‘Our Christmas Song is a festive present to our fans, and anyone else with a love of the heady days of pop music, when the Christmas No.1 mattered and the main event on Christmas day was settling down to watch Top of the Pops with the last few segments of your chocolate orange, washed down with a cheeky swig of your Gran’s Snowball.’ exclaim Terrorvision

 

POP CULTURE SCHLOCK at RPM: Exhibit F – Another Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare

Roll up, roll up; get your hastily-typed feature on a long-forgotten piece of RnR history here! It’s good to be back among the virtual pages of RPM once again as I dust off another rocking relic from the Pop Culture Schlock archive for your reading pleasure. This month I make my first foray into the physical media section of said collection and, as you’re reading this, I’m speculating that you too love collections of physical media…

‘Twas a late Eighties afternoon when I found my hetero-life-mate, Chris Greaves (velvet- fingered axeman extraordinaire famed for his work with seminal acts such as Judgement, Gangland, Big Guns, and Gallini), wide-eyed at the news that ‘The Edge of Hell’ now graced the shelves at one of our many (now, sadly, long-lost) video shops. ‘The Edge of Hell’, to the uninitiated (not us, obviously), was the alternate title given to the UK video release of 1987’s ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare’, one of two entries for director John Fasano in the (much too short) list of Eighties Heavy Metal Horror Movies – the following year’s Carmine Appice-starring Black Roses being the second. It was another name on the credits, transformed into a painted, muscle-bound warrior on the VHS cover art, that piqued the interest of us Eighties metal kids, however…

Jon Mikl Thor was the first Canadian to win both the Mr. Canada and Mr. USA bodybuilding titles. He was also the first Canadian to wrap a micstand around the neck of a pretend milkman live on UK Saturday morning children’s television show, No. 73. An infamous performance at the Marquee paved the way for Thor’s manly explosion over British pop culture – singles ‘Let the Blood Run Red’ and ‘Thundra on the Tundra’, plucked from 1985’s ‘Only the Strong’ long player, making a bicep-shaped dent in both the UK charts and consciousness – before North America caught on and he was cast in his first movie role; playing Thunderhead in Police Academy rip-off, ‘Recruits’. His next two movie roles are the ones that he is truly remembered for, though.

 

‘Zombie Nightmare’ starred Tia Carrere and Adam West and found Thor as a slain baseball player resurrected (via voodoo!) to avenge his death. The soundtrack featured Motörhead, Girlschool, Fist, and Virgin Steele and, as an indicator to the movie’s quality, it was featured on an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000. It was ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare’, however, that really put Jon Mikl Thor on the movie map. Thor played John Triton – frontman of the band, Triton – who travelled to an isolated Canadian farmhouse to record some new music par excellence not knowing that said location was littered with demons! The twist at the end of the flick, as Satan himself (a big friggin’ ant thing – who knew?!) appeared, was that John Triton was in fact the archangel known as the Intercessor. Forget your Keyser Söze reveal – this is the real shit! Anyway, the Intercessor showed El Diablo the four corners of the farmhouse and a Heavy Metal Horror Icon was born. Seriously, you need the Synapse Films special edition DVD release of ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare’ in your collection.

 

So, the Heavy Metal Horror Movie subgenre is woefully short of quality entrants. ‘Trick or Treat’, ‘Black Roses’, ‘Hard Rock Zombies’, ‘Rocktober Blood’, the Easy Action-featuring ‘Blood Tracks’, the Traci Lords-starring ‘Shock ‘em Dead’ are the essentials alongside ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare’; wannabe flicks like ‘Death Metal Zombies’ and ‘After Party Massacre’ honoured to join them, nevergonnabe movies like ‘Queen of the Damned’ and ‘Turbulence 3: Heavy Metal’ desperate to be considered in the same cult movie circles as Sammi Curr, John Triton, and Billy “Eye” Harper. BUT, and it’s a big ol’ but, did you know that one of those notorious metal movies actually had a sequel that limped out into the ether almost two decades after the original movie’s release? Of course you didn’t because it was filmed straight to digital video, released straight to home video, and did as much business as The Wild Family’s album. That movie is, drum roll please, 2005’s ‘Intercessor: Another Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare’.

 

Yes, RPM-people, a sequel to one of the most infamous rock-related movies of all time was released over a decade ago and hardly any of us knew about it. The shame!

