Ask Chris Ross what the biggest difference between touring through Australia and America is, and he’ll probably give one answer: “There’s a lot more cities in America.”

So many, the Wolfmother bassist/keyboardist couldn’t even remember what city the Sydney-based band had performed in the night prior.

“We played last night in … Oregon, maybe,” Ross told Pollstar, hours before a May 26th performance at the Sasquatch Music Festival in George, Wash. “It’s a big country, man.”

Ross and his fellow Wolfmothers – singer/guitarist Andrew Stockdale and drummer Myles Heskett – won’t be resting any time soon, according to John Watson, who manages the band with John Watson Management’s Melissa Chenery. The trio will be touring for the rest of the year except October, Watson told Pollstar.

Here’s a preview: After the band finishes U.S. dates through June, it will head to Europe for a handful of festivals and solo dates. From there, they’ll return to Australia for a sold-out national tour, playing in up to 5,000-capacity venues.

Via Japan’s Fuji Rock Festival, Wolfmother will return to the States in August to play Lollapalooza and gigs with The Flaming Lips and Sonic Youth. Then it’s back to Europe for more festivals and shows with Pearl Jam.

The trio will return to America in September before making one more trip back to Europe. After a much-needed rest in October, Wolfmother returns to the States for dates in November and December.

“This is the hardest I’ve ever worked in my life,” Ross said, laughing.

With sold-out shows in cities like Chicago, Dallas, Austin, Baltimore and Toronto, concertgoers can’t seem to get enough of Wolfmother’s big-riff sound, which is reminiscent of Black Sabbath or Led Zeppelin.

“When people have heard the hype and see them for the first time, they leave as true believers,” William Morris Agency’s Robby Fraser told Pollstar.

That hype possibly started with Wolfmother’s 2005 South by Southwest showcase, which perked the ears of record execs at Interscope, who later signed the trio. Before the band’s full-length Dimensions was released this spring, Watson had a specific strategy in breaking the band Stateside.

“The plan was simply to start the right kind of credible word-of-mouth chatter in as many places as possible, and give it time to build naturally before we dropped the album in the U.S.,” Watson explained.


“Fortunately, Wolfmother has such a striking identity that people want to tell their friends about them. We found that once we got the band in front of audiences, things spread very rapidly from there.”

The manager said Americans were discovering the band through the U.K. and Australian press months before Dimensions was released. And with the help of radio play during February and March along with other U.S. media noticing, the wheels were already in motion when the album hit stores in May.

“This band has a wide-eyed energy and excitement that’s all too rare in rock ‘n’ roll these days,” Watson said. “A lot of new bands right now are either really bland or have a kind of ‘nudge, nudge; wink, wink’ irony to them. I think people are tired of both those options.”

The trio met one another after college, through friends and girlfriends. After jamming for five years, the band finally decided to take its songs into Sydney clubs. Right from the get go, Wolfmother had a local following.

“Initially, we were setting out to play some shows and have some fun, and see what would happen. But it kept rolling along, so we just went with it,” Ross said. “Everything happened organically.”

In 2004, the psychedelic rockers made their debut at Aussie festivals including Homebake and Big Day Out. And the band’s self-titled EP, released on Australia-based indie label Modular Recordings, gained Wolfmother radio play and chart status within the country.

For the time being, Ross, Stockdale and Heskett are enjoying the ride. And along the way, they’ve picked up some helpful advice, namely from fellow Aussie band Jet.

“They said to make a go of it and do as much as you can within reason,” Ross said.

And Wolfmother has been doing exactly that.

“We put everything into our shows. It’s like a one-off experience,” the bass player explained. “You only get to do this once, so why not put everything into it and see what happens? It’s great. You get people at the front screaming, and you scream back at them – it escalates into mayhem.”