KCM- Definitely, I will look that up. I actually love that song so it will be interesting. The first time I heard that song I went nuts! I just love the way the song starts and the attitude of the song. Swan- (laughing) cool! We actually thought that maybe it was a bit violent for a first song on an album because of the lyrics its quite violent and we didn’t know how it would work as the first song. And, it was good actually. KCM- I think it’s a very good way to start an album because it is a very strong song and it keeps your interest especially the intro of that song the drums and the gun together it’s sick!
FIRST REAL INTERVIEW
Swan- I really enjoy hearing how much you like the stuff (laughing)
MAY 25, 2012
RITA the FABIZZO KCM- Overloaded is another favorite song of mine off the albumBy: including video. Swan- Overloaded is the first song I wrote for the album and it’s a really catchy one. And it’s also That night was one of a pretty cool video. We are going to make another one for the next album and we already chose the song and I hope we are going to make it soon. the most interesting and
greatest nights I tohave KCM- That’s great! I can’t wait for the new album to come out, it sounds like it’s going be great! ever
Swan- Yea they’re really are great new songs and my voice is better than before so, if you liked it just say that spending before you are really going to love it this time.
KCM- Oh now I really can’t wait! Go back to the fans I see you have a fan club out called the Black was just like spending Rain girls, did you guys start the group? What’s it all about?
the night at a Marilyn
Swan- Actually, we didn’t create it. It’s some friends of us that started to send us some pictures of Manson concert. I experifans in Black Rain shirts. Most of the time the girls were really pretty and I felt like it was a waste for only us to see the pictures so a friend started to make a MySpace and we put all of the pictures enced all the same feelof the girls. Now, it’s a good thing because it is on Facebook and a lot of girls are sending pictures ings getting beat in Black Rain shirts and it’s also good promotion for the band.without I think it is cool to put pictures up of people who helped you it’s a way of saying thank you from guys well,an thankangry you girls. crowd. I KCM- That’s really cool that you give back to the fanscan
honestly say that it was like a “religious” exSwan- Well we really like to work that way, it’s like a big family. perience because I have KCM- Another thing that is very interesting is the band name including the logo, how you come never connected sodid well up with the name? with someone or have Swan- It was just random I saw the name from the been movie “Black Rain” and I found it very catchy around someone and cool. Nobody else came up with another name so we took this one. It’s also has a cool meaning whoand I can saythe isaggression “normal” black rain is what happens after an atomic bomb explodes we thought fits with the music. to me and gets me. He truly is one ofyou a come kind KCM- It really does fit the music. Your name is also very interesting how did up and with it? I could really say that he Swan- Ok (laughing) Swan is because of the movie “Phantom of the Paradise” I don’t know if you is definitely Manson offknow this movie. spring and an icon for KCM- No, I never heard of it. people like me to look up Swan- It’s a really old movie you have to check that out to.as well. I can’t remember who made it but I took the name from a character. Hellion is just because of the song.
