The lead singer of Australian rock group The Vines appeared in court Wednesday charged with assault after allegedly holding knives to his mother's throat, and intimidating his parents, with whom he lives.

Vines frontman Craig Nicholls fronted a Sydney court on five charges including assault and stalking or intimidating with the intention of causing physical or mental harm to his parents.

He is also subject to a restraining order requiring him to stay away from mother Noreen, 60, and father Terry, 65, after what was alleged in court documents to be a history of violence and abuse towards them.

Nicholls was arrested on Saturday at the family home, allegedly injuring two police officers as they attempted to take him away following an altercation in which he swore at and hit his mother.

Australian Associated Press said court documents alleged an "ongoing feeling of fear and anxiety in the house, including an earlier incident in late September in which Nicholls confronted his mother in the kitchen.

"(Nicholls) opened a drawer and picked up two steak knives and held them two inches from her throat, pinning her against the pantry door" and saying "I could stab you", according to an AAP report of the documents.

The magistrate was told that Nicholls had asperger's syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder affecting social interaction, as well as psychosis stemming from heavy cannabis use.

His lawyer said the singer, who is free on bail, was seeking psychological treatment. Nicholls was ordered to return to court on November 14.

The Vines rocketed to fame with a string of hits early last decade from their acclaimed debut album Highly Evolved, becoming the first Australian band to grace the cover of Rolling Stone magazine since Men at Work in 1983.

Nicholls' struggles have been well documented, with breakdowns on stage in Australia and Japan and on the sets of David Letterman and the Jay Leno show in the United States.