BUZZCOCKS DOCTORATE

Students and staff came together to celebrate on Thursday 9 July 
2009) at the University of Bolton as two days of degree congregation 
ceremonies began.

The graduation ceremony was also a homecoming for two founder 
members of the band The Buzzcocks. Howard Devoto and Pete Shelley 
received Honorary Doctorates for their outstanding contribution to the 
field of music.

They co-formed The Buzzcocks while students at Bolton Institute, which 
is now the University of Bolton, where they studied humanities.

Pete is best known as the group’s lead singer, while Howard, who quit 
after their first single, went on to form the influential band, 
Magazine.

Pete said: “The university has changed a lot, not like us.

“It was a good environment and allowed you to be what you wanted to be 
and do what you wanted to do, like we did.”

Commenting on his achievement, Howard laughed: “Be careful what you do 
because you could end up wearing these robes like we are!

“It is an honour to be awarded in this way from the place we once 
attended. I did learn a lot.”
   

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RICHARD HELL ALBUM

 Richard Hell to Deliver Destiny Street Repaired  Rescued and Re-recorded Version of the Final, 1982 Voidoids Album     On September 1st 2009, twenty-seven years after its original recording, Insound and Richard Hell will be releasing Destiny Street Repaired, an improved version of Richard’s second, and final, studio album with The Voidoids. The original album, out of print for five years, features some of his most essential songs including “The Kid With the Replaceable Head,” “Time” and “Downtown at Dawn.” Incredibly, Destiny Street Repaired features rescued rhythm tracks from the 1982 sessions along with brand new vocals by Richard and extraordinary new lead guitar parts from three legendary players: Marc Ribot, Bill Frisell and original Voidoid Ivan Julian. Destiny Street Repaired has been a project nearly thirty years in the making, a challenging, but ultimately thrilling rescue of what should have been the great second Richard Hell and the Voidoids album. “Destiny Street Repaired better represents the intentions of the original 1982 sessions than does the Destiny Street that was released that year,” according to Richard.     Though it produced some of his best known songs, Richard Hell was dispirited by the ultimate recording of 1982’s Destiny Street. “At the time of the original recording I was so debilitated by despair and drug-need that I was useless. The record ended up being a high-pitched sludge of guitar noise. It was a shame because the songs were clean, simple, and well-constructed, but those values were sabotaged by the inappropriate arrangements and production,” says Richard.     For years in the nineties and early 21st century the album was being distributed illegally. In 2004 Richard brought legal action and was able to regain ownership of the album, whereupon he deliberately let it go out of print. In 2006, after finding a two-track tape of the original rhythm tracks, Richard seized the opportunity to create the record he believed Destiny Street could be. Says Hell, “I couldn’t resist trying to use them to fill and patch up the sinking feeling that the thought of the record had always produced in me.” Using those original rhythm tracks as the foundation, Hell recorded fresh, new vocals, did some editing, gathered new musicians of the highest caliber for the lead guitars, and re-mixed all the elements to produce Destiny Street Repaired. The updated version is an amazing story and a startling achievement. It manages to surpass the original in almost every way.     Though he has but two studio albums with the Voidoids and one with Dim Stars, Richard Hell’s body of work has been pored over, discussed and re-released endlessly in the last thirty years. His reputation and influence have only grown in spite of the paucity of his recordings. (In 1984, he left music to focus on writing.) Certainly many fans and critics will approach this unlikely new version of an old album with caution or cynicism. In fact, Richard approached the project with similar caution and self-awareness. The result of such care for details is new vocals and guitar lines that express the same manic delirium and spontaneity that made the original Voidoids so electrifying. Destiny Street Repaired is simply the superior representation of this album of great songs. Richard says, “It’s pretty unbelievable to be able to fix an old mistake, and turn its nasty consequences into pleasure instead.”    Destiny Street Repaired will be available on two formats: trade CD; and limited-edition deluxe vinyl/CD/poster . The trade CD will feature the ten tracks, now fully repaired, from the 1982 version, in a digipak with a fascinating eight-page booklet inserted. The deluxe vinyl version will feature the ten repaired tracks, and an 18” x 24” color poster featuring a Roberta Bayley photo from the session that produced the cover to the original album on one side, and art by enfant terrible Josh Smith that incorporates Richard’s liner notes on the other. Inserted in the deluxe version gatefold will be a CD that includes the ten repaired tracks plus two bonus tracks that were recorded as studio demos in 1979: “Smitten” (never before released anywhere) and “Funhunt” (previously released only in a live version on long out-of-print small-scale distributions). In addition, every limited deluxe vinyl copy will be numbered (one to one-thousand) and signed by Richard Hell. The cover art for Destiny Street Repaired is a modification by renowned Scottish artist, Jim Lambie, of the original album art. Both the digipak CD and the deluxe vinyl/CD/poster will be available exclusively at online music retailer, Insound.com and, later, at richardhell.com.    Destiny Street Repaired Credits  All rhythm tracks by: Robert Quine, guitar; Naux, guitar, Fred Maher, drums; Richard Hell, bass. Produced by Alan Betrock at Intergalactic Studios, NYC. Engineer: Jay Burnette. Recorded 1982.    All lead vocals by: Richard Hell. All solos and additional guitar by: Marc Ribot, Bill Frisell, Ivan Julian. Produced by Richard Hell at Hal Willner’s House of Knuck and John Kilgore Sounds and Recording, NYC. Engineer: Patrick Ford. Recorded 2008-09.  
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URBAN DOGS R BACK!

Urban Dogs, the punk band formed by the U.K Subs Charlie Harper and Knox from the Vibrators are making their 4th Urban Dogs album together in North London. This time its an acoustic album, produced by Stan from Demented are Go  and features classics like New Barbarians as well as covers like Social Distortians Another State Of Mind. It will be released at the end of the year and expect a few gigs too.

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RUTS MALCOLM OWEN R.I.P

Malcolm Owen † Jul. 14, 1980

Malcolm Owen

† Jul. 14, 1980 (aged 25)

Malcolm Owen † Jul. 14, 1980

Born
* 1955

Died
† Jul. 14, 1980

Cause of Death
Heroin overdose.

The late great singer of one of the greatest punk bands ever, the Ruts, Malcolm Owen died 29 years ago this coming Tuesday. He will never be forgotten by Vive Le Punk!!

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ARTHUR ‘KILLER’ KANE R.I.P

Arthur "Killer" Kane † Jul. 13, 2004

Arthur "Killer" Kane

† Jul. 13, 2004 (aged 55)

Arthur "Killer" Kane † Jul. 13, 2004

Birth name
Arthur Kane

Born
* Feb. 04, 1949

Died
† Jul. 13, 2004
Los Angeles, California, USA

Cause of Death
Just 22 days after the New York Dolls reunion concert, Kane thought he had caught the flu in London, and checked himself in to a Los Angeles emergency room, complaining of fatigue. He was quickly diagnosed with leukaemia, and died within two hours.

 

Biography
Kane was a musician and librarian best known as the bassist for the pioneering glam punk band the New York Dolls.

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RANCID RUMOURS

Vive Le Punk understands that Rancid will now tour the U.K again early next year. Currently blitzing America with Rise Against the band are exclusively ion the cover of this months Big Cheese magazine. www.bigcheesemagazine.com 

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THE SPECIALS

DAWNING OF A NEW ERA!
THE RETURN OF THE SPECIALS

With a recently completed sold out UK tour and another UK jaunt scheduled for November, Vive Le Punk reviews their Glasgow show , and checks in with a Top 20.

