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Sunbury, Victoria, Australia | Established. Jan 01, 2006 | INDIE

Sunbury, Victoria, Australia | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2006
Band Rock Alternative


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"Album Review- The Banquet of..."

Ich dachte immer die 'Simpsons' sind die schrecklich gelbe Familie aus den USA, tja weit gefehlt. Auf dem fünften Kontinent gibt es auch eine 'Familie Simpson', na gut es sind nur zwei Personen, und ob die jetzt gelb sind kann ich nicht beweisen, aber dass sie Musik machen das weiß ich.
In Australien scheinen die Jungs auf jeden Fall schon mal eine recht große Nummer zu sein, zumindest wenn man ihrem Waschzettel glauben schenken darf. Okay, schrecken mich doch diese Honig ums Maul schmierende Pamphlete eher ab, als dass ich ihnen glauben schenke, denn meistens ist es ja so, je ausführlicher die Promotion-Zettel sind, je schrecklicher sind die Bands.
Aber zum Glück ist es bei Don Fernando (bescheuerter Bandname übrigens, klingt eher nach Porno als nach Musik) nicht ganz so schlimm. Gut, das was die Aussierocker hier vom Stapel lassen ist nicht gerade Highend Rock, aber dennoch eine ganz passable Mischung aus Stoner und Hard Rock, versetzt mit einer guten Portion psychedelischer Gitarren, dem nötigen Schuss Melodie und dem dazugehörigen Asselfaktor. Allerdings mit einem großen Manko behaftet, denn dass in Downunder die Queens Of The Stone Age und Kyuss auch nicht gerade unbekannt sind, und dass Don Fernando, die sich 2008 gründeten, auch oft deren Klängen gelauscht haben, hört man "The Banquet Of..." von der ersten Sekunde an.
Schade eigentlich, dass hier so viel Potenzial, das die Herrschaften an ihren Instrumenten zweifelsohne besitzen, so einfach verschleudert wird, indem man einfach das Beste der oben genannten Bands zusammen mischt, statt sich auf sein eigenes Können zu verlassen.
Besonders deutlich wird die Abkupferei beim siebten Song "The Handle", der so glatt auf einer Platte vom Ex-Kyuss-Klampfer und jetzigem Queens Of The Stone Age-Chef Josh Hommes Feder stammen könnte. Sogar dessen typische Gitarrensoli und Art wie er seine Stimme einsetzt, werden sklavisch eingesetzt. Leider nicht auf dessen hohen Niveau.
Menschenskind, sind denn die Australier so schlicht gestrickte Leute, dass ihnen auch das billigste Plagiat einer großen Band gefällt, wie z.B. beim AC/DC-Klon Airbourne?
Dass die Kerle auch anders können, zeigen sie beim Abschluss-Track "Loredana". Hier wird aufs heftigste gedoomt was das Zeug hält. Richtig genial wird dort mit einem ganz ruhigen Piano begonnen, ehe derbe tief gestimmte Gitarrenwände über einen hereinbrechen. Das Ganze ist schlicht und einfach vorgebracht, zwar instrumental, aber eigenständig. Tja, bleibt zum Schluss die Feststellung, dass gut geklaut nicht immer besser ist als gut erfunden, und dass ein einziger Song auch nicht gerade zum Kaufzwang führt.
Andrew Simpson (guitar, vocals, bass, organ, piano)
Chris Roberts (drums)
Michael Simpson (vocals, bass)
Adrian Cummins (guitar, Farfisa)
Ricky Audsley (organ) - Jens Groh- Rocktimes.

"Album Review: The Banquet of..."

I don't exercise much, but if I did I would run like fucking mad when the first song on this offering from Melbourne's Don Fernando kicks into gear. On first impressions I am thinking Therapy, Motorhead, Teenage Kicks, Ten Foot Pole and Rocket From The Crypt and this one hell of a mixture with drums that pound on the door of your hearing like a jealous girlfriend and harmonies that tell you to like the singer (but don't fucking ask him if he loves his Mum).

I am not a massive fan of the straight out harmonic pop of this record but dear me they know how to catch you off guard with a heavy as fuck riff and a change in tempo (the drummer is unbelievable at this). This aint no 'sludge' album, but it will excite anyone with even a passing interest in Tone Bender or Fuzz Face tones.

If you like a cool fuzz tone and enjoy hearing great recording and mixing then this record is for you - on songs like The Peeping Hole and Rise in Sea you can almost visualize the peaks and troughs of the oscilloscope if one were to be used to measure the breakup of the guitar tone - true fuzz.

This is one cool band - BUY THIS One!

Reviewed by Jon Davis - John Davis- Planet Fuzz

"Album and Interview"

Don Fernando: The desert rocks again

Australians newest export Don Fernando would like to serve their banquet in Brazil or Berlin for those, whose ears are sharp like knifes to cut the sound in eatable slices. Andy Simpson – the man who offers the vocal and string dishes – is ready to answer our questions.

