Expectations sometimes provide shocks to the system when things prove to be quite different that what you expected. The Poison Boys have released some previous singles/ EPs and material, which I have loved, and I went into this debut album expecting the album to be a more straight forward up tempo punk n roll album. While it is definitely a punk n roll album at its core, these 12 diverse songs make up an album that is diverse, deep, accessible, and a whole lot of fun. I have been following the Poison Boys for a few years now, and I could not be happier with what they have done here. I can imagine everyone from Chuck Berry to Johnny Thunders wanting a chance to come back and guest on this one.
The title track gets the party started and hits my original expectations as it comes on like a cross between the Humpers and Electric Frankenstein. The mix allows the guitar riffs by Matt Dudzik to pop out of the speakers and the bass (mostly Adam Sheets) and drums (mostly Matt Chaney) hit just as hard. ‘Slow Down’ starts with some brief piano notes before everyone else gets in on the action. The riff in the song feels pretty standard, but the song really connects perfectly. I actually thought about old artists like the Big Bopper here as well as someone like the J. Geils Band as this song compels the listener to smile and enjoy the moment. I can picture the glasses in the air as the crowd sings along to the main hook. Another stone cold rock n roll style classic follows in ‘Cut Right Out.’ If anyone out there remembers the likes of Junk Records, this one would have fit like a glove on their roster with those backing ‘wooohs’ settling nicely in the mix. The beat here carries a great groove, guaranteed to get the hips shaking.
Starting on track four with ‘Empty Heart,’ we start to see the band really expanding the songs. The thundering groove of this epic five minute plus song initially may feel a little long, but this one has proven to be a grower with Dudzik’s charismatic vocals being stretched and pulled on the journey. ‘Downtown’ returns to a fairly basic trash rock standard approach with a simple hook that hits the spot. It feels a bit like the Stones jamming with Hanoi Rocks, especially the way some of the guitar pops in the mix where it gets some extra space. I also love the false ending but perhaps I should not give that away. Wrapping up the first half of the album, ‘Up to the Sky’ opens with some acoustic guitar reminding me of Johnny Thunders before the song kicks in at a midtempo pace on this fellow five minute rocker. The acoustic guitar touches really give this album a wonderful depth. Dudzik’s vocals on the chorus really inspire a singalong, even if you are like me and can’t sing a note.
Flip the record over and the good times show no let up with first single/ video ‘Tear Me Apart’ getting it started at breakneck speed. The vocals really take a backseat here with the verses featuring fewer words, and the electrifying guitar riffs pushed to the surface. The hook in the chorus is sharp, but it is the guitar that has stayed with me the most on this one so far. The piano that is featured here and across other songs will hopefully be replicated in the live setting. ‘Desperado’ features some awesome saxophone and again reminds me of early Hanoi Rocks, right down to Dudzik’s vocals, the tasteful backing vocals, and the way the chorus is constructed. This has been one of my early favorites from the record. Hopefully, the band will get an opportunity to make this a single at some point. Slowing the pace down a bit, ‘True Romance’ simmers along nicely with the groove getting under the skin. The backing ‘woooh’s’ are used again here to awesome effect. When the main chorus hits, it really opens up the whole song with the switch in the dynamics.
‘I Won’t Look Back’ turns the tempo back towards rocket speed with the guitar licks again deserving to be highlighted, but the song itself has been the slowest to connect with me. The band hit trash rock nirvana again with the rollicking ‘Say Goodbye’ reminding me again of the Humpers with the rhythm section nailing this one. Closing song ‘Been Here All Night’ truly feels like it had to be the closer on the album and ends the record on an incredible high. The song shimmies and shakes on the beat with the guitar riffs begging to be played by the listener. Something tells me the guys worked long and hard on this one but knew exactly where it needed to be on the album. It just feels like a celebration musically.
The Poison Boys showcase that there is plenty of magic left in rock n roll over the course of these 12 songs. There has clearly been a ton of heart, sweat, and love used to create this album as these songs drip with the genuine distilled spirits of everything that makes rock n roll amazing. Are the vocals always spotless? Do the instruments hit every note perfectly? Absolutely NOT! This is pure, primal rock n roll the way nature intended. A great summer for music became even better with this album. Recommended? You should have it put it on order when you started reading my introduction.
‘Out of my Head’ is available Here
Author: Gerald Stansbury
FUCK IT!!!!!!! My neighbours have just decided to start hacking the render off the outside of their house using a jackhammer, so I think the only sane and rational thing for me to do is crank the all new double live LP from Swedish Heavy Metallers Bullet up to 11 and give them some payback.
