England, United Kingdom

Jan
18
Bonfire Nights @ The Macbeth

London, None, United Kingdom

London, None, United Kingdom

Nov
15
Bonfire Nights @ Fiddlers Elbow

None, None, United Kingdom

None, None, United Kingdom

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


Unaccustomed to one-band gigs, this reviewer turns up very early for Bonfire Nights 11:30pm set at Woodland. The room fills up gradually, and while there are no support bands, the DJ earnestly tries to entice punters onto the dance floor with a series of indie dance numbers. If you haven’t been to Woodland before, the room is a nice and cozy wooden thing, adorned with scenic prints and cushioned booths. The biggest detractor from the ambiance is the pulsing beat rising up through the floor from the Mustang Bar below.

I take the time to reflect on the journey of Bonfire Nights that has brought them here tonight. I had the pleasure of seeing some of their earliest shows, watching the fledgling act find its feet in their late night shows at The Troubadour (R.I.P.). It is the great story of rock n roll, to see homespun bands cut the apron strings and make the decision to move overseas to pursue their dreams. This will be the last Brisbane show for some time as the trio are relocating to the bright lights of London at the end of the month.

The time comes for Bonfire Nights to take the stage. Guitarist and singer, Steve Foster saunters to the microphone, accompanied by Ruth Nitkiewicz on drums/vocals and Nicole Hoaran on keyboards/synth/harmonica/vocals. They waste no time, jumping straight into their brand of psychedelic-infused rock. It’s a hard sound to really describe. At times, they have a very Velvet Underground flavour, somtimes it’s a bit BRMC meets the White Stripes, at others I get the Bowie feeling (Ziggy, not Labyrinth). At all times, they exude a confidence and energy that is infectious and enthralling. This is a band that is going places, literally.

Despite a couple of technical glitches, including a gaffa-taped kick pedal, the band tear through the 45 minute set without pausing for breath. Final song, Own Worst Enemy is a cracker, coming complete with guitar throwing, standing on kick drums and knocking over keyboards. Dizzy and breathless, we are left hoping for a swift return by Bonfire Nights to our shores as Brisbane needs their rock n roll. However, for now we say adieu and bonne chance, Bonfire Nights!
- FASTER LOUDER


Woodland - Sat Apr 2

When the UK-bound Bonfire Nights – playing their last hometown show for the foreseeable future – appear on the Woodland stage tonight, they resolutely rock the joint. Having recently become a trio with the addition of Nicole Hoaran on keyboards, they exercise a fuller sound combining the best bits of The Velvet Underground and The Kills. One cannot help the buzz they radiate – not the industry cliché, but the actual feeling. Underscored by ambient, reverb-drenched guitar loops, Don’t Have To Be Here and the languid, psych-tinged Leave Yourself Open drip with cool, lanky frontman Steve Foster working his authentic rock & roll pipes and drummer Ruth Nitkiewicz hammering her kit much like Moe Tucker did in the Velvets.

Prompting an enthusiastic crowd response with a clutch of new tracks (Another Low, Lila, Live Undercover), the band finish the half-hour set with their punchiest number, Own Worst Enemy – replete with a full-scale, drum riser jump-involving rockout. That guitar riff towards the end is pure ... liquid sonic sex, for I have no other adjectives to properly describe it. Bonfire Nights, proudly made in Brisbane. In the words of Russell from Almost Famous, these kids are real.

DENIS SEMCHENKO - Rave Magazine


Bonfire Nights - 2 September 2010, Rics


Two new experiences, one old favourite. Epic night. Beginning the evening at Rics Bar for a little bit of a Bonfire Night, then traveling over the road to The Troubadour for some sweet tunes from the Oceanics and Ball Park Music, the evening was bound to be a success. Despite the fact that Washington with Scott Spark were playing at The Zoo. Nonetheless, this was no second best.