The Specials 02 Academy Glasgow 28-04-09

The venue was full to capacity – there were skinheads, Harrington jackets, Fred Perrys and shiny doc marten boots everywhere. The crowd were a mixed bunch, mostly men and women in their mid forties but there were many youngsters who weren’t even born 30 years ago when two-tone started. The DJ was playing some good old ska, getting the crowd even more in the mood than they already were.
 
When “Enjoy Yourself” was played on the sound system a crescendo of noise went up in anticipation. The big curtain that had been covering the stage was dropped and revealed the Specials logo on the rear wall. The band were there and they moved straight into action jumping all over, except the sullen looking Terry Hall who did everything at his own pace. “Do the Dog” was done at a break neck pace, and “Dawning of a New Era” and “Gangsters” were over in a flash.


 
The energy levels of the band were superb, especially Lynval and Neville who were jumping about the stage. The band’s camaraderie was totally mesmerising would not make you think they’d had a break of 27 years. Almost all of the first album was covered: the aptly named “Too Hot” as the venue was like a sauna, the eerie “Ghost Town” gave everyone a chance to cool off before it was back to full pace with “Too Much Too Young” and a few tracks off the second album.
 
Even though Terry kept his dour persona he proved to be very entertaining. At one point Terry asked for a cigarette and a packet was thrown on stage, which he played about with sticking them in his ears and under his nose. This was the closest we got to a smile from him!
 

Throughout the whole show the atmosphere was electric and people danced and sang along constantly. The twenty-four songs during ninety minutes were over in a flash. The Specials finished up with “Enjoy Yourself” (which everyone did!) all went home happy…
DOD.

www.myspace.com/dmphotographyaberdeen <http://www.myspace.com/dmphotographyaberdeen>

www.bigwheelmagazine.com <http://www.bigwheelmagazine.com/>

THE SPECIALS TOP 20 TRACKS

1. A Message to You Rudy
2. Ghost Town
3. Little Bitch
4. Monkey Man
5. Too Much Too Young
6. Nit Klub
7. Concrete Jungle
8. Doesn’t Make It Alright
9. Man at C&A
10. Enjoy Yourself
11. Friday Night Saturday Morning
12. Long Shot Kick De Bucket
13. Skinhead Moonstomp
14. Your Wondering Now
15. Too Hot
16. Stupid Marriage
17. (Dawning Of A) New Era
18. It’s Up To You
19. Rat Race
20. Raquel

 

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THE VARUKERS

U.K hardcore punks the Varukers have been getting angry now for more than a 1/4 of a century. Vive Le Punk spoke to singer Rat in the middle of their 2009 world tour.


(c) Roger Grauwmeijer

30 years of the Varukers! Are you surprised the band is still out there and, still so popular?
WELL THE VARUKERS HAVE BEEN GOING FOR 30 YEARS, ALTHOUGH WE DID STOP AND HAVE A BREAK  AROUND 87  FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS SO LIKE THE QUEEN (HAS TWO OR THREE BIRTHDAYS) WE ARE GOING OUT ON OUR 30TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR THIS YEAR ,THEN IN A COUPLE OF YEARS DO IT ALL AGAIN ON ANOTHER 30TH BASH AROUND THE WORLD ,GREAT AINT IT ,SURPRISED BUT ALSO PLEASED  THAT WE ARE STILL DOING IT THIS LONG STILL  THATS BECAUSE WE STILL HAVING FUN (SOMETIMES) AND THE VARUKERS HAVE ALWAYS HAD A SMALL BUT DEDICATED  HARDCORE OF SUPORTERS,AND LONG MAY IT CONTINUE,WE HAVE TO WORK AT IT CONSTANTLY GOING OUT THERE AND TOURING MAKING SURE THAT PEOPLE DONT FORGET THE NAME ,THATS WHAT IT TAKES FOR A BAND   TO REMAIN POPULAR ,A LOT OF BANDS GOT COMPLACENT AND  FELL  BY THE WAYSIDE , NOT  FOR
US ONWARD AND UPWARD

You have always been a ‘bleak’ sounding band-is Britain better or worse than when you started?
 IT CERTAINLY IS’NT THAT MUCH BETTER ,THE WORLD FINANCIAL CRISIS ,MADE BY THOSE POWERS THAT BE  THE HIGH RANKING FINANCIAL INSTITUTES THEY MESS UP AND AFTER YEARS OF HEARING FROM A SUCSESSION OF GOVERMENTS THAT THE POT IS EMPTY ,NO MONEY TO INVEST ,SERVICES HAVE TO BE CUT ,SUDDENLY FROM OUT OF THIN AIR THEY FIND THE MONEY TO SAVE  THE BANKS AND STOPPING THEM  FROM THE DOMINO EFFECT ,(ONE BY ONE THEY COLLAPSE) ITS MINE AND YOUR MONEY THEY USE BUT HEY FALL BEHIND ON YOUR  MORTGAGE REPAYMENTS AND THE BANKS YOU HELPED TO FINANCE WILL STILL SEND THE REPO MAN KNOCKING ON YOUR DOOR, PEOPLE  ARE STRUGGLING  TO COPE WITH THE RISING COSTS OF  (GAS ,ELECTRIC ,COUNCIL TAX BILLS) AND THE EVER INCREASING RISE IN COST OF FOOD BILLS WHICH EVERY WEEK SEEMS TO BE WORSE  THAN THE ONE BEFORE (BUT HEY COMING TO
ONE OF OUR GIGS WILL CHEER YOU UP)

The Varukers have pretty much always stuck to one style-ever been tempted to break away from it as a few other 80s punk acts did?

I WOULDNT SAY WE ARE STUCK IN ANY STYLE APART FROM THE VARUKERS ONE ,WHICH IS THE WAY IT SHOULD BE ISN’T IT ,ITS THE BEST  THAT WE PLAY IN AND FEELS NATURAL TO US .AND PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD SEEM TO ENYJOY IT SO I THINK WE WILL STICK WITH IT IF IT AIN’T BROKE DONT FIX IT, SO IN AWNSER TO THE SECOND PART OF THE QUESTION IS  NO


(c) Roger Grauwmeijer

What were the bands that got you in to this in the first place?
OBVIOUSLY THE SEX PISTOLS BEING A YOUNG AND IMPRESSIONABLE LAD WATCHING THEM ON TOP OF THE POPS AND READING ABOUT THEM IN THE DAILY PAPERS ,I WANTED TO BE LIKE THAT SO STARTED CHECKING OUT FURTHER PUNK BANDS LIKE THE DAMNED ,999, UK SUBS AND WAS HOOKED,I WOULD SIT THERE ,WITH MY MOTHER WATCHING THROUGH THE  CRAP MUSIC LIKE KC AND SUNSHINE BAND THAT WAS ON TOP OF THE POPS JUST FOR THE 3 MINUTES WHEN ANY PUNK BAND AROUND THAT TIME PLAYED THERE LATEST RECORD (OR MIMED TO IT) I WOULD BE JUMPING AROUND FRONT ROOM ALL OVER THE FURNITURE , UNTIL I GET A BOLLOCKING OFF MY MOTHER

How was the New Zealand and Australian tour? Any funny stories?

