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The Superjesus
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The Superjesus biography
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Lead singer and main song-writer Sarah McLeod formed the band in late 1994 with guitarist (and her guitar teacher at the time) Chris Tennent, drummer Paul Berryman and bass player Stuart Rudd. They were originally called Hell’s Kitchen before changing their name to The Superjesus on the eve of the 1994 Big Day Out in Adelaide.
Says Paul Berryman of the name: “It was basically just a piss-take on commonly used words in the 90’s. Like The Jesus and Mary Chain, ‘Jesus Built My Hot Rod’, Jesus Lizard, Jesus Jones; there’s just heaps of Jesus’ out there in the music world so we thought we would have that and super was kind of like a 90s catch word.”
The group’s debut EP, “Eight Step Rail”, was released in May 1996 and spent a couple of months on top of the Australian Independent charts and won a couple of ARIA awards.
All has not always well with the band internally and in 1997 Chris Tennent temporarily left the band. Aaron Tokona from Wellington, New Zealand band Weta filled in, though chose to turn down the band’s offer to become a permanent member.
They released their debut album, Sumo, through Warner Music in 1998 and its success in Australia led to a US release. The band has released two subsequent albums, Jet Age, in 2001, and Rock Music, in 2003. All albums charted well in Australia.
Chris Tennant left the band permanently in 1999 and was replaced by Tim Henwood (who has since himself left to concentrate on his work with The Androids). Jason Slack (an unofficial member) has since been playing guitars with the band.
In June 2004, the band split with Warner Music Australia and indicated they would take time off while individial members pursued other projects. McLeod is said to be working on a solo album of material not suited to the band. Her solo single released in 2005 is entitled “Let’s Get Together”, while her album to be released in the same year is called Beauty Was A Tiger.
Recently there has been much controversy over whether the band has split: a number of articles describe McLeod and Berryman as “former” members. Fans continue to speculate over online message boards, some reasoning that the writers of such articles jump to conclusions after seeing each member doing his/her own thing. The band has so far remained silent on this issue, although the band’s website has disappeared.
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