Welcome Don Fernando! How are you doing? Please, could you introduce yourself and your members? Who is Don Fernando?
Don Fernando are a four piece Heavy rock band from Melbourne, Australia, we are doing great and REALLY looking forward to coming over to Europe. Me on lead guitar and vocals, Adrian on Guitar, Rob on Bass and James on drums.

Why did you choose this name for a band? If you google, you will discover that Don Fernando is a director and actor of porno movie, it’s about restaurants or about a book by W. Somerset Maugham. Where is your place in this landscape?
I chose the name when all of the above references were unknown to me, Don Fernando the porno actor actually contacted us and said he likes our music!! Anyway, I got the name from a Chilean drug dealer.

You released a debut album called “The banquet of…” About whose banquet is it?
It’s an ambiguous title on purpose, it’s the banquet of whatever you want it to be, for me it’s the banquet of ROCK, your ears are your knife and fork.

In my review about this album I emphasize the near to bands like Kyuss or QOTSA. How do you think about it? Please clarify your point of view about your music.

To be perfectly honest I believe that our songs add enough originality to stand out on their own, I wouldn’t have thought that my influences are that obvious, but hey, you picked it! When I was writing this album I was thinking if I could fill the gap between Kyuss and QOTSA I would be a happy man. But you are right, Kyuss and QOTSA are my favourite bands and the influence they have on my song writing shines through. Id prefer to be compared to them than to Nickelback or Creed!!! Hahaha

Do you have a favourite song on your album (and why)?
Its hard to say as it changes all the time, if it came to the crunch I would have to say “Don’t go”, it communicates who we are and what we do in 1:30, I like things to be concise.

How do you create your music and songwriting, how do you work together? Do you generally work as a team or does somebody write the music or the lyrics?
I write the majority of music and lyrics with Adrian writing quite a bit as well, as we have had a bit of a rotating list of musicians playing with us until now. Lately the newer members have been contributing some music and we have been doing the compositions as a band.

Could you explain about the process of the release of “The Banquet of…” – was it first released by yourself? I ask, because on my edition there is nothing written about a label. But now there will be a kind of re-release by Undertow Recordings in Europe?
Initially it was released in Australia by ourselves with a distribution deal through MGM but no label support whatsoever, now, as you say it is being released in Europe through Undertow Recordings and being distributed by sonic rendezvous, both based in Holland. And we will be doing a new pressing shortly which will have all that info on the artwork

Until now there is not much information in Europe or in the internet about the band Don Fernando. What the people should absolutely know about you?
That’s right, were only just starting to emerge on to the scene, the most important thing you need to know about us is that we are all about the live show, come and see us play and you will know what we mean, we take it seriously but were also up for a good time!!

Tell me something about the music scene in Australia. For most of the readers Australia is located on another planet – we know about aborigines, AC/DC and kangaroos. What are the differences between the music scene there and in Europe?
I’m not sure about Europe yet but the scene in Australia is very small, for bands like us, who don’t have a massive commercial appeal, its hard to make a living, small population over a massive land mass means that we have to drive 10 hours in any direction in order to play some gigs outside of Melbourne.

Is there a favourite place on earth, where you preferably would really like to play?
I’m really looking forward to playing in Berlin, also, I think Rock in Rio would be amazing, I love Brazilians.

With which band you would really love to go on tour?
Them Crooked Vultures – Josh Homme, Dave Grohl and John Paul Jones, what else could you want?? Also, Truckfighters, I love that band.

What are your plans in future?
Come over for the tour in Feb, return home to record the next album and then off on tour again, hopefully go to the USA next time as well and hook up with a record label that will give us a big wad of cash so I can quit my day job.

Would you like to become famous and rich? Or do you have other dreams which should come true?
Being famous doesn’t really appeal to me, being recognised as a good musician and songwriter would be good, rich would be nice so I can concentrate all my energies on music.

Thank you very much for the interview. I wish you good luck! Is there anything else you would like to mention?
Just come to our gigs in Europe, buy us a beer and party with us!!! Oh, and buy our album! See you soon!

Andrew Simpson (guitar, vocals, bass, organ, piano)
Chris Roberts (drums)
Michael Simpson (vocals, bass)
Adrian Cummins (guitar, Farfisa)
Ricky Audsley (organ)

Author: Andreas Torneberg, Photos by Don Fernando
Date: 2009-12-08 - Stalker Magazine

"Don Fernando Deventer, Holland."

It takes some gumption for four scallywags from Australia to pull their socks up, dig into their wallets and fly overseas without knowing what trials lie beyond.
The difference with Don Fernando is they’ve done it all before. So this time round their European Tour is more like a homecoming – a chance to catch up with friends made on their successful jaunt in early 2010, and build on it. With a new guitarist, a new bass player and killer new album Dia De Los Muertos in tow, it is a refreshed, focussed and fiery outfit that hit the stage tonight.

Down a dark cobblestone alley, a cosy couch-bounded room full of mostly Dutch punters awaits. From the first ‘cha-chunk’ of Sammy Crawford’s big shiny white flying-V guitar blasting from his fat Marshall stack, it’s obvious this is going to be loud. Foot to the floor stompers like Take You and High Bankin Hell certainly confirm this, with heads banging in unison in front of the stage and on it.

