West Country rockers RICHARD DAVIES & THE DISSIDENTS celebrate the release of their debut album with another video made entirely in lockdown circumstances.

‘Way Of The Wild’ is the second single to be unveiled from the album Human Traffic which is out this week on Bucketfull Of Brains Records, the label founded by the publishers of the legendary magazine of the same name. It follows on from ’21st Century Man’ which was premiered by Vive Le Rock! last month.

“‘Way of the Wild’ is a song about the struggles of everyday life,” explains Davies. “Things don’t always go the way we want them to. It is an important song for me as a writer because I managed to say exactly how I felt at the time. It also made me aware of the power of words and melodies when they connect in the way that you want them to. It was probably the easiest song for us to record and if you listen carefully you can hear a ska beat organ holding it all together.”

Speaking about the video by filmmaker Darren Stockford, bassist Tim Emery adds, “We’ve had a creative relationship with Darren since the early 90s. More recently he’s produced some fantastic independent films of his own that had a real cinematic quality that we liked. So, he seemed the obvious person to approach. Initially we were a bit ambitious with what we asked but we gave him complete creative control to do what he wanted, just providing him with lockdown footage of the Dissidents playing and he did the rest. As long as he continues to answer our emails, we’ll work with him again. These are crazy times that we live in and it was a nice touch with Trump and Boris Johnson appearing in the film whilst the world falls apart!”

Put together by Davies, sometime guitarist with Camden indie rockers TINY MONROE and alt.country tearaways THE SNAKES, Richard Davies & The Dissidents are a supergroup of sorts with an impressive collective CV that includes MEGA CITY FOUR, PETER PERRETT, GLEN MATLOCK, LAST GREAT DREAMERS and TOMMY HALE.

Human Traffic is streaming now on Spotify and is available to order on CD here.

Richard Davies & The Dissidents on Facebook

Pic by Richard Markham

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THE URBAN VOODOO MACHINE are back with a new self-isolation video which they’re launching exclusively with Vive Le Rock!

‘Shattered Dreams’ was originally on the group’s 2016 album Hellbound Hymns album and the song has been remastered by Alex McGowan at Space Eko for this digital single release which also features a dub remix of their previous single ‘Living In Fear’ by DJ Scratchy, tour DJ for The Clash as well as resident wax-spinner for the band’s club night Gypsy Hotel.

“Since our formation in 2003 this is the longest we have gone without doing a show, so we thought we’d jump on the bandwagon and make a self-isolation video,” explains ringleader Paul-Ronney Angel. “Thing is, so many of them are so boring and look like Zoom meetings and if it’s one thing that The Urban Voodoo Machine don’t do, is boring! We thought we’d bring our kids into it and have some fun with it – it’s all in there from home-schooling, baking, gardening, to clips from our online shows and general lockdown lunacy! It’s very different from any other music video we have made, but the again these are very different times we live in! Anyway, I hope this video will put a smile on people’s faces!”

The Urban Voodoo Machine has always been a large musical family and the video features, along with the main members of the London-based group, friends and collaborators from all over the world, from DJ Smutty Smiff in Iceland, to burlesque star Lalla Morte in Paris, their Holland-based members Tristan and Mark Gilligan and the last person P-R Angel played a live show with before lockdown, Headcat guitarist Danny B Harvey and his wife Annie Marie Lewis (niece of none other than Jerry Lee Lewis) from Austin, Texas!

The whole thing was edited by the band’s main photographer Sin Bozkurt in Cyprus!

Paul-Ronney and his wife Ane Angel host a live-stream gig – Live From Lockdown London – every Saturday from 8pm BST at the UVM Facebook page. FREE to view, donations can be made via PayPal to theurbanvoodoomachine@hotmail.com

‘Shattered Dreams’ is available digitally from Apple, Spotify and all the usual platforms.

The Urban Voodoo Machine’s new album $nake Oi£ €ngine is due for release later in the year.

The Urban Voodoo Machine on Facebook

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For part two of this week’s MAID OF ACE special here’s what you’ve all been waiting for, the exclusive premiere of the band’s brand new video!

‘Repent’ is taken from the girls’ forthcoming new album which will be with us in August. The video is the work of punk filmmaker Mark Richards.

“This one’s for all the cross-shovers who judge us by the way we look, the type of music we listen to or who we’re in a relationship with…,” they tell us. “‘MY LOVE IS GOOD AND I WILL NEVER CHANGE!’ Happy Pride month everyone!”

Check out Maid Of Ace’s Lucky 13!

Maid Of Ace on Facebook!

Pic by Mark Richards

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London punks I, DORIS have just unveiled the video for their new single.

