We got in touch with Mick from Grindhouse when we saw they were going to go on an overseas excursion and we wanted to get up to speed with what they had planned and for the uninitiated, it was a chance for Mick to set out the Grindhouse stall so to speak.  Here with the chatter that matters about all things down under and Grindhouse is Mick ‘Two Fingers’ Simpson. 

Its always been a hotbed of Punk Rock and Roll down under – sure it might have taken a while for us snobs in the Northern Hemisphere to cotton on to some of the bands but the UK can’t get enough of Australian bands at the moment and the trail blazed by the likes of Radio Birdman, The Saints, Cosmic Psycos and Rose Tattoo has recently been reignited by the likes of Amyl & The Sniffers, Grindhouse, The Chats (to name just a few – I Could go on) all making a dent in the scene halfway around the world.  We wanted to get a hold of Grindhouse and see what’s up so we contacted Mick to get the inside track on all things Grindhouse.

G’day Mick. You say you were listening to bootleg albums of your rock and roll heroes hoping one day to imitate them. who and what albums were Grindhouse listening to in the back of that XD?

Ah I see you have done your homework, yeah I grew up on a lot of Australian independent rock kind of by accident. Not that I’m an old fucker but we didn’t have the internet back then so it was a case of finding bands by word of mouth or stumbling across them on peoples stereos at parties or riding around in cars looking for cheap booze and good times. That’s where I discovered Radio Birdman( Radios appear), The Saints, Tumbleweed( Galactaphonic) and Aasteriod B6182. Then wed go out on a Saturday night with a fake ID and watching these bands in the flesh. Ok now I feel a little older ha, ha

 

Tell us a brief history of the band where did you guys meet?

We all grew up in a seaside city called Wollongong but ended up in Melbourne, our drummer had unprotected sex and had to leave the band. We all warned him but he didn’t listen.

The nucleus of the band came from another garage band called the Wardens but I wanted an avenue to really play punk rock, sing about dirty shit and not give a fuck, that’s how Grindhouse came about.

 


You say you’re interested in vintage porn and Mosrite guitars. when you say vintage porn what are we talking here? John Holmes? and the guitars why the Mosrites?

Fuck me I probably wrote that when I first started the band and totally forgot to be honest. Pony plays a 64 Mosrite Ventures that sounds nasty as cat shit but very cool and I used to have a great vintage 70,s porn mag collection in the 90,s so maybe its art imitating life.

 


What does Melbourne make of Grindhouse? will you be welcomed back after your European excursion like prodigal sons or will they close the borders and pretend they’re out so you cant get back in?

We have a loyal bunch of misfits, part-time alcoholics, fare evaders, bum sniffers, serial masturbaters, Lube lovers, weed smokers, vintage porn collectors, speed creeps, and sex freaks we lovingly call Grindhouse fans and that’s just the members of the band.

Hopefully we just clear customs without a strip search( happy for a pat-down), other than that anything else is a bonus.


I’ve always loved me some Australian rock and roll but at the moment there seems to be a real demand for it over here in the UK. We recently had the Chats over as well as Cosmic Psycos and Amyl And The Sniffers and Radio Birdman always manage to play London or at least for the past few years. You guys are coming so what can or should we expect?

Its definitely taken off in the UK lately which is great, I think mainland Europe has always been the main staple of o/s touring for Australian bands so its great for bands to have the UK as another option. Historically the UK has always had a strong connection with Australian music from The Saints to The Birthday Party so its no real surprise. As for the mentioned bands, Birdman will always be Birdman but the next generation of younger bands coming through is great even for us as it creates interest in Aussie Independent bands. Amyl and the sniffers are a great live show, the Psychos seem to just find another gear and get better with age and The Chats just supported Iggy Pop in Melbourne so am I jealous? You better fucking believe it.

 


Any other recommendations you could tip us off with. Who would Grindhouse like to drag around Australia with them?

I love a band from Melbourne called Stiff Richards who id call the best garage band in Australia at the moment other than Grindhouse, there,s also a great Ramones inspired garage doo-wop band from Adelaide called Jullitte seizure and the tremor dolls who we love too.



Its been a year since ‘Can I Drive Your Commodore?’ came out. Are we near a follow-up? Tell us about any new music?

We have a plan to record a new album later this year with a working title of “ Sex, Punk, Power” and well be testing some of the new songs on the road which will be cool.

 


The titles on the record made me instantly smile and from those titles, I was buzzin’ to hear the songs and I knew exactly how they were going to sound. What’s the best title you’ve come up with so far? and why don’t more bands sing about Cheese and their love for friends like Gary? Isn’t shit cocaine dangerous? and is the Australian Car industry really dead?

I’ve always loved ‘Wild sex and machine guns” on our first album as its about a woman I worked with who loved those two things which cracked me up. Our titles are inspired by growing up in the suburbs of 80,s Australia so a lot of people connect to the songs. We don’t make cars in Australia anymore and we also have a lot of shit cocaine in this country so I’ve been told.

As for Peter Russel Clarkle, every band should have a song about a celebrity chef who loves tasty cheese.



Are you guys in shape now ready for a hot and sweaty tour of Europe? Can we have a bunch of shows in the UK, please

I don’t know if were hot but were sweaty and ready, id love to do the Uk so fingers crossed we can get there sooner than later. We have a band we love from Nottingham called The Hip Priests who wed love to do it with plus the beer in the UK is always ice cold.(it’s actually fucken very tasty).