THE TOUR OF AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND WAS GOOD FUN (THANKS TO TIM  AND EVERY ONE ELSE THAT HELPED OUT)ITS A BLOODY LONG WAY TO GO THOUGH ,WE LEFT HEATHROW ON THE SUNDAY NIGHT 31ST MAY AND THINK WITH THE TRAVELLING AND TIME DIFFERENCE WE ARRIVED ON  TUESDAY JUNE 2ND (SO TO US IT IS LIKE 2 DAYS TRAVELLING) WE HAD TO PLAY ON THE WENSDAY IN BRISBANE THEN STRAIGHT AFTER THE SHOW HAD TO DRIVE 11 HOURS TO GET TO THE SYDNEY SHOW  ,SO IT WAS A CASE OF GRABBING ANY REST THAT YOU COULD  WHEN YOU COULD (AS YOUR READ FROM THE ROAD TRIP REPORT) WE HADTOURED AUSTRALIA / NEW ZEALAND BEFORE  11 YEARS AGO AND IT WAS GREAT TO HEAR THAT  SOME OF THE GUYS AT THE SHOWS LAST TIME WE WAS THERE WERE TO YOUNG TO GET INTO THE VENUES  (MOST OF THE SHOWS ARE IN PUBS) AND WAS OUTSIDE JUST GETTING DRUNK AND FEELING PART OF THE NIGHT , NOW THEY ARE OLDER CAN GET IN AND REALLY FEEL PART OF THE GIG , AND OUTSIDE ARE A NEW LOT OF YOUNGSTERS GETTING DRUNK AND HEY MAYBE WE WILL MEET THOSE NEXT TIME (SOONER THAN 11 YEARS TIME WE HOPE)

And where does the Varukers bus head next?
WE HAVE A BUSY YEAR AHEAD OF US ,WE HAVE JUST RELEASED A NEW 8 TRACK(SUPOSE COULD SAY MINI ALBUM) CALLED KILLING MYSELF TO LIVE ON A NEW UK PUNK LABEL VILE RECORDS (CHECK IT OUT) AND WE GO ON TOUR IN SUPORT OF THAT  3 SHOWS IN FRANCE (PLAYING WITH OUR GOOD FRIENDS FROM BRAZIL RATOS DE PORAO),THEN WE HAVE SOME UK DATES IN AUG WITH DOOMSDAY HOUR FROM THE USA (CHECK  GIG PAGE) IN OCT WE TOUR THE USA WITH DOOMSDAY HOUR  AND IN NOV WE HAVE FIVE SHOWS IN ITALY, ALREADY WE ARE BOOKING SHOWS FOR NEXT YEAR ,HOPEFULLY BRAZIL.JAPAN ,RUSSIA AND OF COURSE MAINLAND EUROPE ,MIGHT HAVE TO EXTEND THE TOUR TO THIRTY AND A HALF ANIVERSARY TOUR , CONTACT THE BAND KEEP UP WITH THIER ANTICS AT  WWW.MY SPACE OFFICIAL VARUKERS.COM


ON THE ROAD IN NEW ZEALAND-KIWI KAOS WITH THE VARUKERS, WORDS & PHOTOS BY ROGER GRAUWMEIJER (C)


 
Christchurch reaped around 100 punters and was wild as in the pit. Got about a three hour catnap in my mate’s car before we hit the road for Welly. Rat & Ricardo headed straight for  cabins on the ferry but the rest of us had a great chance to get to know each other better on the journey. We all headed round to Tom Proctor’s for a fab feed Kathy laid on before heading down for soundcheck. Good crowd of around 80 with the pit goin’ pretty hard with lots of young crusties. Back to Tom & Kathy’s for some wind-down beers, much-needed showers and some kip. Good thing Kathy got Rat & I bunking down in the same room as we both snore big time but can sleep through the apocalypse! LOL. Biff took a turn driving on the road to New Plymouth as the front seats were more comfortable and he didn’t want a strained shoulder from the previous night ceasing up on him. Rat & Ricardo slept a deal of the way as usual. Tim arranges flight changes for Biff so he can go home a couple of days earlier. Weird pack of punters at Basement bar in NP – must be the bogan capital of the world. The only action in the pit was the guys from the support acts while all the others stood around like bobbleheads. Managed to have a good catch-up with Joe Lord over several beers upstairs before the gig. Tim & I crash at Craig & Skate’s for the night after dropping the guys off at the backpackers. Leisurely drive to Auckland getting in around 5pm. Dropped the guys off at the backpackers and headed out to collect some more T-shirts (were almost sold out by Welly so Tim ordered more) and a quick stop at Tim’s so he could have a quick catch-up with wife and child and print of Biff’s new e-tickets. Good crowd of around 100 again at Thirsty Dog and catch-ups galore before the show. Pud came over from Brisbane for the show, Die! Die! Die! frontman Andrew Wilson snuck up behind me to my surprise, Sean for Action Man Records finally gets his Punkfest DVD, the list goes on. I make a quick trip down to see Gareth at the Transmission Room to find out what time DiAnno’s on stage – 10.45 – should be doable, and was with a quick sprint down K’Rd&Queen, catch 2 DiAnno songs, and sprint back without missing an act. Boys played a good long set for their last show and the pit was going wild again! They kept the bar open well after the show so we could all relax a bit. Took a couple of band/crew shots as mementos (1 attached) before heading off for some kip. My accommodation had fallen through in Auckland but Sean was more than happy to crash at Dave’s (our roadie/driver) so I could catch the airport bus early in the morning (along with Biff). Burnt off a couple of DVDs of all the shots from the tour for the guys before turning in.
 

 

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SIOUXSIE AND THE BANSHEES

Siouxsie and the Banshees began as a time-filler back in 1975 when a band dropped out of the 100 Club Punk Festival. Siouxsie Sioux suggested to friend Steven Severin that they take the open spot, and Siouxsie, with her rocked out, sexed up hair and blackened eyes would become a fantasy for many during The Banshees 20 year career.

Asked to play again after their impromptu first appearance at another festival they enlisted two borrowed musicians, one being Sid Vicious on drums. The set was a 20-minutes of improvisation with ‘The Lord’s Prayer’ as its focal point.

Although plans were to de-band, requests for Siouxsie and Severin to continue on were so great that they decided to form a proper band. The Banshees experienced a revolving line-up during their years as a band. After finding Budgie in 1979 to play drums, The Banshees continued to struggle to find a permanent guitar player, even enlisting Robert Smith of The Cure on guitar while the band grappled to fill their line-up.

The Banshees had a difficult time getting a record deal, that Siouxsie speculated was due to being a famale fronted band, but eventually Polydor Records offered and released their first single, ‘Hong Kong Garden’ in 1978. In their impressive eleven records to follow The Banshees explored genres such as, punk, electro-pop, rock, and orchestra infused ballades.

Siouxsie Sioux is considered one of the most influential female vocalists, with PJ Harvey and Shirley Manson citing her as a major influence on their own music. Her goth-punk attire paired with her famously styled black hair made her a style icon among girls in the 70’s and 80’s, and a fantasy among boys (and some girls).

In 1995 after the release of, The Rapture, Poyldor decided to part ways with The Banshees even though their album had done well in sales. Once dropped from the label, the band decided it would be best to break-up. Siouxsie began a serious of one-off collaborations with the likes of Morrissey.

Although the band has been dormant since 2002 after their brief ‘Seven Year Itch’ tour, The BBC has decided to honour The Banshees with a 3-CD and DVD set, At The BBC. It includes digitally-remastered live recordings of all The Banshees’ classics along with a DVD of their Television appearances in the UK. It seems even The BCC agrees that Siouxie’s intoxicating voice is hard to quit.
 

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GENE VINCENT

Gene Vincent – The Screaming End.