 

In the so-bad-it’s-good stakes, ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare’ is right up there with the classics. After importing ‘Intercessor: Another Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare’ from the States, paying way too much for it, and forcing myself to sit through it twice, I’m not even sure that it reaches the heights of just bad. It is, in fact, diabolical. But, as I learned from cribbing all John Waters’ writings, there is such a thing as good bad taste… and I needed to give my good bad tastebuds a treat that they wouldn’t forget in a hurry…

‘Intercessor: Another Rock ’n’ Roll Nightmare’ is a no-budget flick that makes Thor’s appearance on No. 73 look like Emmy Award-winning television. The late John Fasano got a producing credit, and as for acting credits – well, I’m sure every single one contravenes the Trade Descriptions Act. The plot revolves around a feud between Zompira, King of the Undead, and Mephisto, a dark sorcerer from the depths of Hell. A spell has allowed these miscreants to come to Earth in order to corrupt and devour the souls of the innocent. Caught up in all of this is Harry, a long-haired loner with a crutch, arm brace, and a penchant for drawing muscle-bound comic-book heroes. He has a crush on his neighbour, Julie, and keeps in contact with her via walkie-talkie. This was 2005, remember! He lives with his sewing-obsessed aunt and, POW, there’s a zombie attack where she gets turned, Julie gets abducted, and the world is in danger. I know this because I gave myself a migraine struggling to hear what the fuck was going on due to the movie’s terrible sound. Harry dresses up like a member of Raven – shoulder pads, gridiron helmet with ‘Tritons’ logo (tenuous link to previous flick) – and starts offing the undead with his crutch. I’ve actually made this all sound quite good. DON’T trust me on this one!

 

Meanwhile, a muscle-bound loner in a Man from Del Monte hat duffs up a rude customer in a coffee shop – “I’m just trying to enjoy my coffee…” – and you’ll never guess who it is. It’s John Triton, the Intercessor; cursed to wander the Earth as a mortal! Cursed, that is, until Harry is offed and his NFL helmet morphs into the Intercessor’s Crimson Glory-esque face mask. Now, bedecked with cape and mask, and with a weapon that looks like a dog-dick-dildo, the Intercessor is ready to take on all nefarious ne’er-do-wells! He keeps the dogs away by fighting a vicious canine (complete with ludicrous dubbed-on human doing dog impression sound) – “Stop hound!” – then gets attacked by a tree branch. He takes on some am-dram witches – “I never wanted to hit a woman but… thou is not!” – and gets involved in some chopsocky fighting that makes vintage British Saturday afternoon wrestling look like the Bolshoi Ballet.

The special effects look like they came from a shitty iPhone app – not unlike a video I made years ago that showed Adam Bomb getting blown up by laser missiles as he shredded onstage at the Doll’s House in Abertillery – and, even though I have a penchant for bad movies, I struggled to get through this one mentally unscathed. I suggest that the only way to truly enjoy this one is via a house party where Absinthe imbibing and marker-sniffing is rife. You’re all invited – Adam Bomb is playing. Bring a pretend missile.

 

I’ll be back next month, souring the festive season with another nostalgia-driven column. Feel free to join me – I’m sure that I’ll luck out soon and one of these articles will actually be interesting! Remember, look them in the eyes, knock them down to size, no-one must oppose the Metal Avenger…

 

Follow Pop Culture Schlock 365 on Twitter, Instagram & Facebook

 

LA veterans Junkyard follow up their excellent 2017 comeback album ‘High Water’ with the release of a ‘new’ album entitled ‘Old Habits Die Hard’. Now, this album contains long lost songs recorded back in ’92 and features original members David Roach, guitarists Brian Baker and Chris Gates, bassist Todd Muscat and drummer Pat Muzingo.
These songs have actually been previously available and Junkyard diehards will probably already own the albums ‘Joker’ and ‘XXX’ that the band self-released and were selling over 10 years ago.
This collection of songs were slated to be released as the follow up to 1991’s ‘Sixes, Sevens and Nines’, but of course Grunge happened, the music scene changed, the band were dropped by Geffen and the proposed album shelved. It’s a familiar story that rings true with so many bands from that era.
Presented here in all their glory are the handpicked gems from those sessions, released for the first time on vinyl.

While ‘Sixes. Sevens and Nines’ followed a more laid back, country rock direction, with the likes of the MTV friendly ‘All The Time In The World’ and ‘Misery Loves Company’, the band found themselves trying to deliver hits for their record label, but still remaining true to their punk rock roots and write the songs they wanted to play. Those sessions provided an album that harks back to their first album and ultimately the sound the band continues with to this day.
‘Old Habits Die Hard’ is pretty much as you would expect, it doesn’t stray from what Junkyard were doing at the time. Hard, bluesy rock with a southern twist and a sleazy delivery.
That trademark bluesy swagger is evident from the off. The likes of opener ‘Pushed You Too Far’ and ‘Fall To Pieces’ are prime Junkyard. It’s all spit and sawdust, engine oil and cheap whiskey, as Gates and Baker trade dirty riffs and southern licks while vocalist David Roach spits lyrics like a punk rock Vince Neil in his prime.
At times the band comes close to repeating themselves. The bloozy ‘Blue Sin’ is pretty much a rewrite of ‘Long Way Home’ from the debut album and ‘Take Me Home’ is very similar to ‘Blooze’ the opener of that very same album. But I’m nit-picking, as they certainly didn’t struggle to deliver the singles the record company demanded. ‘Tried & True’ could’ve been the strong single contender. Heartfelt, full of sentiment, but with that bluesy Junkyard swagger still intact. Baker and Gates’ howling leads and fat riffs don’t disappoint. Again, ‘Holdin’ On’ is more evidence of that. A great melodic verse that leads to a catchy chorus, with nice gang backing vocals thrown in for good measure. It’s a song that would’ve been pure MTV fodder back in the day and it still holds up all these years later.
With its instantly hook-ridden chorus and metal riffage ‘I Come Crawling’ is the band taking the bull by the horns and delivering the goods. Elsewhere, the acoustic and countrified ‘Hanging Around’ is Junkyard doing their laid back balladry thang, which they always did with style and substance.

