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Chuganaut formed in 2002. Their sound was loosely based around alternative rock and twisted metal, but in their own words, is 'nothing you can put your finger on, with mellow and heavy extremes'.

Stu, Lil, Munro and Nail of Chuganaut


Chuganaut started life as a covers band, The Y Fronts, playing the pub circuit, who began to incorporate original material into their sets. The first many heard from them was the song Party Geek with its distinctive 'chug-a-lager' chorus, which received extensive airplay on the Generator.

Chuganaut won the local Generator run Battle of the Bands competition in 2003, and followed it up by winning the Waikato/Bay of Plenty Regional Finals of World Battle of the Bands 2004. Following the latter, they won the national final of World Battle of the Bands, and then the international final (the second Hamilton based group to do so). In the same competition they also took out first place for Most Outstanding Guitarist, Most Outstanding Drummer and the People’s Choice Award. In 2004 Chuganaut also released two singles, produced its first music video, and released a single (Brightside) on the Axe Attack Metal CD Compilation Vol 1.

The following year, Chuganaut opened the 2005 Big Day Out to a crowd of thousands. They soon released their debut EP, the 6-track Wolf. Released through Intergalactic Records and being the prize for winning the 2004 World Battle of the Bands, two of the tracks were recorded at Area 51 studios. The 'Wolf' CD is complemented with a video of the same name, directed by Greg Page of Fish n Clips, and is being aired on Juice TV, XSTV and C4TV.

As their first step in what they hoped would be an international career, Chuganaut played live in Brisbane and on the Gold Coast, Australia, in December 2005. Their debut album, 11:11 One was released in 2007. In early 2009 the band secured the opening slot for Iron Maiden in Auckland. Outside of the Boys Day Out event at Mystery Creek in 2010, they have largely been on hiatus since late 2009.

Chuganaut News

Chuganaut News header

In addition to playing more shows than almost any other Htown group at the time, the band promote themselves in other, less conventional ways - one being the publication of a newsletter, the Chuganaut News - which was available at places like Tracs, Starbucks and others.

Current Members


"11:11 One" cover art

Published Articles

  • Chugging Along, Waikato Times, 10 March 2004, pE1
  • Chugging On, Waikato Times, 25 November 2004, p19
  • Chuganaut debut album with double the impact, Taranaki Daily News, 25 January 2007, p20

External Links