What with the shitty news going on on our televisions how about we get lost in some great new videos for new releases covered here on RPM Online? lets do it. First up is one from the brand new compilation album from The Undertones reviewed this week.
The band unveil a brand new video for ‘Thrill Me’made by Vinny Cunningham its the opening track on ‘Dig What You Need’,The Best Of The “Reformation Years 1999 – Present” released next week on Dimple Discs. The band are out there touring this record and tickets can be had Here
Next up is a track off the new Ravagers album ‘Badlands’ which has its vinyl release the same day as The Undertones but these street punk n rollers are a different breed and one that will satisfy those searching for the new breed of Dead Boys, Dictators influenced punks to challenge for the underground pack leaders. Don’t snooze on this bad boy.
Finally, this has just dropped from Bob Vylan, the new video for the single ‘Health Is Wealth’. Get Vylan’s album and merch here
Rock n’ roll is alive and kicking baby, and it lives in Baltimore! Well, that’s where these snotty, street punks known as Ravagers can be found anyways. Taking their tricks from all your favourite punk n’ roll bands, they come outta the gutters screaming like the bastard sons of Hanoi Rocks and The Dead Boys jamming out with The Exploding Hearts. And if those names aren’t enough to whet the appetite, you’re on the wrong page entirely. Just look at that cover art and tell me you don’t want that on vinyl right now!
This is the debut long player from the 8-legged denim & leather clad four piece, and it’s no surprise to discover former Biters and current Restless Hearts leader Tuk Smith at the production helm, as this 10-track ‘all killer, no filler’ affair comes on like his former band’s early EPs (and we all know how good those are, right kids?).
Right from the off, Ravagers are firing on all cylinders. Previous single ‘Down That Road’ has a cool as you like gang vocal chorus that is preceded by urgent beats, guitars shooting from the hip and snotty vocals spat with enough venom and attitude to make this listener pay attention. It’s instant, it’s exciting and it will make you wanna don a leather jacket, grease back your hair and go look for some action.
Yes, there’s an element of danger and a whole lotta energy packed into the sonically seductive grooves of ‘Badlands’. Untamed, unkempt and undernourished, Ravagers certainly have an appetite for destruction. They seem like the sorta band that would steal your beer, shag your girlfriend and piss on your rims without giving it a second thought. In fact, they’d probably write a song about it, and you’d buy it, cuz it would be fuckin’ killer!
Think Motörhead drums, the power chords of Ramones and Stooges raw power, all wrapped up with anthemic power pop melodies, that’s a sure-fire recipe for rock n’ roll success, baby! Frontman Hagen sure has a Stiv Bators drawl about him, and the powerful rhythm section backs up the guitars of the singer and former Biters man Matt Gabbs to perfection.
‘Shake The Reaper’ is ‘Badlands’ pièce de résistance. A haunting, almost gothic picked guitar intro leads into a killer AC/DC riff, with pumping bass and no-frills beats. A catchy chorus with stabs of keys to accompany it, here they remind me a lot of New York punks Wyldlife, as they also do on ‘White Widow’, not a bad thing at all in my book. Man, this band have street anthems designed to blast at top volume, at maximum speed. Play loud, play fast and leave the competition weeping in the rear-view mirror. Just blast out the high energy, hook-laden ‘Trespasser’ for further evidence.
There’s a 70’s glam rock stomp to ‘Blackout’, it has a killer hook any sleazy rock n’ roll band would kill for and its fast becoming an album highlight for me with each play. The thing all these songs have in common? Loud guitars, killer hooks and enough anthemic choruses to give the Swedish action rockers a run for their money.
Ravagers have been causing debauchery for nearly a decade. 2 EP’s and a whole bunch of touring cemented a notorious live reputation. They have opened for the likes of The Damned and The Adicts, and played the Las Vegas’ Punk Rock Bowling Festival amongst others.
Who knows where live music will take us in the coming months and years and how well underground bands will adapt to survive. But I’ll tell you one thing, on the evidence of their debut album, these street rats called Ravagers have what it takes to survive these trying times. A punk rock energy and a handful of great tunes could take them far. Hell, these boys are so confident, they have a song called ‘Suzi (has an Uzi)’ and it didn’t even make the album!
