Freshly-minted US punks UXB are ready to unveil the first fruit of their labours and are premiering a track exclusively with Vive Le Rock!
The incendiary ‘Westworld Crisis’ is the first – and title – track to be taken from the band’s debut album, which sets its sites on the world’s current climate and technology’s influence.
Newly signed to Demons Run Amok, UXB is the new project put together by former members of Orange County punks U.S. BOMBS – founder member Kerry Martinez (guitar), Wade Walston (bass) and Chip Hanna (drums) – who quit the band back in 2015. They’re joined by frontman Jesse Wagner of reggae-punks THE AGGROLITES.
With European dates tentatively pencilled in for the Autumn, Westworld Crisis is out though Demons Run Amok on 14 August.
FROM THE SPECIALS – THE NEVILLE STAPLE BAND featuring the legendary Coventry toaster and his wife Sugary Staple, are unveiling a brand new video exclusively with Vive Le Rock!
Many artists have been forced to make videos under lockdown, but ‘Lockdown’ the song was actually specifically written about experience itself, concerning COVID 19 and isolation from one’s friends and loved ones.
“Sugary came up with the idea to write a song about the lockdown, which, at first, was a very fast-stomping ska track,” explains Neville. “We then realised that it was too fun and happy a tune for the theme. Most of us have been quite down about the whole virus thing, so we decided to take it on a more sweet but moody 2Tone reggae route, in a similar vein to ‘Ghost Town’, with some music we had worked on previously with Sledge (Steve Armstrong).”
The track was recorded by sharing files among the various band members in their own homes, while the video was shot under similar conditions.
“It wasn’t easy,” says Sugary. “I had to collate a whole bunch of recorded snippets from the band, mostly done via phones and tablets. But as a part-time actress and filmmaker, I really do enjoy editing and producing videos and this one was great fun.”
While the band have been forced off the road, the pair have been involved in more charity work than usual, recording DJ sets for those in hospital or self-isolation. In keeping with this, they’ve decided that the single will be used to highlight the work of Zoe’s Place, a charity run for terminally ill babies and toddlers.
“Charities like these really do suffer at a time like this, as the focus is on other things.” says Sugary. “But the work they do at Zoe’s Place is like one of a kind and so very special. They step in when families really do need the support, providing 24-hour high quality, one-to-one palliative, respite and end-of-life care for children aged 0-5 years. A heart-breaking time for anyone involved. We must not lose a charity like this – it is too important and so we will be supporting this, along with other charities we are patrons or ambassadors to, with this single. We also dedicate this song to all those who have been affected by COVID 19.”
The ‘Lockdown’ track is available on 7″ vinyl EP in a strictly limited edition of 250 as part of a special gift set with a CD of rare tracks, fridge-magnet, keyring and protective face-mask. It’s available to order here.
THE GODFATHERS have just unveiled a brand new video.
Nicely coinciding with the band’s 35th Anniversary, the direct statement of intent ‘Wild And Free’ is one half of a storming double-A-side single with ‘I’m Not Your Slave’ on the other. We reckon it’s classic Godfathers…
Says frontman and founding Godfather Peter Coyne, “This promo video was completed under lockdown using film of the group performing on the legendary Rockpalast TV show we’d recorded in Germany in March and sprinkled with quotes from John Carpenter’s cult classic They Live…”
Available on 7″ vinyl and CD, you can buy the single, and a rather swish array of Godfathers merch, here.
THE MURDERBURGERS’ mainman Fraser has a new project and he’s premiering their new video with Vive Le Rock! Careful though, it’s not for the fainthearted.
The song ‘New Sun’ is the title track from the new EP by WRONG LIFE, which is due out through HFL Records via Bandcamp, Spotify and all the usual platforms.
“If anyone needs any tips on how to get the smell of several cups of tea out of an already slightly smelly carpet then hit me up,” he says. “Took me about a week to finish the job after that shit but I got there in the end.”
ROLE MODELS guitarist Nick Hughes is back with a new project, a new single and a new video which he’s premiering exclusively with Vive Le Rock!
‘B.A. Baby’ is the first single by the newly minted THE MIDDLENIGHT MEN and is taken from the forthcoming album ISSUE 1. The project was put together by Hughes along with longtime friend and STATUS QUO drummer Leon Cave and producer Andy Brook (Wonk Unit, Lucifer Star Machine), plus various friends and acquaintances, including Tom Spencer (Yo-Yo’s, The Professionals), Rich Ragany (Role Models) and many more…
A man with CV that includes stints with THE YO-YO’S, TERRORVISION and LOVE ZOMBIES, Hughes hatched the concept for the single while playing dates in Buenos Aires with DUNCAN REID & THE BIG HEADS.
‘B.A. Baby’ is out on Friday 19 June and is available to pre-order here.