The pumping punk-disco ‘Wonderwomen’ is the self-styled ‘mummycore’ band’s third release, following on from their theme-tune ‘Just Some Doris’ and debut single ‘The Girl From Clapham’.

“Women are often praised for being multi-tasking superheroes – who needs that kind of pressure?,” they say. “This is a song about cutting yourself some slack. If you’ve managed to get the kids to school in one piece, and get through the day without thumping your boss, you’re doing fine.”

One of the highlights of last year’s Rebellion, the band feature Loudwomen festival/organisation founder Cassie Fox (bass/vocals), Lucy Morgan (keytar/vocals), Abby Werth (guitar/vocals), and Louisa Edwards Knight (drums). Both Fox and Morgan were members of semi-legendary Socialist R’n’B band THEE FACTION, while Knight also plays in CRACK FOXES.

‘Wonderwomen’ is available now on Spotify and other digital platforms.

I, Doris on Facebook

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Swedish alt.rockers STATUES are back with a brand new video which they’re premiering exclusively with Vive Le Rock!

The pummelling, corrosive ‘The Salt’ is taken from the trio’s second album Holocene, their first for Lövely Records, which follows of from their 2018 debut Adult Lobotomy.

The single is one of over forty songs the band wrote for the new album, whittling it down to a compact thirteen for the finished article, recorded in just three hours at Sandås Silence Studio with producer Christian Ramirez.

“‘The Salt’ is about environment anxiety and the apocalypse,’ says singer/guitarist Johan Sellman. “The lyrics play around with old ways of reading the future. Prophetic birds, tea leaves, swarm flights, and reading the future in tea leaves and salt. And now there’s all of a sudden a pandemic at our doorstep. Someone told us to be careful, we didn’t listen.”

Hailing from the town of Umeå in northern Sweden, the three members of Statues have been playing alongside each other on and off since 1991, in bands such as Starmarket, KVLR, and The Vultures, until launching in the current configuration in 2018.

‘The Salt’ is released on Friday 12 June, with the album set to follow in the Autumn.

Statues on Facebook

Pic by Magnus Olsson

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The first results from the CRASS REMIX PROJECT are set for release next month.

Late last year, Essex anarcho-punk pioneers Crass made the original separate track stems of their debut album The Feeding of the Five Thousand available as free downloads, encouraging people to remix tracks to raise funds for the domestic violence charity Refuge.

The 12″ Normal Never Was EP features a remix of the anti-war anthem ‘They’ve Got A Bomb’ by producer and XL Records supremo Richard Russell under the name rLr, along with a version of ‘Do They Owe Us A Living?’ by Boston experimental synth-pop artist Glasser.

“Crass is a great example of futuristic art and lifestyle; anchored in communal ethics and collective spirit, moving beyond mere defiance of authority and into radical ideas of love and creativity,” explains Glasser. “I’m so glad I had the chance to play around with their recordings. It’s basically the best gift a fan could get from the artists they admire.”

All money raised from the sale of the EP and other Crass Remix Project releases will go to Refuge, who provide specialist support and shelter for women and children experiencing domestic violence. The recent lockdown has seen calls to the charity’s helpline increased by two-thirds and website visits have risen nearly tenfold.

Set for release on 24 July on Crass Records through One Little Indian, Normal Never Was is available to pre-order here.

Crass are still accepting contributions to the project with the final date for submissions being 1 August. “But don’t let that stop you,” they say. “Make your own album of it and get it out there but let us know if that’s what you’re up to. We’re all in this together. It’s you who makes the world around you, the mix is all yours. Tell it loud, tell it proud.”

Download the stems here.

Pic by Tony Mottram

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South Coast punk sisters MAID OF ACE are back with a brand new video this Friday, which they premiering exclusively with Vive Le Rock!

To whet your appetite, we asked them to come up with 10 of their favourite tracks. Unlucky for some but lucky for us, they came up with 13! We asked them about the songs, but women of few words, they’re letting the music do the talking….














Maid of Ace on Facebook

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Fast-rising ska-punks MILLIE MANDERS AND THE SHUT-UP have unveiled a video for their new single, which they’re premiering today with Vive Le Rock!

‘Your Story’ is the second single to be taken from the London and Norwich band’s eagerly anticipated debut album Telling Truth, Breaking Lies which is due out on 23 October.

“’Your Story’ was inspired by a short, intense relationship where I was, unfortunately, a rebound,” says Millie about the song. “Having been very guarded, it took me a long time to allow this person in. They said all the right things, and I fell. That was when they decided they had ‘said it all too early’. Watching their ‘stories’ on social media and wishing I was still part of them inspired the chorus, the first part of the song to be written.”

‘Your Story’ available now on Spotify and all the usual digital platforms.