If they drag their skinny arses over the pond, make no bones about it, I’ll be there in a shot, and so should you. But for now, track down this album and buy it on your favourite musical format of choice. You won’t regret it.
Welcome to the singles club, we’ve not had many sittings recently probably due to the Christmas period but they’ve started to trickle in and when we had a few exciting tunes fly in we had to fire up the jukebox and get some 45″ RPM action going.
First up is a mighty fine 7” split for groups LJ & The Sleeze (Richmond, VA) and Killer Hearts (Houston, TX).
LJ & The Sleeze / Killer Hearts – Split (Eight Ball Record$) The 2 song split features the first new tune since Killer Hearts Debut LP was released last year (one we certainly championed here) ‘Skintight Electric’ was truly all killer and absolutely no filler. ‘High Temptress’ is more of the same with manic, rabid rock and roll resplendent with its chest-beating & frantic tempo, those Dead Boys inspired solos and catchy choruses that make you want to sling down a yard of ale before running through a brick wall – great stuff.
LJ & The Sleeze’s side of the split holds the newly redone ‘I’m Bad’, off of their LP ‘Stay Sleezy’, giving in-your-face punk attitude aplenty. It’s got a swagger and a hook that you won’t be able to free from your head, nor would you want to. Menacing and snotty with just enough snarling venom to make you want to root through your sister’s purse to fund this record. Exactly how a split should be done – Get on it Here it’s out in the middle of March so be sure to keep that link locked down – you won’t regret it.
Totally Slow – ‘The Lost Art of Shutting Up’ ( Refresh Records) Another new one on us comes out off their new album ‘Casual Drag’ its indie punk rock with a great hook and a foot in the past it’s got a tonne of energy like melodic punk of so-cal punks a really good earworm that just gets better the more you hear it.
I love the breakdown and want to hear more. Which is the whole original point of a 45″ single right? I dove into the back catalogue and am currently loving ‘Casual Drag’. Pick it up Here
These Arms Are Snakes – ‘Camera Shy’ (Suicide Squeeze Records) US hardcore/mathrock band These Arms Are Snakes have today announced a new rarities release called ‘Duct Tape & Shivering Crows’ which will be released April 15th via Suicide Squeeze Records.
Formed from the ashes of legendary noise bands Botch and Killsadie, These Arms Are Snakes had a 7-year run in the early 2000s and released three albums and many Eps and splits, toured relentlessly, before splitting in 2009.
Described rather wonderfully as a ‘synth-infused noise rock, bad-trip psychedelia, flamboyant proto-metal boogie, and unhinged basement-show hardcore,’ These Arms Are Snakes reformed for some reunion gigs in 2021 and now have this rarities comp
The Good The Bad And The Zugly – ‘One Dimensional Man’ (Fysisk Format) Any day you get to head a new GBATZ tune is a great fucking day so today must be fanfuckingtastic seeing as two of them have shown up. The first earworms from their new Covid produced album is here. ‘Nostradumbass’ is a huge melodic masterclass. Sure it’s the B side but its got a poptastic lick and a chorus that could have been lifted from Abba.
Now the A-side is loud and has a thumping rhythm and the hook is classic Turbonegro-tastic to boot right out of that ballpark. It’ll take a while to properly burrow down and lay its musical explosions that will go off for weeks to come but you know they’re in there. Bring on that damn album and bring it on now. Essential purchase! Here
The Blue Carpet Band – The Slow Death Of Camden (Bomber Music) dealing with the gentrification and all the changes happening on the once rock n’ roll streets of Camden Town. Major brands taking over and the loss of iconic venues and drinking places have erased the edginess and excitement. The rock’n’roll bandits are all gone. Pretty much the same thing happened in Soho and Wardour St and I guess the LES of Manhattan and St Marks and Time Sq as well as a host of other places to boot. Mores the pitty but these times they are a-changing but Rock and Roll will never die don’t you go thinking otherwise.
The Blue Carpet Band are true Rock and Rollers and this is another slice of sleazy Rock n Roll. Check it out – you won’t regret it. With a new album on the way 2022 is shaping up nicely. Buy Here
Electric Boys – ‘Favorite Hello, Worst Goodbye’ (Mighty Music) Another new song recorded by these hard rockin’ Swedes during the “Ups!de Down” sessions. The first one, “Favorite Hello, Worst Goodbye” is out on digital platforms now.