North-East punks LOADED 44 have a new video which they’re premiering exclusively with Vive Le Rock!
‘Love To Hate’ is taken from the Line Him Up EP released last year.
“We are releasing this new video during lockdown just to make sure we have not wasted our time,” say the band. “We have another studio video to record and release for ‘Line Him Up’ as soon as the lockdown rules are relaxed a bit. We have had gigs in Germany cancelled due to this nightmare but once this is over we want to get back out there as much as possible now we have our lineup back to full strength with Steve back on bass. However, we do have the fantastic Tony Taylor from First Wave/Hi Fi Spitfires as a stand in, when Steve is away with The U.K. Subs. Hoping to see everyone soon.”
Long-serving Southern punks THE DEXATEENS, unphased by Covid lockdown, are issuing a new download-only live album next month.
Live From Athens, GA – Heathens Homecoming 2020 was recorded, as the name implies, at the annual Heathens Homecoming show hosted by the DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS at the 40 Watt Club in Athens, Georgia on 13 February. The gig saw founding singer/guitarist Elliott McPherson and bassist (and also current Truckers member) Matt Patton joined by original guitarist/singer John Smith, who left the band in 2010. The line-up was completed by drummer Brian Gosdin.
Formed in 1998 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, The Dextateens are little short of a Southern institution, maintaining a fluctuating line-up around McPherson and Patton with occasional breaks. Veering between full-on garage-punk plangent Americana and queasy whiskey-swillin’ Southern Rock, they’ve made six full-lengths for labels such as Estrus, Skybucket and Cornelius Chapel, who release the band’s most recent studio album Teenage Hallelujah in 2016.
Live From Athens, GA is set for release on 3 July through Cornelius Chapel and is available to pre-order exclusively through Bandcamp.
Fast-rising pub rockers THE JAMES OLIVER BAND have a brand new video which they’re premiering exclusively with Vive Le Rock!
‘Stay Outta Trouble’ is taken from their debut album TWANG!, which was produced by Paul Riley of Nick Lowe, Chilli Willi and Balham Alligators fame.
Hailing from Blackwood, South Wales – famously also the hometown of the Manic Street Preachers – Oliver has played alongside such guitar greats as Albert Lee and Bill Kirchen, racking up something like 2,000 gigs in the past decade, while TWANG! bears the unmistakable influence of such other Telecaster masters as Danny Gatton and Mick Green of The Pirates.
Norwich post-hardcore trio OTHER HALF have just released a video for their new single.
‘Trance State’ is taken from the band’s debut album Big Twenty, which is set for release on Venn Records, the label founded by GALLOWS members Laurent Barnard and Stu Gili-Ross.
Speaking about the single, the band say “’Trance State’ is made up of fragments from nights spent at our worst, and the real ill nature encountered on the way. It’s probably the only time the characters on the album become the observer—seeing the ugliness in their surroundings for the first time—but, as with anything, that’s quickly put to bed in favour of putting something up their nose. Musically, the track pulls from bands like The Jesus Lizard and Slint, aiming for something that slithers along with the same creepy intensity of the characters in the song.”
Formed in 2012 by members of Maths, Ducking Punches and Manbearpig, Other Half comprise Cal Hudson (guitar, vocals), Alfie Adams (drums) and Sophie Porter (bass, vocals).
In support of the Black Lives Matter movement, the band have turned stills from the original ‘Trance State’ video footage into packs of limited edition art prints, 100% of proceeds will be split between The Black Curriculum and the Black Immigrant Collective.
“We will never fully be able to understand the experiences of black communities,” they say. “But we do understand our responsibility to use the platform and the resources we have to try and make a difference and better understand issues of racism. Racism and racially motivated police brutality isn’t just an American issue. Social injustice and systematic racism exists everywhere. We stand in solidarity with the black community, open and honest to the discomfort of the truth and our privilege—listening, learning and acting to incite change and fulfil our potential as allies.”
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.
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!
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!”
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.
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.
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.”
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….
1. AMYL & THE SNIFFERS – ‘SOME MUTTS (CAN’T BE MUZZLED)’
2. BOB VYLAN – ‘WE LIVE HERE’
3. NOVA TWINS – ‘VORTEX’
4. GG ALLIN – ‘BITE IT YOU SCUM’
5. THE AVENGERS – ‘OPEN YOUR EYES’
6. THE PRODIGY – ‘FIRE STARTER’
7. THE PLASMATICS – ‘A PIG IS A PIG’
8. PUBLIC ENEMY – ‘HARDER THAN YOU THINK’
9. GIRLSCHOOL – ‘RACE WITH THE DEVIL’
9. CHRON GEN – ‘BIRDS DON’T SING’
11. THE SELECTER – ‘MISSING WORDS’
12. BETTY BLOWTORCH – ‘I’M UGLY AND I DON’T KNOWN WHY’
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 Futurehere.
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.