Psychobilly stalwarts return reanimated.

Legends of the psychobilly scene who made their name with classics like ‘I See Red’ have been surfing the tsunami of renewed interest in the genre. Always an innovative band, they emerged as forerunners once again with brand new release ‘In The Blood’ on People Like You, slap bass vocalist Steve Whitehouse explained: “It is the ultimate album for us. We spent a long time getting the best sound and we actually wrote it as ‘an album’ rather than just a bunch of songs chucked together .I find myself being influenced more and more by things that are happening around me, a lot of stuff winds me up”. Psychobilly was originally dismissed as a gimmick but thirty years later is still a worldwide genre but Steve is not surprised: “Like a lot of cult scenes it differs from the mainstream by having devoted followers, people are really into the music for the true love of it. There is a whole new young scene that has developed over the last five to ten years too, breathing a whole new lease of life into it. It’s happening in a lot of other countries too, especially the USA and it’s great.”
Frenzy have clearly influenced the new generation of bands, vindicating the innovation they were often berated for.
“It is really flattering to know and makes us feel like all the hard work was worth it. We have spoken to a lot of bands that have become really big, some that have even gone on to influence us, we’re chuffed our music has been the reason they got into a band. You can hear a lot of Frenzy influence in bands from periods when we were getting slagged off for being too progressive, go figure. Frenzy are always innovative. That’s why psychobilly started in the first place, to stick a finger up to the festering rock ‘n’ roll scene.”
The band see the signing to PLY as another step on the road to bigger things: “People Like You have given us a great opportunity to reach new people and expand on our fan-base we have been touring relentlessly to get the word out about our new material, but there is only so much you can do. ‘In The Blood’ needed something much bigger.”

‘In The Blood’ is out now on People Like You

Simon Nott

TIGER ARMY – III: Ghost Tigers Rise
NEKROMANTIX – Brought Back To Life


Righteously raw punk ‘n’ roll.

Lucifer Star Machine make the kind of music that gets played in scuzzy dive bars, and their fans love it that way.  Ever since releasing their first single on their own label in 2006, the band has been attracting more and more attention for their gritty brand of rock and roll.  The band mixes classic punk, sleazy ‘80s rock, and sneering vocals together, and with song titles like ‘Venom Milkshake’ and ‘Disco Hard On,’ Lucifer Star Machine avoid any sort of polite pretensions.  Their raucous, take-no-prisoners live shows further cement their reputation as down and dirty, no frills rockers.  They’re currently at work on their third album, and are readying to release their albums in the States.  While the band continues to record, tour and gain more attention, it’s clear that they won’t have to sell their soul to Lucifer in order to find wider success. 

‘Street Value Zero’ is out now on Nicotine

THE RAMONES – The Ramones
MOTORHEAD – Ace Of Spades
THE MISFITS – Walk Among Us


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Were you at Rebellion Festival in Blackpool this year? Then you need the new issue of Big Cheese!

A ‘Rebellion Rockers’ special issue, it features BAD RELIGION, THE KING BLUES and GALLOWS on the cover, all of whom played storming sets at Rebellion. The three discuss what punk means to them in 2010. This isn’t to be missed!

There’s also your Top 20 Greatest Punk Bands Ever (including THE CLASH, DEAD KENNEDYS, RAMONES and more!) and a free punk CD (with tracks from COCK SPARRER, BAD RELIGION, THE KING BLUES, FRENZY, SICK OF IT ALL and more!

For more info and to find out how to order CLICK HERE.


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Welcome to the magazine you’ve been waiting for!

VIVE LE ROCK is proud to bring you the Bad Boys of rock ‘n’ roll! From punk and new wave, glam and garage through to mod and primal rock ‘n’ roll, and even the darker side of alt-rock, VIVE LE ROCK will serve up the very best from the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s and beyond!


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It has been over thirty years since the band’s inception and since they recorded their first album and now the Crassical Collection is finally here, and the first release is the newly mastered The Feeding of the Five Thousand. After many years of being out of print, this legendary album has been restored from the original analogue studio tapes, repackaged and bolstered by rare and unreleased tracks, and stunning new artwork from Gee Vaucher, who has lovingly created what could only be considered a real artefact.
Included in this package is a 64-page booklet featuring all lyrics along with extensive liner notes from band members Penny Rimbaud and Steve Ignorant, which shed light on the making of the record. Also included is CD-sized recreation of the iconic original fold- out poster sleeve.





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Last month we asked:




You were right! Check out this fan footage (by YouTube user YouMustBleed) of SLF’s Rebellion set, playing ‘Suspect Device’:

Now vote for what new album you’re looking forward to hearing!


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Beki Bondage from UK punks Vice Squad has paved the way for female fronted rock n’ roll bands since she started the band in Bristol in 1978. Having just released their best album in years, and about to hit the Rebellion festival, Big Cheese caught up with a real survivor showing the true spirit of independence.

Beki, when you formed Vice Squad way back in 1978 did you think all these years later that you would still be touring the world and releasing albums?

When I first joined Vice Squad I was way too young to think more than a few months ahead, but if I had thought about it I would have expected to be making music for life as I always wanted to be a singer and I was obsessed with Punk. I certainly didn’t have any plans to ‘settle down’ and have a normal career, and I never have !! 
If I’d been the sort of person who has an easy life and doesn’t care about social justice etc I could have opted for normality, but I’m more fired up about things now than I was back then so I still have plenty of songwriting inspiration. Plus it helps that I love music and nothing gives me greater satisfaction than pushing my voice to it’s limits and turning my amp up to infinity and then meeting all the fantastic characters who come to our gigs.