In the "interesting" venue that is Rics Bar, Bonfire Nights lit up the stage playing songs from their self titled debut EP, as well as new a selection of old and new songs. Rics is never the easiest venue to play in, and I always find that no matter who is playing, regardless of size or genre, the vocals are always drowned out by the instruments. But regardless, they put one a hell good set, showing diversity not only within set list, but also within their individual songs. Some starting off ballad-esk with guitar and vocals, then powering on adding drums and synth. I love how this band has two chicks over one guy. It makes me chuckle. I have to say, the drummer - Ruth was incredible! Not only is she a brilliant drummer, she also is an incredible singer, and to do both, talent. I also have to mention the synth player, she brought not only a harmonica to the stage, but also a saxophone. Brilliant. - A Gig Reviewed (blog)


Bonfire Nights - 2 September 2010, Rics


Two new experiences, one old favourite. Epic night. Beginning the evening at Rics Bar for a little bit of a Bonfire Night, then traveling over the road to The Troubadour for some sweet tunes from the Oceanics and Ball Park Music, the evening was bound to be a success. Despite the fact that Washington with Scott Spark were playing at The Zoo. Nonetheless, this was no second best.

In the "interesting" venue that is Rics Bar, Bonfire Nights lit up the stage playing songs from their self titled debut EP, as well as new a selection of old and new songs. Rics is never the easiest venue to play in, and I always find that no matter who is playing, regardless of size or genre, the vocals are always drowned out by the instruments. But regardless, they put one a hell good set, showing diversity not only within set list, but also within their individual songs. Some starting off ballad-esk with guitar and vocals, then powering on adding drums and synth. I love how this band has two chicks over one guy. It makes me chuckle. I have to say, the drummer - Ruth was incredible! Not only is she a brilliant drummer, she also is an incredible singer, and to do both, talent. I also have to mention the synth player, she brought not only a harmonica to the stage, but also a saxophone. Brilliant. - A Gig Reviewed (blog)


Darragh Murray (21/7/2010)

Once upon a time some English guy attempted to blow up Westminister. The years, decades and centuries following this nefarious scheme, people throughout the world have celebrated this event ostensibly to commemorate the failure of the Gunpowder Plot, despite it being more likely that they generally seem to enjoy ‘blowing shit up’. While bonfire night was banned here in Australia in the 70s, locals Ruth Nitkiewicz and Steve Forster have appropriated the name for their latest musical endeavour, presumably with the objective of setting off some fireworks of their own.

Questionable metaphors aside, Bonfire Nights self titled EP is the product of an ongoing collaboration between the couple. It would be incorrect for the reader to assume this is an opportunistic attempt to tap into the ‘girl / boy’ duo trend. The genealogy of Bonfire Nights is rich enough to dispel notions that this is simply another iteration of the seemingly fashionable ‘girl/boy make indie music’ dynamic, a common trope in today’s indie pop landscape (Sleigh Bells, I’m looking at you).

So what does the EP tell us about the duo's creative journey? Well, it is obvious that Bonfire Nights have produced an accessible yet personal record. A cursory glance at the track listing hints at seemingly existential questions. ‘Own Worst Enemy’, drawing parallels to the sounds of BRMC and The Kills, is cautionary rock anecdote that indulges in the odd flange-tinged guitar solo (the flange is back in business baby!). Further investigation of the EP reveals themes of personal reflection, such as in the ballad ‘Leave Yourself Open’ (‘there ain't no sense in choice you make/ leave yourself open / when the feelings real but the words are fake / say I'm not broken’).

Despite only having two musicians on the roster (Ok, sometimes three), Bonfire Nights show a startling array of diversity over five tracks. Standout 'We Don't Care', embracing a more pop aesthetic, is designed to make ones feet shuffle. 'Don't Have to Be Here' builds from a simple guitar and vocal line into a song of operatic dimensions. The emphasis seems to be on creating a tapestry of contrasting melodies and the song is assisted by some great, yet indistinguishable, backing vocals from Ruth.

The closing song, an interesting take on the Undertones signature tune 'Teenage Kicks', continues the ideal of introspection that seems to draw the EP together. Ruth and Steve wind back the intensity of the original song, their voices whispering the famous lyrics over a simple fingerpicked guitar lick. My guess is that fans of the original song might be divided on Bonfire Nights version, but it is interesting enough to warrant some attention.