Bringing a healthy swagger of blues rock and down-tuned rolling grooves, Don Fernando has always been likened to Kyuss, QOTSA etc. This compliment/constriction has obviously worn on frontman Andy Simpson and co. They’ve apparently decided, “Fuck this, it’s time to break out, and BRING THA NOIZE”.

Ball-screaming in threes, leaning back into bass heavy brutality and generally pushing their riffs and rhythms into much meaner, darker territory – it becomes clear this is not the Don Fernando I once knew in Melbourne. Sure there’s still the catchy hooks, sleazy grooves, silly-big guitars and equally silly stage banter like, “Hey Holland, I watched some of your porn. What’s with the horses?” But this slick smiling face sits on different shoulders these days– bare, sweaty, tattooed shoulders. Be warned: Don Fernando has found its nasty streak and is blatantly riding it all the way.


LOVED: Drummer James Innes cutting sick and hitting harder than ever after some unwarranted heckling from the front.

HATED: Anyone sitting on those comfy couches at the back.

DRANK: Only the best Dutch beers – Hertog Jan and Grolsch. The Grolschies were colder.
- See more at: - Beat Magazine (Furst Media)

"Q & A With Don Fernando."

So, someone is walking past as you guys are playing, they then go get a beer and tell their friend about you... what do they say?

I saw this band called Don Fernando, they were tight as fuck and sounded like Queens Of The Stone Age playing Songs For The Deaf era cross with Kyuss doing Sky Valley yet sounded completely original at the same time.

How long have you been gigging and writing?

I've been writing since I came into this world and gigging since 2005.

You have played stacks of shows all over the world, what has been the best show and where?

Man that's hard, supporting Helmet here in Melbourne at the Hi Fi Bar is pretty hard to top

You are about to drop your latest album Dia De Los Muertos . What does this mean and how does this reflect on the release?

The title is "day of the dead" in Spanish, I kinda went with a theme on this album which is death and rebirth in all its connotations. It's a new lineup for the band and a new heavier sound; in death there is beauty and the death of something always brings something new and fresh.

Off to Europe in September, what are you looking forward to?

We're really looking forward to playing some festivals which will be a first for us, as well as all the club dates. We just love getting out on the road in a way which is just not possible here in Australia, playing every day, no sleep, driving ourselves and putting on some very memorable shows, we all live for this shit and were born to do it! So all of it!

What are you not looking forward to?

The stench. 5 weeks in a tour van has a stench all it's own

What can we expect when you return, will you come back at all?

Yeah, we will be back! Just bigger and better and a bit uglier.

Hit us up with the details for the launch.

Friday August 26 at The Espy with Battle Axe Howlers, Hytest, Mammoth Mammoth and The Hard-Ons! It's a massive lineup! Get down early!
- See more at: - Beat Magazine (FURST MEDIA)


Andy and James sit down with Beat TV in 2011. - Beat TV

"ALBUM REVIEW- Dia De Los Muertos."

Mit ihrem dritten Album "Dia De Los Muertos" kommen die Australier DON FERNANDO um die Ecke und präsentieren ihre explosive Mischung aus Stoner-, Alternative- und Punk Rock. 2006 Wurde im Eigenvertrieb das Debüt "It's Good WHile It Leasts" unters gemeine Volk gemischt, gefolgt von "The Banquet Of...", das schon bei ihrem jetzigen Label Impedance Records erschien. Nun legen die "Boys From Down Under" nach und rocken, bis die Bude bebt. Jawoll.

"Dia De Los Muertos" hebt bereits nach wenigen Tönen die Stimmung, denn die Musik ist schwungvoll und hörbar energiegeladen. Ein fetziges Rock-Riff nach dem anderen wird hier aus dem Ärmel gezaubert und mit viel Elan und Spielfreude dem Hörer entgegengepfeffert. Spätestens aber beim Erklingen der Stimme ist die Sache klar, denn Andrew Simpson, der zudem auch eine der Äxte bedient, schreit, singt und brüllt sich die Kehle aus dem Leib. Auch wenn vornehmlich die gepflegte Singstimme dominiert, hat der Mann ein wahrhaft vielseitiges Organ und so beschert er zwischendurch durchaus Hardcore-kompatible Schreisätze. Geil.

Die Produktion ist saftig und vor allem überhaupt nicht modern steril. Dadurch können die Stoner-Ansätze gut zur Geltung kommen und auch die schwereren Heavy-Riffs richtig wirken. Alles in allem also eine runde Sache, was DON FERNANDO auf "Dia De Los Muertos" abgeliefert haben. Wenn der Hitfaktor beim nächsten Versuch noch etwas höher ist, dürfen wir mit dieser Band sicher einen neuen Burner präsentieren. - METAL.DE

"Album Review- Dia De Los Muertos."