KCM- So to start off tell me a little bit about yourself and what you are all about. Manzin- Oh, oh I hate this question (laughing)! I don’t know I am just some f***in kid that moved to New York from Ohio. I grew up in a small town in a very small family with a lot of relatives. I started traveling and got into modeling and photography through various misadventures and strange twists of fate and ended up settling in New York City for better or for worse, mostly for the better because it's been a very good ride which is all thanks to my fabulous roommate artist extraordinaire Nick Kushner. KCM- (to Nick Photographer) Original New Yorker right? Nick- Yes! Manzin- He is fantastic! KCM- Hey we are neighbors I am an original New Yorker too. Nick- I am from Upstate actually but it is New York so yes we are. KCM- Very cool. Manzin- I’m an import (laughing). That’s why I am more expensive. KCM- Are you charging me? Manzin- No the first one is free (laughing) KCM- Second visit I am guessing I will have to pay (laughing) ? Manzin- The second visit you are going to have to bring sandwiches or something. KCM- Hey I am Italian so I will cook next time (laughing). So, getting back to your answer
Manzin- I always get lost when I get asked that because it’s like, what is there to say? I have a job, I live in New York, I sometimes model, I sometimes photograph, I sometimes write but not anymore, I love to travel. KCM- Oh really you are into writing? Manzin- Well I used to write. I had a Live journal back in the day and I would spend most my time writing about the life I wanted to live and how badly I hated Ohio and how much I wanted to get out, go on tour and be with Manson and all these creative projections that I did. It was sort of my brain trying to create a reality for myself but the problem is that all that I have wanted came true. So now I am too busy having the adventures that I wrote about and not having time to write about the adventures that I am having. It's kind of like I wrote my future before it happened and now it's happening the way I wrote about it. Now I don’t have time to write what I want my future to be like because I am too busy. KCM- Obviously you have a very big connection now, literally a physical connection with Marilyn Manson instead of just a fan connection and a connection to his music, what basically turned you on to him? Manzin- It's really; really difficult to explain what exactly it is that happens with Manson and me. I was driving home one day and was compulsively flipping through the radio channels like I always do and I came upon the guitar part with the wah pedal right before the second verse kicks in on Sweet Dreams. And I thought this song sounded familiar and was trying to figure out what song it was. Then I realized that it was Sweet Dreams and said to myself “who covered Sweet Dreams?” Then the voice came in and I almost went off the road! I thought what the f*** is that?! Who is this?! Oh my god!! And through the rest of the song I just kept saying to myself
“what the f***”, I was white knuckling the steering wheel in this weird terrified vaguely aroused weird feeling! I went home and looked up a picture and I just kind of sat there staring and I can’t really explain. The fact is that when you are growing up and are different in a small town where everybody is a football player, cheerleader, and the whole cookie cutter thing and then there is you who doesn’t fit anywhere. I wasn’t really comfortable and every guy living in Ohio is known to have short hair, play sports, and drive a tractor and all that. The same goes for the girls. And I am thinking I don’t fit in anywhere and I was convinced that I was an alien or an anomaly or that something was wrong with me. But then I saw Marilyn Manson and realized that nothing was wrong with me because whatever was wrong with him was wrong with me too. It's like he was the same thing that I was, he was the first person that I saw on this earth that looked familiar, more normal and safe like a homecoming in this alien thing I was on. I was immediately drawn to him and just fascinated by him and tried to internalize everything that I could. I read all the interviews, and collected all the songs. “Smells like Children” had already come out and” Antichrist “wasn’t out yet so, it was that long ago. I was one of the “sweet dreamers” which is funny because they used to look down on us (laughing). They used to say “oh you only got here because of Sweet Dreams” and now it’s like we are demigods and everyone is thrilled to know that we have been here since Sweet Dreams was out! KCM- That is so cool and you are so lucky!
Manzin—I was very lucky and actually kind of resentful that I didn’t find him earlier. I would say it was love at first sight but it wasn’t even love. It was something completely different than that; it was something I just never felt before. I don’t know if anyone could really relate to that relief to know that there is nothing wrong with you because then if it’s wrong with you then it is wrong with him. I am just another dorky kid from Ohio that said “I don’t give a f***, I am doing what I want “ and actually have it work out for them. All I thought was “if he could do it then I could do it, f*** it I will do what I want!” And that is what I did. KCM- That seriously sounds like me when I got into him. I got into him during the Eat Me, Drink Me era. The way I discovered was from being in dance school. I was waiting at a dress rehearsal practice and all the sudden I heard this f***in amazing drum beat. And I said to myself what the f*** is that?! I of course wasn’t the preppy one in dance school at that time. I was the black sheep and the one tap dancing to rock n roll and thrash metal. Manzin—(laughing) I am trying to envision this and it's awesome! (laughing) KCM- Yup I was the one doing tap and ballet to thrash metal. Manzin: One of my favorite strippers in a club I used to go to would dance to Slipknot. All the other girls would dance to Cee-Lo, Usher, and all that shit but this one girl would come out and dance to Slipknot and some other crazy shit. There was another girl I knew in high school who would dance to the most ear-splitting music like the NIN remix album Fixed that has all the broken songs redone. It had this ear-splitting guitar and the bass that just keeps going along with drums and it’s so horrible to listen to. She would do a 6-minute stripper dance to this music and the guys would be sitting there just horrified because she would be kicking the wall behind her head and just dancing to this intolerable music. The guys would actually pay to make her leave and would say “please just go away and take your terrible music with you!” I had so much respect for her dancing the way she wanted to and using the music that she loved without caring what was popular or not. She just said “f*** you, f***this club. I am just doing it to pay for our drugs anyway “ (laughing)! Yea, college was only good for me experimenting sexually, learning how to smoke weed, snort drugs, and I learned fencing. All of which I’ve forgotten except the drugs and how to eat p***. (laughing)! Go to college, kids. It's very important! (laughing)! KCM- (laughing)! Manzin—These are life lessons that will serve you your whole life. Trigonometry will not serve you your whole life. Do you remember when your teacher would say “you are not going to have a calculator on you all the time and you have to know how to do this”? Well now there are iPhones and one side is a scientific calculator. That's all you need. KCM- I don’t even what to talk about or think about math! (laughing) Manzin—I know. I don’t like math either.