It’s actually been 9 years since I first encountered the live tour de force that is Bullet blowing headliners Hardcore Superstar into outer space with a brand of Heavy Metal very much steeped in the tradition of bands like Saxon, Krokus and perhaps most closely Accept. Bullet are a band who play balls to the wall Metal complete with flying V guitars, studded wrist gauntlets, and stretch black jeans so tight they split on stage, something that did actually happen to guitarist Hampus Klang (and what a name for a six-string slinger that is) the night I saw them.
Recorded across three shows on the band’s 2017 Storm of Blades tour and their 2018 Dust To Gold tour the eighteen tracks contained here capture the ferocity and energy of Bullet live whilst retaining a clarity that is often lost with a lot of modern Metal bands. Granted vocalist Hell Hofer has one of those Marmite voices that is part Udo Storace and part Davros but anthemic tunes such as ‘Riding High’, ‘Speed And Attack’, the extended ‘Highway Love’ and set closer ‘Bite The Bullet’ transcend any vocal elitism you might still be harbouring and will soon have you chanting along with your fist pumping high in the air.
Remember the halcyon days when live albums were “must buys” and contained all killer and no filler? Well, Bullet has managed to capture the soul of ‘Live and Dangerous’, the intensity of ‘If You Want Blood’ and the solidarity of ‘The Eagle Has Landed’ to deliver possibly the best live Metal album you will hear anywhere this year. In fact, it’s so live that I can almost smell the dry ice and feel the heat of the pyro as the band explode into opener ‘Storm Of Blades’.
The PR blurb that accompanies ‘Live’ has Klang proudly declaring that the double live album contains eighteen all original songs and no covers (and so he should), what he also should have said is each and every one of these tunes is guaranteed to give the listener headbangers neck, such is the infectious nature of this feelgood record….oh and there’s no fucking ballads either.
Released on July 5th as a 2 CD digipak and gatefold 180gms double LP pressed on black vinyl that also contains a poster and the 2 CDs in paper sleeves, it sounds to me like the latter is the one all true Bulletheads will be looking out for.
So ‘Turn It Up Loud’ brothers and sisters, because Bullet ‘Live’ officially drowns out jackhammers and I am the living proof to that fact.
Buy Bullet ‘Live’ Here
Author: Johnny Hayward
When I first saw this I must admit to being slightly skeptical off the back off the last studio album maybe they were heading into the quick cash in and bash out an acoustic album of classic Skids. Well, happy to report I was wrong there. Whilst it is indeed an acoustic Skids record it gives the impression of being well thought out and lovingly put together from the lush string synth or real strings it matters not because hearing a lush ‘Into the Valley’ is a beautiful thing. they slow it right down to a funeral march tempo and throw in everything from the strings to the percussion and plentiful backing vocals ‘Into The Valley’ never sounded so good and Jobson’s voice sounds weathered and emotional.
Don’t stop there folks because over the next ten songs this record soars high and to be fair is a majestic thing from the hand claps and drums of ‘World On Fire’ this record is already ablaze and whilst the synths are cheating if you’re calling it an acoustic album but when you drop the needle and crack open that stone cold beer you’ll get the picture when you sink back into a comfy chair and let this wash over you.
Dipping into their last studio album ‘Burning Cities’ for ‘Kings Of the New World Order’ it’s always tough when you try to pitch new with old especially when the old are classics like ‘Into The Valley’ and the piano-driven ‘Saints Are Coming’ with a spectacular arrangement to be fair and again Jobson seems to have found his niche vocally.
‘Days In Europa’ is represented by a Crosby, Stills and Nash vibe on ‘Animation’. ‘Hurry On Boys’ from ‘The Absolute Game’ begins a little bit piraty for my liking and ‘Blood And Soil’ from ‘Joy’ is also reworked into something of an epic and sounds regal on its chorus. I think that’s it, every Skids album represented with ‘Joy’ also lending ‘Fields’ to proceedings. We’ve also got a brand new track added to proceedings in the shape of ‘Kreuzberg 79‘ but its the finale of ‘Desert Dust’ again from the last studio album that leaves you like a good friend leaving with a reassuring hand to the shoulder. the Skids have turned in a fantastic record. Sure Acoustic albums have seen their fifteen minutes when MTV was a thing but every now and again one comes along and hits you for six and this boundary is courtesy of The Skids. Check it out that’s my advice although I’d have loved to have heard them take on ‘Yankee Dollar’ but I guess you can’t please everybody all the time and this will most certainly do. Good effort.
Buy Peaceful Times Here
Author: Dom Daley
With just four weeks to go to our annual trip to Rebellion Festival at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool we thought it was high time we gave you a flavour of what RPM would be doing over the four days that make up the absolute jewel in the crown of the UK summer festival season. Johnny H kicks things off with his look at the opening day and a line up that combines the old with the new in one huge celebration of everything great about punk rock music.