Dia De Los Muertos
Format: CD
Label: Impedance
Spielzeit: 49:11

2009 veröffentlichten DON FERNANDO aus Melbourne mit „The Banquet Of ...“ ihr erstes Album, in Form von „Dia De Los Muertos“ gibt’s nun Nachschlag, der keine Neuorientierung erforderlich macht. Erneut lassen Andrew Simpson und Band fiesen, wuchtigen Rock auf uns los, der sowohl Elemente von Stoner- wie auch von düster-doomigem Post-Rock enthält.

Die australische Herkunft lässt sich auch nicht ganz verhehlen, die ONYAS lassen grüßen, doch unterm Strich fehlt DON FERNANDO das entscheidende Maß an Eigenständigkeit. Was genau es mit der in Bandname und Albumtitel zum Vorschein tretenden Hispanophilie auf sich hat, erschließt sich mir nicht, klingen die Namen der Musiker doch alle uraustralisch-britisch. - Joachim Hiller

"ALBUM REVIEW- Dia De Los Muertos."

Geschrieben von Brix Kategorie: CD-Reviews Veröffentlicht: 05. Dezember 2011

Vor Überraschungen ist man offensichtlich nie gefeit. Bei diesem Bandnamen, dem Albumtitel und -cover tippte ich auf eine Truppe stolzer Iberer, die uns uns mit "Dia De Los Muertos" saftigen Rock´n´Rotz um die Ohren hauen möchten.
Leider sind in diesem Falle Namen einmal mehr Schall und Rauch, denn DON FERNANDO stammen unverhoffterweise aus Down Under und backen knusperige Stoner-Kekse - immerhin hat die musikalische Richtung einigermaßen gestimmt.
Nach einer EP und einer Langrille ist "Dia De Los Muertos" das dritte Release der Australier, die nach Erfolgen auf dem fünften Kontinent nun auch in Europa landen wollen.
Von Vornherein ist eines klar: In Sachen "Stoner Rock" ist die Messe eigentlich schon seit ein paar Jährchen gelesen; jede Band, die weiterhin diese Fahne hisst, muss schon einiges zu bieten haben, um sich im Gedächtnis festkrallen zu können.
So müssen sich auch DON FERNANDO mit ihren Songs kräftig strecken, um nicht den 08/15-Stempel verpasst zu bekommen. Das gelingt im Großen und Ganzen auch recht gut: Allein schon der rotzige Gesang hebt die Australier von allzu verdrogten Vertretern des Genres ab - hier ist die Mission ganz eindeutig "Rock´n´Roll"!

Standesgemäß schweine-rockt der Opener "Take You" dann auch amtlich los; "Except You" und "Layed To You" schlagen in die gleiche, fetzige Kerbe.
Aber klar, es wäre kein Stoner, wenn nicht auch Raum für Groove und Blues wäre - "Liar", "You´re Wrong, I´m Right, You´re Dead", "Cold Blooded" und "Welcome To The Fold" bedienen alle gängigen Klischees ohne ZU belanglos zu wirken. Dennoch: Den meisten Songs haftet die "Hab-ich-schon-mal-gehört"-Medaille an; den Innovativ-Orden werden DON FERNANDO so nicht verliehen bekommen.
Der Rausschmeisser "I Know" mit knapp neun Minuten Überlänge spielt geschickt mit Laut-Leise-Dynamiken und passt sich dem oberen Durchschnitt des Gesamteindrucks an.

Kurz und knapp: Ein munteres und ordentliches Stoner-Album, das Genre-Freunde bedienen wird, aber bei dem mir die wirklich aufregenden und mutigen Momente fehlen. (Brix) - Brix-

"ALBUM REVIEW- Dia De Los Muertos."

Punkrock. Stoner-Rock. Geradewegs aufs Maul. Oder in den Worten von Don Fernando: „Massive riffs, massive hooks, tight as fuck, no bullshit.“ Nach dem Debüt „The Banquet Of...“ aus dem Jahre 2009 lässt das Quartett aus dem australischen Melbourne mit dem Nachfolger „Dia De Los Muertos“ wieder von sich hören und schleudert dem Hörer eine frische Ladung knüppelharter Rockriffs um die Ohren. Das selbstgeklebte Etikett „Stoner/Punkrock“ liest sich zwar wie ein oller Marketingkniff, trifft den Stil der Band aber doch ganz gut: Don Fernando schrauben die Gitarren auf Brumm-Niveau runter, sind gleichzeitig aber eher simpel unterwegs und setzen am Mikrofon lieber auf energiegeladenes Halb- bis Vollgeschrei, als auf Klargesang.

Klar, innovativ ist was anderes, selbst wenn man ein etwas ungewöhnliches Genre drüberschreibt. Auf klangliche Revolutionen kommt es der Band aber auch nicht an, wie sich schnell zeigt. Vielmehr ist unüberhörbar das geradlinige Drauflosholzen Konzept – und unter dem Aspekt hat „Dia De Los Muertos“ so einiges zu bieten. Genau genommen machen Don Fernando nämlich kaum etwas anderes, höchstens in etwas unterschiedlichen Formen: Während der Opener rasant voranprescht, verlässt sich „You're Wrong, I'm Right, You're Dead“ auf schleppenden Dampfwalzensound und „Welcome To The Fold“ nimmt sogar noch ein bisschen Tempo raus und ersetzt es durch noch mehr malmenden Groove.