You have released albums on EMI and various independent labels, but you have released your new album ‘London Underground’ on your own label. Hows it been doing? 

It’s the best thing we ever did, but it’s stressful as we do all the work because there’s no record company to help us. As we write and record every song ourselves and want control over what goes out it seemed logical to start our own label.
 We had the help of an amazing artist called Landon Armstrong from Arizona who drew the cover art and equally amazing sleeve designer Barry Kade, so we managed to get the complete package to sound and look as good as possible whilst still being completely DIY.
In the future we would love to be in a position to write and record songs for other bands for release on our label. Like you, Eugene, we’d like to help new young talent get heard and feel that the major label side of the music industry ignores a lot of the talent out there.

At the height of your popularity you were called the first ‘Punk Pin Up’ Beki appearing on the cover of Smash Hits and NME. Would you have any advice for female fronted bands like Paramore who are in the charts right now.

I don’t think these type of bands need advice from me, they are doing very well and are more pop than punk. They have management, PR companies and labels behind them, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing as at least it gets more guitar based, punk influenced music into the charts. I would prefer to give advice to less-well-known bands like Girlfixer and Pink Hearse because I hear raw talent in both of the singers, who, like us are DIY.

I think I got featured on the cover of music mags because I had controversial opinions about animal rights and feminism as much as for my image. I didn’t look like a pin-up at all, at the time girls rarely had tattoos and blue hair or drank pints! Music is sexy so if someone likes your music they tend to find you a lot more attractive than you really are. It’s best not to play up to the pin-up idea too much or you alienate female fans, girls need role models and they already have enough ‘photo-shopped’ impossible ideas of female attractiveness to contend with. Talent and integrity are the most important things, everything else is just packaging.

And there still seems to be a distinct lack of girls in bands these days.

Maybe girls don’t enjoy weeks and weeks of being on the road and not bathing quite as much as the average soap-dodging male muso does !!!! You need to dedicate ALL of your time to being in a band, and that doesn’t work if you’re married with kids and a day job so you have to be prepared to sacrifice security for the freedom (and filth!) of the road. 
Generally women still get lumbered with the child care so being on the road isn’t really an option for them, and I’m sure they envy the glamour of waiting in the snow at the side of the Autobahn for the recovery truck after the alternator’s fallen out of the transit van on the way to a gig in Berlin. Touring is easier if you are getting financial support from a record company/sponsor, but when you’re DIY it’s much, much harder. I’ve worked with lots of men who can’t hack it and the type of women who tour tend to be tougher than the men (Girlschool could drink a gang of 6′ 6" truckers under the table any day).

Vice Squad have toured and gigged with many girl-fonted and all girl bands like, So Unloved,The Devotchkas, The Voids, MDM,The Front, Hotwired and Misspelt to name a few. There are definitely a lot more women coming to gigs these days, in the US we often play to audiences with more women than men, which wasn’t the case in the first decade of Punk when audiences were very male dominated.

Finally, punk has gone through a lot of changes over the years. As you look forward to playing Rebellion this month, what do you think of punk rock in 2010?
It’s bigger and better than ever and it’s influence is HUGE and worldwide. More and more young kids are picking up guitars and taking the first steps on the road to ruin, and most importantly more people are questioning the world they live in and challenging those with wealth and power. I used to make nearly everything I wore, now you can buy punk clothing from dedicated on-line boutiques or buy punk influenced clothing from chain stores. Punk is as relevant today as it was in the beginning….

London Underground is out now on Last Rockers.

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The Sex Pistols Experience are The Worlds No1 professional tribute to the most outrageous & controversial band of all time! With a Worldwide reputation built from over 1,000+ performances. Having done extensive tours of the U.S.A (almost 100 U.S.A shows), toured throughout Europe, & Brazil South America, taking in cities from New York to Los Angeles, El Paso to Seattle, Sao Paulo, Rio, & Maringa, Berlin, Barcelona & Bradford(!) & everywhere in-between. So convincing is the live show that the BBC, Sky TV, Channel4, Fox TV (in the u.s) and lately the new movie ‘Who Killed Nancy?’ (out now on DVD) have all hired this band for re-enactments in film & T.V documentaries as the Sex Pistols/Sid & Nancy. 

If you’re a Pistols fan, this then this is the only worthwhile alternative – A tribute to be proud of! VLR caught up with the band to find out more…

Check-out the sites,



You have recently been in the studio reproducing two classic Sex Pistols tracks’Anarchy in the UK’ and ‘Pretty Vacant’. Was it all just about having fun or did you take it seriously in the end and really took a challenge for improving the originals? 