Eugene Vincent Craddock was born on 11th of February 1935 in Norfolk Virginia and died on 12th October 1971 aged 36 after a life riddled with pain and incendury Rock N Roll. Eugene first picked up a guitar aged 12 and got the music bug. He joined the US Navy aged 18 and while still serving had a motorbike accident in 1955 that left him in permanent pain with a severe leg injury that would plague him for the rest of his life. Eugene became Gene Vincent in 1956 and with his band The Blue Caps recorded one of the all time classic Rockabilly hits ‘Be Bop A Lula’ for Capitol Records. Apart from Gene’s vocals the whole recording is perfect from the archetypal guitar solo to the hair-raising scream from the 15 year old drummer. The flip side ‘Woman Love’ was banned from radio airplay in the UK due to the BBC’s dislike of the slurred vocals and in their opinion veiled reference to VD (seriously). As well as the monster hit in that year Gene and The Blue Caps appeared in classic Rock flicks ‘The Girl Can’t Help It’ and ‘Hot Rod Gang’.

TV shows followed throughout the 50s as did a few minor hits but a whole shed load of legendary rocking recordings that never dented the charts. One of his best tracks ‘Race With The Devil’ flopped mainly because radio DJs didn’t like to spin records that mentioned ole Beelzebub, that was the sort of shit that he was up against. Gene reportedly began to hit the booze and drugs to combat the pain of his leg which may have also explained tales of trails of smashed hotel rooms and wild behaviour that followed Gene and the ever-changing Blue Caps. In 1957 they toured Australia with Little Richard and Eddie Cochran then in 1958 he lost his home due to reported tax debts. Gene Vincent came to the UK to a heroes welcome in 1959 where he was re-invented by Jack Good as the menacing, hunched, leg braced, tortured, black leather clad rebel that has become the image associated with him thereafter. Legend has it that when Gene made his first appearance on Good’s ‘Boy Meets Girl’ the latter was in the wings screaming ‘Limp you bugger limp’.

Tragedy struck in 1960 he was involved in the car crash that resulted in the death of his friend and rocker of equal legendary status Eddie Cochran and further trauma to his already agonising leg injury and fragile mental state. In 1961 he performed in Liverpool with a band named The Beatles as the support act. The pain induced demons that raged through Gene Vincent took hold resulting in alcoholism as the 1960s progressed and Rock N Roll was usurped by previous support act The Beatles and 60s Beat. Despite limited chart success he continued to be in demand for live performances and recorded right up until his untimely death due to a bleeding ulcer in 1971.

Gene Vincent will be always remembered for his iconic tortured hell-raising image and some of the wildest and most abandoned vocals ever to be put to wax as well as the most heart-felt. His sometimes hushed, sometimes desperate and always intense deliveries are all the more chilling as they were indeed truly tortured. Just have a listen to ‘Cat Man’, Gene Vincent – The Screaming End.
Simon Nott

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FASHION

When Alex Ogg wrote No More Heroes, there were many bands who had to be left out because of space considerations, or because he couldn’t track down appropriate interviewees. So, in what might become a regular feature for ViveLePunk, behold No More Heroes The Offcuts – which might one day end up being published as No More Heroes II, if Alex ever stops watching the cricket long enough.

To kick off, here’s a band many know for their later synth-chart incarnation, but who were pretty important on the early Brum punk scene.

Fàshiön

Luke Sky (aka Luke Skywalker; aka Al James; vocals/guitar), Jon Mulligan (bass/keyboards), Dik ‘Mamba’ Davis (drums)

One of Birmingham’s great punk era bands, albeit one with an obvious stylistic debt to Bowie and the Glam era, who looked like “they’d just fallen off a catwalk in outer space,” as Midlands journalist Nick Byng would recall. Fàshiön’s musical reference points spanned electronics to reggae as much as punk. They began rehearsing as early as 1977, playing their first show at the Bournbrook Hotel opening for the Mekons. “Me and the drummer were beaten up in the gents right before the show,” recalls Sky. Miki Cottrell produced their debut single on their own label, complete with ‘suicide motif’ sleeve to accompany the a-side’s closing gun shot effect (similar artwork, in that respect, to the Frantic Elevators’ subsequent ‘Holding Back The Years’ effort). A less controversial cover was felt appropriate for the subsequent reissue in March 1979, by which time it had picked up distribution through Miles Copeland’s Faulty Products. A second single – the rather splendid ‘Citinite’, followed in June 1979, gaining excellent reviews from the likes of Adrian Thrills and Phil Sutcliffe. Some have suggested the cover may have influenced Madonna’s ‘Vogue’, though we’re not entirely sure about that. It preceded an album cut at Grosvenor Studios in Birmingham, again with Cottrell. Two tracks were culled for an EP release, joined by a new third track, Sodium Pentathol Negative’, as a pure play for the American market. There was a three-month tour there, alongside supports to The Police and B-52’s and a UK club tour with U2.

Thereafter the line-up shuffled. Among the new contributors were Tony Dial (ex-Neon Hearts) and Troy Tate (Index, Shake, Teardrop Explodes etc). “The main reason that I was interested in the band and in fact went to the audition – I thought the audition was to be the guitarist in the band,” states Tate, “was that I had seen them when he was the front man very early on. It must have been about 1978/70 and he was great. It doesn’t get mentioned a lot but he was a great guitarist. I do recall when I got the call to go to the audition I had 4p in my pocket and was desperate for money/work. When I arrived it soon became apparent that they wanted me to sing. Luckily I had learned the lyrics so that I would know the song arrangements and I just bluffed it. When they offered me the job as singer it was a bit of a surprise but I was too broke to worry and just went for it. I also recall discussing the up coming tour and the shock at finding out that the first gig was to be in a week live on television. Ah, happy, wreckless days!"

But by then the group was well on the way to becoming, according to Sky, who bailed midway through the recording of a second album, a “lame, pretty boy disco new wave band – the stupid sods!” Marlon Recchi and Dee Harris also joined. Still, as he attests, Fàshiön do deserve their spot in the roll call of punk’s earliest movers, not least due to their being among the first to start a record label. Incidentally, Luke is the titular hero of ‘Luke Come Back’ on The Photos’ (then unreleased) Crystal Tips And Mighty Mice album. He continues to record solo (www.fashionlukesky.com, where you can also score copies of the excellent Product Perfect). Davis and Mulligan would later join Tin Tin. Davis passed away in the mid-90s (“still to thid day the best drummer I ever played with,” notes Sky) while Cottrell, his best friend from school days, died from pancreatic cancer in 2000.

Discography:

Steady Eddie Steady/Killing Time 7-inch (Fashion Music Prod. FM-1 November 1978; reissued with new sleeve March 1979)

Citinite/Wastelife 7-inch (Fashion Music Prod. FM-2 June 1979)

Product Perfect LP (July 1979)
(reissued on CD in 2009)
Product Perfect / Die In The West / Red, Green and Gold / Burning Down / Big John-Hanoi Annoys Me-Innocent / Citinite / Don’t Touch Me / Black Boys / Fashion / Technofascist
(a second version, issued through Illegal Records and retitled Product Perfect Europe, added the tracks from the first single. “It must have come out after June 1980 when I left the band,” notes Sky, “because in the run-off groove it says ‘But for Luke 78/80’ – we were into scratching cryptic messages into the vinyl when mastering the discs. Others that spring to mind were ‘It’s a toilet, man!’, which was our reference to Nick Jones of Faulty’s comment on some of the first London gigs he got us, and ‘got no bread, have to have toaste’ – Dik going through his Marie Antoinette phase Brum style.” Reissued on CD in 2009 with same running order but original ‘Big John/Hanoi Annoys Me/Innocent tracks separated)

The Innocent 7-inch EP (IRS IR-9502 September 1979)
The Innocent/Red Green & Gold/Sodium Pentathol Negative

 

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VIDEO KILLED THE RADIO STAR – MORAL DILEMMA


Welcome to our new VLP video section, Video Killed The Radio Star. Every few weeks we’ll post a new video for you to enjoy. The first one is London punks Moral Dilemma.

