The Dirty Rats have been playing together since the '80s, and it shows. Tight, raucous, loud and - yes - dirty, they're purveyors of the kind of high energy rock and roll which will never die.”

Exhumed - ABC Radio Melbourne

Dirty rats bio

Dirty Rats were originally a 5 piece rock band that were very active in the Melbourne pub rock scene from the mid to late 1980's. The band released a 4 song EP in 1987 and played extensively throughout Victoria, as well as interstate festivals such as Ponde 88 until internal pressures caused the band to implode and eventually fold in the early 90's. Smashcut forward 25 years and the Rats are back, with a new line up, but still playing “old school” hard rock, trying to stay faithful to the sound the band had in the 80s when we were all fresh faced and optimistic, and had hair and stuff. 

This current line up is a leaner and meaner 4 piece with original member, Jamie Beovich on bass along with Wayne (Richie Rat) Rich on vocals, Anthony (Chooka) Chapple on guitar, Andy Thomson on drums and has brought the Dirty Rats kicking and screaming into 2018, while still retaining our hard rock roots and sound. Dirty Rats are a little older and worn around the edges, but still produce some of the best rock coming out of Melbourne today, and always give one of the best live performances you’ll see in this town. 

We started seriously writing and arranging for our current album, Rock n Roll, around mid 2016 and recorded later that same year for release in 2017. Jamie and Andy came up with the idea that the album should just be recorded “live”, just go in and play as if we were doing a gig, and I reckon that was the best way to go, as it gave the album that rough and ready feel that we were after. We have always been a tight band musically with a good feel for how we each perform, so most tracks were recorded in just one or two takes. We had to do some overdubs with the guitar parts due to some changes in guitarists, but otherwise we just got stuck in and got it done.   Dirty Rats have recently been signed to SlipTrick Records for distribution of "Rock n Roll" throughout the European Union, UK, Scandinavia and the US.  We are very excited to be part of the SlipTrick stable of artists and looking forward to exploring new markets and making new fans overseas.

We have always primarily been a working band, so we are still gigging in venues around Melbourne, playing original sets with other original bands. We recorded our performance at the Bendigo Hotel in Collingwood Victoria in February this year and a selection from that set has been put together for a four track EP called Dirty Rats – Live at the Bendigo Hotel (imaginative title eh?) The EP is being released on Itunes and Amazon on the 13th of April and will be a nice little treat for fans until our new album is ready to go. 

We have been writing new material for probably the last 6 months or so and working a couple of the new songs into our live sets to see if they go over, and so far that hasn’t been too bad. There have been more hits than misses, and we will more than enough to record our new album by the middle of the year. We have been madly arranging to get them to where we want them, and there are some absolute crackers, so we cant wait to get them into the studio. Hopefully the new album will be out around late 2018 and we can build on the audience we have both here and overseas with maybe a couple of small promotional tours to raise our profile a bit. Either way, I think more people are going to hear our music, either live or through their preferred streaming service, and I reckon that’s what makes it all worth it.

Sample track

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Don’t worry about locking up your daughters … it’s your mothers you should be worried about! Melbourne’s own Dirty Rats have been rocking out since arguably the best decade for Australian Rock – the eighties – and are showing no signs of slowing down! They’ve recently released their first full length album, ‘Rock n Roll’, and it’s an absolute banger (if you haven’t heard it yet, do yourselves a favor and do so!). In the midst of this release, and the band still rocking local stages like there’s no tomorrow,  OVERDRIVE were fortunate enough to speak to Wayne “Richie Rat” Rich, Dirty Rats front man, about their latest release, and what it’s been like rocking through Melbourne for over thirty years! 

Dirty Rats are comprised of band members Wayne ‘Richie Rat’ Rich (vocals), Anthony ‘Chooka’ Chapple (guitar), Jamie Beovich (bass), and Andy Thomson (drums). 

Read the full interview at:


 "taking their cues from the obvious homeland touchstones of Rose Tattoo and AC/DC, they mash up those influences and others into a no-holds-barred, brutal blast that covers 9 tracks of prime hard rock. Fronted by the powerhouse vocals of Wayne Rich, back up comes in the form of a classic guitar-bass-drums line up featuring grimy riffs by Chooka, low down four string from  Jamie Beovich and rattling drums courtesy of Andy"

Read the full review at:

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Dirty Rats

Central Club in Richmond Victoria

Dirty Rats

Dirty Rats

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