We actually never wanted to go in the studio to re-record what are already classic songs – whats the point in trying to re-record any of those songs over again?? It’d be like trying to rerecord the classic Beatles songs, your just asking for crittisism because people will always find fault. If anyone ever asked us "Why don’t we do more recording?" we always just said "Go listen to the original Never mind the bollocks" if thats what you want to listen to. We heard too many other Pistols cover/tribute bands going off spending hundreds of pounds (probably) on studio time to re-do the Bollocks songs, & we never heard any that even came close to the original, vocals usually all wrong, drummmers playing it too fast, whatever – no one ever seemed to really ‘listen’ first to the songs before recording them. So we didn’t see any point in us bothering, & always just preferred to put out live recordings of us doing live shows. A far more accurate representation of what we are capable of as a tribute band. Anyhow, one day we get a phone call, some bloke wants to do a ‘Tribute album to the Sex Pistols & wanted us on the album, & offered to pay the studio time. So we thought about it for a while, & decided if it wasn’t going to cost us anything – then why not? – i think also we were all curious as to how we’d sound properly recorded too, & this was our opportunity to do it ‘free’. Plus we do like doing studio stuff having done plenty in our various other bands prior to the Sex Pistols Experience forming, so figured we’d have a fun couple of days. The thing is, we played these songs literally hundreds, if not thousands of times over the years, at every gig & god knows how many times rehearsing over the years, so we know them inside out & back to front with our eyes shut. We played the songs far more times over 9yrs than the real Sex pistols ever have, or anyone else the World over for that matter, which always helps when it comes to recording songs. Both tracks were captured in two or three takes at the most. Which left us plenty of time to put the guitar overdubs on, & spend extra time doing the backing vocals. But we kind of played them as we would do live – so our versions – although exactly the same running time as the original tracks – are driven with more power, energy & passion than the 1977 versions. We felt that with the right producer, who we found in ‘Matt’ at Axis studio in Doncaster – who we knew was/is a massive Pistols fan with years of experience behind a mixing desk, made for the perfect recipe for Pistols perfection. So we did see it as a challenge, & knew we had some big boots to fill, but more importantly to getting good results in a studio is to have fun at the sessions, but we also found it suprisingly very easy & quick to do, leaving lots of time to drink beer & play pool, while Matt slaved over the production.

Are your versions of the songs very different from the Sex Pistols ones? 

The run time of the tracks are exactly the same, 3min 45 seconds or whatever, but we seemed to have played with the same level of energy & passion as we do live, which definately comes accross in the recording. We copied the songs as well as we could play them which after so many live shows is very close anyway. We really do feel we improved on the original for sure, now i’d much rather listen to our versions than the original version of 77. It definately inspired us to want to cover more of their songs because we really feel we can do a better job than anyone else in the World, & after listening to the recent recordings the Sex Pistols did in L.A last year for Guitar hero, we also feel we’re capable of doing it better than them too, which is a big statement to make, but we’re an honest band & speak our mind, you go listen to them – you’ll see.
How many songs did you do and why did you choose those particular ones?
We spent a great deal of time in the 2 or 3 weeks prior to going in the studios deciding what songs we should do. We did think it’d be better to do something a little more obscure like ‘Belsen was a gas’ & ‘Whatcha gonna do about it’ – or other Pistols songs or cover versions they played in their live shows, but were never properly recorded back in the 70’s. But the guy paying for the studio time was really urging us to do the show piece of the album – which meant he wanted us to do two of the four Sex pistols singles. So we took the bull by the horns went for the two biggest sellers & most iconic, Anarchy & Pretty Vacant. We had already done ‘God Save the Queen’ years ago for the BBC, so didn’t really want to do that again.

The tracks were recorded for the upcoming Pistols tribute album. Can you tell me something about that release. When is it coming out?

Well the album is actually nothing to do with us, other than we played on two tracks on it. But its called ‘No Future’ & is a tribute to the Pistols, The Clash & The Damned with six tracks dedicated to each band performed by various more recent punk bands. We take care of a couple of the pistols tracks on there. It’s available through through Cadiz Music & we’ve got a few copies to sell on our website & at our live shows too.
What other bands took part in creating that album?
Er – well the guy putting it out is based down in Surrey -or South London somewhere, so its bands that are well known down there on the live scene, like ‘The Price’ Steve Drewitt of Newtown Nurotics, Attila the stockbroker, Leatherface amongst others, but us coming from ‘up-north’ we’ve not heard of any of them!? I guess it’ll sell well to those who know.

Obviousely, there have already been quite a few Pistols tribute albums done by various bands, how is this one different?

We have absolutely no idea! As i said, control of the album is out of our hands, all we could do is do the best job we could with the two tracks we had, & leave it in the lap of someone else to make the album as a whole appeal to the fans over any other tribute album thats been before. But at least we can relax in the knowlage that we think we did a decent job on our contribution.

Have you got any other releases planned for the near future?
We have copies of our recent studio tracks, & want go back to do some more soon to put together our own album from bits of stuff we’ve done over the years. We’re keen to get Ed Tenpole in the studio with us, as both he & us are keen to re-do his classic hit song ‘Swords of a Thousand men’ – which alwas blows the roof off when we do it together live, & Ed’ always says we do the best version he’s ever heard, which s cool. We have one or two other ideas up our sleave too, like adding the version of ‘Silly Thing’ we did with Steve Jones over in L.A, some live tracks from tours around the World, plus these new recordings, but studio time is expensive, & we’re not rich, so it might take us some time to compile it all, but we really do want to leave something behind as a legacy & representation of this band, other than just live recorded shows.

What inspired you to establish The Sex Pistols Experience in first place?

