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Encyclopedia entry for 'The Dynamic Hepnotics' LETTER:

Formed in 1979
StyleSoul, R&B
 Original line-up: Continental Robert Susz (vocals, harmonic; ex-Rugcutters, Humdinger Dogs), Andrew Silver (guitar; ex-Big Town Playboys), Tim Martin (sax; ex-Friends), Manuel Patti (bass), Richard Ruhle (drums)
 Dynamic Hepnotics albums: Strange Land (mini-album, Missing Link, 1982), Live (Mushroom/ Festival, 1984), Take You Higher (Mushroom/Festival, 1985); Mighty Reapers albums: The Mighty Reapers (Rufus/Polydor, 1993), Trouble People (Rufus/Polydor, 1994), The Hurt is On (Rufus/Polydor, 1997).

History
Throughout the early 1980s, Sydney-based The Dynamic Hepnotics was the premier soul/R&B outfit in the land. Fronted by the stylish Continental Robert Susz, the band boasted an authentic repertoire of 1950s and 1960s roots-based favourites, and a swag of quality originals in the same vein.

The original line-up recorded the four-track EP `Shakin' All Over' for the fabulous Mambo label which came out in May 1980. By that stage, Bruce Allen (sax; ex-Jeff St John Band, Ol'55), Allen Britton (bass; ex-Mangrove Boogie Kings) and Robert Souter (drums; ex-Lizard, Gulliver's Travels, Living Legends) had joined Susz and Andrew Silver. The new line-up recorded the Susz-penned `Hepnobeat'/`Funky Turban' single (September 1981). It initially came out on Mambo, then was reissued by Missing Link. Jim Niven (organ; ex-Sports) also played on the record. `Hepnobeat'/ `Funky Turban' was issued a third time in August 1982, this time as a 12-inch on Stateside (through CBS). The single was also issued in Europe (on the Statik label), the USA and Japan. Having established the connection with Missing Link, The Dynamic Hepnotics issued the Strange Land mini-album (August 1982). `Hepnobeat' and `Funky Turban' were again included on that excellent six-track release.

The Dynamic Hepnotics looked further afield, and in 1984 signed to Mushroom's White label. The first release on White was `I'll Make You'/`The Meaning of Life' (May 1984), followed by `Soul Kind of Feeling'/`Last to Know' (September) and `Gotta be Wrong'/`Motley Crusaders' (March 1985). The singles launched the band into the premier league when `Soul Kind of Feeling' peaked at #4 on the national chart in December 1984 and `Gotta be Wrong' reached #7 in May 1985. In between came the album Live, which was a mix of originals and cover versions such as Scott/Malone's `Turn on Your Lovelight' and Holland/Dozier/Holland's `(I'm a) Roadrunner' recorded live in the studio at A.A.V. Melbourne. By that stage, New Zealander Mike Gubb (keyboards; ex-Rough Justice) had joined the band.

The Dynamic Hepnotics recorded Take You Higher in early 1985. `Whenever You're Ready'/ `Blue Kind of Feeling' was lifted from the album as a single in July 1985. Take You Higher peaked at #19 on the national chart in June. At the end of 1985, Mark Simmonds replaced Bruce Allen on sax and Dave Brewer (ex-Elks) replaced Andrew Silver. Peter Bishop (trumpet) also joined the band, and the new line-up recorded `On Our Way Now'/`The Work It Out' (March 1986).

It was to be the band's final release. Following further line-up changes with Duncan Archibald replacing Souter, Chris Pascoe replacing Gubb and Lloyd Swanton (ex-Benders) replacing Britton, the band broke up at the end of 1986. Continental Robert Susz concentrated full-time on his sideline band The Mighty Reapers (of Vengeance), which also included Dave Brewer, Richard Ruhle, Vito Portolesi (bass), Duncan Archibald (drums) and Sammila Sitole (percussion). As The Mighty Reapers, the band issued three albums of stylish soul/ R&B material, The Mighty Reapers (1993) Trouble People (1994) and The Hurt is On (1997), plus the cassette You Gotta Reap (1990).

Britton joined The Foreday Riders and then The Bondi Cigars. Gubb joined Mental as Anything, The Layabouts, Dog Trumpet then The Headhunters. Silver joined Wild Blue Yonder. Bruce Allen toured with Ross Wilson's Rockhouse, the Fabulous Zarzoff Brothers and The Eddys.



Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop / Ian McFarlane 1999
under licence from Allen & Unwin Pty Ltd

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