Seminal Geelong guitar band Bored! was at the forefront of that Victoria harbourside city's push to make a mark on the Australian independent scene. In the wake of Bored!'s gut-level and explosive approach to music making, the Geelong floodgates opened to spawn the likes of The Sunset Strip, The Dirty Lovers, Seaweed Goorillas, Amba Fear, Poppin' Mommas, Warped, She Freak, Magic Dirt, Automatic and Food, all garage rock exponents of considerable power and conviction.
Dave Thomas had been a member of Geelong punk band Bodies (circa 1983), and in 1985 played with Melbourne band Slaughter House which comprised Mike Chrystal (guitar; ex-Gas Babies, White Elephants), Mark Ivey (vocals; ex-White Elephants), Geoff Martyr (bass; ex-Sick Things) and Jim Smith (drums; ex-White Elephants). Thomas put the first version of what became Bored! together in late 1986. For the first year, the band was variously known as International Rescue, Sister Anne or White Noise. When the line-up stabilised with Thomas, Nolan, Munday, Gardner and Hann, the band settled on Bored!. Thomas dispensed with the keyboards to concentrate on a finely honed, guitar-heavy, punk/metal hybrid. The band's influences ranged from The Saints, Radio Birdman, Coloured Balls, AC/DC and Rose Tattoo to The Stooges, MC5, the Sex Pistols, Black Sabbath, Mudhoney, Motorhead and Blue Cheer. The band's name was derived from a song by US band Destroy All Monsters.
The band's self-titled mini-album (on Grown Up Wrong, October 1988) included a cover of Coloured Balls' `Human Being'. Bored! was issued in Germany on the Glitterhouse label. The single `Little Suzie'/`Heartbreaker' came out in the USA on the Sympathy for the Record Industry label. Dog Meat Records issued Negative Waves and the single `Satisfaction'/`Round and Round', `You Make Me Sick' in October 1989. The album included a hot wired cover of AC/DC's `Whole Lotta Rosie', which was also included on the Various Artists tribute album Used and Recovered By . . . (1990). The title Negative Waves was taken from a line in Gary Young's (not the Daddy Cool drummer) cult biker/road movie Cosy Cool. Around that time, Bored! also appeared on a single by studio band Sabotage (brainchild of ex-God guitarist Joel Silbersher): `Take Some Drugs Tonight'/`Search and Destroy'. By late 1989, Tim Hemensley (ex-Royal Flush, God) had taken over from Gardner. Hemensley added much to the band's charisma and sense of arrogance. The new line-up recorded Take It Out on You (issued on Glitterhouse in Germany) and toured Europe in 1990.
As soon as Bored! returned to Australia, Nolan and Hemensley split to form Powder Monkeys. Thomas recruited bassist Russell Baricevic (ex-Gas Babies, Macho Clowns) and concentrated on a more stripped-down punk rock attack. During 1991, Tas Blizzard, from fellow Geelong band Seaweed Goorillas, filled in for Thomas when he was unable to play guitar due to a broken arm. Survival Records issued the albums Feed the Dog (1991), Junk (1992) and Scuzz (March 1993), plus the single `People Say' (November 1991). The Celibate Rifles' guitarist, Kent Steedman, produced eight of the tracks on Junk and Peter Wells produced four. Scuzz mopped up nine live tracks and 13 studio outtakes.
Bored! contributed the tracks `There's a Lot of It Going Around' (by Melbourne punk band The Chosen Few) and `Descender' to Thomas' 1992 Geelong compilation Check this Action . . . Let the Fun Begin on his own Destroyer label. By that stage, Bored! was on its last legs, and eventually broke up in 1993. Thomas has always been an enormous influence on, and source of encouragement for, young bands on the Geelong independent scene. Through his tireless efforts over the years he did much to foster the growth of that scene. He lived in Europe for a year, and on his return in 1995 joined fellow Geelong band Magic Dirt. Following his 18-month tenure with that band, Thomas re-formed Bored! during November 1997. Baricevic, Munday and new member Matt Randall (rhythm guitar; ex-Trigger) completed the line-up.
Following the November 1997 tour, Thomas continued to reform Bored! for regular tours: October 1998 (supporting Swedish rockers The Hellacopters), February 1999 and then again in late 1999. All appearances featured the Thomas / Baricevic / Munday / Randall line-up. When not working with Bored!, Thomas toured and recorded with Fiona Lee Maynard’s band In Vivo. In 1999 Thomas assembled a double CD compilation of Bored! material called Chunks, which came out in March 2000.