While obvious comparisons will be made to other girl/boy groups such as the White Stripes, the Ravonettes and the aforementioned (The) Kills, Bonfire Nights are not simply reproductions of these famous duos. Instead, as this EP shows, Bonfire Nights is defined by experimentation with the indie rock genre, that not only the fulfils personal goals, but is palatable to the general public.
- PARALLEL LINES ON A SLOW DECLINE (blog)


Darragh Murray (21/7/2010)

Once upon a time some English guy attempted to blow up Westminister. The years, decades and centuries following this nefarious scheme, people throughout the world have celebrated this event ostensibly to commemorate the failure of the Gunpowder Plot, despite it being more likely that they generally seem to enjoy ‘blowing shit up’. While bonfire night was banned here in Australia in the 70s, locals Ruth Nitkiewicz and Steve Forster have appropriated the name for their latest musical endeavour, presumably with the objective of setting off some fireworks of their own.

Questionable metaphors aside, Bonfire Nights self titled EP is the product of an ongoing collaboration between the couple. It would be incorrect for the reader to assume this is an opportunistic attempt to tap into the ‘girl / boy’ duo trend. The genealogy of Bonfire Nights is rich enough to dispel notions that this is simply another iteration of the seemingly fashionable ‘girl/boy make indie music’ dynamic, a common trope in today’s indie pop landscape (Sleigh Bells, I’m looking at you).

So what does the EP tell us about the duo's creative journey? Well, it is obvious that Bonfire Nights have produced an accessible yet personal record. A cursory glance at the track listing hints at seemingly existential questions. ‘Own Worst Enemy’, drawing parallels to the sounds of BRMC and The Kills, is cautionary rock anecdote that indulges in the odd flange-tinged guitar solo (the flange is back in business baby!). Further investigation of the EP reveals themes of personal reflection, such as in the ballad ‘Leave Yourself Open’ (‘there ain't no sense in choice you make/ leave yourself open / when the feelings real but the words are fake / say I'm not broken’).

Despite only having two musicians on the roster (Ok, sometimes three), Bonfire Nights show a startling array of diversity over five tracks. Standout 'We Don't Care', embracing a more pop aesthetic, is designed to make ones feet shuffle. 'Don't Have to Be Here' builds from a simple guitar and vocal line into a song of operatic dimensions. The emphasis seems to be on creating a tapestry of contrasting melodies and the song is assisted by some great, yet indistinguishable, backing vocals from Ruth.

The closing song, an interesting take on the Undertones signature tune 'Teenage Kicks', continues the ideal of introspection that seems to draw the EP together. Ruth and Steve wind back the intensity of the original song, their voices whispering the famous lyrics over a simple fingerpicked guitar lick. My guess is that fans of the original song might be divided on Bonfire Nights version, but it is interesting enough to warrant some attention.

While obvious comparisons will be made to other girl/boy groups such as the White Stripes, the Ravonettes and the aforementioned (The) Kills, Bonfire Nights are not simply reproductions of these famous duos. Instead, as this EP shows, Bonfire Nights is defined by experimentation with the indie rock genre, that not only the fulfils personal goals, but is palatable to the general public.
- PARALLEL LINES ON A SLOW DECLINE (blog)


Rebecca Barron (3/9/2010)

Bonfire Nights' self titled debut EP is a mix of rock and chilled out pop with a small amount of psychedelia from the Brisbane based duo. Whilst one would think that having such an eclectic mix of sounds on a 5 track EP would be distracting and sound confused, Bonfire Nights seems to pull it off pretty well.

All tracks have a unique sound, yet the sound is similar enough that ties them all together instead of making the EP sound like mix tape. The highlights of the album are the first track “Own Worst Enemy” and the fourth track “Don’t Have To Be Here”. “Own Worst Enemy” is a full blown rock track, that will get most people head banging. Kind of dark, with a really good mix of vocals and guitars. Vocally, the harmonies between the duo are great, their voices fit well together. “Don’t Have To Be Here” is a more subdued pop rock track that is driven by drums and synthesised sounds. Again vocals and harmonies top off another really good track.