Telling Truth, Breaking Lies is available to pre-order here.

Millie Manders and The Shut Up on Facebook

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London punks GIRLS IN SYNTHESIS have unveiled a new video from their forthcoming debut album.

The caustic, cathartic ‘The Images Agree’ is taken from Now Here’s An Echo From Your Future, which follows on from last year’s singles comp Pre/Post: A Collection 2016-2018.

The new album had originally been scheduled for release in May, but with the onset of the Covid-19 lockdown, the band decided to delay the release until 28 August through Harbinger Sound, the label that brought us Sleaford Mods.

“Media manipulation has become an art and a tool for people with the wrong intentions to control or mislead the public,” explains vocalist and bassist John about the single. “As this becomes more and more acceptable (or undetectable…) it’s important to question and not blindly accept. As we have seen with the government’s recent lack of clarity and transparency during the current pandemic, a headswim of confusion is created to stop people seeking the truth, no matter how despairing it may be.”

The band have also lined up a series of live shows for October. Assuming we’re allowed to go to gigs by then, you can catch them at…

Thurs 15 Oct – Birmingham, Hare & Hounds
Fri 16 Oct – Nottingham, Chameleon Arts Cafe
Sat 17 Oct – Manchester, The Talleyrand
Fri 23 Oct – London, Shacklewell Arms
Sat 24 Oct – Northampton, The Lab

Pre-order Now Here’s An Echo From Your Future here.

Girls In Synthesis on Facebook

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While we’re all sitting around twiddling our thumbs waiting to see if and when music venues will be opening up again, a fascinating new book takes a look back at some of London’s legendary venues and finds out what’s become of them.

The first release from the book publishing arm of London garage-punk label Damaged Goods, London’s Lost Music Venues takes a look back at over 60 years of the capital’s live music scene and the places that made it happen.

Historian, sometime promoter and brains behind the superb DerelictLondon.com website, across 240-plus pages, author Paul Talling focuses on more than 130 clubs, pubs, theatres, often providing firsthand recollection, pinpointing key moments, gigs and their impact on the various scenes down the years, ranging from jazz, skiffle, rock’n’roll and folk through mod, psych, pub rock, punk, indie, Britpop and more. Each entry is highlighted with present day photos as well as contemporary fliers and and memorabilia.

Memories likely to be rekindled include The Bull & Gate, The Tally Ho, Middle Earth, The Roxy, The 12 Bar, The Astoria and no fewer than four versions of the legendary Marquee, plus dozens more besides.

Priced £14.99, London’s Lost Music Venues is published by Damaged Goods Books on 25 June, and is available to pre-order here.

Damaged Goods Books on Facebook

Pic by Paul Talling

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A landmark gig in international hardcore will be heard by a whole new generation of fans thanks to a new reissue of a seminal live album.

On 4 December 1983 eleven of Italy’s top hardcore bands – BRONTOSAURI, JUGGERNAUT (pictured), STATO DI POLIZIA, PUTRID FEVER, DEMENTS, USELESS BOYS, WARD DOGS, A’UFSCHLAG, CHEETAH CHROME MOTHERFUCKERS, I REFUSE IT! and TRAUMATIC – assembled at the deconsecrated church of San Zeno in Pisa, Tuscany for The Last White Christmas, organised by GDHC (Gran Ducato Hard Core), that has since gone down in the annals of HC history.

The gig was recorded via a cassette deck wired directly to the mixing desk by sound engineer Alessandro Sportelli, and issued the following year on two cassettes – one C90, one C60 – by San Diego label Bad Compilation Tapes. Copies of both tapes now change hands for absurd money.

The recordings, completely remastered by Sportelli, are now being made available once again as a brain-frying 71-track double CD Last White X-Mas through top Italian punk label Area Pirata.

“I’ve been goin’ to gigs since 1970 and there is none other like this,” says Bad Compilation Tapes founder Chris BCT. “IT WAS THE GREATEST RECORDED PUNK ROCK GIG OF ALL TIME! (Not that it’s a contest). HC blew up from about 1980 thru about 1986. It’s still around but the world blast happened then. These are some of the great Italian punk bands of the mid 80s. This gig is a historical document. It’s high art for future generations. This gig has no bands that suck. And probably all making great music. Some of the best bands I’ve ever heard. To let this gig slip into forgottenness would be an artistic crime cuz there was never anything like it during the heyday of HC from around 1980 through 1986 that I know of. It’s not a perfect recording. I think it’s as close to our punk equivalent of Woodstock as I’ve ever run across…”

Released on 1 June, Last White X-Mas is available on CD from the Area Pirata website and digitally via Bandcamp.

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