The vocalist-guitarist of influential Geelong punk band Bored!, and one-time member of Magic Dirt, Dave Thomas has passed away after a battle with cancer. He was 56.
Thomas was a member of various Geelong and Melbourne punk bands in the early 1980s, including Bodies and Slaughter House. He formed Bored! in Geelong in 1987, named after a 1978 Destroy All Monsters song, with their eponymous debut extended play arriving the following year.
Their first studio album, ‘Negative Waves’, was released in 1989. The band began to fracture in 1990 when Tim Hemensley and John Nolan left to start the Powder Monkeys. Bored! went on to release three more records before disbanding in 1994.
Thomas became an influential music figure in his own right, starting his own label Destroyer Records. Destroyer Records paid particular attention to Geelong bands but also released music by Sydney rockers Asteroid B-612, Brisbane band Onyas and Tasmanians Mouth. He also started managing an early iteration of Magic Dirt in 1991.
Thomas joined Magic Dirt briefly in 1995 to play on their debut album ‘Friends in Danger’, before leaving the group in 1997. Magic Dirt wrote a tribute to Thomas on their social media yesterday, calling him “a pivotal part of the band’s formative years”.
“In our hometown of Geelong, Dave was known and revered as the godfather of punk rock,” they said.
“The epitome of punk rock itself and espousing a strong DIY ethic with philanthropic leanings, Dave took many bands under his wing and we were lucky enough to have been one of them. Amongst many things, he facilitated some of our earliest recordings and tours, making sure we were seen and heard… His contribution to Magic Dirt’s music and to the Australian music scene will never be forgotten, he will be sorely missed.”
Thomas is survived by his wife Leisa and children Charlie and April.