aka Tarbet, Kamsha

In a brief but action-packed 18 months at the beginning of the 1980s, Invercargill band Airstrike hit the New Zealand touring circuit hard, gaining a reputation as a high-energy live act with a strong following.

Although they were still taking their first steps in a career that would continue in Australia with line-up and name changes, Airstrike never lacked self-belief and found themselves rubbing shoulders with many of the headline Kiwi bands of the era. They would often cross paths with the likes of Mi-Sex, DD Smash, Hello Sailor, Citizen Band, The Swingers, The Crocodiles, Golden Harvest, Rick Bryant, Barry Saunders’ early band The Tigers, Flight X7, Pop Mechanix, Coup D’Etat, Lip Service and The Knobz.

Paul Maaka, Airstrike.
Airstrike, 1979. From left: Neil Sutherland, Graham Moses, Peter Chilton, Neil Chilton, Neil Burns.
Airstrike - Peter Chilton on the truck, Timaru 1980.
Airstrike in a Hillcrest Tavern advert.
Airstrike reunion, Invercargill 2017, with Dave Gent of the Exponents.
Early Airstrike photo, 1979. Left to right: Neil Sutherland, Graham Moses, Neil Chilton, Peter Chilton, Neil Burns.
Neil "Burnsy" Burns and Neil Chilton, Airstrike.
Neil Chilton, Cabana 1980.
Paul Maaka, Airstrike.
Neil "Sutho" Sutherland, Airstrike.
What's the Name of Your Band? - the story of Airstrike, by Peter J Chilton (2022) 
Neil "Burnsy" Burns and Neil Chilton at the Cabana, Napier 1980.
Peter Chilton, Airstrike.
Airstrike's 2017 reunion at the Civic Theatre, Invercargill, with former Exponents bassist Dave Gent at right. From left: Paul Maaka, Neil Sutherland, Neil Chilton, Peter Chilton, and Dave Gent. 
Kamsha - He Will Sleep
Kamsha - 1000 Years (1985)
Neil Chilton, Airstrike.
Neil Chilton and Neil "Sutho" Sutherland, Airstrike reunion, 2017.
Airstrike in 1979, just before the band headed to Auckland. From left: Neil Sutherland, Neil Chilton, Graham Moses, Peter Chilton, and Neil Burns. 
Neil "Burnsy" Burns, Airstrike.
Airstrike in Sydney.
Neil Chilton, Airstrike reunion 2017.
Airstrike in Sydney.
Airstrike visiting the grave of Neil Burns, 2017.
Airstrike, from left: Neil Burns, Neil Sutherland, Paul Maaka, Neil Chilton, and Peter Chilton
Airstrike in Hamilton. From left: Peter Chilton, Neil Sutherland, Neil Chilton, Paul Maaka, Neil Burns.
Airstrike in the Shoreline carpark, Dunedin, 1980.
Kamsha - 1000 Years (PolyGram, 1985)
Kamsha - Work Until You Drop (1985)
Neil "Burnsy" Burns at the Cabana, Napier.
Airstrike live on stage, Invercargill.
Paul Maaka, Airstrike.
Airstrike reunion at the Civic, Invercargill 2017.
Neil "Sutho" Sutherland, Airstrike.

Update, 2022: Peter Chilton has written What’s the Name of Your Band?, a warts-and-all memoir of his years with the bands Air Strike, Strika and Kam Sha.


Neil Chilton - vocals, guitar

Peter Chilton - drums

Neil Burns - bass

Neil Sutherland - keyboards

Graham Moses - guitar

Paul Maaka - guitar

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