Claiming the song is made up using Cheap Tricks DNA is a big call but it isn’t a million miles from the mark. The Electric Boys play solid hard rock n roll and do it well. Conny Bloom rallies his troops through this meaty rocker and slides some neat fretwork. Fans will lick it up no doubt it’ll be interesting to hear more of this new material
Supera Morza – ‘I’m Working It Out’ (Bad Apple Music Group) The band’s third single sees Supera Morza, ‘Working It Out’ hailing from Manchester these spikey individuals play uncompromising punk rock. It’s possibly in the same ballpark as Blackwater and Cabbage in its gritty, angular post-punk attack with melody and aggression. Two-and-a-half minutes of uncompromising shit or bust anarchic grunge. Hailed as one of Manchester’s most exciting prospects expect to hear and see a lot more of these guys. The previous singles ‘Roadkill’ which had similarities to Nirvana pre ‘Nevermind’ (which isn’t a bad thing either) and my personal favourite the frantic Scrubber. Check them out via Facebook and Spotify
Fontains D.C – ‘I Love You’ (Partisan Records) Taken from the band’s forthcoming album ‘Skinty Fia’ due in April. A slow-burning, brooding and intense love song the track sees the band offer up a dark insight into what they’ve been up to during lockdown. It follows hot on the heels of ‘Jackie Down The Line’. Check out the video here.
Stacy Crowne had their single reviewed here last year but have since shot a video for the B side of their cover of Golden Earrings ‘Radar Love’ check out the lively ‘Dead Of Night’ Get it while it’s hot Here
A follow up on two successful Captain Oi! box sets by the band, ‘THE EPIC YEARS’ and ‘THE ALBUMS 1979-85’
Disc One is the band’s first-ever live album that includes Punk classics like ‘Baby Baby’, ‘Automatic Lover’ and ‘Troops Of Tomorrow’. The recordings are vibrantly captured and the band’s boundless energy is well captured. When I’m listening it dawned on me how overlooked the band’s catalogue has been in general terms. Knox and the gang wrote some really great slabs of power pop punk rock and had it down to a tee and did it better than most of that time period. None more outstanding than ‘Amphetamine Blue’ which has stood the test of time and is still a stone-cold classic.
The second disc is 1988’s ‘Recharged’ album which features the single ‘String Him Along’ that opens the album in a more countrified power-pop but the band was able to go from that to the more aggressive and choppy ‘Hey Little Doll’. ‘Go Go Go’ is pure Rock n Roll’ and indicative of the time with regards to the production. One of my favourites off the album is the acoustic ‘Every Day I Die A Little’ maybe a predictable rise and fall middle section as the drums kick in but a top track all the same. Rounded off nicely with a crowd-edited rendition of ‘Disco In Moscow’.
Disc Three is the ‘Meltdown’ album which now adds the previously non LP ‘Wasted Life’ as a bonus track. ‘Office Girls’ kicked off the album and the band had lost none of their appetites to pen spikey punchy power pop, tight verses and uplifting chorus. Again I love the balladeering on ‘So Young’ with its great saxophone break from Waterboy Anthony Thislewaite that took the Green On Red sounding track into another direction making it one hell of a song. The band mixed the songs up quite a bit on ‘Meltdown’ running through their repertoire of influences from the balladeering to the tougher punkier songs and other genres getting some oxygen which helped make The Vibrators one of the best bands to emerge out of punk and beyond.
In under twelve months the band released the follow up to ‘Meltdown’ with the fourth disc in this set 1989’s ‘Vicious Circle’ album which features the Billy Fury cover of ‘Halfway To Paradise’ single and the rare bonus B-side ‘Drive’. With a better fuller more rounded production that really suited The Vibrators songs, ‘Vicious Circle’ kept the show on the road with topical ‘Polltax Blues’ adding some grunt to proceedings and that Stooges piano tonk underpinning the rolling riff.
Whilst ‘Fire’ was still snotty having it lean on the Billy Fury cover still sounds weird such is the contrast.
