The Celibate Rifles were formed in 1978 by friends at a suburban Sydney high school. Their first full album Sideroxylon, was released in April 1983 by HOT Records, showcasing eleven original songs full of energy, wit and disrespect for fashion.
1984 was spent recording a number of singles and also releasing their second album. The Celibate Rifles, (aka 5 Languages) to critical acclaim, containing some of the bands most requested live songs to this day.
During 1985 and 1986 the band toured extensively, saw their first two albums compiled for release in the USA and the UK (Quintessentially Yours and Mina Mina Mina), and also released a third album The Turgid Miasma Of Existence. Critic David Fricke of Rolling Stone Magazine USA wrote: "At a time when most punk outrage is just witless spleen at 90 mph, these Aussie spitfires have fired off a release that shakes with lyric force and experimental valour, not just speed and volume."
On the band's return to Australia late 1986 the album Kiss Kiss, Bang, Bang, which they had recorded live while playing at New York's famous CBGB's, was released in Australia.
March 1987 saw the band touring again, firstly four weeks through America, then to Europe where they recorded Roman Beach Party in Amsterdam ("..the anger, the insight and the humour that makes The Rifles one of the most powerful rock bands in the world today." Roger Holland, Sounds Magazine UK), then more European touring and back to the States before finally returning home December 1987.
Solo projects occupied the first half of 1988, and then the band returned to Europe for more solid touring.
The fifth studio album Blind Ear saw the band break new ground and reach a whole new audience. Never before had the band been so popular within their own country and they toured Australia extensively.
1990 marked the release of Platter's Du Jour which brought together 23 unavailable and/or rare tracks originally released as vinyl singles, A and B sides.
More touring during 1991/92 and a return to the studio to record Heaven On A Stick, produced by legendary Australian vocalist Rob Younger. The album contains a number of crowd favourites such as "Cold Wind", the track which appears frequently in many internationally released surf movies.
The Rifles toured the world in 1992 including Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the USA where once again they recorded in CBGB's a stunning live album Yizgarnnoff.
January 1994 and the compilation Sofa was released spanning the band's career 1983-1989. In April a new album Spaceman In A Satin Suit, possibly their most mature and innovative album ever came out.
The Rifles most recent studio recording is the brilliant On The Quiet, an album of mainly their own material but this time played acoustically. Although originally sold only by mail order, the album has proved so popular that HOT Records decided to release the album internationally.
In 1997 a compilation CD called 'Wonderful Life' was released in Brazil. It has been available on import via HOT Records in the rest of the world.
1998 was a relatively quiet year for the band though they did play in Australia and some gigs in New Zealand highlighted by the Ripcurl Heli-Ski Challenge in Wanaka.
The band ended 1999 playing their traditional Sydney Xmas Eve and Boxing Night shows whilst working on their 13th album which has a tentative title of "Lashings Of Ginger Beer All Round".
The Celibate Rifles current line up is;
- Damien Lovelock Vocals and deadly striker
- Kent Steedman Guitar and Ginola like left winger
- Dave Morris Guitar. Right flanker. Runs like the wind
- Nik Rieth Drums. The left back hardman
- Jim Leone Bass. Tidies up the channels on the right