It’s interesting to note that Junkyard never actually split up and have been touring sporadically for their entire career. And while I feel ‘Old Habits Die Hard’ is not as strong an album as ‘High Water’, it’s a snapshot of where the band were heading during the Grunge years and proves they still had the songs when the record company ditched them for plaid and goatees.
This collection of songs do not sound dated or out of time because Junkyard were never part of that whole scene anyway. They continue to do what they have always done, play low down and dirty rock ‘n’ roll with attitude, because they are doing it to please nobody but themselves. As they say, old habits really do die hard.

Author: Ben Hughes

Acetate Records: Here

Buy Old Habits Here

 

Something you won’t see on MTV any day soon (mores the pity) Suicide Generation play loud rock and Roll and we love it.  Shove this in your face on any morning let alone a Monday.  you can thank us anytime. the time has come for you Americans to sample what we already know over this side of the pond.  Facebook 

Spaghetty Town Big Cartel  

Heres a classic slice of Ash remastered in 2019 that will feature on the bands 2020 release  ‘Teenage Wildlife: 25 Years Of Ash’

New music video for “Play It Down” from the album “Stay Gold” sees Dead Furies as our final entry on this crisp cold morning in December.  Enjoy it!

 

Ho Ho Ho!, Nothing Christmassy about this bunch of records except to say I’d be one happy chappy if these were hanging in my stocking come the big day.  It’s always quality before quantity here at RPM Singles round-up. As we welcome back old friends and applaud like a bunch of performing seals when the music hits the airwaves… With an immense array of talent on offer we bring you the pick of the new releases because we’re like that and its the season to give, give, give…

Motherfuckin’ Motherfuckers – ‘Trillion Dollar Man’ (Lux Noise Records) Its always a pretty good bet that as soon as I get things in order to write up a compilation of new singles and videos that are about to drop Those Lovely Hip Priests boys appear as if by magic (either its coincidence or they have my house tapped) but hang on before you get carried away this is only half of the Hip Priests together with half of Bitch Queens under the umbrella of Motherfuckin’ Motherfuckers (never a more appropriate name eh?)

Following on from that glorious cacophony of noise that was the debut mini-album ‘Trillion Dollar Man’ is the fearless foursome back for more with a two-minute one-second rip ride of unadulterated punk rock and roll. from the intro tape to the snot fueled solo it hits you like a speedball if you flip it over side two is more of the same.  Too much drugs, too much booze, too many amps and guitars will ki… Never be enough! we live in tough time kids so when you have a band put together as a bet that can turn up and knock these out then things aren’t all bad proving once again that they can go toe to toe with the greats and channelling their inner Motorhead, MC5, early Hellacopters you get the idea where these punks are coming from. Just buy it for fuck’s sake you know you want to. Click here and let em know your order before they all go, which they will. Then you’ll still be uncool and not even have the new Motherfuckin’ Motherfucker single in your possession either. Oh and they cover D4 as well it’s almost as if D4 knew one day it would happen and some bunch of ne’er-do-wells would turn it up and kick out the jams on their classic and bring it to a whole new generation of rock n rollas. so,  what are you waiting for?

 

The Black Halos – Geisterbahn ii (Yeah Right! Records) A band that shouldn’t need an introduction but we’re giving them one anyway.  Hailing from Vancouver and been in some sort of semi-hibernation until now.  Seemingly out of nowhere this old/new single drops.  the A-side is something familiar to those who pay attention as it was released a while back when they played the Black Heart in London and some shows in Spain a few years ago but the single was delayed due to one thing or another until now.  the band has been writing new songs back in Canada and we are about to hear the benefits of that. Original members Billy Hopeless, Rich Jones, and Jay Millette have reunited and are joined by the rhythm section of Danni Action and John Kerns on these new recordings.  These songs mixed by long-time collaborator Jack Endino C’mon folks it’s a banger from the off.  Its got the wonderful vocal delivery from Billy (who else?) and a vibrant workout from a band who sound like they love to crank it up and get on with their business.  I for one can’t wait for the album next year it’s going to be special and on the evidence of these samplers one, you should be interested in no question.  Recorded back in Berlin by RDO TV Mork and features Rags n CC Voltage (they don’t need an introduction here do they?)  just buy it!  Bandcamp