The final disc is the band’s tenth album, imaginatively called ‘Volume Ten’. Opening with ‘Losing It’ is something of a classic sounding Vibrators song with a strong pop melody and chorus glued together with a sharp guitar riff that leads to a palatable chorus. ‘Hot For You’ is more uptempo and yet another example as to how good the band was even when they did a cover of ‘Rave On’ which I’m still not sure about. It’s not like they were struggling with writer’s block and could have gone with just original tunes but hey ho what do I know.
The clamshell box also has a booklet containing detailed liner notes overseen by Jon ‘Eddie’ Edwards which are pretty cool.
For a relatively cheap amount of dosh, these Vibrators box sets are a fantastic purchase and people who possibly got blown off course and missed out on these recordings now have the chance to fill those gaps with some great records. Pick one up it’s a no-brainer!
“Unfiltered, savage and animalistic.” That’s how Midnight main-man Athenar describes his second long player for Metal Blade Records (his fifth studio record overall), and I for one, think he’s hit the (nine inch) nail bang on the head with that description, because ‘Let There Be Witchery’ is indeed, a total beast of a record.
From the blistering opener ‘Telepathic Nightmare’ (which sounds like Discharge jamming with Hellhammer) through to closer (and perhaps one of the album’s most “commercial?” tracks) ‘Szex Witchery’, what you get is a set of songs that are, without question, Midnight’s strongest to date. You can forget the comments I made when reviewing their last album – ‘Rebirth By Blasphemy’ – for RPM that Midnight might be about to do a Ghost and break through to the mainstream, because the ten tracks contained here are a massive middle finger to anything even remotely resembling compromise.
Working once again with producer Noah Buchanan (who had worked on ‘Rebirth By Blasphemy’) is perhaps Athenar’s master stroke this time around, largely because when saying he wanted his new record to “sound like a cross between ‘Raw Power’ and ‘Apocalyptic Raids’,” the pushback he got from the man behind the desk was “those records already exist, let’s make it sound like Midnight.” This advice proving to be very wise indeed as tracks like ‘Nocturnal Molestation’ and ‘Snake Obsession’ simply ooze Midnight malevolence. Likewise, ‘Villainy Wretched Villainy and (the superb) ‘In Sinful Secrecy’ plough a now familiar Midnight groove in the same way Motorhead did through much of their back catalogue. Well, if it ain’t broke, eh?
Elsewhere, ‘Let There Be Sodomy’, ‘More Torment’, ‘Nocturnal Molestation’, ‘Frothing Foulness’ and (the hypnotic) ‘Devil Virgin’ all sound like they have been taken straight from a Black Metal giallo movie soundtrack, albeit one that’s playing out in Athenar’s (hooded) head. There really is no let up as the (one man) band who pride themselves on producing music to start fights to turn in one metal suckerpunch after another, making the experience of listening to ‘Let There Be Witchery’ not unlike being constantly coshed around the side of the head with an aural battering ram.
“I always want it to be loud and nasty,” admits Athenar. “That kinda thing never gets old with me. How funny will that look to see me at age 77 – if I reach that point – sitting on the porch blasting Hellhammer?” Well, with ‘Let There Be Witchery’ it’s a job very well done indeed, as this 55 year old is listening to this and feeling like I’ve just discovered Venom all over again back in my early teens.
There are not many bands out there right now as brutally honest as Midnight, and ‘Let There Be Witchery’ really is the boot in the bollocks the metal world needs in 2022.
‘Giddy Up A Ding Dong’ be fucked, ‘we have lift off’ might have been a more apt title for tonight such was the gale blowing around South Wales. This rearranged fixture comes after the original pre-Christmas Tour hit Covid buffers. Tonight it was the turn of Storm Eunice to try to derail this sold-out show but unperturbed, the ‘Giddy Up A Ding Dong’ tour rolls into town thankfully without further incidents or act of God.
Tonight the bill was bolstered by the inclusion of Gary’s newly signed band Dead Freights which was my first introduction to this lively south coast band, it was also another chance to see Local(ish) members of the Libs extended family the wonderful Trampolene.