MORAL DILEMMA

Live at London’s Camden Underworld, May 2009. Catch Moral Dilemma live at Rebellion Festival in Blackpool on August 7th.

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REBELLION FESTIVAL

With the worlds’ biggest and greatest punk festival about to rock Blackpool again at the start of August, Vive Le Punk caught up with Rebellions main man Darren Russell to find out what hes got planned for 2009!


The King Blues

What bands are you looking forward to seeing at Rebellion this year Darren?
The King Blues who i think are the best band in the UK, Flogging Molly who are a truly awesome live band, Killing Joke for sure, and some things in Bizarre Bazaar stage like Adrian Edmondsen and the Bad Shepherds, The Bay City Rollers & Gong and some good new bands if i can like The Blame, The Exposed & Jaya the Cat and of course the Adicts are always great.


Killing Joke

Were you a Killing Joke fan back in the day?
I was really into the Crass anarcho thing at the time but i had a few singles and the first album which still sounds great now.

And the Animals and even Derek Faulkners Bay City Rollers are on this year!!
Yes we have been trying lots of variety of the last few years. Chas & Dave always do well, and we have had the Sweet, Slade & the Animals before. We like to consider ourselves as more than just a straightforward punk
festival.

And finally- you have a few other shows pencilled in for Holland and Londo soon- can you tell us about them?

Cock Sparrer in Amsterdam is already sold out, we have 4 Skins at Amsterdam Melkweg on December 5. Next year Cock Sparrer are doing 2 nights at London Forum March 26 & 27 and we are planning a Rebellion in Venice in the spring.

VIVE LE PUNKS TEN TO CHECK AT REBELLION 2009

1.U.K SUBS. Charlies Brit punks are onfire again and will roll out all the
hits.
2.THE KING BLUES. Best band in the uk right now.
3KILLING JOKE. Originla lineup reformed to rock Blackpool.
4.FLOGGING MOLLY. Lets all go hooley crazy on Thursday night!


The Freeze

5.THE FREEZE Rare U.K show from 80s US punks.
6.SHAME ACADEMY Members of Irish legends the Outcasts and Rudi -dont miss em!
7.THE BANNED. Reformed 76′ Roxy punks-will they be any good tho?
8.THE ADICTS. Blackpool faves
9.SICK ON THE BUS. Biff and hte boys always rock!
10.SONIC BOOM SIX. Ragga, hip hop , punk machine!

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POLL RESULTS (JULY)


Last month we asked:

WHO IS THE GREATEST OUTLAW ROCKER EVER?

EDDIE COCHRAN 34.3%

JOHNNY CASH 31.5%
JERRY LEE LEWIS 20.4%
GENE VINCENT 10.2%
CHUCK BERRY 3.7%

Now vote for who you think was the best ska band of the 2-Tone era.

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JULY ISSUE LIVE REVIEWS

Vive Le Punk Presents…
VIVE LE PUNK
London South Of The Border
April 9th
4/5
Roll up, roll up for a night of punk rock mayhem that is the first ever Vive Le Punk gig night, taking place at the all new South Of The Border in London’s Old Street.
Hidden away in this Mexicola basement is what turns out to be the best punk party I have been to in a long while and officially the best way to kick start the Easter weekend on a Thursday.
First up of tonight’s trio was THE HATEFUL, who are straight-up London punkers and a snarling amalgamation of the Ramones and the Pistols. They were incredibly tight, so if you think you’ve heard it all before I recommend you listen to it all again.
Secondly we had the delightful JOHNNY THROTTLE. Don’t be mislead by the influx of Johnny based names: these guys are hard-hitting, blood curdling screamers that have resurrected Iggy for one last stage dive into a willing crowd.
Band of the night was our darling headliners, the glamorous, the burlesque, THE FABULOUS PENETRATORS. At first I could hardly believe my eyes, but then I couldn’t believe my ears! It was a surly and superb mix of styles that was all baker boy hats and glittery make-up, which caused the whole basement to shake from the lounge lizard swing. These jumpy disco boogie boys turned the night from spitting on the walls to a night of ‘sing a long, even if you don’t know it’.
In summary, certain T4 presenters couldn’t get in, certain members of a recent radio scandal (the granddaughter) were hanging around and our very own El Prez was on the decks. Whatever you do don’t miss the next one!

Hazel Savage

The next Vive Le Punk night will be in July

SATANTIC STOMP
Halle 101, Speyer, Germany
April 11th-12th
5/5
The mainstream music press started knocking nails in the coffin of psychobilly, the genre that refuses to die, back in the 1980s and have continued to do so ever since. Rarely has an obituary been so premature Almost thirty years after The Meteors first screamed that their brother was a zombie hundreds of multicoloured psychobillies walked en masse in George Romero-esque misery after being turned away from this sold out festival. This 22nd Satanic Stomp was back at its spiritual home of Speyer after a brief relocation last year. That was a very modern Hellcat-dominated event but this year had an old school feeling about it. Day one of the two-day gore fest featured an excellent festival debut from UK trio the WHIP CRACKIN’ DADDIES whose macabre rockabilly acted as perfect aperitif for the main course of Klub Foot favourites including a welcome return of THE WIGGSVILLE SPLIFFS, and stomping smile along with THE LONG TALL TEXANS whilst veteran US stalwarts THE QUAKES waved the flag for the States with a barnstorming performance from front-man Paul Roman. DEMENTED ARE GO followed in full horror mode with a rasping set of classic sickness. Headliners and highlight of the first day was a triumphant set from the GUANA BATZ, frontman Pip belied the years as he jumped, joked and screamed his way through a set that tested the wrecking pit to its very limits. A DJ set until 4am ensured that stamina was tested to the full.
Day two dawned at around lunchtime with the packed parking lot-cum-campsite strewn with booze casualties from day one’s exertions dozing in the sun. Once again sad eyed psychos were turned away in their hundreds as day two sold out as fast as day one. The action in Halle 101 was frenetic but the audience slightly more subdued no doubt due to the boozed up aural and physical battering they had taken the day before. The bands soon whipped the crowd’s stamina back to acceptable levels with mustachio-ed  shenanigans from THE ROCKABILLY MAFIA and an excellent performance by THE LUCKY DEVILS who gave it some French style. Old school favourites THE COFFIN NAILS showcased a chunk of their new album as well as old favourites before a memorable encore when amply proportioned Humungous stripped down to a ‘mankini’ which horrified and amused in equal measure. MAD DOG COLE followed and rocked the joint with a mixture of MDC’s old Krewmen material as well as their own songs which saw veteran warbler all over the stage and speakers. MAD SIN’s show also featured a large chunk of older songs and put up one of the performances of the weekend. The REVEREND HORTON HEAT had a hard act to follow but did so in his usual professional polished style winding down a weekend that was hard going physically but propelled by some of the best Psychobilly performers ever in top form. Next year, book early, get a cheap flight to Frankfurt and be there because the Satanic Stomp is Psychobilly heaven.

