Midnight Oil Quash Reunion Talk
The rockers will reunite frontman Peter Garrett with drummer Rob Hirst, guitarists Jim Moginie and Martin Rotsey, and bass player Bones Hillman, a lineup which had appeared finished when Garrett embarked on a career in federal politics with the Australian Labor Party in 2004. He went on to serve as Minister for Environment Protection, Heritage and the Arts, and later as Minister for School Education, Early Childhood and Youth, until he left office in June 2013.
Through those years, Garrett was constantly asked if he’d ever return to the front of stage for the Oils. “Not likely”, was his typical response. That line became, “not out of the question” though rumors of a reunion were quashed in 2013. Politics’ loss is rock ‘n’ roll’s gain.
The band has encouraged fans to sign up to its mailing list, where they can expect to receive a free download of "Forgotten Years," recorded live in the capital Canberra back in 2009, a warm-up for "Sound Relief". The rockers promise to “make a racket” when they embark on their concert dates, though there’s no word yet of new music.
Midnight Oil's Peter Garrett Launches Australia's Bigsound Conference
There will, however, be new music from Garrett. The iconic singer is working on his first solo album, a project that was inspired by the process of writing his memoir, Big Blue Sky, which was published last year.
After forming in 1972, Midnight Oil went on to become one of Australia’s most popular bands – and certainly its most politically-charged. Through song, the group pushed for indigenous rights, and they took an anti-war stance. The 1987 set Diesel and Dust came in at No. 1 in the 100 Best Australian Albums, a compendium of homegrown recordings published in 2010. The group was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2006 alongside Divinyls, Rose Tattoo, Helen Reddy, Daddy Cool, Icehouse and Lobby Loyde.