Dead Freights took to the stage bang on time and proceeded to knock out a very impressive thirty minutes of sharp, loud indie rock with an emphasis on the loud and the rock. Frontman Charlie looked confident with his fringe and skinny jeans as he thumped out the chords to the band’s post-punk, indie rock tunes that had plenty of punch in the rhythm section and some nice choppy guitars to complement that aggressive style. The highlights were ‘Kill Your Man’, ‘Girlfriend Experience’ and the sharp ‘Bat Man’ which mixed up the caped crusader’s riff into the song’s frantic and snarling delivery – excellent tune. A true story that’s every bit as menacing as the story suggests. I was impressed with an excellent starter from this evening’s entertainment and await to hear more from this fledgling south coast band who have recently signed to Gary Powell’s label.
Next up are a band I’ve championed for a while. Trampolene were in fact the first band I was lucky enough to see when we emerged into the new world post-Covid. Trampolene have a brand new album ‘Love No Less Than A Queen’ under their belt.
I’ve always found the band’s live shows to be a sprawling, exciting, bundle of energy from start to finish. Always entertaining and never dull. Whilst they nail the music side of it they have also oozed that “by the seat of our pants” energy that bands need. Stand or fall – they’ll go down having the time of their lives and as previous shows have proven they throw every ounce of energy into their performances be it in a tiny club or on the larger Uni circuit or in an arena.
Tonight was going to be special seeing as the band hail (as I do) from 40 miles down the M4 and aren’t exactly welcome in certain parts of this town, as a result of the superior sporting achievements (obviously) in the last decade. Jack embraces the jovial abuse of ‘You Jack Bastard’ and runs with it, grinning like a Cheshire cat it adds fuel to the fire. As the band get straight on with business ‘It’s Not Rock and Roll’ punches a huge riff-sized hole in the Great Hall air, and get down to the serious job of showing this audience exactly what they have in their locker.
The swelling audience is then treated to some of the stand-out tracks off the new ‘Love No Less’ album mixed with older ones as ‘Adrenaline’ and the grungy ‘Oh Lover’ whip up the audience before Jack introduces the fantastic ‘Beautiful Pain’. The trio totally locked in and took the audience with them on their energetic journey. They tap into the energy of the audience throughout the set that saw their thirty minutes fly by ending with a frenzied ‘Alcohol Kiss’. Jack, Wayne and Kyle take a thoroughly deserved ovation from the appreciative audience who put rivalries aside Cardiff knows a good band when they see one, and once again the Great Hall has a new Welsh band to champion. Trampolene moves on to their biggest headline show this coming Friday as they open the brand new 3,500 capacity Swansea Arena and this has been the perfect warm-up for both tonight’s headliners and their own big night next Frieday.
On this evidence, it won’t be long before they themselves are headlining the Universities of the UK and beyond. Get in there you jack bastards its been emotional.
With the packed out, Great Hall now nicely warmed up – the intro tape of ‘Get Down On It’ is fired up. Onto the stage strides the likely lads – with a spring in their step they take to the stage with some Only Fools and Horses dialogue only for it to be drowned out as the Great Hall hoards roar as ‘What A Waster’ signals the whole auditorium to move like an ocean in a storm. Pure pandamonium. The buzz is maintained throughout ‘The Ha Ha Wall’ and ‘Up The Bracket’ before a chance to catch one’s breath as the brilliant ‘Gunga Din’ plays out and the interplay on the vocals is still spine-tingling and majestic.
Docherty and Barat still have that special energy (that X-Factor if you like) as they collide into one another, but these days it’s more like an inspiring bump, a wink, and a nod rather than previously being a kick up the arse or a sly dig. The tension is less spikey and more an appreciation to each other for what they bring to the music of The Libertines and the stage. Maybe it’s an age thing or now it’s the music that is doing all the talking and not any “off-field” dramas being blown out of proportion and spiraling out of control. The Libertines have been there, done it and bought the T-Shirt but have now moved on. Thank God they’ve been drawn back into each other’s orbit like moths to a flame, knowing that when the four are on a stage it’s different, it’s certainly special and unfinished business awaits. They can do the side projects as well (most welcome they are too) but this band and these songs are special.