KCM- Ok so what got you into modeling? Manzin - Well basically since Manson had so much effect on me, the way I would express my appreciation and my love for him was by recreating his looks. I basically thought that “well, if he pulled off this look then I can too”. I had put a bunch of pictures on the Internet and for some reason people liked it. I don’t know why and still don’t know why (laughing) but they did! It was fun and it became a challenge to me to see what pictures I could take that Manson took and how could I recreate them. It all just started to blossom from there but after a while I would make internet friends from MySpace that were other models and photographers who were looking for people to shoot with. Someone needed another model and asked me to come in and do the shoot. I had never at that time photographed with anyone but myself because no one had ever did a shoot with me. So I would go in and they would take pictures of me and it became so much easier versus a stack of books and putting the camera on top, looking to see how tall I was, putting more or less books, setting the timer and running to get in the picture on time, then run back look at it and take it over if something goes wrong. It was just running back and forth which took me hours. It was such a pain in the ass and still is cause I still do it! (laughing)! I am a little better at it now. KCM- Being into Manson I see so many people that seriously think they are him and try so hard to be him and that bothers me but you are the only one that doesn’t bother me because I know you are not trying to be him or copy him. I love it because even though you look like him, you do it in such a different way because you are recreating the look not copying it. Manzin - What I like about Manson is there are some shoots he can’t do, like the more Nazi kind of German themes, where I can do to being nobody. I think its fun how somehow vicariously he can shoot through me while I can shoot all the things that he can’t, which makes me shoot through him. Like for example he can shoot with an f***in lion and I can’t. But, I can shoot in a suit and a swastika. KCM- So did the inspiration of Manson help create your name, identity, look and all that? Manzin - It actually was. My name is actually a derivative of Manson, which is obvious. It looks like Manson, sounds like Manson but it’s not quite Manson. So that’s what I took off as and how I wanted it to be. I was very into reading about the Aztecs, Mexico, all that shit and the Aztecs would add “tzin” at the end of someone’s name if they were royalty, which made them a noble. So I found that interesting and figured that I could be Manzin minus the T because Mantzin sounds ridiculous. I use Manson as a clotheshorse. Like I said, if it looks good on him, then it’s going to look good on me. KCM- I do consider you his offspring. Manzin - I consider myself that too (laughing) or at least his intellectual odd asexual offspring. He didn’t at all have to have sex to create me but instead his art created me. I was born through him and he was the passage or vessel that gave me life. He is my weird brother or dad twin thing. KCM- Your clothes are amazing and it’s very hard to find clothes in that style that’s why I took up designing so I can actually learn how to make clothes. Do you design your clothes or have them designed for you?