Simon Nott

Big Cheese Presents…
PROPAGANDHI
London Islington Academy
April 19th
5/5
The excitement in Islington Academy is palpable by the time that Canadian melodic hardcore punk heroes PROPAGANDHI take the stage. Excitement is replaced by confusion and amusement as Clive Jones of early ‘70s Leicester metallers Black Widow plays the flute and introduces the band. Quickly forgotten, the Winnipeg quartet open with the title track from their new album ‘Supporting Caste’ and are soon ripping through fan favourites such as ‘A Speculative Fiction’, ‘Less Talk More Rock’ and the mighty ‘Back To The Motor League’, sending the crowd into a frenzy. New tracks such as ‘Dear Coach’s Corner’ and ‘Human(e) Meat’ sit comfortably alongside songs from their previous four albums. Propagandhi are unsurprisingly as tight as they are on record, with dual guitars, a thundering rhythm section and Chris Hannah’s note-perfect and passionate vocals blowing everyone away. The old-school fans were treated to the ‘gandhi classic ‘Anti-Manifesto’ and the Zionism and religion attacking ‘Haillie Sellasse, Up Your Ass’. Thankfully, the preaching is kept to a minimum, with Hannah and co. letting the songs do most of the talking, but the band are surprisingly fun, inviting a fan onstage to sing ‘Fuck The Border’ and joking about being “guys who are almost 40 and still dress like we’re 16”. Encoring with the return of the caped Clive Jones for a cover of his band’s ‘Come To The Sabbat’ before blowing the roof off with the blistering ‘Purina Hall Of Fame’, the night ends with Hannah’s face melting guitar solo and a set that left the crowd picking their jaws up from the floor.
Ian Chaddock

Big Cheese Presents…
NOFX
SNUFF, THE FLATLINERS, POUR HABIT
London 02 Shepherds Bush Empire
May 3rd
5/5
Our openers at this second London Fat Wreck extravaganza come in the form of recent signers POUR HABIT.  Harking back to an early SoCal sound with a heavy dose of Compton roots mixed in, the band whip up a tasty circle pit in no time, and while singer Chuck Green may look a far cry from the emo sheen of Davey Havok, the vocals spouting from his lips could fool you otherwise.
Next up are Toronto’s THE FLATLINERS, a band barely out of their school uniforms but with a punk sound that’s solidified their name on the Canadian scene.  Providing a nice middle ground for the show, these guys aren’t really much to write home about, but probably worthy of a place on a Fat Wrek sampler.
Brit legends SNUFF mark our strike three on this sunny Sunday evening and the reception from the stalls on their entrance is one of true anarchic admiration. Over twenty years young, with an iconic ska punk sound that’s impossible to pigeon hole, classic songs like ‘Whatever Happened To The Likely Lads’, ‘Nick Northern’ and the slur-along to beat all slur-alongs ‘Arsehole’ all crop up in a performance that shows no signs of wear, despite the bands on/off career.
Unstoppable since their birth, NOFX’s album output has never faltered with mark 12 ‘Coaster’ (or ‘Frisbee’ on vinyl) hitting shops last month.  Although we get a nice taster from this, most of the set is happily made up from their massive arsenal of favourites including a mix of faster tracks like ‘I’m Telling Tim’, ‘Bob’ and ‘Seeing Double At The Triple Rock’, chilled out reggae ditties like ‘Eat The Meek’ and ‘Reeko’ and a furious five minute, six song splurge in the middle. NOFX aren’t all about the music though: half of the laughs are…well, the laughs, with tonight’s banter ranging from discussions over Fat Mike’s nipples, to a mini breakdancing sesh from the ‘illustrious’ El Hefe.  Everybody leaves with a smile on their face: a true laugh riot night from the Bill Hickses of punk rock.

Tom Williams

GROEZROCK
Meerhot, Belgium
April 17th-18th
4/5
Belgium’s answer to the Vans Warped Tour, Groezrock is without a doubt Belgium’s premium punk and hardcore festival, mixing a commanding line-up together with a huge atmosphere that would challenge even the largest of festivals.
From the hardcore sounds of AMEN RA to the ska soundtrack of CATCH 22, this year’s line-up stepped it up in terms of variety.
THE LIVING END celebrated their first time back in Belgium for eight years, sounding and looking excellent on stage as true professionals. Cover songs abounded throughout the weekend, with THE VANDALS coming up with a typically amusing version of Queen’s 1978 hit ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’. Although THE AQUABATS covered Rolling Stones’ ‘Paint It Black’, this was not a highlight of the weekend with a mixed reaction of obscenities and salutations.
NO FUN AT ALL, the Swedish punk rock band, formed back in 1991 and even after all these years and several line-up changes, they still pull together for an amazing performance, as did BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE, with an electric atmosphere and their loyal army of fans.
Although RISE AGAINST were on top form and produced an awesome show, NOFX managing to squeeze out an almost complete set stole the weekend and blew everything else out of sight.

Daniel Talbot

GALLOWS
London Madam Jo Jo’s
April 29th
5/5
Stages weren’t meant for Frank Carter. Within, oh, about five seconds he’s bounded off the tiny platform inside the super-intimate Jo Jo’s where GALLOWS have decided to cap off a screening of the ‘Grey Britain’ DVD with an invite-only show and scampered up onto the overlooking balcony, merrily passing the microphone and bellowing in the faces of industry types as Lags, Stu, Steph and Lee crank out the life-affirming racket that is ‘Grey Britain’, tearing their way through the likes of ‘Death Voices’ and ‘Leeches’ with a recharged level of passion and aggression. On top form with Frank cracking jokes and Stu introducing ‘Belly Of A Shark’ (one of only a couple of ‘Orchestra Of Wolves’ songs played, showing the confidence the five-piece have in their new material), it takes little time for a circle pit to develop inside the bespoke venue, with friends and family leading the charge. Fantastic.

Jim Sharples

THE LIVING END
Camden Koko
April 22nd
5/5
THE LIVING END’s only London show of their three-gig whistle-stop tour was a sell-out packed house and the band rose to the occasion. They kicked off with one of the new songs ‘Raise The Alarm’ in stomping fashion before wading into classic ‘Roll On’ not giving the crowd chance to draw breath then mixed it all up for the rest of the set with older more familiar material blending well with the new. Bassist Scott Owen is definitely going to be in trouble with bass lovers as he abused his instrument, mercilessly slapping, dragging and mounting it all over the stage. Chris Cheney showed similar scant regard for his guitar, throttling out lightning fast licks as he circumnavigated the stage conquering Andy Stachan’s drums in the process. The band’s anthem ‘Prisoner Of Society’ still takes pride of place in the set and is played with as much venom and power as it was when it propelled the band into superstardom in Australia over a decade ago resulting in raised heckles and a thousand fists accompanied by every voice in the house singing the chorus at the top of their lungs. Not resting on their laurels it was straight back to the new with ‘How Do We Know’ rolling into party piece ‘E-Boogie’ where the drum and slap bass showcased before Cheney played slide with a frothing beer bottle on a guitar of many a dream before necking the remaining booze to  rapturous cheers. Last song was ‘White Noise’ which already sounds like an anthem but we knew they’d be back, melancholy but rockin’ ‘Wake Up’ surprised a few but not as much as an impromptu rendition of ‘Jailbreak’ before back to a thunderous and fitting Living End finale ‘West End Riot’ which had the Koko crowd throbbing in unison. Once again The Living End proved that they are one of the best live bands on the planet.

