SpringloaderFormed in late 1993 by Rob Mayes, Springloader was principally a vehicle for Mayes' own compositions, predominantly melodic based indie rock, combining the pop of Mayes previous outing in Throw, and the heavy leanings of Dolphin, and a new darker shoegazer post rock edge. Mayes shifting from his bass role in previous bands to electric guitar.
A chance meeting with Dave Toland, (ex They Were Expendable, The Playthings, Belle Motions, Not Really Anything) at Galaxy Records saw the 2 set up some sessions to explore Dark powerpop. The 2 developed some material as an instrumental 2 piece expanding on Mayes melodic yet dense guitar style. Toland had jsut taken on the lease for an inner city warehouse which he converted into a living space with big practice room, a luxury in the increasingly overpriced central.

Mayes had spent the previous year working on the Avalanche project and associated ventures, and this leading to a heavier guitar sound.

After a couple of months Mayes invited singer / guitarist Michael Oakley to join the group on vocals. Oakley had been a regular attender at Throw and Dolphin gigs and came to Mayes' attention through his own songwriting outing Field, which featured Chè Rogers on bass. Field were almost a tribute band to Mayes' own band Throw, the band being big fans of Throw's music and stylistically similar.
Rogers and Oakley were a regular feature on the local pop gothic scene and had been in a number of musical outings together that made waves in those circles, notably CR Eye, and Elder Sign, both bands developing a following at various successful indie all-age concerts that the bands self-promoted and arranged.

Oakley brought Rogers into the band and within a month Springloader had arranged their debut performance on February 5th, out of town at Wellington's Bar Bodega with fellow Christchurchers Atomic Blossom.

The band followed this with a support slot for Auckland's The Nixons (later EyeTv) at Warners hotel in Christchurch.
Toland's cronic stage fright showed itself the night before the concert with him going missing from the bands rehearsal and being un-contactable till the actual gig.

The band did 2 recording sessions with the original line-up at the newly build Red Acoustics studio on Madras Street featuring a big live room. The first session in January 1994 and the other in April, recording a total of 14 tracks. One track "Now I Know" was included on the Good Things compilation. Another track "One More Thing" would appear on a NZ on Air Funded music video directed by David Reid, Shot by Brett Nicols and edited by Greg Page and Rob Mayes. The others tracks would not appear till 2005's Retrogenic Series Release of the 'Just Like Falling' album.

The band arranged a local show at the Dux de Lux, with Toland again going missing during the bands pre-show rehearsal and arriving again just before the show.

The uncertainty of Toland's attendance strained Band stability but the band agreed to embark on a South Island tour to Dunedin and Invercargill, again hitting trouble with Toland arriving minutes before the band were due to start playing.
Toland was also playing in the support act, the fledgling Future Stupid, their first live performance.

The band played their show in Invercargill successfully before a messy return to Christchurch before Toland and Springloader parted company. A phenomenal drummer but a logistic problem for staging gigs, the recording of their songs capture fantastically Toland's mastery of his drum kit though.

In September 1994 Mayes enlisted new drummer Andrew Kerr, and the band recorded a New Zealand On Air funded video for the track "One More Thing".

Mayes continued to work on the band's music till the band performed one last time in April at the Dolphin album release party.
Mayes left for London in October of 1995 to concentrate on his work with Dolphin, and continued working on the Springloader album in London Studios. Dolphin Guitarist Kevin Stokes contributing some additional guitar parts to the recordings. Some of which were done at Elvis Costello and the Attractions drummer Pete Thomas's home studio in Richmond and the rest at River studios near Tower Bridge. Remaining work was completed in the new protools studio at Redd acoustics back in Christchurch New Zeaalnd in 1998 and 99.

The album "Just Like Falling" features 9 slices of densely layered guitar textures, and 5 bonus instrumental tracks (including Hamish Oliver's orchestral interpretation of the track 'Believe') was eventually officially released in 2005 for the Failsafe Records Retrogenic series of lost albums.

"Just Like Falling" album  
"Keepin' Secrets" - Various Artists (song One More Thing)    


Springloader Myspace Page


"Just Like Falling" cover image (800x600 or 1024x768)

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