THE ILLICITS ‘Left Behind / Born Slippy’ (Creation 23)  The elephant in the room here is these cats have only bagged themselves a guest slot from the one and only Steve ‘Fuckin’Jones!  Yeah, that’s right the lonely Boys strapped on his Les Paul and threw down a riff on ‘Left Behind’. What’s it like then you ask. Well its a pretty decent noise to be fair as is their take on ‘Born Slippy’.  Terrace punk would be a fair description somewhere between the pub rock of early britpop and Jonesys Professionals these guys have a swagger cutting through their record and its impressive, maybe the time is right for some real guitar bands to kick out the jams once again and give this industry a good fuckin’ shakin’.  Get on it here 

Märvel – ‘Marvellous’ (The Sign) Märvels debut EP “Märvellous” claimed to be recorded in 2002 for the American label New York Powerhitters during the bands exchange semester in Colorado. Märvel returned to Sweden before the songs got a release, and the EP never got to see the light of day… Until now!  After the success of their ‘Guilty Pleasures’ album, the barons of rock have re-recorded their “lost EP”. After seventeen years of making albums and touring,  the band has a long tradition of writing hits while constantly developing their sound which has enabled them to re-record an almost twenty year old EP and make it sound as if it was written yesterday. ‘Märvellous’ will officially be released January 24th through The Sign Records. go check it out.

 

Rotten Mind – Burn For You (Lövely Records) the first single taken from Rotten Minds upcoming album Rat City Dog Boy. “Burn For You” is a melody-driven, upbeat punk anthem clocking in at just under two minutes. Despite its relatively short length, it manages to capture the essence of Rotten Mind; defiant lyrics sung from the heart, accompanied by a fast drum beat and poisonous guitar melodies drenched in reverb, creating a thick yet vibrant soundscape. It’s a captivating track with a somewhat uplifting atmosphere, and yet there’s something melancholic lurking in the shadows.

Combining elements of 77’punk, post-punk and garage rock, Swedish indie- force Rotten Mind are back with their fourth full length album. With Rat City Dog Boy, Rotten Mind returns to their musical roots while embracing new influences to create an album that sounds both fresh and vintage, making Rotting Mind appealing to old-school punks as well as newfound lovers of the scene

The Doghunters – Hitchhiker (Tonzonen Records)  Taken from the German Bands soon to be released album ‘Splitter Phaser Naked’.  Some smooth indie rock that’s well recorded and delivered and is a bit of a grower to be fair. Bandcamp

Autogramm – ‘Bad Day’ (Self Release)  Again Autogramm deliver some quality synth-driven power pop.  Its got a great infectious hook on the chorus but carries a serious message.  The fact that all profits go to a great worthy cause, of course, we’re going to champion this single. Check out the video below and make a donation or pick up a physical single – you know it makes sense.

 All proceeds from digital sales will be donated to World Federation For Mental Health Save “Bad Day” to your preferred music service: https://orcd.co/badday Donate to The World Federation for Mental Health: https://wfmh.global

Available on 7″ vinyl from Jarama 45RPM Records

Gun – Rock The Casbah (Silver Lining Records)  Lifted from their album ‘R3loaded’ this is a pretty impressive cover to be fair.  Gun seem to get it (whatever it is) their take on this Clash Classic is available for you to see as well as hear below so click away kids Facebook

Bitch Queens, The Lombego Surfers, Nicole Bernegger, Luc Montini – Gimme Shelter (Lux Noise Records) – An extremely limited edition of only 100 red records here, all for a good cause the charity  ‘Save Free Spaces’ sees this collaboration cover the stones classic not once but twice!

Whilst the fast side sort of whizzes through its got a suitably dirty guitar sound that is befitting such a classic, upping the tempo misses the dirty dangerous groove that the original delivered but hey its a cover so why try to reproduce the original right? right!  Saying that its the slower version that grabbed my attention and boy do they nail such an iconic tune.  Nicole Berneggers vocals are exceptional to be fair and well worth checking out if you haven’t already. Bandcamp

 