All of us coming from a background of being in a veriety of original bands over the years none of us were big fan’s of the idea or concept of ‘tribute bands’, but i’d noticed tribute bands were getting popular through the late 80’s into the 90’s & that no-one was out there doing the Sex Pistols, or rather there was – but just very badly – pub type cover acts with no effort to getting the details right, just wearing jeans & t-shirts & struggling with poor musicianship, no one could do it any justice, at least to my mind – not do it right anyway. It’s one of the hardest band’s to do, because of the look and sound, its not as easy as you’d think to play, or to look like. There are four strong, image laden, iconic, colourful charecters in the Sex Pistols. People said they couldn’t play, but that was just press hype as they certainly could, listen to their album, or live recordings & tell me they couldn’t play? Of course Sid couldn’t play bass too well, but listen to Glen Matlock – brilliant bassist. That one album of theirs has stood the test of time to this day, and is still a major influence on many of today’s new bands. The ‘Never mind the Bollocks’ album in-fact was recently voted the most influential albums of all time, in 2nd place only to the Beatles! And the look of the band, & attitude, was, & still is, original. It’s important that today’s youth see, and recognize, the impact of the sex pistols on music today, they cannot see the ‘real’ band anymore as they were in their prime in 1976/77, so we are the only chance the kids of today will get to see the music done accurately, and played with passion, excitement & the dynamics fully live. And the older generation, who like us remember it all the first time around, are also having a fantastic time, reliving their youth and thoroughly enjoy seeing the Sex Pistols Experience too. There’s hundreds of ‘Who’, ‘Abba’, Led Zepplin, or ‘Beatles’ bands etc out there doing the rounds, but only one Sex Pistols tribute show thats worth anything, we have gained the respect from fan’s and, most importantly – the original band members themselves.

What were the early days of the band playing together like?

We were very nieve, but we ran on adrenalin & a real passion for what we were doing. Looking back we really wern’t all that good although the crowds thought we were, we made all the mistakes any new Pistols tribute make, but we knew there was room for things to improve. Its very important to be self crittical & listen to the fan’s comments, good or bad, listen to the live recordings we’d done, compare & learn from it & improve. Our first live gig in early 2001 was for a friends 40th birthday party who was a big Sex Pistols fan, we put alot of effort into getting things as close as possible right from the start, with the clothing, sound, backing vocals etc. Then at that first gig everyone was so blown away with it all, & it went so well that the venue re-booked us to play again the next month. So even though it was only meant to be a one off event, we had enjoyed ourselves so much we just wanted to do it again. A little while later we entered a local ‘Battle of the tribute bands’ competition arranged by a local entertainment agency looking for new cheap acts to flog around thier network of blue-rinse bingo halls & working men’s clubs. We knew full-well we wouldn’t ever be allowed to win – afterall – what would they do with a Sex Pistols band?? – We’d go down like a ‘fart in a lift’ in those trypes of places. So we did it just for a laugh really, to be the stick in the mud & stir things up a bit, but we also thought it’d make a good launch-pad & prove that good entertainment doesn’t have to be bland, dull, polite & boring Tina Turner/Bon Jovi/Elton John songs, and that a bit of energy & excitement will go a long way. We won the first heats, & came 2nd over all in the final, (2nd to a Shania Twian tribute who’d won – mind you, she did have a nice arse which definately helped with the all male judges) We were then all over the local press the next day – the "underdogs triumph" etc. Then next time we were due to play a gig the word had got out on us, and it was a sold-out show & then we were off & running. We felt at first it was just going to be a short lived bit of fun, but we knew from the first rehearsal that we we’re on to something a little special, Every gig we kept on tweeking bits here & there, learning on experience & trying to make things better all the time. It was four or five years later, four or five years of hard giging in the North of England primerily, before we really felt we’d got it about right, then we handed in our notice to the day- jobs, & started to broaden our horizons, venture overseas, to Europe & the U.S.A etc.

You are touring and playing gigs around Britain constantly, do you still enjoy it after years of playing?

Yes of course, otherwise we’d stop doing it. But y’know there have been one or two times when we’ve been close to giving it up, there have been some real low points, like being desperately skint & the van breaks down in the freezing rain, that type of thing that makes you wonder what the hell your doing, which is nothing really – that just life in a band. But we have had real hard times, like doing a tour & finding out by the end of it all, the money earnt has gone on fuel, hotels, food etc & we go home with nothing but a table full of bills that have to be paid.. The bands first singer ‘Johnny Forgotten’ (2001 – 2006) became a raving alcoholic, it made life incredibly difficult for us all, & was an absolute nightmare for the other three of us. His whole day was driven by where his next drink would come from, & he screwed up too many important gigs for us – which to this day we are still carrying the stigma of once having a poor frontman. But we were driven to absolute dispair by his alcoholic actions, with some totally embarassing episodes. We all wanted to just quit, & the guitarist did, so we recruited a new one with our current ‘Steve Bones’, then ‘Sid’ (Kid Vicious) left through not wanting to perform with the singer anymore, before in the end, for his own good really, we sacked the frontman. That left just me – the drummer & the new guitarist, so i & called on two of our stand-ins to do a tour of Europe that we already had booked. After a bit of a shaky start, that turned out to be the best thing we ever did. With a new frontman & a new guitarist in 2006, that was enough to attract ‘Kid Vicious’ back to the fold & put us back on the map, & rejuvinated the band.

Have there been any particular highlight on the tour recently?