Manzin- It’s a big mix. I had clothes made up twice which were the Personal Jesus white suit, which I don’t even have anymore, and a jacket that was based off the jacket that Manson wore for his wedding to Ms. Dita Von Teese. Most of my stuff I find at thrift stores. For example, this shirt I have on is a Cheap Monday ruffled dress shirt that I found for $4. I brought this belt from a guy on the street for $5. I just throw a bunch of things together. I am constantly taking things, adding pieces to it, wearing stuff the way it’s not meant to be worn. I’ve been wearing headbands as eyeglasses and other crazy things like that. I am always just seeing how I can take something and abuse it, torture it, and force it into some fashion thing that I can play with and to make it fit my fickle, changing fashion taste. One day I will feel like being a pretty lady and put 14 wigs on my head, wrap it with wire, put on sunglasses, a skirt and just leave the house that way. Then one day I will feel like wearing a suit with 8’ stilettos and I don’t fuckin care (laughing). It's whatever I'm in the mood to do. KCM- Sounds like my closest I don’t have a lot of money to look for stuff online so I am always designing things and using things that you would never believe could work but they do because I make it work.
Manzin- My favorite thing I have been doing right now is getting latex and storing it improperly, leaving it for a long period of time so it deteriorates and rips into all these interesting holy things which can be used as shoulder pieces, or head pieces, or can be pinned to something because it turns into such a weird glob that you can play with. The same with latex gloves they start to form these crazy holes that look cool. That is just what fashion is, taking things and transforming them into something crazy. KCM- Do you have any musical talent?
Manzin- I started taking piano lessons when I was in kindergarten. I had a two-and-a-half octave very small piano and that’s what I would play. Then my lessons got to the point where the songs would go beyond the keys I had and it was annoying because my finger would hit the wood part and mess up the song. So they upgraded me to a full -size piano and I took lessons for about 14 to 15 years. I can sight read and play by ear. I was in the jazz band playing piano and trumpet. I was in the advanced music class that had me and four other people in it. We learned how to play the ukulele, the French horn, the flute, and all these ridiculous things. I probably don’t even know how to play any of these instruments anymore. It was a fun thing to do while in school. I do like music, I just don’t have a piano here but music was important to me growing up. Everyone would go to bed early and I would lock myself in my room with the piano and just play and play feeling the music just moving through me, directing all of my emotions into the music. KCM- Do you write songs? Manzin- I didn’t really write anything. Everything I write turns out to be a derivative of something I heard on the radio. I would play songs I liked and transform them on the piano. I did a lot of Manson songs that are him just singing like Into the Fire which is what everyone knows me by because it is on YouTube. I like that one a lot because it was like my valentine to him. I started trying to figure out the whole thing then I lost touch with it and forgot about it. Then I decided to bring it out of the bin and re-did the whole thing over again. It was difficult trying to combine the vocals, the piano, and Jeordie’s guitar into one thing. It all came together and I was very happy with it.
KCM- I saw it and I loved it. It’s amazing and that’s where I got that question from because I wanted to see if you did anything else. Manzin- Oh, very clever. I haven’t done anything else. People ask me where the music comes from but it’s played by ear. I hear a note and I know what it is. I don’t use sheet music so I couldn’t tell you how to play it. I just hear it and I know it but I can’t explain how I know it. KCM- But that’s talent, because anyone can learn how to read music, that was like me on drums. I started on bass and I am not going to lie but it’s thanks to Twiggy why I picked up a bass. You know, even though Manson is God but Twiggy is a major inspiration to me. Manzin- Well Twiggy is like God the Son. You know. You got God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. KCM- That’s exactly how I consider it. And that’s why I tried waiting for him after the show so he could sign my wrist. I am going to get a big portrait on my arm of Twiggy and I wanted him to sign my wrist so I can get it started the right way. I actually made friends with his driver and he made me wait because he was trying to help me and thank God I waited because that is how I met you. Manzin- “Seriously just scribble on my wrist please so I can get it tattooed!” (laughing) Don’t worry. It'll happen when it's meant to happen. That’s one thing I learned about Manson. Sometimes you could be backstage and nothing happens. Everything flows according to the need. You might think you need it or want it but you don’t really need it. But when you do need it, it comes through. It's very weird.