Stevie R Pearce & The Hooligans – ‘Rush Of Blood To The Head’ (Cargo Records) With a new album recorded live in Blackpool entitled ‘Give Me Everything’ ‘Rush Of Blood’ is a brand new track to follow on from last years studio album.  You want loud guitars and Rockin’ tunes with a heap of attitude then Stevie and his bunch of Hooligans are your boys just ask Jizzy Pearl and Kory Clarke they know a thing or two about guitar players.  reunited with two of the Black Bullets players Stevie has got Carl and Lance in to rock out as his new Hooligans a line up completed by Richard Jones. Stevie recons it’s the lightest of the new songs they’ve written but the chorus is a keeper and couldn’t be ignored he’s not wrong it’ll lodge itself in your noggin’ and you’ll be humming it all bloody day long. It’s gritty yet polished and if this is the lightest he’s come up with then I’m intrigued – Top tune make no mistake about that, America listen up – This could and probably should rule the FM airwaves.  Facebook

The Electric Shakes – 2019 EP (self Released) Why not treat yourself to some of the digital records you know, flac or mp3. so it’s not something you can put in a jukebox but these four tracks sure do rock and fuckin’ roll. From the garage fuzz of the catchy ‘Phoney High’ Electric Shakes have got it going on.  this Bournemouth three-piece make a wonderful noise and a cautionary tale about cheap narcotics. ‘Rye And Dry’ ups the tempo with some lovely Poison Ivy stylings on that six-string whilst the rhythm section holds down the backbeat to the chorus that’s like a rush of adrenaline. Cool stuff. Probably my pick of the four tracks on offer would be the spikey ‘Hound Dog’ with its distorted riff-a-rama that takes you to the holin’ chorus.  Oh wait don’t jump the gun because they saved the best till last as ‘Trash’ is one angry motherfucker as it rallies against the modern world and the disdain poured onto the people at the bottom of the ladder and the homeless or those who just struggle.  Good on you Electric Shakes this is a band we like and will support, a band with a moral compass and a bunch of top tunes to boot give them a shout folks and get behind them they rock. Pick up the EP Here

The Zeros – ‘In The Spotlight’ (Munster Records) The Zeros are back baby and this December sees the first new music in God knows how long (over twenty years). It’s   Released on Munster Records outta Spain and this slice of Rock and Roll shows that Javier Escovedo has lost none of his spark and these two blistering tunes are full of energy and are as vibrant as anything their contemporaries can put out in 2019. I hear rumours of an album and If these tunes are an indication of what we could expect from a long-player in 2020 then bring it on brothers because these tunes are fantastic. Sleazy Rock n Roll from the heart with some wicked lead breaks mixed with some howling harmonica on the lead track whilst ‘Nowhere To Run’ has boundless energy mixed with plenty of snotty rock n roll. Welcome back boys we’ve missed ya!

Facebook

Bandcamp

THE CHERRY DOLLS – State Of Mine (Bread And Butter Records) with a brand new record Australias Cherry Dolls rock up with something that has a hint of The Strokes mixed with something darker from the origins of The Stooges for sure. ‘State Of Mind’ is a fuzzed up slice of Rock and Roll that we love around these parts and this is a welcome addition to our singles club. Go check them out on Bandcamp and Facebook and tell em RPM Sent You! 

https://www.facebook.com/TheCherryDolls/
https://twitter.com/TheCherrydolls
http://www.thecherrydolls.com/

Tom Baker and the Snakes- ‘Cancel It’ (Rum Bar Records)  It’s always a rockin good day when a Rum Bar Records record drops through the ether.  It’s like the quality stamp of approval you don’t even need to ask who it is because chances are its gonna lodge itself in your noggin and take root.  The fact its Tom Baker backed by The Snakes is something of an afterthought. (God knows who? Tom Baker has never made a bad record either) lifted from ‘Dirty Snakes’ its an absolute throwback rocker think Georgia Sats kicking it out with Mellencamp when he turned up the amps.  Its a corker and in a few weeks the full album will be released Facebook
Tensheds – Goldtooth (Tensheds Music) taken from the soon to be released album ‘Deathrow Disco’ the more observant of you might notice the keyboard player from a certain Jim Jones & The Righteous Minds.  This has been described as a cross between Jerry Lee and Lady Gaga but its more White Stripes with a great big dirty Rhodes organ instead of a guitar it’s like James Leg has a UK based twin but with a more style and better hair.  Facebook

Beat Hotel – Feel It (Occultation Recordings) The first single off this Brighton based bands self-titled mini album with a great sense of songwriting with great lyrics and well worked arrangments it’s a great slab of noisy pop taking chunks of influence from the alternative scene of the 80s with bands like the Bunnymen and Teenage fanclub clearly having some influence as well as a most welcome dash of Jesus & Mary Chain.  Great song and I look forward to hearing the full minialbum.
Keep up with Beat Hotel
Facebook | Bandcamp | YouTube | Twitter | Soundcloud | Spotify | Vinyl order | Press contact

Pist – Fools Gave Chase (APF Records) As we’re such a broad church here is the latest offering from those heavy as a 10000 tonne boulder Pist are in the club with the rifftastic ‘Fools Gave Chase’ in all its non-single length glory. Taken from the album ‘Hailz’ Available Here

