Aleks and the Ramps are a Melbourne five-piece, spilling out a stew of surreal, banjo-driven indie-pop - with hints of psychedelia, doo-wop and even bossa nova. Led by Aleks' banjo and his acerbic lyrics, the crew is filled out by bassist Denim Owl, guitarist Flying Simon, and musical nomad Extreme Wheeze (who roams about the stage, playing any instrument in his path). The band, mid-2007, also included dancing drummer Captain Rad - who moved to Perth, leaving a vacancy, which was filled by Black Wasp. In late 2010, after a successful tour of Japan (with ii), Denim Owl left the group to pursue her eponymous project. Black Wasp departed several months and one show later, following the completion of the group's third album. They were replaced by Whistling Nancy (also of Kikuyu) and Pascal Barbare (of Pascal Barbare and Teeth) respectively.
The group released their first album - Pisces Vs Aquarius - on Melbourne indie label Cavalier Music (now no longer). They have also released two EPs (They're Recording Everything We Say, and Attack Mode - a Canadian tour EP) and appeared on compilations including Cyclic Defrost's Emergent compilation (streamable on last.fm) and The Lifted Brow (a book/CD package). In March 2008, they recorded a radio single, 'Hey Owl', for a mail-out to international radio stations.
The group's second album - Midnight Believer - will be released through Australian label Stomp on May 29, 2009. It is preceded by the single 'Antique Limb' - a split 7"/digital download with Canadian act Mixylodian, with whom the group toured the east coast of Canada in 2008. The single has been played on community radio around Australia as well as being playlisted on national network Triple J.
Aside from the Ramps, all of the group's members are involved in musical asides. Extreme Wheeze is a band unto himself whilst moonlighting with local outfit Midnight Bosom; Flying Simon and Extreme Wheeze both play in alt-country band Potential Falcon; Denim Owl performs with Aleks under her Denim Owl moniker; Aleks records the occasional soundtrack; Black Wasp spends time playing with abstract improv duo ii and slo-mo disco quartet Speed Painters as well as producing the Paper Radio podcast. Newer member Whistling Nancy plays solo as Kikuyu and drummer Pascal Barbare has his own band, Pascal Barbare and Teeth.
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