The Briefs men get retro with a colourful collision of new wave, ‘70s punk, mod-revival and power pop that is THE CUTE LEPERS.

When punk rockers The Briefs decided to go on hiatus last year, vocalist/guitarist Steve E. Nix didn’t let it slow him down. Instead he formed The Cute Lepers with fellow Briefs man Stevie Kicks (bass), Zache Out (guitar), Josh Blisters (drums), Bent Rewd III, Analisa Leper and Miss Meredith (all backing vocals, tambourine and handclaps) to take the Briefs template and inject it with a more power pop sound.

Filled with female backing vocals and percussion, their pop sensibilities shine through in their unashamedly retro tunes. The Seattle posse are influenced by bands such as new wave pioneers The Cars, ‘70s London mod revival band The Chords, ‘70s American rockers The Jags and rock ‘n’ roll guitar hero Johnny Thunders. Adding all these sounds to the humorous Briefs classic punk-loving attitude has resulted in hugely fun, short, sugary blasts such as ‘Nervous Habits’, ‘Terminal Boredom’ and ‘It’s Summertime, Baby’.

With their debut full-length hitting shops back in April, its title reflects their love of all things retro punk rock - ‘Can’t Stand Modern Music’. If you feel the same then put on your dancing shoes and join the Lepers. Vive Le Punk caught up with singer/guitarist Steve E. Nix…

Hi Steve E, Eugene here from Vive Le Punk.

“Hi Eugene, nice to hear from you!”

So what has happened to the Briefs Steve E?

“Well, the Briefs have simply reached a point where there are no plans. I'm more interested in spending my time writing Cute Lepers songs and playing with this band, so that's pretty much where things are at. Y'know... you've gotta spend your time doing what's fulfilling and all that.”

And the Cute Lepers are part Australian/part American?

“No, we're part Canadian though! I think that question refers to some untrue internet information. But hey, one of us is part Latino and one is part Asian and I'm adopted, so we're kind of exotic... sadly no Australians though. Maybe once we get some horn players.”

You seem to be going for that classic power pop sound?

“Yeah, among other things. First wave punk, power pop, mod revival, the Rolling Stones. Hooks with a bite.”

You guys seem to love all the UK ‘70s type stuff. Got any faves?

“The Carpettes, The Boys, The Chords, The Lambrettas, The Starjets, Fast Cars, 999, Buzzcocks, Nipple Erectors, Damned, Elvis Costello... there's tons.”

Your playing with Johnny Moped at the 100 club - are you a fan?

“Yep! The Nipple Erectors have recently confirmed that they'll be performing as well. It'll be Shane MacGowan and Shanne Bradly from the original line-up. We're thrilled!”

And what can fans expect from the 100 club show from you and the Cute Lepers?

“It's our first time overseas, so I think we'll really be making an effort to put on an energetic show and play our songs well. We usually have a blast playing and we're looking forward to playing the legendary 100 Club of course! You can expect abrasive guitars, three back-up singers smashing tambourines together and singing harmonies, a few excellent covers we've pulled from the UK mod/power pop closet, and you can expect a star struck group of Lepers... we're playing with the fucking Nipple Erectors!”

The Cute Lepers play Londons 100 Club next Tuesday May 6th with Johnny Moped band and the Nipple Erectors.

‘Can’t Stand Modern Music’ is out now on Damaged Goods.

Eugene Big Cheese



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