By the time the band breaks it down for the more laid-back task of ‘What Kate Did’ followed by the outstanding ‘You’re My Waterloo’ it’s shaping up to be one hell of a performance and setlist. Carl took to the piano stool whilst Pete handled the acoustic guitar until the solo when Carl picked up the Les Paul JR laid his emotional lick out there before signing off the piano part. The highlight of the setlist so far.
With only three albums in neigh on twenty Years they can pretty much fill a ninety-minute set with all killer and no filler and tonight the spread of songs was superb helping the set flow magnificently.
‘Boys In The Band’, ‘Can’t Stand Me Now’ had the audience providing vocal harmonies that were clearly having an impact on stage. If I’m correct it was Fifteen songs played before the encore that raised the bar further (if that was even possible).
‘The Delaney’ became something of a new years eve late night sing-a-long before the band rattled out an epic ‘Fame And Fortune’, ‘Death On the Stairs’, ‘Don’tLook Back Into The Sun’ and finally closing a spectacular night with ‘Time For Heroes’ and we then shuffled out into the cold, wet and blustery Cardiff night having witnessed a fantastic night of live music. It felt great to be back out there and see fledgling openers introduce themselves, super confident support with a whole pocketful of excellent songs, and a master class in headlining from one of the best bands Britain has to offer.
If you are thinking about taking in one of this summer’s outdoor shows – my advice is don’t hesitate to get on it. The line-ups will be excellent and on tonight’s setlist and performance The Libertines will more than impress. Energy, enthusiasm, and above all fantastic songs. Now, how about a new album? Pretty please.
Fried Cheese & Pivo, the first time on vinyl, was originally recorded in Czech Republic in 1992 and was only released on CD in 1993 and for Czech market.
The Pleasure Fuckers were formed in 1988 in Madrid (Spain) and were led by legendary Kike Turmix there is no doubt they were an absolute tour de force of Garage punk rock and did it with style and played it hard.
During their ten years, they put in the hard yards on the touring circuit extensively across the toilets clubs of Europe and the USA.
From the opening roar of ‘Solid Steel Automobile’ they take no prisoners. I think that’s fair to say and the relentless barrage continues at pace throughout these four sides of wax.
If you’ve never experienced The Pleasure Fuckers then I guess it’s Bored!, Cavemen, Asteroid B-612, Turbonegro, The Ramones, Motorhead at their rowdiest, and then some Stooges (obviously), ‘Oh Yeah!’ has easy lyrics to remember but the solos that slice through the solid wall of Rock and trust me they are blissful. the sonic six-stringery of Norah Findlay and Mike Sobieski is off the scale at times, as for the rhythm section they were tight as two rizzlas and had style and swagger.
You know the drill it’s pretty much two to three minutes of all-out sonic assault with Marshall stacks turned up to 11 and away you go. ‘Away’ is supper snotty to the max and it’s followed by the 100 miles per hour blitzkrieg of ‘No Naggin Hag’.
They did pause for breath but it’s literally just that a pause. It’s not the best quality recording but that only adds to the charm of songs like ‘Haven’t Got Time’. ‘Destination Uranus’ is like a punk n roll hand jive if I might be so bold with its strip club pole grinding rhythm and sleazy attitude.
They’d slip in some extraordinary covers like the Dead Boys classic ‘What Love Is’ that truly gives Stiv and the gang a run for their money. I guess it’s fair to say These guys couldn’t give a fuck who they offended either (then again you aren’t hoping to reach TOTP with a name like The Pleasure Fuckers are you?). With albums like the charmingly titled ‘First Abortion’ they are truly underrated but this live album might go some way to bring them to a new generation of fans as it leans heavily on the ‘Supper Star’ album that was released the same year. Tracks like The Ramonesish ‘The Gimp’ is the band showing how tight they are and that they indeed had their tongue in their cheek as well.
Great to see bands like The Pleasure Fuckers getting some love from Bang! Records and hopefully we might see the studio albums get a similar treatment that would be the icing on the cake. Signing off with their tip of the hat to The Ramones is perfectly acceptable as is their slog through ‘1970’ it seems about right.