Viel mehr Abwechslung war nicht zu erwarten und wird auch nicht geboten. Dafür macht die Band ihre Sache ordentlich, ist aber auch klar dann am besten, wenn sie direkt zur Sache kommt: „Some Other Way“ leidet zum Beispiel unter einem langgezogenen, zu nichts führendem Intro aus abgehackten Akkorden, das dem Song ein Gutteil Druck nimmt. Auch „Cold Blooded Lover“ kommt zu langsam aus dem Quark und überzeugt auch in vollem Lauf nicht. Ganz anders Songs wie „Liar“ und „High Backin Hell“: Während ersterer mit coolem Riffing und zwischen klar und hart verzerrt wechselnden Vocals besticht, bricht sich bei letzterem ordentlicher Schweinerock à la Psychopunch Bahn. Schnell und räudig, dabei aber mit ordentlich mahlendem Gitarrensound zeigt der Track vielleicht am eindrucksvollsten, wie Don Fernandos Stoner-Punk im Bestfall klingen kann.

Umso erstaunlicher ist das, was die Band einem daraufhin als Rausschmeißer vorsetzt: „I Know“ kriecht auf tief wummernden Bässen durch die Walachei und erzeugt in Verbindung mit heiserem Schreigesang eine stockfinstere, hoffnungslose Stimmung. Das grenzt schon an Doom- oder Sludge-Metal, möchte nicht so ganz zu allem Vorherigem passen, klingt aber für sich genommen nicht übel. Der ruhige, von Klavierklängen getragene Mittelteil sorgt für noch mehr Verwirrung; gegen Ende nehmen Don Fernando dann aber doch wieder Tempo auf und sorgen für einen passenderen Abschluss.

Ähnlich zwiegespalten wie „I Know“ ist allerdings auch der Gesamteindruck von „Dia De Los Muertos“: In guten Momenten machen Don Fernando tatsächlich Spaß und schaffen es, mitzureißen. Leider sind diese Momente generell ein bisschen rar gesät; die Songs teilweise zu gesichtslos und wenig eingängig. Ein richtiger Hit, der nicht nur im Nacken, sondern auch im Ohr sitzen bleibt, fehlt ebenso. So taugt die Scheibe insgesamt leider nur zur morgendlichen Halswirbelgymnastik – auch wenn das live alles noch einmal ganz anders aussehen dürfte. Doch egal, wie es um die Bühnenqualitäten von „Dia De Los Muertos“ bestellt sein mag; vor der heimischen Anlage bekommt man hier nicht mehr als ordentlichen Durchschnitt. - THE PIT.DE

"ALBUM REVIEW- Dia De Los Muertos."

ritik, Anmerkung, Beurteilung:

Mit Don Fernando hört man endlich mal Musik, die aus Down Under stammt, was man bei dem Namen sicherlich eher ausgeschlossen hatte. Sei es drum, was steckt drin? Die Band verspricht jedenfalls geradlinigen, harten Rock und genau das halten sie auch ein. Rein musikhistorisch betrachtet hinken die Jungs wohl gewissermaßen nach; die großen Zeiten des Stoner (hat es sie denn jemals wirklich gegeben?) sind gezählt und um zu punkten, wird hier etwas aufgefrischt. Neben dem Hinzufügen von modern schmoddrigem Gesang und kleinen Kreischeinlagen wird auf Elemente wie die typische Verklärtheit in der Stimme und ausartende Bluesparts weitgehend bis gänzlich verzichtet - die Musik kommt ein wenig daher wie nüchterner Stoner mit Einflüssen aus dem Punk der letzten Jahre.

Insgesamt dürfte das Konzept daher wohl gut für die Verkaufszahlen sein, aber vom alten Stoner-Eisen werden wohl nur die Skateboardfahrer aus der Fu Manchu-Ecke wirklich viel Gefallen daran finden. Anders kommt da der Song 'Welcome to the Fold', der sehr viel mehr Klassik in sich birgt, was allein schon an dem Tempo liegen könnte. 'Dia De Los Muertos' ist insgesamt sehr treibend, raubeinig und für Stoner auch schnell. Ansonsten bergen die Songs aber wenig Innovationen oder Aha-Effekte.

Ein Stoner-Revival wird man durch dieses Album nicht erleben, allerdings verdirbt es auch nicht die Lust daran. Zum Auffüllen der Musiksammlung in diesem Genre sicherlich geeignet, hat 'Dia De Los Muertos' doch die Schwäche, gleichzeitig zu wenig und zu viel Neues für das Genre bereit zu halten. - Colin- Wiskey-


Playing on Basement Apes 2013 - BASEMENT APES



"Don Fernando Interview"

Don Fernando being interviewed by Abraxas.
On their South American Tour of 2013 - ABRAXAS

"Clutch and Don Fernando at the Metro Theatre, Sydney."

