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Carus and The True Believers were an Australian folk, country, roots and reggae band formed in 1995 in Perth. They released three studio albums, before founding mainstay, Carus Thompson, went solo in 2008 and subsequently issued three studio albums.

Carus and The True Believers
OriginPerth, Western Australia, Australia
Years active1995 (1995)–2008 (2008)
Past members
  • Paul Keenan
  • Noel Manyam
  • Carus Thompson
  • Jason McGann
  • Andy Fry
  • John Bedggood
  • Mathieu Lucas
  • Mo Wilson
  • Ben Leahy



1995–2002: Early yearsEdit

Carus and The True Believers were formed in 1995 in Perth, by 18-year-old front man, Carus Thompson, on lead vocals and guitar. They began performing on the local pub circuit, often for four or five nights a week. Thompson lists Paul Kelly as one of his early influences. The group supported local performances by Australian artists, Mick Thomas (of Weddings Parties Anything), Ed Kuepper and Neil Murray. In 2000 Carus and The True Believers released their self-titled first extended play, which attracted the attention of other artists. They backed Jack Johnson, John Butler Trio and then the Waifs. With the release of their second EP in 2002, Mind's Eye, Carus and The True Believers began touring interstate.[1]

2002–08: Songs from Martin St. to Three BoxesEdit

After touring for almost a year, along the east and west coasts of Australia, in December 2002, Carus and The True Believers, with the line-up of Carus, Paul Keenan on drums and Noel Manyam on bass guitar, recorded their first studio album, Songs from Martin St., in Melbourne's Martin Street Studios.[1] It was issued in February 2003, which Thompson co-produced with his brother, Chris Thompson, and includes guest performances by Vikki Simpson (of the Waifs) on vocals and John Butler (of the John Butler Trio) on guitar.[1] It has an eclectic mix of rock, reggae and folk styling,[1] which reached number 18 on the Australian Independent Records chart. The group relocated to Melbourne.[2]

Before the album appeared Paul Keenen had left to drum as a touring member of rock group, Eskimo Joe.[2] Thompson recruited Jason McGann (ex-the John Butler Trio) on drums.[1] The album established the trio in the new roots-folk scene, they followed with a national tour and then a tour of Europe.[1][2] Thompson gave a solo performance at Fremantle's Norfolk Hotel, which was recorded by engineer James Hewgill (worked for the Waifs), and was released as a double live album, Acoustic at the Norfolk, in October 2003. It has Thompson either solo on lead vocals and acoustic guitar or accompanied by Adam Gare on violin and Dave Johnson on harmonies and mandolin.

In April 2004, Long Nights are Gone, the second studio album by Carus & the True Believers was recorded in one day in Fremantle with half the songs written and recorded on the same day. Recorded in Thompson's parents bedroom, it depicts the process of writing and recording on the fly. John Bedggood has also played on Bernard Fanning on his solo album, Tea and Sympathy and performed as part of the backing band on the album promotional tour.

In 2006, Long Nights Are Gone was edited for the German market, combined with the EP, The Breakdown, and repackaged. In Australia, the album managed to further boost the prominence of the band with the single, "Ain't no Crime" taking out the number 1 spot on Triple J's Net 50. With another line-up change, after Long Nights Are Gone, Andy Fry replaced Noel Manyam on bass guitar. Fry also played bass for John Butler Trio.

The band released their third studio album, Three Boxes, in May 2007 in Australia, Britain and Germany.

2008–present: SoloEdit

Carus Thompson issued his solo album, Creature of Habit, in 2009, and followed with Caravan in 2011. His third solo album, Island, appeared in February 2017.[3] Tex Miller of Forté magazine rated it at four-and-a-half out of five and explained, "Brilliant riffs, honest heartfelt lyrics and an element that is sure to have you singing along with a smile in no time."[3]


Carus and The True Believers
  • Paul Keenan: drums
  • Noel Manyam: bass guitar
  • Carus Thompson: vocals, guitar
  • Jason McGann: drums, vocals, piano, lap steel guitar
  • Andy Fry: bass guitar
  • John Bedggood: violin, piano, mandolin, vocals
  • Mathieu Lucas: electric and double bass
  • Mo Wilson: keyboards
  • Ben Leahy: ukulele



Carus and The True Believers
  • Songs from Martin St. (February 2003) – Independent
  • Long Nights Are Gone - Independent (2004)
  • Three Boxes - Independent (2007)
Carus Thompson
  • Creatures of Habit (2009)
  • Caravan (2011)
  • Island (February 2017)

Live albumsEdit

Carus Thompson
  • Acoustic at the Norfolk (October 2003)

Extended playsEdit

Carus Thompson
  • Carus (2000)
  • Mind's Eye (2002)
Carus and The True Believers
  • The Breakdown (2005)


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Carus Thompson – Carus". TE Archive. 19 March 2003. Retrieved 4 April 2018.
  2. ^ a b c Smith, Michael (12 April 2011). "Travelling Man". Drum Media (233). Perth. Retrieved 4 April 2018.
  3. ^ a b Miller, Tex (12 February 2017). "Carus Thompson: Island". Forté. Retrieved 4 April 2018.