KCM: The bars that you go to is there a little scene or clan going on there? I see that the people who go there are very different looking so what’s it all about. Is a scene starting? Manzin: Kind of, but I go to all different bars. There's this one bar on Bowery it’s called R Bar and I like it there primarily because there's a popcorn machine. There’s a very diverse crowd that goes there and if you go on the wrong night it's like a totally different club. One night I went in and it was bowling night, another night was a burlesque performance, then it was bar poker, then it was a rap club. It’s very weird but once a month they do have a big Goth party. My Friday night bar is called The Box and it’s filled with naked midgets, girls hanging from the ceiling with people peeing on each other, dogs bouncing on balls. It's very insane and I love it. My friend Kayvon Zand who is a musician, model, artist and performer hosts a party there every Friday night. I go in with him and he has a coterie of assorted freaks and beauties that he rolls in with. He has the very tall thin model boys and some people who do the more drag looks. There’s a little bit of everything that goes on there. You can wear what you want, girls are topless, guys walking around with their butts out and it’s just a really good time. I'm either at The Box or the Bowery Poetry Club which has a good Goth party on Saturdays that's mostly dancing. I go everywhere. I like to explore and that’s one of the reasons why I moved to New York. KCM: I love New York and would never move out unless it's to Italy but I just can’t find a clique to join which I think part of the problem is because I stay in my house too much (laughing). Manzin: Yea it’s hard to find cliques when you don’t leave the house and it's also hard when you're young to meet people that are like-minded. I don’t know where I met anybody until I was enough, like in college
I started meeting people and at Manson shows. It was really hard when I was growing up because I had a small circle of friends but once they realized I that I was quote unquote “weird” and it wasn’t a phase they stopped calling me. So, I went from having friends then to not having friends and I was ok with it. The fun thing about high school is that when you are young you have the circle of friends and then you lose them. You can be popular and be in a clique but once you go to college, you're not going to have that clique anymore and you are going to have to get used to being by yourself. The people who are loners are already used to it and they won’t go through the shock of losing that bubble of friends. It's kind of good when you're alone all the time because you get to know yourself better and you can start developing and nurturing the things that comfort you. When I was growing up books were always my go-to. I escaped into books and was addicted to reading. I would read everything, even the milk carton. Which because of that I became a grammar Nazi once I hit high school. KCM: Well that’s good because lots of people don’t even read it’s like everyone is lazy these days. Ok so moving on tell me about a crazy memory that you have had in life. Manzin: Crazy memory.. I am trying to think but everything I am thinking of is bad (laughing). Well, I lit a girl's tampon on fire once (laughing). It was backstage at a Manson show in Detroit and we were all backstage. She was running around doing hand springs showing everyone that she wasn’t wearing underwear. Then she said that she needed to change her tampon. She removed the tampon held it up and stuffed the used one into her mouth. She chewed on it for a few seconds and said “it tastes like coffee grinds!” Several people excused themselves from the room.
She said I need to reload and pulled out a new tampon. I said “let me do it” and she said ok. She lay on the ground on her back with her legs in the air; I inserted the tampon with her assistance. I got it in there and it was like a little cotton mouse with its tail hanging out and I turned to my friend and said the fateful words “do you have a lighter?” (laughing) He did! He did in fact have a lighter. Despite the girls protests I lit her fuse, let it burn for a few moments and blew it out. There are photos and videos of this, which were sent to different parties who were not present, and they thanked me for my oddness. I never saw the girl again. KCM- I like that one. Moving onto a very interesting topic now: haters! I'm sure you have a lot of them. Manzin- They're funny. There is this one guy that I would frequently have words with. There is actually a rivalry with the quote unquote “Manson lookalikes”. There’s some bad blood amongst various ones. There is one in Texas that I do not get along with well and it's funny because no one gets along with him but, he seems to particularly not like me for various reasons which I shouldn’t even go into because I am pretty sure the reasons are obvious. There are always haters and there are always people who write me saying “Marilyn Manson preaches individuality and he said never to be like him he always said to be like you and make a difference”. If I had a quarter for every time someone said that to me I could pay my rent with that. It's ridiculous because I'm aware of that but what I'm doing is different than that. I'm doing different things than what they're accusing me of. They seem to think that all I do is Manson-related stuff and honestly, I’ve been shooting Manson-related looks since 97 or 98. I’ve shot almost everything of Manson that I wanted to shoot. They think I am a one trick pony but I'm not. I shoot so much more espe-