Having honed their craft here and abroad, Melbourne’s Don Fernando proved visibly comfortable in front of a healthy crowd. Built on a foundation of fuzzed-out stoner-rock riffage and muscular grooves which the headliners would have approved of, they also packed a few memorable melodies. Some less distinguishable tunes ensured selected punters ventured to the bar instead, but were nonetheless politely, if not rapturously received. - Brendan Crabb- The

"Clutch + Don Fernando Sydney Metro Review."

CLUTCH are one of those bands from America that have been playing music for well over twenty years and never disappoint on the live front. Given several years have passed since their last full tour here and having being included on the latest Soundwave bill for 2014, there was an obvious air of anticipation at seeing this band whip it up again live. Support act, four piece band DON FERNANDO, from Melbourne, took great delight in expressing their love of CLUTCH and charmingly stated, ‘we’re going to warm you up and then CLUTCH are going to fuck you’. So with that messy sounding invitation, the crowd accepted their fate and relished in the support band’s pummeling hard rock and blues based riff laden musical foreplay, so to speak.

DON FERNANDO soon launched into ‘Release Me Now’ from their first album with a driving rhythm that had a bit of bolting desert rock sound to it. Their front man played on a SHIHAD and QOTSA favoured Maton MS2000 guitar and their lead guitarist used a Gibson SG so it was pretty obvious where their sound influences originated from to some extent to create their rocking songs. The band will be at the Cherry Rock Festival in Sydney and no doubt will play the slow building, down tuned thump of ‘Welcome to the Fold’. Open guitar sounds drenched in reverb and delay countered the riff power, adding necessary dynamics through their set. Dropping a song titled ‘What You Need’ into the set which was a pile driving effort; the band might need to consider their awareness of existing song titles, unless that was intentional. Anyway, they finished off their forty minute set with ‘The Setting Sun’ and thus warmed up the crowd as intended. Barreling riffage, hard hitting drumming walloping floor toms, snares and cymbals alongside a straight ahead but effective bass line made it a perfect segue way for what was to come from the headliners. - Paul Southwell- SF MEDIA

"Clutch and Don Fernando at the Prince of Wales, St. Kilda."

A stressful start to the night, but it was finally time to kick back and enjoy the second half of Don Fernando’s set. This band I was familiar with. Don Fernando seemed to be a perfect fit for Clutch fans. Many were content on just grabbing a beer, casually conversing and occasionally turning their heads to the front of stage to give a head bop motion. The room may have seemed a tad empty at the start of their set, but towards the end the Clutch crowd waltzed in and gave Don a subtle head bop seal of approval. - Josh-

"Cherry TV Interview."

Andy has a chat with Host B- on the Rocks about the Residency show they just finished, including a quick introspective to 2013-2014. - CherryRockin' (Cherry Bar TV)

"Supporting Monster Magnet"

"With only a good handful of people who rocked up early, DON FERNANDO opened the show with a performance that many who didn’t attend early had no idea what they missed out on. In most cases, people usually turn up for the main act, but many need to support the local scene, as DON FERNANDO were definitely one of the best openers I’ve seen among all the gigs I’ve been to over the years. Vibes of stoner riffs and big beats, and it sounded like a band I’ve missed out on but have been there all along. In tones of KYUSS and FU MANCHU, and only a 25 minute set, I enjoyed the hell out of DON FERNANDO and so far have been one of my favourite discoveries of the year." - SFMedia Australia

"Cherry Rock 2014"