We look forward to getting together every weekend, & really every night is a highlight for us. But i suppose recently would be getting the opportunity to play Longhorns Ballroom in Dallas Texas. Ever since we were kids we’d watch videos of the Sex pistols performing there on their last tour in january 1978. The iconic looking Sid wasted on drug withdrawl. Johnny at his Rotten best performing in a very hostile Texan enviroment made for a great show. We’d driven through Dallas a couple of time whilst on tour in the U.S & called into Longhorns never expecting to be able to play there due ot the sheer size of the place, 3500 capacity. But then i spotted on the internet an up-coming biker festival that was happening in Dallas in March of 2009, the big party night was to be at the Longhorns Ballroom, so i just mailed the organizers & said to them we’d be the perfect band for the festival. Next thing i know we’re on a plane to Dallas.! Great stuff, & an incredible achievement for a Sex Pistols tribute from the north of England. It was definately a box ticked for us. As was Cains Ballroom in Tulsa, another venue the Pistols did on the ill fated 78′ tour, we hit that stage in 2006 – was the biggest box office takings we’ve ever recieved!

What is the funniest or strangest thing that ever happened to you during a gig?

Sid (Kid Vicious) being forced into a big lingering kiss from a big fat hairy biker at a biker festival! The guy stormed the stage & had him held around the back of the head & just planted a big smacker right on Sid! We fell about.! We have lots of laughs along the way, we’re always laughing about something or other, mostly driven by drink but the whole point is to have fun & it never stops for us.

Have you got a favourite venue to play at? And is there a particular place you’d like to play at but you haven’t had a chance yet?

The 100 Club in london was always a favorite. ‘The Damned’ asked us to play with them on their 30th anniversary gig down there – which was cool. But again, its an iconic venue, & one the Pistols fequented often in 76. A bit like a Beatles tribute band would want to play at the Liverpool Cavern Club, same for us & the 100 Club. We did have a list of places we wanted to play – like the 100 club, Cavern club, Longhorns etc, but over the years we can proudly say – we played them all. All thats left for us to do – that we feel we want to do- is play over in Norway & Japan, & we’re working on putting that right.

Do you try to make each gig different from the previous ones or do you wish to keep them all pretty much similar?

We do play around with the set-lists a bit, but over the years we think we’ve figured out the best structure for that, so have worked on the same set list for quite some time now. But that helps to keep things running smooth, & prevents us having to run around the stage looking for a bit of paper to see what we’re playing next.?? Often set-lists get covered in beer, or stolen etc, so its easier to stick to a well formulated plan that we’re familliar with if everything turns chaotic – which it often does. However if we perform somewhere two or more times a year we’ll present a different set & throw in some alternative songs that we didn’t do last time.

Have you ever considered recording a CD consisting of your own original songs?

No, not at all really. Thats not what were about. We have all been in original bands over the years, to varying degrees of sucess, recorded our own stuff, been there, done that, & bought the t-shirts as they say. This band is not about doing original songs. We’re a tribute band to the Sex Pistols – like it or not, we don’t care, thats what we do, & thats all we do. Get used to it. … although that said, recently we figured we are in a pretty good position to perhaps establish ourselves with some original music if we wanted to. We have a good network of ‘myspace frinds’, email adresses, industry contacts, etc, a solid launch-pad that would be the envy of any band trying to ‘make-it’. We could use all that as a launch pad for our own stuff. Problem is, we all four live in four different corners of the u.k now, two of the band had their first born babies in 2009, so the chances ever getting together to write & rehearse original songs is very unlikely now. Not all bands have to exist to write & record original songs & try to change the World – some bands exist purely for entertainment purposes, & we are such a band, alot of people can’t get their heads around that for some reason, & think we should be doing our own songs – well, we don’t want to.

Aren’t you fed up of covering other band’s work, is it exciting enough to still be interesting after years of doing it? Are you still having fun bringing the Sex Pistols experience to the fans?
The day we get fed-up of doing it, is the day we’ll decide to stop doing it. Yes, it is somewhat frustrating to be considered ‘successful’ on the back of someone else’s songs, whatever successful means? But after (personally speaking, & the others have similar stories) having tried for years to get somewhere with original stuff, which in hind-sight was a complete waste of time, largely due to the location i was living in at the time, none of us we’re fortunate (or not?) to have grown up in or around London – the supposed mecca of the music industry, we came from all the corners of the uk & no A&R men ever visited my town, so we’d travel to the towns & cities playing original music to no-one, for nothing, & this was a time befoe computers or the internet, back when we started out it was all phone calls & hand drawn posters.! Then one day i was asked to stand-in for a local cover band & found myself on stage with a big crowd going mental, and i got paid for it! so i figured from there on if im gonna play music i might as well get paid for it & play to packed houses even if it means performing someone else’s stuff. So we may be performing someone elses songs, but we travel the World, we play exciting gigs every weekend, or every night on tours. We spend time out on the beer with our good friends & have an absolute wicked time. Part of the reason for our longevitiy is that we are ‘fans’ of the Sex Pistols & have been for years, so we don’t really tire of performing the songs. We’ve seen many tribute bands who are not fans of their chosen band, & literally have to run through the motions every gig – that must be soul destroying, they do it for the wrong reasons in my book, nothing more than prostituting yourself – musically. As for us, if the fans are loving it -then we’re loving it. Its easy for people to say -"oh your only a fucking tribute band – whats the worth in that etc" Easy answer to that – we don’t have to get up for work at 8am every moring. We dont have to work some crappy 9 to 5 to pay the bills. We play great songs, to great fans, & have a truely brilliant time doing it. We get to sit on Copacabana beach all expenses paid etc. What more could you want.!?? I think people who pose the above sort of questions are only really jealous that they can’t do it themselves, so fuck em!