Bandcamp

Grande Royale / Liar Thief Bandit – Split (The Sign Records)  Action Rockers strap yourself in for a royale showdown as Liar Thief Bandit lay down the challenge with some classic Action Rock riff-a-rama as they offer up ‘Virtue As A Vice’ whilst fellow Action rockers Grande Royale announce that they were ‘Saved By Rock ‘n’ Roll’ its limited to only 300 pieces its an easy chorus to remember Saved by rock n roll wohoho! so get out your tennis racket and play along and don’t spare the sweatbands

Facebook

As part of their Amazing Disgrace World TourThe Quireboys have announced an extensive tour of the United States, including stops in CaliforniaLas VegasSalt Lake CityDenverHoustonOklahomaKentuckyClevelandNew York and many more.

February sees the band, who have scored gold and platinum discs as part of their illustrious 35-year career, head to California to play the legendary Whisky A Go Go club in Hollywood, The Boardwalk in Orangevale and The House of Blues in Anaheim before embarking on a 14+ date run in March taking in a further 13 states across the country.

The lads were last in the States for their Black Eyed Sons Tour in 2013. Guitarist Guy Griffin said of the latest tour “We can’t wait to get back over to Hollywood, the spiritual home of sleaze, it’s been too long.  And to play Las Vegas will be a thrill – we will just have to keep Spike off the slot machines…”.

The Quireboys recently sold out their 35th Anniversary concert at London’s prestigious O2 Forum in Kentish Town – a show which is being released via digital download shortly, and then as part of a full 90-minute documentary for worldwide release via Amazon.

The band will bring their unique blend of blues and British rock’n’roll during February and March 2020, with more dates looking to be added shortly.

 

Website

Facebook

 

 

If you’re one of those eagerly awaiting the chance to spaff a hundred dollars plus over the prospect of Motley Crue getting back in the ring and touring any time soon, then I would implore you to take some time out of your reckless abandon to spare a thought for Crue’s one-time US touring cohorts, Scottish hard rockers Heavy Pettin, who are just about to re-release three of their albums in expanded CD format.

Formed in Glasgow in 1981 guitarist Gordon Bonnar, drummer Gary Moat, bassist Brian Waugh, vocalist Steve ‘Hamie’ Hayman and lead guitarist Punky Mendoza immediately set their sights on hitting the big time just like their heroes UFO (hence the name) releasing their debut single ‘Roll the Dice’ in 1982 on Neat Records. This almost immediacy lead to them inking a multiple album deal with Polydor and with Warner/Chappell Publishing before working with Queen guitarist Brian May and producer Reinhold Mack on their classic 1983 debut LP ‘Lettin’ Loose’ and touring with the likes of KISS, Ozzy and Whitesnake.

Now that’s what you call an impressive two year career path if ever there was one, eh!

With 1985’s ‘Rock Ain’t Dead’ this saw the band looking to take on the world via deals with concert bookers ITB and ICM, but with the hard rock world changing (and hence the reason for my introduction) by the time the band resurfaced with their failed stab at Eurovision glory in 1987 you could almost sense the vultures starting to circle as the UK press was basically working for the Yankee dollar by the time of its release, and Pettin finally called it a day in 1988.

FM Revolver posthumously released the band’s last album for Polydor, the prophetically sounding (and much more AOR tinged) ‘Big Bang’ in 1989 but by then even the classic rock bands Pettin had supported back in their early days had morphed into near mirror images of the Saints of Los Angeles and only the die-hard Pettin fans like yours truly were left to pick up the hand full of copies that eventually did make it into UK record shops.

With the exception of a couple of semi-official reissues in the early noughties these albums have long since been the treasured finds of hard rock collecting eBayers and crate diggers alike…until now that is. And with singer Hamie and guitarist Gordon Bonnar once again touring under the Pettin banner its actually their old drumming pal Gary Moat (who is currently busy fronting his own band Burnt Out Wreck) who we have to thank for these for these three CDs (complete with a handful of bonus tracks) licensing the trio for a late November release via his Burnt Out Wreckords label with distribution through Cherry Red Records.

The big question I suppose though is what will it be like listening to these records again over 30 years on, as the emotional tourism of nostalgia can sometimes cloud the judgement, I’m sure you will agree.