Don Fernando is an arse-shakin' cocktail of stoner rock groove and deep ‘70s fuzz. Returning from a South American tour fit for a ravishing conquistador, frontman Andy Simpson hopes their homecoming at this year's Cherry Rock Festival hears hordes of Aussie punters praising the "Don." In the beginning, guitarist and vocalist Andy Simpson breathed life into Don Fernando. Forming in Wollongong, NSW in 2006, the band trucked down to Melbourne in '07. They quickly took root among cramped dives and rock haunts like Cherry Bar. "The members in the band are completely different to what they are now," Simpson begins. "We've had bass players from Brisbane, drummers from Perth and the other guitarist is from Tassie." Initially, the ‘Don’ was born to kick out lazy and equally damn heavy stoner jams. "I also decided to start a band where I'd kind of be the boss of it," Simpson laughs. "I wanted to write most of the material with our main influences being Kyuss, Fu Manchu and Queens of the Stone Age," Simpson notes. "We throw in a bit of Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin, too." Releasing one EP and two full lengths since, they caught the attention of locales both unusual and far afield. In November last year, Simpson and the band played a mountain of festival and club dates in South America, their "most successful tour so far," Simpson gladly reports. "In terms of crowds it definitely was the best tour we've had. We got an opportunity to play to some bigger audiences. Somehow, probably through the power of the internet these days, we've developed a bit of a following over there. We had a profile we were relatively unaware of. Argentina and Brazil have a pretty strong underground stoner rock scene.” So, it went off without a hitch? "Oh, there were definitely a few hitches," Simpson chuckles. "It's so different over there, compared to touring Europe. We just get off the plane, pick up a van with all our gear and backline and off we go for six weeks. In South America the distances were so vast we couldn't do that. We'd fly from one gig to the next. The gear would be provided by the other bands. Amps here that cost $1,500 cost twice as much there. But the crowds were good and it was heaps of fun." Returning to home soil slotted Don into supporting fellow stoner darlings Clutch on their Soundwave/Earthrocker tour in February and Monster Magnet in Melbourne last Sunday night. The Don's highly coveted gig was a March-long Wednesday residency at their beloved Cherry Bar. "Cherry Bar is definitely a spiritual home for us," Simpson enthuses. "Our bass player is the manager there and it's like a second home for all of us. "There's something about Cherry Rock," Simpson considers, having played Cherry Rock in 2012. "It's got a certain vibe that I haven't experienced at any other festival. It's interesting chatting to the bands. We played when Fu Manchu played and they were stoked. It's a small crowd compared to some of the other festivals. Everyone's packed in the alley and just goes nuts!" The Don's one goal, apart from kicking arse and rockin' hard, is leaving a lasting impression on the Cherry Rock faithful and beyond. "We seem to be one of those bands that other bands know about," Simpson observes. "We get a lot of respect from other bands, like Fu Manchu. I was surprised that they knew of us and been listening to our albums. I think as a band we just have to jump that fence into being more popular with the general public as opposed to dudes in other bands!" Here's hoping. BY TOM VALCANIS - See more at: - Beat Magazine (Furst Media)

"Cherry Rock 014"

Overview of the day. - Beat Magazine- ONLINE

"Cherry Rock014"


"Cherry Rock 014"

Don Fernando were quick to keep the momentum going that the Bitter Sweet Kicks started, opening with an instrumental track that would have seen a lesser band fall flat on their faces. Having supported heavyweights Clutch on their Australian tour, most in the room had their interest piqued before they began playing. Don Fernando stuck right into it with their melodic brand of heavy sonic thunderstorms. For those that have never seen or heard of Don Fernando, they have a heavy sound reminiscent of Tool in the sense they are fucking epic, heavy rock, with some crazy guitar riffs and musically intricate to the point of insanity. Playing ‘Welcome To The Fold’ got the crowd moving in time with Sammy Crawford’s solid build and take-no-prisoners attitude to match his IRA issue haircut.
*Sammy has been mistaken for Jonny Driver* - Vulture Magazine.

"Watts Presents June 2014"

Andy on the couch with some absolute local legends.
Rob from Award Winning Funk Soul band Saskwatch, Paulie from the one of the most EPIC/POLITICAL Party bands from the 80's- The Painters and Dockers.
Andy talks BREIFLY about Rock n Load that occurred at The Espy Hotel.
Featuring Tumbleweed, King of the North, My Echo, Bugdust. ETC - Beat TV

"Brewtality Heavy Magazine Presents"

Despite having to get used to seeing daylight through the weathered Tote windows (and thus the equally weathered Tote floor), it didn’t stop the bands from rocking and the beer from flowing. Melbourne local legends Don Fernando got the crowd going early with their no nonsense stoner rock thumping on the Tote mainstage, and with Todd Trevor from Warped filling in on guitars, it was a slick performance that set the tone for the rest of the evening. - Get Shot Magazine

"Brewtality 2014"

I headed back down stairs to see Melbourne stalwarts Don Fernando on the main stage, these guys a great live and produced a thoroughly entertaining set as always. They’ve toured with Clutch, and more recently supported Monster Magnet on their Australian tour, so if you like those bands, you’ll get their style. They’re about to record a new album, and after that you’ll see their name around Melbourne quite a bit.
* listen to Don Fernando – Take You -

"Live Lodge Matinee."

Announcing Live Lodge Matinee Series. - Rolling Stone Magazine. Australia.

"Rolling Stone Magazine Australia Live Lodge Series Melbourne-"

Photo Review of the Matinee show Don Fernando were invited to do for
Rolling Stone Magazine Australia- Live Lodge Series. - Kissthefist- Daniel O'

"New Album and tour dates for Don Fernando."

Melbourne’s DON FERNANDO have announced they’ll be releasing a new album, ‘Haunted By Humans’ this March. The band will also perform as part of Rock The Bay Festival on 21 March at The Espy.

This April, DON FERNANDO will return to Europe and the UK for DesertFest, which features SLEEP, RED FANG, EYEHATEGOD, ORANGE GOBLIN, ACID KING and more. DesertFest showcases 50 bands over 3 days in Camden, London on 24-26 April. - Heavy Music Magazine

"Don Fernando announce new album, tour dates."

Melbourne’s DON FERNANDO have announced they’ll be releasing a new album, ‘Haunted By Humans’ this March. The band will also perform as part of Rock The Bay Festival on 21 March at The Espy.
This April, DON FERNANDO will return to Europe and the UK for DesertFest, which features SLEEP, RED FANG, EYEHATEGOD, ORANGE GOBLIN, ACID KING and more. DesertFest showcases 50 bands over 3 days in Camden, London on 24-26 April. - SFMedia Australia

"Don Fernando announce new album, tour dates."

