The Eastern are a string band that roars like a punk band, that swings like a gospel band, that drinks like a country band, that works like a bar band, that hopes like folk singers, and sings love songs like union songs, and writes union songs like love songs, and wants to slow dance and stand on tables, all at the same time. Whether roaring as their big six piece string band or swinging the lonesome ballads as a two piece and averaging over 200 shows a year, The Eastern can hold it down in all settings for all comers.
Constantly on tour the eastern have played all over New Zealand and parts beyond from gore to Nashville, Shirley to Sydney theyʼve held it down and treat any opportunity as a chance to plug in a play. Theyʼve toured with Steve Earle, the Old Crow Medicine Show and the Lilʼ Band of Gold as well as opening for everyone from Fleetwood Mac to the Jayhawks to Jimmy Barnes to Justin Townes Earle as well as Jim White, Victoria Williams and Vic Chestnut.
Their self titled debut album was released in 2009 and debuted straight into the top ten of the new Zealand indie charts based only on a ferocious live reputation and a belief in the old fashioned concept of playing for people, having made album of the week status in the Sunday star times and the chch press its sold out of its first run and continues to gather friends for the band far and wide.
In 2010 they released ʻArrowsʼ tight on the heelʼs of a year which would see most bands wilt at the workload, The Eastern recorded the album in January started touring in February, released the record 1st of march and have been on tour ever since up and down New Zealand. Itʼs been a thrill to see the work pay off with the record selling faster than they can print it, bar rooms full of repeat listeners and new friends alike and a growing audience who seem to care as much about the band as the band cares about them. ʻArrowsʼ has been a watershed for the band and the response to the record has kept them on tour most of 2010 and through the summer of 2011, in may it was released in Australia and the band have hoped in the van and started runninʼ round these Australian highways also.
“…you can smell the whiskey and dust on
every song…true to the spirits of Bob Dylan,
Springsteen, Patti smith and Townes van
Zandt” – Sunday Star Times
“Stunning”- Rip it Up
“the first New Zealand band in a long time to
do things the good old-fashioned way.”
- Dominion Post
“The Eastern are possessed of a sound which
is heartfelt, authentic and infinitely
listenable…"- NZ Musician Magazine