The opening day at Rebellion was always about meeting up with old mates to share a pint or two, then making some new ones in the process, it was about rummaging through the market to find long sought after gems, popping into the Punk Art Exhibition to see what twisted genius my old mate Colin Creamcrop Scott had been up to, and then perhaps maybe catch the odd band in the middle of all of this.
I’m telling you this so you understand the seismic shift I’ve seen in the last ten years of going to Rebellion. Thursday was kind of like the appetiser, or a quiet introduction if you will, for what effectively was about to follow over the next three day. Now I look at the bill and I wonder how the hell am I going to do any of the above as its just so jam packed full of great bands right from the off that I’m seriously thinking that next year I’m going to have to go up on the Wednesday as that now appears to be the new Thursday!
Anyway, this year thanks to the train taking the strain once again RPM should be on site just in time to catch Millie Manders & The Shutup and/or The Kingcrows. I say and/or because right from the start we have a band clash, something that undoubtably will see me going one way and our Editor In Chief Dom Daley going the other more than once over the course of the weekend.
Regrettably, our eta means we will have already missed System of Hate and The Murderburgers in Club Casbah and our Brazilian pal from last year Supla performing an exclusive acoustic set, but it doesn’t mean you have to too. In fact, go check them all out as from doors open this year this promises to be one hell of an action-packed weekend.
Back for the 5th year running (by my reckoning anyway) I would bet my Kiss Me Quick hat that Rebellion 2019 is going to be all about The Bar Stool Preachers. The Brighton based ska punks very much on the rise right now and promising to preview tracks from their soon to be recorded 3rd album their 5:15 slot (5:15 geddit?) on the Empress Ballroom stage plus headlining the Almost Acoustic stage later in day are going down on my laminated colour coded band planner as must see performances.
Again I’m not exactly sure where there will be time to anything else other than watch bands after this though as in quick succession we have Pears in the Empress, (our old Slugfest mates) The Blunders in the Arena, cricketing nutters Geoffrey Oicott in the Pavilion, with TV Smith and Slice Of Life both in the Opera House all playing within a two hour window. I can’t of course watch whole performance but I’ll try my best to catch at least some of each.
One band I really do not want to miss this year are Birkenhead’s Queen Zee who will be bringing their Eno goes grunge influenced glam rock stylings to the Empress Ballroom for an 8:30 slot promising to take us on a much welcome trip into the unknown ahead of the hardcore onslaught that is to follow. I was at their recent sold out Newport Le Pub gig but had to leave early when it overran and was truly gutted to miss them, and right now they seem to be everywhere, Download, Glastonbury and thankfully for me Rebellion. Queen Zee may be a bit mainstream for some tastes but they certainly a hell of a lot less pop than Masked Intruder who they follow in the ballroom, I just hope I don’t turn out to be a ‘Loner’ in such huge surroundings.
With Dom no doubt fluffing his mullet to Dave Sharp over at the Almost Acoustic stage and Flipper and The Descendents playing in the Empress plus D.I, Poison Idea and Fear all playing over in Club Casbah you’ll forgive me for thinking that I’ve just somehow quantum leapt back into the early ‘80s (I know there’s a Blackpool gag in there folks but I’ll let you make up your own punchline).
Fear playing their first ever UK show will surely be a must-see for many but for me it’s the lure of Poison Idea that will see me making the short dash from The Bar Stool Preachers in Almost Acoustic to Club Casbah for what might very well be their last ever UK show. ‘Plastic Bomb’ anyone? Fuck yeah!
With everything I’ve covered already I’ve rather shamefully not even touched on the new bands all playing on the Introducing Stage on the opening day, but from London ska punks Lead Shot Hazard through to The Outlines from Nottingham the Jonny Wah Wah curated stage promises a packed house and a total of 51 bands across the weekend coming from all across the world to play Rebellion, and who knows one of two familiar faces to RPM might just creep out on stage along the way too.
Right that’s me knackered and I’ve only just written about day one not lived it, time for some shut eye back at the B&B then I’ll up bright and early for some Bingo with Max Splodge before the not to be missed Rat Boy Magic Show, and we are well and truly into Friday.
Want to join us on our Rebellion escapades? You can buy tickets for Rebellion here.