Melbourne stoner-rock outfit Don Fernando will release their new album ‘Haunted By Humans‘ on Saturday 21st March. On the same day they’ll be part of the big Rock The Bay Festival at The Espy in St Kilda. The album was recorded and mixed by the band collectively at Singing Bird Studios and mastered by Paul Fox at Indie Masters. You can pre-order the album on Bandcamp [Here] where you can also stream a couple of tracks now. Next month the band head off on tour visiting Spain, France, Belgium and UK. Visit their page for more information [Here] -

"Don Fernando"

Rock’n’roll is a lifestyle as much as it is the sound of amplified guitar music with the snare on two and four. Melbourne stoner rock band Don Fernando’s members are three records and 19 years into their legitimate rock’n’roll lifestyle. Having previously released albums Dia De Los Muertos and The Banquet Of… they’re just about to drop their third and most accomplished album to date Haunted By Humans (‘Most accomplished album’ is normally one those music journalism wanks that writers use to sound informed when they have no fucking idea, but in this case it’s most valid). - See more at: - Beat Magazine (Furst Media)

"The Morsel 13th March, 2015"

So to wrap up this week, I go full circle back to where my story all began. Melbourne, Australia. Don Fernando are a band fresh off the back of a new release “Haunted by Humans”, a support of the mighty Truckfighters and on the precipice of heading back to Europe for a tour that takes in none other than the London chapter of Desertfest. This new release and tour is sure to propel Don Fernando beyond Melbourne pub band to international stoner contender. If you have ever wondered what happened when Fu Manchu and QOTSA got drunk and gave birth to a feisty little loud bastard love child, then Don Fernando is for you. Riff driven, punchy and catchy as hell, “Hunted by Humans” is a great release with highlights such as the title track “Haunted by Humans”, “Why”, “If You Say So”, “Motherload” and the stoner anthem (and my favourite track) that closes this tight as helll full length, “Older”. Dan Fernando is one not to miss at Desertfest and expect the Black Heart to be rocking and a rollin’ when these Melbourne boys, with the Cherry Bar coursing through their veins, arrive and raise hell. - The Morsel- Matt Parker.

"Don Fernando- Album Review"

This being the third full-length album by the band proves the well hasn't run dry and they still have the chops to create something interesting. The eleven tracks on "Haunted By Humans" explores many domains and textures. From soulful acoustic passages, to full-blown metal onslaughts. Most of the vocals are clean sounding, but there are a few gut wrenching screams from time to time for dramatic effect.

If you dig the old stoner sound from long ago, from bands like early Queens of the Stone Age, Hermano, Fu Manchu and the like "Haunted By Humans" will sure tickle your fancy. I'm willing to bet when 2015 runs down, this album will be one of the more memorable listening experiences you've had. Limited edition digipacks and digital downloads available via their Bandcamp site. -AW - Ear Munchies- AW


2006- It's Good While it Lasts. (EP- Independent Release)

2008- The Banquet of... (CD- Independent/MGM.)

2011- Dia De Los Muertos. (CD- IMPEDANCE RECORDS AUS.)

2015- Haunted By Humans.



 Don Fernando; massive riffs, massive hooks, high octane, Stoner Rock n' Roll. 

 From Melbourne, Australia; Don Fernando have been storming stages since 2006 having unleashed fury over the world with their unrelenting work ethic, they have toured Australia extensively, played in eight different European countries, and toured throughout South America.

To date, Don Fernando released their first recording in  2006; 'Its Good While it Lasts' EP. In 2008, 'The Banquet of...' received much praise in Europe and Australia. Fast forward to the 2010 release of 'Dia De Los Muertos', which had seen the band moving into darker and much heavier territory, while not losing any of their trademark musicality. Much adoration had been built from these releases, that they have supported and played along side many well renowned, and respected international acts including; Brant Bjork (LOW DESERT PUNKS) Monster Magnet, Clutch, Helmet, The Atomic Bitchwax, Black Cobra, Earthless,The Shrine and Fu Manchu.

Still keeping in sync with their roots; Don Fernando's new record "Haunted by Humans" represents an exploration into the far reaches of the bands musical inspiration, mixing their trademark high octane riffage, with a new found love for the low down and dirty smudginess of their forefathers. 

There's no stopping these boys. The first show for 2015 is with Sweden’s Truckfighters at the SOLD OUT Cherry Bar show this January. Don Fernando will then take off overseas to embark on a tour in and around Europe and the UK this April for they're highly anticipated new release “ Haunted By Humans”. The tour will finish off with HEAVYWEIGHTS of The Stoner Rock scene, Sleep, Red Fang, Orange Goblin and Sludge/Doom-laden masters; NOLA’s very own EYEHATEGOD at DesertFest in Camden, London. Don Fernando are the one of many rising rockers on this bill and shall be flying the AUSSIE FLAG proudly at this festival.  

Band Members