Released the same year as Def Leppard’s ‘Pyromania’ 1983’s ‘Lettin Loose’ has lost none of its youthful charm, and the May/Mack production which at the time I felt was a little lightweight now adds an almost timeless charm to the album’s nine original tracks. It’s the fact that songs like opener ‘In And Out Of Love’ plus the hit single that should have been ‘Love Times Love’ can still stand shoulder to shoulder with anything off Leppard’s multi-Platinum seller that really stands out most for me. There isn’t a bad song on this underrated classic of a debut and after all these years it’s only now that I hear just how much in common Hamie had with one Biff Byford, especially on the rifftastic ‘Victims of The Night’, a song guaranteed to still give you a bit of HBN (that’s headbangers neck) after just one listen. Bolstered by both sides of the band’s debut 7” single on Neat Records (giving the CD a total of eleven tracks) ‘Lettin Loose’ is still a fantastic slab of twin guitar driven melodic hard rock, and is a record that promised so many great things for a band who were by the time of the release of its follow up selling out UK venues like London’s Astoria under their own steam and looking to really take on the big boys.

So with this in mind I’d always wondered with such an upwards career trajectory and such big money backing why ‘Rock Ain’t Dead’ didn’t thrust Heavy Pettin into the arena circuit worldwide? They seemingly had the songs to follow up their superb debut, they slightly tweaked their image to fit with the times and through extensive touring had all the confidence and stage craft to take on all comers. Polydor put an eager young producer like Mark Dearnley (AC/DC) behind the desk for the record, and yet I still get the feeling listening to this album all these years later that the band themselves simply wanted more.

Of the ten tracks that went on to make up ‘Rock Ain’t Dead’ its much easier for me to look behind the hype and for me one of the factors that may have dented this album’s credibility is that all of the sudden for record number two instead of seeing Def Leppard as a peer they suddenly seemingly just wanted to be them. I mean just listen to the bass rhythm of ‘Soul Survivor’ or the ‘Rock Of Ages’ lite of ‘China Boy’ and tell me I’m wrong. Don’t get me wrong they are still decent songs, its just I feel that when Pettin should have been developing and pushing their own sound they actually (perhaps unintentionally) took a sideways step and why oh why anyone thought that Hamie’s upwards inflection shriek at the end of a lot of his vocal lines was a good idea is still beyond me. I do note he has recently dropped these shrieks live during the recent reformation shows, so perhaps I might be onto something here too. It’s only really ‘Heart Attack’ which creeps up just past the half way mark of the album which is in keeping with the adrenalin rush spirit of Pettin’s debut, and the rest, whilst still a very decent record (CD bonus track ‘Crazy’ also being cut of the same striped spandex cloth), actually now strikes me as the sound of a band musically treading water.

Changing management after ‘Rock Ain’t Dead’ certainly didn’t help the Pettin cause in the slightest and then to follow this up with the failed ‘Romeo’ Eurovision bid of 1987 it was just short twelve months later before the band were calling it a day, and with Polydor never releasing the ‘Big Bang’ eight track album (and here given the definitive article treatment) from which that single came, it was left to FM Revolver to try and posthumously make something of the record, and of the three reissues this is the hardest one to listen to in 2019.

Chock full of keyboard samples that conjure up images of Patagonian pan pipes, drums that boof like Robocop’s boots chasing you down a corridor and songs that sound like they were specifically written for 80s action film montage sections the eight tracks that make up ‘Big Bang’ at best (‘Looking For Love’ and ‘Heaven Sent’) sound like Saxon outtakes from their EMI commercial phase and at worst (I mean do I have to spell it out) like something from an 80s Cliff Richard or Chris Rea album. With two tracks added to this reissue (‘Romeo’ 12” B side ‘City Girl’ and the previously unreleased ‘Rock You Endlessly’) the thing that immediately strikes me is whilst it’s rumoured this album was actually recorded as a get out clause for the band Polydor must also have been pushing the band in this much more commercial Bon Jovi/Journey-like direction, and what they actually ended up doing was make Heavy Pettin sound like Skagarack a band already signed to Polydor and hardly a household name either.

So, there you have it folks, (2007’s ‘Prodigal Songs’ unreleased songs collection aside) that’s pretty much the story of Heavy Pettin summed up in three very different albums. They are a band who really should have been huge and who knows if a few business decisions had gone another way they might now be one of the bands vying for a position on Motley Crue’s megabucks reformation tour too.

Author: Johnny Hayward

Buy Heavy Pettin’ Reissues Here

So, the next PROFESSIONALS chapter officially begins, to take the band into 2020.

6 new songs recorded during 2019, will be available to advance order from today (29th November).

The 3 EP’s will be released in January, February and March of the new year. Each EP will feature 2 new tracks plus two live recordings of older material. They’ll be available individually through Transistor Music on CD, limited edition vinyl and super limited edition colour vinyl, or as various bundles with exclusive T- shirts and signed posters. The new tracks are contenders for next year’s October released album, the follow up to the critically acclaimed ‘What In The World’. There’s also talk of adding guests to the new recordings before the release, taking advantage again of Paul Cook’s immense punk rock address book.

Studio time has been booked around the band’s tour with SLF and US dates, where further new material will be put down.

 We have a 2020 vision and hope you’ll all be part of it.