We need timely reminders that the 90’s weren’t all bad and bands like this didn’t give a shiny shit about what was fashionable because good honest loud Rock and Fuckin’ Roll has always been Hip and in fashion to those who knew it and they certainly did. The Pleasure Fuckers walked the walk and talked the talk. My advice would be to Just buy this its a start and better late than never right? It’s almost twenty years since the man-mountain and formidable force that was Kike Turmix passed away so time to catch up me thinks.
A collection of four tracks recorded during lockdown by former and current members of The Hip Priests, TV Crime and Mannequin. Ben, Austin, Sid, Joe and Nathan, recorded these four tracks that Von Cruz had written, with no rehearsal at all and smashed them out in a few hours with the result that those lucky enough to purchase this here Hate Tape. Of course it’s limited to 50 copies. It’s not on vinyl or digital but on the ladies format – The bloody cassette tape. They might be all gone by the time you’re reading this but it’s worth a try christ of course it’s worth a try, it’s fan-fuckin-tastic.
Hipster fuckers knocking it out on tapes I guess that’ll piss off the vinyl illite how dare they use a dead format (or are they ahead of the curve? With every man and his mother out buying a record player maybe the Cassette isn’t just for the ladies but hip as fuck and something you can fit in your back pocket instead of a phone and plug this racket into a snazzy walkman and get fired up on Hate.
‘Some Of My Brothers Only Have One Speaker’ is Red Bull amphetamine Rock and Fucking Roll kids (Hell it’s all full-throttle what else would you expect?) It should carry a warning sticker and should be approached with caution. No, not because it’s shit but because it might blow your speaker. Of course, it’s fantastic why the fuck wouldn’t it be? As it’s lo-fi it’s also a sonic stick of dynamite. ‘Disgraceland’ is like having your skull rattled with a baseball bat, intense and pummeling would be a few apt adjectives.
Von Cruz and Austin Rocket go back before the Hip Priests when they rattled fillings with Gods Chosen Dealers and Ben is now also a Hip Priest so they have a great understanding anyway. Nottingham bands cross-pollinate big time here which I guess helps when jumping in on these tunes, it certainly helps reach these energy levels.
‘Little Johnny Thunders Is A Motormouth’ is a tub-thumping banger! It’s got a filthy amount of riff-a-rama and rocks like a bastard of the highest order. An absolute masterclass it is too and has some awesome guitar wankery to complement the manic rhythm section that’s like a runaway train and I love it, Joe is the prince of pound, make no mistake.
I have a hunk of burning love for this tape and if there’s more to come Mr Von Cruz then get it pressed up the world needs more Von Cruz and his Hate tunes right here right now and the less produced and more fired up the better now fuck off because I need to turn the tape over and get a sonic sorting and a brain full of more of this here Hate. 10 out of 10 no doubt about it!
Bad Actors released their album on Sioux Records who have previously released the excellent albums last year from Richard Bacchus and The Yowl who both made my best of albums for 2021. Bad Actors was supposed to come out a while back and what with covid etc the can got kicked down the line and delays with one thing or another means it’s only now getting a vinyl release but it’s limited so don’t snooze.
So what do they sound like? well, it’s a Rock and Roll record in the time-honored traditions of The Heartbreakers and Joneses but the vocals have much in common with The Humpers.
Hell, it’s a loud sloppy old-school punk Rock n Roll record. It’s buzzing with energy from the first note of ‘Steal Your Heart’ to the final refrain of ‘Cold Mercy’. Ten tracks of really good noise. When you hear influences like The Candy Snatchers and Humpers then you know it’s got to walk the walk as well as talk the talk.
‘Eyes On Top’ is a scuzzy slow rumbling rocker with low-fi vocals delivered with a bit of menace that meanders to the chorus where you get hushed piano tinkling the time-honored stooges one finger fuck you honky tonk whilst the guitars just kick out the jams like the Nomads. There’s tub-thumping into a Heartbreakers slog on ‘Anthem’ of course it’s called Anthem why wouldn’t it be? Imagine you’re in a beer stained club, it’s late you’ve had one beer too many and someone hands you a large glass of Jager shots and then the dry ice hits you and the speakers crank out some ear-shattering bad boy boogie and ‘Backfire’ creeps out of the speakers and you can’t help but get involved well ‘Black Static’ does that and some.