Author: Johnny Hayward
Buy Queen Of The Pill Here
- 08/23 Los Angeles, CA @ Redwood Bar Record Release Party *
- 09/02 Atlanta, GA @ The Earl
- 09/04 Greenville, SC @ Radio Room
- 09/05 Durham, NC @ Motorco Music Hall
- 09/06 Wilmington, NC @ Reggie’s 42nd St. Tavern
- 09/07 Asheville, NC @ The Grey Eagle
- 09/08 Nashville, TN @ Little Harpeth Brewing
- 09/10 Richmond, VA @ The Camel
- 09/11 Washington DC @ City Winery
- 09/12 Harrisburg, PA @ 10th St. Stage
- 09/14 Harrisonburg, VA @ The Golden Pony
- 09/15 Pittsburgh, PA @ Hard Rock Cafe
- 09/16 Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom
- 09/18 Portland, ME @ Geno’s Rock Club
- 09/19 Hampton Beach, NH @ Wally’s
- 09/20 Cambridge, MA @ Middle East
- 09/21 Amityville, NY @ Amityville Music Hall
- 09/22 Brooklyn, NY @ El Cortez
A few music-related flicks that have just been released or are about to be released have shown up on our radar. Starting with this banger – We Are The League tells the full uncensored story of how a biker, a skinhead, a grammar school boy and a Persian exile came together, with no musical talent or ambitions and even less respect for anything or anyone, to burst into the UK charts with their debut single.
Next up in time for some spooky Halloween fun (or not)that will excite fans stateside – Glenn Danzig’s directorial debut ‘Verotika’, the horror/thriller anthology that just made its world premiere at Cinepocalypse in Chicago and will follow that up next week (June 25) with a West Coast premiere at the Montalban Theatre in Los Angeles. Today on Deadline an exclusive first look at the project’s new poster (below) which clearly reflects the comic book roots and horror punk sensibilities of the veteran musician.
Written and directed by Danzig, Verotika was produced by James Cullen Bressack and Jarrett Furst for Cleopatra Entertainment. The anthology ensemble includes Alice Haig, Ashley Wisdom, Kayden Kross, Natalia Borowsky, Rachel Alig, Scotch Hopkins, and Sean Kanan.
Verotika Website Here
Danzig is newly minted as a filmmaker but in heavy metal circles the New Jersey-born singer-songwriter has been a mainstay presence since 1977 and has been a founding member of three notable bands: Danzig, the Misfits, and Samhain.
The title of Verotika is a variation on Verotik, which is the name of Danzig’s comic book company and a term he concocted (it’s a mash-up of “violence” and “erotic”). This August marks the 25th anniversary of Verotik, which has published titles such as Grub Girl, Albino Spider of Dajette and Death Dealer while showcasing the work of fan-favorite creators, among them Liam Sharp, the DC Comics star now drawing the monthly Green Lantern series.
Fathom screenings are planned in the weeks ahead for Verotika in New York, San Francisco, Austin, and other markets. A Blu-ray and DVD home video release is planned by year’s end.
If you like Danko Jones, you’ll love “A Rock Supreme” and if you’ve never heard the band before, your in for a treat…
“I’m In A Band” is a fist in the air declaration of intent. It had my 9-year-old air guitaring right out of the blocks and is guaranteed to have the same effect on you. Stripped down to perfection, with a chorus that kills.
So let’s make some comparisons – in my humble opinion there’s a bit of Dan Reed Network in there, along with a bit of Kings X, Wolfsbane, Van Halen and a whole chunk of Misfits attitude
“I Love Love” hits Dan Reed Network territory, while “We’re Crazy” pushes it a little harder. Both boast hooks that kill, with enough space for Danko’s personality to rip through the well-placed guitar lines.
“Dance, Dance, Dance” gets way funky in a Dan Reed kind of way, while “Lip Stick City” wouldn’t be out of place on the last Turbonegro album.
“Fists Up High” is pure Wolfsbane, real “Live Fast Die Fast” stuff. “Party” keeps the good time rock & roll theme going, again the Blaize Bailey upper register cutting through to perfection.
“You Got Today” has a naughty “Hot For Teacher” flavour, while “That Girl” is pure Phil Lynott.
“Burn In Hell” takes us full tilt into stripped down Hetfield territory, taking you places Metallica wished they could have taken you in the “Load” era.
The album closes where it began, with another fist in the air anthem. “You Can’t Keep Us Down” is a final reminder of how good “A Rock Supreme” is, imploring you to hit that play button again.
I’ll finish with the wise words of my 9-year old rock chick daughter… “I think I love this band!”
Author: Fraser Munro
Buy A Rock Supreme Here
‘What Would I Do If I Were Me’ – Steve Conte NYC – From The Steve Conte NYC Album.
Filmed entirely in Morocco by Jacoba Cornelisse & Salah Ait Oukdim. NYC still photos by Grayson Dantzic. Morocco still photos by Steve Conte. Edited by Toni Tikkanen in Helsinki, Finland.
with an all star band – Steve Conte Vocals/Main Guitar (+ 3rd Solo) – Steve Conte Bass – Keith Christopher, Rhythm Guitar (+ 1st solo) – Dregen Guitar (2nd solo) – Ginger Wildheart Drums – Rich Pagano Accordion – Kenny Margolis Washboard – Boris Kinberg.