Facebook

“a release of intense basic frustration, anger, and aggression, especially that rediscovered by means of primal therapy”.

What better way to release your frustration and anger than at a gig, and what is more Primal than, raw garage rock, alongside a few diversions into other territories, dance, industrial, country and good old raw Rock and Roll, welcome to Primal Scream, one of my fave live entities, always sharp, always intense, always in your face with no punches pulled, hands up who remembers Bobby Gillespie, dedicated ‘Kill all Hippies’ to the massed Glastonbury ranks and not one of them realizing he was taking the piss? Priceless!!

I first caught Primal Scream in Glasgow in 2000 supporting Oasis, just after the release of probably my favourite LP ‘Exterminator’ and I’ve caught them just about every tour since and every time they’ve mutated the sound, changed direction and kept the crowd guessing to what we’re going to get. So tonight for me is a culmination of the last 20 years a set going out under the banner of Maximum Rock and Roll, a best of so to speak happy days.

Openers tonight were a brand new band to me Holy Youth Movement, as far as I can tell not a lot out there to pick up but if tonight’s performance is anything to go by they’ve got the potential to take it to the next level. Grounded in the garage rock sound we know and love, they made a great noise, reminiscent of the rawer side of Primal Scream to be fair, and a great fit, sadly this was the last night on this tour before support bands change over.

On to the main event, and opening with ‘Don’t Fight It, Feel It’ was always going to be a winner for me but to follow it with one of my personal favourite tracks ‘Swastika Eyes’, I could have left then happy. The thing is though with Primal scream they just get better and better as the set moves on, the rush hitting everyone harder and harder, no Little Barrie Cadiogan tonight but Andrew Innes, brought the MC5 influenced raw Rock and Roll sound to the plate, while Simone Butler locked the base down, there was no let up tonight and as the tracks blurred you caught that garage rock and roll underpinning, shaping everything, there were many highlights tonight including the rebirth of Rock and Roll part 2, an inspired ‘Come Together’ complete with a bang up to date Fck the tories, Fck Boris Johnson refrain interspersed in the lyrics, but for yours truly I think the tracks that sent this set into overdrive were a blinding version of Dolls, a jaw-dropping ‘Cry Myself Blind’ and a seriously rocked up version of 100% showing how good the ‘Chaosmosis’ tracks are when given a live slant. And the incredible ‘Kill All Hippies’.
Watching the crowd go mental to ‘Country Girl’, the dedication of ‘Loaded’ to the Super Furry Animals and the encore of ‘Come Together’ before the roof was well and truly lifted with ‘Jailbird’ and ‘Rocks’, 20 years of following Primal Scream nicely rounded off for yours truly. Lets kick off the next decade as usual with a new sound from the Scream (as usual) or maybe a tour playing ‘Give Out But Don’t Give Up’ (The Memphis sessions version complete with brass section) or the 21st anniversary of ‘EXTERMINATOR’ would be a good shout, but as with all things Bobby Gillespie the only guarantee is it’ll be relevant!!!

Signing out “Kill all Hippies!”

Author: Nev Brooks

Acclaimed chronicler of the dark Suzie Stapleton has announced the release of her new single, ‘Thylacine’, and a five-date UK tour. Both herald the release of her highly anticipated debut album, ‘We Are The Plague’, which is due in the spring.

Released on 29 November via AWAL as a digital-only release, ‘Thylacine’ finds Suzie Stapleton in compelling form. Tying in with the apocalyptic themes that inform ‘We Are The Plague’, the new single is suffused with a sense of drama and an ethereal intensity that marks her down as a very special talent. This is music that seduces, compels and haunts.

“When I started writing for this album, I felt a sense of responsibility to address what was going on in the world. We’re bombarded constantly by horrific news, stuck on a broken systemic hamster wheel. I felt stupid writing about my insignificant woes whilst the world burned around me,” explains Stapleton.

Joining Suzie Stapleton’s live band are bassist Gavin Jay from Jim Jones & The Righteous Mind and Yann Tierson drummer Dave Collingwood. The Stranglers’ drummer Jim Macauley brings his talents to the studio.

“I approach the art of recording differently to performing songs live,” continues Stapleton. “There’s energy during live performances that can turn songs into a different beast. I expect that these new songs will evolve and begin to draw breath during these dates.”

Produced by Suzie Stapleton, ‘Thylacine’ and ‘We Are The Plague’ were recorded at OX4 Studios in Oxfordshire and Stapleton’s home studio and were mixed by award-winning engineer Dan Cox, whose previous credits include Thurston Moore’s ‘The Best Day’.

Suzie Stapleton plays:

DECEMBER

07 – Paper Dress Vintage, London

JANUARY

04 – The Carlisle, Hastings
24 – The Brunswick, Brighton
25 – Rough Trade, Bristol

 

Website
Facebook
Twitter
YouTube