When DV8 front man, guitarist Greg Bryce was barely out of school he formed a power trio called Meccalissa with friends Mark Middleton (bass) and Darrell Mepham (drums) which went on to play to packed audiences at the legendary Star Hotel. This was the essential line up of DV8 – an original band of hard-driving, no frills blues-rockers who released 4 charting albums and singles during the eighties when they “ruled the local rock scene.” Other players included Roy Giles and Allan Cook (bass), Tony Heaney (keyboard), Tony D’Abruzzo and Kerry Jacobsen (Dragon, KB Express) on drums.
The Herald’s Scott Bevan said “For seven years Greg Bryce was the key to DV8, playing the roles of founding member, singer, guitarist and song-writer. Bryce was also the key to DV8’s popularity in Newcastle. He not only wrote catchy songs that incorporated a variety of styles, he understood exactly what the average pub-goer was looking for in a band….an act that was low on pretense but big on energetic guitar-based rock.”
Although Bryce may have been the key he certainly wouldn’t have got far without the brilliant drumming of Brad Heaney who went on to play with The Radiators and Screaming Jets and the exceptional bass playing of, firstly Mark Middleton, then Brett Reid. At the height of their powers when they pulled crowds of up to 2000, similar to bands like Chisel and Midnight Oil at the time, DV8 called it a day before they had a chance to move beyond local notoriety, Bryce turned to touring the world and practicing yoga for the next 7 years.
The early nineties saw a reformed DV8 once again playing to a packed Newcastle Workers Club and in the late nineties a new album Big Green Monsters. The line-up of original members Bryce and Middleton with ex-Screaming Jet drummer Craig “Rosie” Rosevear was formed in 2000 with a goal to return to the inspiration of blues rock roots of the late sixties to mid-seventies and create new music steeped in those roots yet with an ear for the freshness of all that’s new. This lineup released a ‘best of’ ‘live album’ in 2007 called “Live 2 Rock”.
Travis Suprano, a hard-hitting stylish drummer from the lineage of great Newcastle drummers has been in the drum seat for DV8 these last few years and the band released a new studio album in December 2016. On April 1st 2017 they celebrated their 30th Anniversary DVD launch at Belmont 16’s large auditorium with a capacity crowd.