Simon Nott

 

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JULY RECORD REVIEWS

GREEN DAY
21ST CENTURY BREAKDOWN
(Reprise)
Ambitious return from legendary trio.
3/5
“Sing us the song of the century” sings Billie Joe Armstrong by way of introduction, lost in a static mist before the trio kick into the muscular power-pop of the title track and single ‘Know Your Enemy’, heralding the arrival of first act ‘Heroes And Cons’. As far as ambition goes, ‘21st Century Breakdown’ has it in spades, from the concept (main characters Gloria and Christian’s journey across the United (and not so united) States,
witnessing bonfires of ideals and morals from paranoia and the rise of the Christian right. Recalling the likes of The Who and U2 more so than, say, Black Flag, Armstrong, Dirnt and Cool have created an album that, were it a few tracks shorter, would be a masterstroke. However, the likes of ‘Before The Lobotomy’, ‘Peacemaker’ and ‘Restless Heart Syndrome’ bloat an album that would have been genuinely fantastic, muddying the narrative along the way. However, the sheer infectiousness of the Tom Petty-esque ‘Last Of The American Girls’ and ’21 Guns’, coupled with the rip and roll of ‘Murder City’ sees ‘21st Century Breakdown’ destined to climb the same heights as ‘American Idiot’ – perhaps even surpassing it.
Jim Sharples
 
Also Available:
‘39/Smooth’ 1990
‘Kerplunk’ 1992
‘Dookie’ 1994
‘Insomniac’ 1995
‘Nimrod’ 1997
‘Warning’ 2000
‘American Idiot’ 2004

ANTI-FLAG
THE PEOPLE OR THE GUN
(SideOneDummy)
Plenty to say on Pittsburgh punks’ ninth full-length.
4/5
Anti-Flag’s first album with SideOneDummy was recorded at their own studio that they built in Pittsburgh so they could record an album ‘on their own terms’. They have come up with some material that is going to win them a whole host of new fans with songs like their opening track ‘Sodom, Gomorrah, Washington D.C.’ which is definitely as catchy as everyone is telling us swine flu could be. The topics of their angry (but slightly more melodic) and still furiously paced punk are bang up to date. Job losses, rebellion, politicians’ consciences and religion rammed down throats are all battered about with their trademark holler and chant-back vocals. Since the band had all the time in the world to put down this their new slab of anti-establishment it is perhaps surprising that the album is barely 30 minutes long (with a pretty throwaway hidden track to boot), though the 11 tracks are thought-provoking. That hidden song forgotten, maybe the clue is in the anthem of the closing track, the rabble-rousing ‘The Old Guard’, which could well be a joyous out with Bush and in with the Obama celebration. If correct, it would explain why Anti-Flag appear to be less venomous and pissed off, but the great tunes shine through, albeit only 10 times. Not angry enough to write ‘get mad about’  material in this dawn of a new age of hope maybe?
Simon Nott

Also Available:
‘Die For The Government’ 1996
‘Their System Doesn’t Work For You’ 1998
‘A New Kind Of Army’ 1999
‘Underground Network’ 2001
‘Mobilize’ 2002
‘The Terror State’ 2003
‘For Blood And Empire’ 2006
‘The Bright Lights Of America’ 2008

ASSEMBLE HEAD
WHEN SWEET SLEEP RETURNED
(Tee Pee)
Hallucinatory guitar grooves from San Francisco.
4/5
Assemble Head’s expansive guitar sound stretches out between California‘s sun-bleached canyons and the further limits of overdriven space-rock, with a heavy nod towards the acid-blasted sounds of the late-sixties west-coast and more than a hint of early Floyd and Hawkwind at work to boot. When Sweet Sleep Returned is an exploratory sonic sweep, propelled by limber psyche-rock grooves into shimmering, tranced-out realms. It‘s beguiling enough to have your hardened Cheese scribe driveling away like an old hippie, but this particular headspace is no bad place to be. So wipe that smirk off your face, punk, and don’t bum me out. It may well do the same for you.
Hugh Gulland

BLACK PRESIDENT
BLACK PRESIDENT
(People Like You)
Punk rock supergroup strikes black gold.
5/5
Formed by Circle Jerks/Bad Religion axe-man Greg Hetson and Goldfinger guitarist Charlie Paulson, Black President are a brash collective comprised from some of the gnarliest punk rock talent the underground has to offer. But despite Hetson’s recent departure, this debut shows no signs of flaccidity: in fact it’s pretty damn hardcore! 14 tracks of classic punk rock built for bar room brawls, with a cheeky Motorhead number thrown in for good measure, can we really ask for more? Well, maybe a tour with Bouncing Souls this June. If you were wondering, the name came before Obama – ain’t life just hilarious?
Tom Williams

THE BOLSHEVIKS
ACTION REACTION
(Red Square)
Old Bristol punks deliver the goods.
4/5
When these long-running punks split recently, it proved to be so brief that it made TSOL’s hiatus look like a few decades in the wilderness. But hey, we’d have missed the old buggers if they’d stayed away. And the same goes for the Bolsheviks! This new album on their own Red Square imprint is darned good. The predominant influence on a lot of these 11 tracks seems to be old school NY punk, with plenty of nods to R&B (in the old sense) and the spirit of the Clash is never too far away. Crunchy funky closer ‘The Need’ is the stand out track, but there’s no filler here.
Shane Baldwin

DRUGLORDS OF THE AVENUES
SING SONGS
(Red Scare)
A definite grower from Swingin’ Utters vocalist’s new side-project.
3/5
Druglords of the Avenues are a punk supergroup, comprising of Swingin’ Utters, Knuckle Up, Moonshine, Butterface and Hot Heresy members, so I didn’t think it was wrong to expect my bollocks to be blown off by this debut album. Unfortunately for my astronomically high expectations, we’re merely presented with serviceable street punk. Fronted by the haunting, gruff vocals of Johnny Bonnel (the man does have a beautiful voice), on first listen this just didn’t click. Repeat listening shows the record to be one of depth, lyrical intelligence and a stealth-ninja-style way of getting trapped in your head. Special mention goes to the fantastic artwork.
Ian Dransfield

DUSTY RHODES AND THE RIVER BAND
PALACE AND STAGE
(SideOneDummy)
Swirling, huge sounds with no pigeon hole.
3/5
I suppose these days with the world’s biggest punk band releasing what has been described as rock opera, this isn’t totally out of place. This album is one you have to sit back and listen to while it swirls around you unwrapping its layers as it goes. And layered it is, you name it (possibly with the exception of punk) it’s all here. Folk, rock and country are probably the bedrock of this album as it takes you on a journey of harmonic vocal-related laments and misdeeds. The general feel of the album can be unnervingly dark in places, but it certainly is quality.
Simon Nott

FISHBONE
LIVE IN BORDEAUX
(Ter A Terre)
Live album and DVD from these often overlooked funk metallers.
3/5
Back in the funk metal explosion of the early ‘90s, poor old Fishbone blew up and then were somewhat left by the wayside. However, they still whip it up live, the thing they have done best all these years. Anyone who has seen this madcap circus will tell you what fun they are so this live album and DVD does its best to capture the madness. On the whole it succeeds, although I suspect just the DVD would be enough as its good to see and hear the mayhem. Somehow though, it just isn’t the same as seeing them in the flesh – you need to feel the sweat.
Miles Hackett

FLIPPER
GENERIC / GONE FISHIN’ / PUBLIC FLIPPER LIMITED
(Domino)
Essential recordings from the SF artcore giants.
4/5 / 4/5 / 4/5
A vital influence on the 1980s hardcore scene, yet cussedly at odds with it, Flipper emerged from the San Francisco punk scene at the end of the ‘70s and trailblazed their driving dissonant noise across the US underground for the next half-decade or so. These two studio albums and the double live ‘Ltd’ collection reveal Flipper as an abrasive, provocative and highly inventive combo, melding their morbid humour with a nagging punk-core grind, their white-heat guitar noise shot through with an experimental jazziness that yields in places – the prime example being the classic ‘Sex Bomb’. The most demented don’t-give-a-fuck freeform flip-outs this side of the Stooges’ ‘Funhouse’.
Hugh Gulland

JOE COFFEE
WHEN THE FABRIC DIDN’T FIT THE FRAME
(I-Scream)
Lumbering and rumbling Joe hits low.
3/5
Joe Coffee hail from the mean streets of New York City and play gritty, mid-paced garage rock in a low down and dirty manner that will have aficionados of such sounds in raptures. The almost totally self-penned songs are as understated and morose as the fella on the cover  (though thankfully better performed than he is drawn), although they do perk up a bit with the odd sax honk in the more ‘cheerful’ songs. The whole album sounds slightly ‘muddy’ but that does really go with the ambience that deep voiced Joe and crew are hoping to put across.
Simon Nott