Do you think you’d be successful as you are now if the Pistols were still doing gigs themselves?

Had the Sex Pistols been performing back when we started – we would of never of started. In 2001 there was no sign of any more Sex Pistols gigs ever happening again, which is where we came in, as the only worthwhile alternative if you wanted to hear those songs live. However when they announced they were about to tour again in 2007 – that was one of the points at which we almost stopped doing it – go see the real deal instead as there is no need for us anymore.. We started to look at the jobs boards then, but as it turned out their tour 7 the promotion for it was the best thing that could of happened for us. We got busier than ever as the Sex Pistols profile was raised once agian, they were no longer a fading memory of a once brilliant band, they were back on the scene, & in the newspapers & on the T.V once agian, which in turn gave us a tremendous boost really.

Have you seen the pistols play live? When was it? What did you think of it?

Like many Pistols fans up until the recent reformation tours we hadn’t seen them live, as we we’re just a bit too young during the bands hey-day in 1977. Thats why we had it nailed early on, because all these fans who’d not been in & around London in 1977 probably missed them live, & so came to see us to get a feel for how it might of been. Then in the later reform tours everyone got a chance to see their hero’s live. We were there with all the other fans going nuts down the front. Saw them all over the place, Brixton several times, Hammersmith, Birmingham, etc. We thought they were great in 1996. Just ‘alright’ in the 2000’s – lacking the old spark, & as the dates went on you could see it was a ‘just for the money tour’ not exciting, none threatening, & somewhat watered down if i’m honest. Given a chance to see then again i’d probably prefer to watch the Winterland gig on video, or some old bootleg show from the 70’s, as thats what the Sex Pistols were about to me, & four 50+yr olds cant fire on all the cylinders like they did when they were in their 20’s.

How much longer do you think you can keep doing it, I mean do you think you’ll still be able to play the Sex Pistols on stage when you’re 60?

Nah, we’re probably getting close to the end of the road by now, it’d be nice to see out ten years, which would bring us to 2012 & another Queens Jubilee, so thats gotta be a milestone – & just because its a nice round figure. But we just don’t know what we’d go on to do after this.? And the phone keeps on ringing with gig enquiries, so we keep doing them, & we have too much of a good time to stop just now. But we are all fully aware that we could call a stop to it anytime & we’d be very satisfied with what we’ve managed to achieve up to now if we did, & we will stop when the time is right to do so. Might be next week, next year, or in another ten years – we just don’t know, perhaps as long as the fans want to keep being fans. When things start to dry-up we’ll bow out. We’ve achieved pretty much all we wanted to, ticked all the boxes, done all & far more than any Sex pistols tribute band could ever wish to do, or hope to, we’ve done it all, & have nothing to prove anymore to anyone. We call our own shots, & we’ll stop when we decide to.

Do you still stick to the characters you play on stage after the show, have you ever pretended you were the actual members of Sex Pistols outside a gig and what was peoples reaction to that?
No, never. That’d be asking for ridicule. We know tribute bands who do do that, & they are a laughing stock behind their backs. We do not take ourselves too seriously, we have a laugh with it & are fully aware of what we are, what we do, & where the boundries lie. We do turn it on for photographs, because the fans want a picture of ‘Sid’ with them (for example) & not a photo of Nigel from Doncaster who looks a bit like Sid. There was once a time, well twice actually, when we did feel it was easier to pretend to be them in a situation. Once on our first tour of Ireland we stopped in the middle of nowhere – somehere north of Dublin for our 1st real pint of guinness, & the bar man asked "what band are you??" we said "The Sex Pistols Experience, we’re just about to do a tour of ireland". Lost in his own excitement seeing we were obviously a band on tour, he just didn’t hear the word ‘Experience’ & thought we were the Sex Pistols, before we knew it he’d bought us all our pints of guinness on the house & had us signing his precious guitar that he kept over the bar. We drank-up & made a hasty exit before he got a camera out. Same again in a KFC somewhere in the deep south of America, near El Paso somewhere or other. The counter staff just didn’t hear the word ‘Experience’ again, & before we knew what was happening we’d got our maga-family feast buckets on the house, & had been whipped into a frenzy of autographs. Needless to say – we made a hasty exit.

Have you ever thought to yourselves: we’re the real Sex Pistols. Or: we’re better than they ever were? 

No, not at all. We have felt that we know what it must of been like to walk in their shoes though, as it were. Like touring around the u.s.a whilst battling every day with a drug addict – or alcoholic in our case, trying to keep them clean enough to do the show. Just as it was for their 12 days on the road in 1978 with Sid Vicious riddled with herion addiction looking for a fix – except our tour lasted 32 days & we had to avoid liquer stores, then get to the gig & find there’s a fridge full of free beer.! We’ve sank to the depths of depression enough in the past to be in a position to fully appreciate the better times. We have had the adulation – which is nice – but were adult enough to just accept that as a sign of a job well done, & not let it go to our heads, we’re fully aware of who we are & what we do & we keep our feet firmly on the ground. There is no room for such ego’s in this band – ego’s can bring a band to a very sudden halt, & we soon squash any ego’s before they have a chance to manifest.

What do you think is the best thing you’ve achieved as a band?

Being able to say -in between having to have a boring 9to5 job – that at least for a while we were good enough to be professional musicians, earning a living by doing something we love, & being top of our game. We did it, we lived it, enjoyed it, travelled the World, & have the best memories as a result. Hopefully that the fans will remember all the great nights they had with us long after we’ve given up. And also, (so far) there’s two weddings & three little kiddies that came along as a direct result of this band exisiting, for two of us right now – thats the most important thing.