Mick did say that they were looking to coming to Shit Island sometime next year hopefully with a brand new album under the hood so its our (and your) duty to demand it and make it happen by showing bands like Grindhouse that the UK loves them and wants to bring them here for some live dates.

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Mullets, high-waisted jeans and short, sharp noise injections. Yeah, Aussie pub rock punks Amyl And The Sniffers are as retro as a pint of Snakebite, a whiff of Old Spice and a mouthful of Space Dust. And we at RPM Online loves ‘em… L-U-V. Their soon to be released debut long player is high on the ‘one to watch out for’ list, and the chance to catch them at one of their first UK headline shows was not an event we were going to pass up.

 

Yet, I was a bit apprehensive coming along to The Brudenell tonight. The last time I saw a show in the smaller Community Room here was He Who Cannot Be Named. About 20 people and a dog turned up to see that punk rock legend, so what chance do these unknown upstarts from down under have?

Well, someone informed the Leeds punk massive on this wet and rainy Wednesday, as by the time Amyl And The Sniffers saunter on stage to large cheers, the place is rammed.

With a quick greeting from diminutive and smiley frontwoman Amy Taylor, the band literally launch into ‘Mole (Sniff Sniff)’.  Dressed in a tight red tracksuit top and high-waisted jeans, she jumps into the crowd and all hell breaks loose for the next 40 minutes.

There are a few actual skinheads down the front tonight, full on DM’s and braces brigade and any thoughts older members of the audience may have had about quietly snapping away at the front are quickly dispersed for fear of gaining more bruises than photos. A circle quickly forms front centre as skins, punks and rockers launch at each other, having the time of their lives, while us bemused punters try to avoid their flailing limbs and stay on our feet. And that’s just the first one minute and 30 seconds!

The uber cool ‘Westgate’ follows. A rumbling bass and jagged guitar riff bursts from the PA as Amy struts the stage and eyes the audience with a deathly stare, coming on like the bastard child of Wendy O Williams and Debbie Harry. She holds her microphone tight, as if an invisible man is trying to wrestle it from her grasp, as she barks the words to a stunned audience. To her side guitarist Dec and bassist Calum deliver the riffs and rumble, while behind them Bryce keeps the back beat.

Holy shit! This band is good, jaw-droppingly good. I would go so far as to say their recorded output does not do them justice live. If they manage to bottle this energy for their debut album then they surely have the world at their feet.

 

Between songs the live-wired singer is like a different character, with a proper loveable Aussie girl next door charm. “Someone told me you guys hate Manchester, why?” she asks prior to ‘70’s Street Munchies’. The whole band look bemused at the “Yorkshire” chants they get in reply, before launching into a high energy version that sees the singer headbanging like a loon for the entire song. As she arches her back, microphone in the air Iggy style, and snarls “…and I’m wearing my favourite sweataahh!” it feels like we are witnessing an iconic moment in music history.

I spy a girl down the front, a tinnie in her hand, shaking and pogo-ing on the spot round and round, the can frothing  over, lost in her own world, as a couple of skinheads bound back and forth in front of her, this is how a punk rock show should go down ladies and gents.

‘I’m Not A Loser’ is probably their greatest song, a proper anthem. Yet the following

‘Balaclava Lover Boogie’ has full blown shake appeal. It brings the energy of prime Stooges to the fore. Powerful and intense as it builds on that riff and when it kicks back in again after the first verse it reaches another plane entirely, sublime stuff indeed.

They end a high energy set with the recent 7 incher ‘Some Mutts Can’t Be Muzzled’. With its “do you remember me” refrain, it’s part Ramones part Wendy O Williams and all killer no filler for sure.

 

Opening with a “sniff sniff” and climaxing with a “woof woof”, Amyl And The Sniffers delivered the goods and left us wanting more. They came, they saw and they conquered The Brudenell in 45 minutes, no encores, no fucking about…job done. Shit, it’s only 10pm! What the hell do we do now?

Tonight was one of those shows where I felt like I was witnessing the start of something great. One thing’s for certain, I will go out of my way to catch this band when they return to our shores, and I highly recommend that you do the same.

 

Author: Ben Hughes

Buy Amyl & The Sniffers Here

Well, it’s that time of the week again so why not take ten minutes our of your day say fuck it work can wait and enjoy these three songs we highly recommend starting with everyone’s favourite Australians who’ve been over here in the UK this past week.  a country so big its its own continent is really kicking out the jams lately with some superb bands so here’s our pick starting with Amyl & The Sniffers with easily the best mullets in music bar no one

Next up is the slackers and hipsters anthem of choice but we just know its quality punk rock ladies and gentlemen the second best mullets in rock n roll,  I wanted to show the new video for Pub Feed but felt it was a step too far to show the gratuitous footage of uncalled for sandals and socks combo Oi! Chats, sort it out. –

Finally ‘ave some tractor rock with the Cosmic Psycos and a song about all our towns –

Not a country I could visit seeing as every creature there wants to kill you and I’m terrified of snakes so I’ll just settle for them producing some of the best bands old and new and that’s good enough for me.  First up today we have the brand new video from the most excellent Clowns

 

Second up and its a right banger from Amyl & The Sniffers who are about to drop a new record and tour the UK which we can’t wait for so the new single will just have to do

Couldn’t decide what to throw in for the third was it going to be The Living End or Black Heart Breakers it would have been Main Street Brats if they only made a video maybe in the future so this time its a classic bit of footage from Radio Birdman with ‘Descent Into The Maelstrom’