Probably the only lowlight I can find is with the cover of The Undertones song “Teenage Kicks” which is the last track on the EP. It’s just a bit too quiet and chilled to fit with the rest of the album and considering that it is originally a punk track, this cover just doesn‘t quite feel right. However it is a really good cover, despite that awkward feeling.

I really did like this album, I enjoyed it. Some of the songs have a bit of a ‘cutesy’ feel to them partly due to the sickly sweet harmonies by the duo. But that’s cool. It totally works with Bonfire Nights. Their mix of pop/rock/folk/psychedelic is well balanced which has lead to a really well balanced, well performed album. If you are looking for a new band to listen to or just new music I can thoroughly recommend Bonfire Night's self titled EP.
- THE DWARF.COM.AU


Rebecca Barron (3/9/2010)

Bonfire Nights' self titled debut EP is a mix of rock and chilled out pop with a small amount of psychedelia from the Brisbane based duo. Whilst one would think that having such an eclectic mix of sounds on a 5 track EP would be distracting and sound confused, Bonfire Nights seems to pull it off pretty well.

All tracks have a unique sound, yet the sound is similar enough that ties them all together instead of making the EP sound like mix tape. The highlights of the album are the first track “Own Worst Enemy” and the fourth track “Don’t Have To Be Here”. “Own Worst Enemy” is a full blown rock track, that will get most people head banging. Kind of dark, with a really good mix of vocals and guitars. Vocally, the harmonies between the duo are great, their voices fit well together. “Don’t Have To Be Here” is a more subdued pop rock track that is driven by drums and synthesised sounds. Again vocals and harmonies top off another really good track.

Probably the only lowlight I can find is with the cover of The Undertones song “Teenage Kicks” which is the last track on the EP. It’s just a bit too quiet and chilled to fit with the rest of the album and considering that it is originally a punk track, this cover just doesn‘t quite feel right. However it is a really good cover, despite that awkward feeling.

I really did like this album, I enjoyed it. Some of the songs have a bit of a ‘cutesy’ feel to them partly due to the sickly sweet harmonies by the duo. But that’s cool. It totally works with Bonfire Nights. Their mix of pop/rock/folk/psychedelic is well balanced which has lead to a really well balanced, well performed album. If you are looking for a new band to listen to or just new music I can thoroughly recommend Bonfire Night's self titled EP.
- THE DWARF.COM.AU



Alice Rezende (10/8/2010)

****
Boy meets girl meets ‘70s folk-pop meets champagne shoegaze (I think)

A growing number of Aussie acts have stripped membership to a bare minimum – Angus & Julia Stone, Georgia Fair, DZ, Super Wild Horses. Brisbane locals Bonfire Nights have also forsaken big band dynamics in favour of more personal creative contributions. If it’s true that sometimes too many people can like, totally cramp your band style, then the sparse and dreamy fuzz of this release really proves a point.

The duo manage to medley from shimmery, stompy indie rock tunes – eerily similar to Essex Green’s Cannibal Sea boy-girl anthems – to melancholic ambient lulls like the lovely Leave Yourself Open that seem to have been hummed for generations in a remote hippie sanctuary (where The Undertones reside as a happy family). What’s more, they do it with such quiet attitude (case in point are We Don’t Care and Don’t Have To Be Here), that it becomes clear Bonfire Nights are onto something.

- RAVE MAGAZINE



Alice Rezende (10/8/2010)

****
Boy meets girl meets ‘70s folk-pop meets champagne shoegaze (I think)

A growing number of Aussie acts have stripped membership to a bare minimum – Angus & Julia Stone, Georgia Fair, DZ, Super Wild Horses. Brisbane locals Bonfire Nights have also forsaken big band dynamics in favour of more personal creative contributions. If it’s true that sometimes too many people can like, totally cramp your band style, then the sparse and dreamy fuzz of this release really proves a point.