‘Pale Rider Dark Horse’ sounds live in the studio with a cool lick on the intro before the whole band kicks up a shitstorm much like Chelsea Smiles. These cats can Roll with their Rock and its powerful stuff. It’s got attitude aplenty and they have a fantastic sleazy sound its like a muscle car with plenty of grunt and a middle digit in your face but once you familiarise yourself with it then you will be the best of friends.
Man there’s even time to wind up some psychedelic riff-a-rama on ‘Who Knows Why’ but once it gets going it’s top drawer stuff. ‘Off My Head’ is sleazy power pop at its finest mashing up old school 50-60s pop with Punk attitude and rounded off with handclaps and boogie piano. What’s not to like? Man as we head into the final fling of this record we get some Detroit-like riffs on ‘Sister Slowdown’ that will rival anything out of Sweden – honestly. The pace is taken down for the final fling as ‘Cold Mercy’ is sinister menacing Rock n Roll.
So when I say these are limited to 300 pieces on white vinyl don’t waste time – if the postage from further afield than the USA is your problem I suggest you check out their other releases and pick them up and discover a new label that supplies the most excellent punk rock and roll records.
Taken from their forthcoming album which is released on Cadiz Music and is a collaboration with Youth from Killing Joke who produced the album and played bass on it, and they’re touring with Killing Joke in March/April.
The Anglo-American Imbeciles are enigmatic writer/guitarist Butch Dante’s creation, with a history of being vividly reborn. In chrysalis form they were a conventional punk band, Wartoad, till a Californian tour finished at an ex-biker roadhouse, whose former denizens were still inclined to dig up guns and bury bodies in the surrounding desert. Improvising with extreme freedom at what felt like the end of the world, The Imbeciles were born here.
2019’s The Imbeciles debut album was taped in eight deranged days, in a haunted studio on the Texan-Mexican frontier, a record of abrupt razor-edits and spectral moods. This was followed by an unhinged gig at London’s Heavenly Social where the band crashed and burned, with Dante pulling only singer John Kent from the wreckage with him.
As lockdown hit in 2020, the Dissolution Sessions EP was the first sign of renewed life, with a rebuilt line-up and sound. “I said, ‘I want to do pub-rock,’” Dante says, “and it went over really well.” It outsold the original album, with Crystal Palace fan Dante’s art-punk football anthem “Sunday Leaguer” being played on Match Of The Day. Youth (aka Martin Glover), loved it, and invited them to his Andalusian studio to properly begin Phase 2.
Colonel Kurtz and Hunter Thompson had seemed guiding spirits during the first album’s stoned madness. Youth’s El Mirador studio was equally extreme in its way, rewarding the Imbeciles who’d survived Texas’s purifying flame with a hippieish, bohemian Shangri-La. Waking up in Peter Murphy’s bed (the Bauhaus singer is a regular guest), Dante had to pinch himself at this ascension into post-punk heaven. “It’s on a mountain on Spain’s southern coast,” he recalls, “where Youth has built a big compound with Moroccan-style minarets. It’s quite chaotic, with incredibly esoteric furniture, art and books. You climb up a ladder to a sorcerer’s library in a tower dedicated to music. It’s got a huge, sunken sitting room with a big fire, and a pool. When we got there, it was just me, John Kent and Youth. For three days we just ate food and talked, listened to music and watched Kubrick movies – and Final Destination! – and decided what we were going to do. The rest of the band turned up and plugged in, and things started happening.” Youth’s musical partner Michael Rendall played keyboards, with Youth playing bass and co-writing throughout.
The first fruits of the sessions for new album ‘Imbecilica’ can be heard today in new single ‘Tiny Blue People’, a high-energy attack that explodes with vitality and melody. The Tiny Blue People in the video live an invisible existence at the bottom of swimming pools in the suburbs United States, cunningly camouflaged by their blue skin. At night they emerge to cause mischief and mayhem – and, sometimes, gory murder – before retreating back to their chlorinated and aquatic world.
“The song is about the duality of American middle-class society,” reveals Butch Dante. “At one level everything looks perfect, idyllic – but in reality, those perfect lawns and crystal blue pools conceal the vilest perfidy, a world ruled by egotism and base cruelty.”