Finally, what are your plans for 2010/11?

More live shows, we’re busy booking them now. We are hopefully going to be doing some more of our new show – a tribute to Lydons other band – Public Image Ltd, called ‘Public Imitation Ltd’. Hopefully we’ll be offered some more good festival appearances, & bit of overseas travel again to more new & exciting places. So more of the same really. Every year brings up new suprises & things we didn’t expect to happen, so thats what we look forward to – the unknown & unexpected, & playing the next gig.
Cheers.! (Paul Crook – band drummer, manager, founder member)

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The Chords – legendary mod-rockers hailing from the post-punk era of 1979-81 – are returning to the live circuit for the first time in 30 years. There will also be a single released in August – the first new material from the band since 1981. Their most famous song, "Maybe Tomorrow", featured on the recent number one album "Mod Mania".

 The Chords came to prominence during the Mod revival of 1979, and enjoyed considerable chart success in the early eighties with 5 singles on Polydor hitting the charts, and a top 30 album, the acclaimed "So Far Away". There were also appearances on Top Of The Pops, nationwide tours, and gigs alongside The Undertones, The Jam and Stiff Little Fingers.
They split up in 1981, since when there have been numerous compilations, best-of’s and live albums released, and a few one-off gigs with various line-ups. Chris Pope and Buddy Ascott have also forged a new reputation with the band "Pope", with two critically acclaimed albums and gigs across the country.

Now the original Chords line-up is back – Billy Hassett (vcls/gtr), Chris Pope (gtr/vcls), Martin Mason (bass/vcls) and Brett "Buddy" Ascott (drums). The tour starts on August 19th in Glasgow and continues for two weeks across the UK , including a major London showcase. See dates below.

The single, a Chris Pope composition called "Another Thing Coming", will be released on Aspop Records (through Code 7/Plastic Head) on August 9th.

August 2010
19th –  Glasgow – Ivory Blacks
20th – Luton – Charlie Browns
21st – London – Relentless Garage
22nd – Southampton – TBC
24th – Nottingham – Rescue Rooms
25th – Wolverhampton – Robin 2
26th – Sheffield – The Leadmill
27th –  Brighton – Coalition
28th – Ryde, Isle Of Wight – Balcony Bar
29th – Bristol – Thekla


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Subs in the States...

Fresh from the U.K Subs website 



Punks from the other side of the pond will be delighted to hear that the U.K. Subs will be playing some dates in the USA in October. The line up will be confirmed soon, and the gigs are:

14th: The Rocbar, Houston, Tx Subs in the States...
15th: The Trees, Dallas, Tx                                     
16th: The Korova, San Antonio, Tx                       
20th: Thee Parkside, San Francisco, Ca                   
21st: Galaxy Theater, Santa Ana, Ca                            
22nd: Brixton, Redondo Beach, Ca                
23rd: Angels Sports Bar, Corona, Ca                                  
24th: Brick By Brick, San Diego, Ca

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Vive Le Rock can reveal that the Special s are looking at recording a new album. According to Lynval Goulding the new material will reflect on the Aghan war and its affects on people among other topics. More news exclusively soon!

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More news on the forthcoming Urban Dogs album… from  THE BRILLIANT UK SUBS WEBSITE –

Charlie has confirmed to Time & Matter website that the new Urban Dogs album is very nearly fully mixed, and has also confirmed that the likely album title is going to be UNDERDOGS. Some of the songs are accoustic versions of Tomorrows Girls, War Babies and Warhead, as well as a cover of Hobo’s Lullaby, which is a an old folk song covered by a few of Charlie’s musical heroes, including Woody Guthrie and Ramblin’ Jack Elliot. The opening line of Hobo’s Lullaby is "Go to sleep, you weary hobo, let the town drift slowly by; listen to the steel rails humming, that’s the hobo’s lullaby."
Harper historians will know that one of Charlie’s bands in the 1970s was called the Steel Hummers, who were named from these song lyrics. One of the brand new songs is called Not In Our Name, and there are also plans for a follow up Urban Dogs album in the not too distant future!

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VIVE LE ROCK scribe Alex Ogg has helped with a new book coming out about THE SEX PISTOLS by Trygve Mathiesen.

Release of new Sex Pistols book and photos, with a set from TV Smith
at Rough Trade East, Brick Lane, London, Friday August 27th, 2010 at 6pm!
"Banned in the UK – Sex Pistols exiled to Oslo 1977"

This new book about the Sex Pistols’ concert at Pingvin Club in Oslo, Norway, July 20, 1977, written by Trygve Mathiesen with Harry Nordskog as co-researcher, contains witness reports from the band’s press conference, gig and after parties, and a full list of spectators at this legendary concert.
Punk author Alex Ogg calls the book ‘a forensic examination’ on the rear cover.
Besides first-hand recollections of the actual gig, analysis of what was said during the press conference and the band’s impact in Scandinavia, the book presents 47 previously unpublished photos, many in colour.
(ISBN 978-82-997166-4-2)
ALEX OGG about the book:
"Sex Pistols’ Scandinavian tour of 1977, with the band at the height of their notoriety, saw the curious and the concerned gather to gawp and gaze. On the night of July 20, the tiny Pingvin Club in Oslo saw its official capacity of 200 overcrowded, the audience a mixture of the bohemian and the bemused, including bearded hippies with the legend Sex Pistols inelegantly scrawled on their jumpers.