The duo manage to medley from shimmery, stompy indie rock tunes – eerily similar to Essex Green’s Cannibal Sea boy-girl anthems – to melancholic ambient lulls like the lovely Leave Yourself Open that seem to have been hummed for generations in a remote hippie sanctuary (where The Undertones reside as a happy family). What’s more, they do it with such quiet attitude (case in point are We Don’t Care and Don’t Have To Be Here), that it becomes clear Bonfire Nights are onto something.

- RAVE MAGAZINE


For a band playing their third live show, Bonfire Nights are really freaking good. Consisting originally of Steve Foster on guitar and Ruth Nitkiewicz on drums, the duo have now also enlisted Nicole Hoaran on keys. Like all new bands, there are a few teething issues but the potential is definitely there. The songs are catchy, with great boy-girl harmonies and a real Raveonettes vibe. Give them time to tighten their set and put some more shows under their belt, and they could be the next big thing. - Faster Louder


For a band playing their third live show, Bonfire Nights are really freaking good. Consisting originally of Steve Foster on guitar and Ruth Nitkiewicz on drums, the duo have now also enlisted Nicole Hoaran on keys. Like all new bands, there are a few teething issues but the potential is definitely there. The songs are catchy, with great boy-girl harmonies and a real Raveonettes vibe. Give them time to tighten their set and put some more shows under their belt, and they could be the next big thing. - Faster Louder


Discography


"Bonfire Nights" - self-titled EP, released July 2010 through MGM Distribution and iTunes

"Own Worst Enemy" - single/video clip released Feb 2011 (Australia), Feb 2012 (UK/US).

Photos

Bio

Bonfire Nights' make swirling moody psych-pop: a clash of surf and synth, shoe-gaze with purple haze, Virginia Plain meets Jesus & Mary Chain.

With mantra like drones, shaking bones and sweet candy overtones, Bonfire Nights like to blur the boundaries. Formed by Steve, Ruth and Nicole in 2010, the band relocated to London from their hometown of Brisbane, Australia.

Adopting a minimalist ethos, the band recorded their first self-titled EP on a four-track analogue tape machine. While the approach was modest, the outcome was an eclectic mix, ranging from the menacing 'Own Worst Enemy' to the sparse and dreamy fuzz of 'Leave Yourself Open'.

Bonfire Nights are currently recording their debut album with Ed Deegan (Mudhoney, Slow Club, Soldad Brothers) Those tracks are being produced and mixed by Ian Davenport (Band Of Skulls).

A successful 2012 saw Bonfire Nights touring the UK & US, including official SXSW, Liverpool Sound City & Focus Wales showcases. Since playing those showcases the band have secured a deal to release their debut album in the US, through Mad Dragon records. This will be distributed nationally through Ryko.

The band are also very happy to have also reached a publishing agreement with Native Tongue Publishing.

“Rocking, in the vein of White Stripes and BRMC. Love the vocal harmonies…”
- Dom Alessio, Triple J

"At all times, they exude a confidence and energy that is infectious and enthralling. This is a band that is going places"
- Stew Riddle, Live Review, Faster Louder, 05 April, 2011

“Unexpectedly, it was the first act on stage, Brisbane's Bonfire Nights, that stole the show... the fiery three-piece... kicked the night off with a storming set that suggested big things are in their future.”
- Bristol Evening Post, Live Review, 24 October 2011 (Sons & Daughters UK Tour)

Touring History

Australia Tour - September, 2010

New Zealand Tour - November, 2011

Australian Tour- March-April, 2011

United Kingdom Tour - /w Sons & Daughters - October, 2011

United States of America Tour - (SXSW) March, 2012

Contacts:

Label: Mad Dragon Records (US)
Contact: zack@maddragonmusic.com
http://www.maddragonmusic.com/

UK/Australia Management:
Steve Foster
bonfirenightsband@gmail.com

US Management:
Zack Weinstein
zack@maddragonmusic.com

Publishing & licensing: Native Tongue Music Publishing
Jamie Gough
jaime@nativetongue.com.au
www.nativetongue.com.au

Lawyer: Media Arts Lawyers
Yasmin Naghavi
yasmin@mediaartslawyers.com
http://www.mediaartslawyers.com