THE MAHONES
IRISH PUNK COLLECTION
(Stumble)
Canadian paddy punk.
4/5
Fast approaching their 10th year in existence, the Mahones pull out all the stops on this, their eighth album. Like most bands playing this sort of thing, they lack the dangerous, slightly seedy edge that Shane MacGowan gives to the Pogues, but the Mahones are boisterous, uplifting and a hell of a lot of fun. Their own songs like ‘Drunken Lazy Bastard’ and ‘Drunken Night In Dublin’ (do we spot a trend here?) are top notch. Scruffy Wallace from Dropkick Murphys guests on ‘Amsterdam Song’, and there are also creditable versions of ‘Irish Rover’ and traditional song ‘Whiskey In The Jar’ that the likes of me know from the 1972 Thin Lizzy single.
Shane Baldwin

MOB RESEARCH
HOLY CITY ZOO
(Echozone)
Killing Joke’s Raven’s last recording.
4/5
With his sudden death, the colourful life of bassist Paul Raven was celebrated by a shocked rock world last year. And his death was not only a great loss to his long-term bands Killing Joke and Ministry, he was also in the final stages of recording this debut for the star-studded Mob Research. For fans of KJ and Ministry, it won’t disappoint. With Warrior Soul’s Korey Clarke on vocals and members from Queens of the Stone Age and the Mission, ‘Holy City Zoo’ is a sonic slice of 21st century rock ‘n’ roll. At times concrete-like heavy and with just the right amount of Warrior Soul swagger, Mob Research were looking like real heavyweight prospects. R.I.P Raven.
El Prez

NICK WELSH
THE SOHO SESSIONS
(Moon Ska World)
Debut solo slice from the superstar of ska.
5/5
Nick Welsh (aka King Hammond) has run the 2-tone gamut in his time, lending word-slinging and musical skills to bands as diverse as The Selecter, Bad Manners and Skaville UK, to name but a few. ‘The Soho Sessions’, his first solo effort, compiles all the choicest morsels from his accredited writing and recording career in kickback acoustic format and, truth be told, the man has never sounded better. From leisurely classics like ‘Return Of The Ugly’ and ‘Memory Train’ to lesser known, but equally smooth, tracks like ‘Outrageous’, this one’s bound to have you digging in the attic for those 7” originals. Set your skank to slo-mo: this record is a chair dance extravaganza. 
Tom Williams

NO DIRECTION
NO DIRECTION
(Nicotine)
Anglo-Finnish rock ‘n’ roll machine.
4/5
Containing past and present members of the Vibrators, the Wildhearts and Tokyo Dragons, and a European mix of half Finnish, half English, No Direction convene under a united flag of pure, full-on rock ‘n’ roll. Taking a trademark Scandinavian sound of greased up riffs, sideburns and songs about their ‘Dead End Generation’, ND have made a fresh sounding mix of Social Distortion and the Backyard Babies at their ‘Total 13’ best. And with potential hits like ‘Skip Tomorrow’ and ‘Right Today’ along for the ride, they are most definitely heading in the ‘right’ direction. BC is trying to get them to play our Vive Le Punk club night, so you’ve been warned!
El Prez

NORTH LINCOLN
MIDWESTERN BLOOD
(No Idea)
Long-awaited second album from Michigan gruff punk rockers.
4/5
Celebrating their 10th anniversary this summer, fans of this Grand Rapids, MI band will be excited to finally hear their new album, following a two year lull between recording and release. Thankfully, it was worth the wait. Their raw, dual-vocalled punk songs sound more powerful and honest than ever, and instrumental stretches (and perfect cover art) add to their helpless but not hopeless lyrics. Hot Water Music and Jawbreaker fans will enjoy the heart-on-sleeve grittiness of ‘Bridge Jumpers’, ‘All This Time’ and upbeat closer ‘Siblings’ – the light at the end of the tunnel with the final lyrics “I’m strong now, so much stronger than I’ve known”. Album three is on the way too…
Ian Chaddock

PARANOID VISIONS
BEWARE OF THE GOD
(FOAD)
Reformed Irish anarcho punks.
3/5
Paranoid Visions formed in Dublin way back in 1981, joining in the anarcho punk scene with gusto, releasing records on their own FOAD label, licensed to All The Madmen, and playing with bands like Poison Girls, the Subhumans and the Instigators before splitting in 1992. They reformed in 1996 to support the Sex Pistols, then again in 2001 and 2005, and have continued since, releasing a new album, ’40 Shades Of Gangreen’, a couple of years ago. And here they are again, still dark, brooding, and angry as all hell, with a rather spiffing, nicely produced new album. ‘I Am The One’ is especially fine, a pumping crowd pleaser, but there’s really nothing to disappoint here.
Shane Baldwin

SHOOK ONES
THE UNQUOTABLE A.M.H.
(Paper + Plastick)
Rousing third full-length from Seattle melodic hardcore punks.
5/5
With two storming albums of Kid Dynamite-loving melodic hardcore punk and an exhilirating live show, Shook Ones are one hell of a band. As hinted at with recent releases, ‘The Unquotable A.M.H.’ is their most uplifting and melodic (but pleasingly not overproduced) record to date, with vocalist Scott’s raw voice mixing perfectly with infectious guitar lines and hooks on ‘For Collards’ and the melodic punk anthems ‘For Flannel’ and ‘They’re Very “Yes”’. More None More Black than Kid Dynamite here, this is a stunning album right up to the passionate crescendo of closer ‘Tip The Weatherman’ and looks set to be my soundtrack of the summer. Play it loud and sing along.
Ian Chaddock

SYMARIP
MOONSTOMPIN’ AT CLUB SKA
(Moon Ska World)
Skinhead reggae originators reform to shake your ass!
5/5
They’ve gone by The Bees, Seven Letters, Zubada and The Pyramids since their late ‘60s origins, but Symarip are undeniably one of the most iconic bands in ska history, accredited with kick-starting the skinhead movement. Now brought back to life 35 years on by former members Monty Neysmith and Roy ‘Kaleb’ Ellis, this is truly as authentic as British ska can get. Recorded live at London’s premier ska club, the album oozes West Indian riddim’ and good times and by the end you’ll be green with envy that you didn’t get your tickets. Luckily, there’s a bonus 90 minute DVD to show exactly what you missed. 
Tom Williams

VARIOUS ARTISTS
LOS SUAVES NEGROS – TURBONEGRO TRIBUTE
(Despot)
Bossanova Turbonegro covers, assuming you need ‘em.
3/5
That‘s right, this is lounge/bossa Turbonegro, and the ugly spectre of the funny-for-five-minutes Nouvelle Vague looms large. As with the latter’s punk-samba efforts, this is agreeable enough for a couple of tracks, but the compulsion to hit the eject yelling ‘Okay, I GET it’ is overpowering. In other words, life’s too short. That said, it’s pleasant enough taken as easy listening ear candy and maybe says something for the adaptability of the ’negro’s songs, if adaptability counts for anything with a song catalogue as cock-fixated as the Scandinavian leather boys’.
Hugh Gulland

 

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AUGUST VIVE LE PUNK LIVE TOMORROW!

The August issue of Vive Le Punk will be live tomorrow, Wed 8th July with a whole bunch of new features and reviews. Stay tuned for stuff on Siouxsie and the Banshess , the Specials, Gene Vincent and more!!

 

FREE gig listings-remember to list all your gigs now on the site!!

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