Trygve Mathiesen’s tale is a forensic examination of forces surrounding the band at a specific time and place when the possibilities were still endless, even though their eventual collapse was only months away. Using original shorthand notes from the group’s press call, Johnny Rotten is at his most articulate and forthright, with Sid Vicious playing the punk rock delinquent of popular myth to a tee. Just as illuminating, however, are the first-hand testimonies of those who witnessed their show at the Pingvin, and the ripple effect that ensued. As Asle Kristiansen observes, one of dozens of eyewitnesses interviewed, ‘it was probably the first time in 15 years that rock was ‘dirty’ again’.”
Alex Ogg is author of No More Heroes: A Complete History of UK Punk from 1976 to 1980 and Independence Days – The Story of UK Independent Record Labels.

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Hilly Kristal † Aug. 28, 2007

Hilly Kristal

† Aug. 28, 2007 (aged 75)

Hilly Kristal † Aug. 28, 2007


We want to remember Hilly Kristal this month. Vive CBGBS!!

* Sep. 23, 1931
New York City, NY, USA

† Aug. 28, 2007
New York City, NY, USA

Cause of Death
Died from complications of lung cancer.

Related Bands
Dead Boys (Manager)

Founder of CBGB’s, legendary punk club of New York City.

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Is this the scent of Anarchy ?

Etienne de Swardt dégaine un parfum poivré rebelle pour les Sex Pistols…

Une création de Mathilde Bijaoui, parfumeur chez Mane.

“We are not into music, we are into CHAOS”

The Sex Pistols

Feed your inner rebel

Lancement France en exclusivité chez Séphora, 12 juillet 2010

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VIVE LE ROCK ATTENDED THE OPENING NIGHT OF BEYOND PUNK LAST NIGHT ALONG WITH THE LIKES OF GAYE ADVERT, CHARLIE HARPER, JOHN ROBB, KNOX, TV SMITH AND POLY STYRENE. THERES SOME GREAT ART ON DISPLAY SO GET DOWN AND CHECK IT OUT!!   Beyond Punk' a unique art show curated by Gaye Advert Signal Gallery Starts > 12th August > Signal Gallery is delighted to present 'Beyond Punk' featuring the artwork of > punk musicians, artists associated with punk bands and artistic friends of > punk. The legendary bassist from The Adverts, Gaye Advert, curates the > exhibition, which will gather together a fantastic collection of 'hell > raising' talent.  From the outset, the punk movement was about more than just > music. The punk 'look' was as vibrant and 'shocking'. Many punk musicians > started their creative lives as visual artists who, one day, found themselves > playing a guitar, bashing a drum or shouting into a microphone and before they > knew it, they had recording contracts and gigs booked well into the future. > The result of this musical success was that their artwork took a back seat. > Over time, many of these musicians have returned to their creative roots and > started producing artworks again. This rich wellspring of visual talent will > be the centerpiece of the 'Beyond Punk' exhibition.   The line up speaks for > itself: Adam Ant (Adam  the Ants), Charlie Harper (UK Subs), Chris Brief (The > Briefs), Dale Grimshaw, Dee Generate (Eater), Gaye Black (Adverts), Gee > Vaucher (Crass), Jamie Reid (Sex Pistols), Knox (Vibrators), Nick Taggart > (Zkrr Zkretna), Philip Barker (Buzzcocks), Poly Styrene (X Ray Spex), Shanne > Bradley (Nipple Erectors), Shepard Fairey, Steve Ignorant (Crass) and Youth > (Killing Joke). And more... 'Beyond Punk' will reflect the richly varied > inventive world that has grown up around the punk movement over the past > thirty-five years. In an age when the young find it increasingly hard to > achieve new ways to shock their elders, nostalgia for the simple but effective > 'fuck off' of punk is very strong. Those musicians and artists involved in the > movement are being recognized as the last 'lost' generation. >  12th August private view. 13-21st August open to public. >  Where Signal Gallery, 96a Curtain Road, London EC2A 3AA > < > vZ22pyIDTmI7Ryab2d3HpcAJTs-WwB0Ikhl2i47l3GV7SlD4qUBjR9SiRX1nQaUwmiVL79hluDTafN > C-Q3SyUa34FtMo8VfQ==>  


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 Earache Records is due to release a brand new CD/DVD set from British ragga-metal pioneers DUB WAR, entitled 'THE DUB, THE WAR & THE UGLY'.  Due to be released on September 13th, 2010, 'THE DUB, THE WAR & THE UGLY' features a wealth of exclusive new and unreleased material from DUB WAR, which featured vocalist BENJI WEBBE of SKINDRED and released two genre-defining albums in the late '90s.  DUB WAR and SKINDRED vocalist BENJI WEBBE comments:  "For the short time we were a band I know we made a lasting impact on a lot of lives. This release gives a chance to all those who missed us back then to see exactly what we had and why people still talk about Dub War."  The CD features twelve rare and previously unreleased DUB WAR tracks, including three songs from the band's unreleased third album. The DVD features a brand new documentary filmed in 2010, which gives a detailed history of the band from start to finish, including in-depth interviews with all key members of the band. The DVD also contains a full live set filmed at the London Astoria on January 10th, 1998, as well as all six promotional music videos from the band.  View the album cover at  
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