The Fauves

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For other uses, see Fauve (disambiguation).
The Fauves
The Fauves at Asian Australian Football Championships.jpg
The Fauves at Asian Australian Football Championships
Background information
Origin Melbourne, Australia
Years active 1988–present
Labels Polydor, Shock Records, Festival Records
Members Andrew "Coxy" Cox (guitar/vocals)
Philip "Doctor" Leonard (guitar/vocals)
Adam "Doug" Newey (drums)
Timothy "Ted" Cleaver (bass/backing vocals)
Past members Jack Dyer (bass) (1988–2000)

The Fauves are an Australian rock band formed in 1988.[1] The band are known for their witty lyrics, melodic pop-rock and often satirical or evocative exploration of Australian themes.

Their album Future Spa was nominated for Best Alternative Album in the 1997 ARIA awards but lost to Spiderbait's Ivy and the Big Apples. They played at the Big Day Out in both 1993 and 1997.

In 2007 they played their 1000th Show and in 2008 they celebrated their 20th Anniversary Gig at The Espy in Melbourne.


The band was formed in 1988 by four school friends from Mt Eliza High School on the Mornington Peninsula near Melbourne. The initial line-up consisted of: Andrew Cox (guitar, vocals), Philip Leonard (guitar, vocals, brass), Andrew Dyer (bass) and Adam Newey (drums). The band took its name from the short-lived French art movement Fauvism which was characterised by both its intensity and infatuation with colour.

In 1990 the band released a 5 track 12" vinyl only EP This Mood Has Passed, as well as a 7" vinyl only single Fireman 451 / Daughter Abroad. In 1992 the band released 2 six-track CD EPs on Shock Records, The Scissors Within and Tight White Ballhugger.

In 1992 The Fauves featured on a CD called 'Dress Ups' (Shock Records) with other Melbourne bands The Glory Box and Pray TV with each band performing a track from the others' repertoire, as well as contributing one original track.

The band came to wider attention when they appeared on the bill of the first Big Day Out tour in early 1993. In October of that year they signed to Polydor Records and released their debut long player Drive Through Charisma.

The original release of Drive Through Charisma included a 22 track bonus disc featuring early demos and some live songs. The bonus disc was accompanied by a separate booklet titled "22 Reasons Why A Band Shouldn't Put An Album Out in Its First Few Years." The booklet was written by the band and provided critical analysis for each track.

The 1994 computer game Quarantine featured the band's song "The Driver Is You" on its soundtrack. Their second album The Young Need Discipline was released in 1994. In 1995 the band released a non-album single "Everybody's Getting a 3 Piece Together". The song was later included on the band's next album as a secret track.

The Fauves's most successful album to date Future Spa was released in July 1996. The album yielded considerable radio success with singles "Dogs Are The Best People" and "Self Abuser" coming in at No. 20 and No. 30 respectively in the Triple J Hottest 100, 1996. Between the release of Future Spa and their album Lazy Highways, the band were filmed for Vanessa Stuart's one-hour documentary, The Fauves: 15 Minutes to Rock, which has since aired on SBS and was also screened at the Document Film Festival in 2004.

By the end of 1999 however the band was dropped from Polydor after the label's merger with Universal. Following their departure from the major label, the band wrote two songs, "Bigger Than Tina" and "Bigger Than Tina II", for the Australian movie Bigger Than Tina which were released as a single on Festival. Since then the group has released seven albums independently. They have had success on Triple J with "Bigger Than Tina" at No. 50 in 1999, and "Give Up Your Day Job" at No. 58 in 2000.

Andrew Cox contributed a humorous agony aunt segment on Jay and the Doctor's Triple J breakfast show from 2005 until the show ended in 2009 and has also contributed opinion pieces to The Age newspaper. Andrew also wrote and distributed the band's Rabelaisian fanzine 'Shred' which commented satirically and often savagely on the music industry and pop culture more generally.

The Fauves released their ninth studio album, When Good Times Go Good, on 6 September 2008. It was recorded with longtime collaborator Wayne Connolly, who has worked on five of the band's nine albums, and co-produced by Jim Moginie from Midnight Oil. A video-clip was made of the "Underwhelmed".

After a three-year break the band debuted tracks from their tenth album Japanese Engines on 10 November 2011 in Geelong. The album was followed only five months later by an eight-track EP German Engines launched at The Toff in Town. Andrew Cox announced on stage: "Japanese Engines was kind of the poppier record. German Engines has a much darker soul, it's a bit heavier, it's a bit rougher."

The Fauves played The Workers Club in Fitzroy on Saturday 7 June 2014.




"Get Fucked", from The Fauves, was included on the Rock Against Howard compilation in 2004.




  • Ian McFarlane (1999). Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop. Allen & Unwin. ISBN 1-86448-768-2. 
  1. ^ The Fauves: 15 Minutes to rock, Time off, October 2004

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