cially these days I do more of my own shoots. I like to experiment a lot between the feminine and masculine and blur them together. KCM- Speaking of gender, do you get a lot of controversy for playing the role of both genders? Manzin- I actually don’t. I get a lot of people saying “I really like you in heels”. My favorite is when a guy will add me because my main photo is more feminine and then be very confused as to why I have all these boy photos in my portfolio. There’s some people that see me as a guy who cross dresses as a girl, some people see me as a girl who cross dresses as a guy, there’s some people that see me as both genders, neither gender, third gender... KCM- Do you keep your gender a secret? Manzin- I don’t really know. Honestly I just kind of do what I do. I work on mood and whim and I think everyone should have the same freedom to play with gender. Just like there’s a whole spectrum of color, it’s also like that for gender as well. I identify as male but sometimes I have more feminine qualities than masculine. Sometimes I feel more female than male, sometimes that varies by the hour, by the day, by who I'm with, by what I'm eating, what movie I've seen. I don’t like to limit myself with anything. KCM- That’s what I like about you, you don’t really know exactly what gender you are and that makes people wonder but in a way it works with you because it’s like you feel yourself as both. I’ll admit growing up I got called lesbian a lot, got called a guy a lot and people still think I am a guy. Manzin- (whispering) but you got massive boobies! (Laughing)
KCM: (laughing) So I am putting you on the spot, pink or purple?
and I love you so much that I can’t even handle you being alive”.
Manzin: Purple. I like purple because pink is traditionally the girl color and blue is the boy color and when you mix them together you get purple.
KCM- New York or LA?
Manzin- Rock. I like metal but all the songs I like the most are the singles that are played on the radio.
Manzin- Both! (laughing). For living, New York because it can keep up to my lifestyle with everything open 24 hours. LA has so many beautiful clubs. Lots of my friends are in LA. I can never get any work done in LA, which is a problem because I am always in vacation mode.
KCM- I hope this next one doesn’t make anyone mad (laughing) Golden Age of Grotesque or Eat Me, Drink Me?
KCM- So finally what can we expect in the future for you cause now thanks to me Krashcity is all into you.
Manzin- Eat Me, Drink Me.
Manzin- Wooo hoo you found me! Well I am going to be doing more of the same stuff. I have a really big shoot in the works that's going to be shot by my boss Melissa Rodwell who is an amazing fashion photographer. Hopefully I'm going to go out to LA and work with things out there. I'm hoping to have some merch out, I'm working on tshirts and I'm going to be making candles. I'm still selling posters on my website and hopefully, along with that, a website redesign. Please God, I need a website redesign! (laughing) That’s about it. I'm always looking for new shoots so just hit me up.
KCM- Rock or metal?
KCM- Oh my God really! Manzin- Yea. I love the Golden Age but I am angry about it because that was the one tour I didn’t get to see. If I would've seen it live I might've had more of a connection to it. My life was parallel with that album because that was when my relationship was going bad and I had the same obsessive “I want to consume you and drink everything that makes up your essence and pull it into myself and create a singular being out of the two of us”. I just felt so deeply with Eat Me, Drink Me and of course The High End of Low when it all came tumbling down in burning ruins after. Those two albums I feel a tie so much to what happened to me and that is why I love them so much. KCM- Yea I had lots of connections too with that album which we will talk about off the record. I loved the whole romantic theme that he used but it was all evil romance, which is my kind of romance. Manzin- Yea the whole “I love you so much that I want to kill you so no one else can have the experience of you dying but me. It’s a gift that I can give to you and you can give to me,
KCM- Awesome and that concludes it thanks so! Manzin- Thank you!
"GOTTA PROBLEM?" ASK Ms. Pamela Des Barres★: ★World's Highest Authority On ★ANYTHING★ Groupie Relates, ★We Assure You★. Tessa Writes, Hello Miss Pamela, I have just finished reading “Let’s Spend the Night Together” & am in the middle of reading “I’m with the Band”...my gosh it’s a pleasure to read you; you really lived a fascinating life!! I envy you and I’m pretty sure if I lived in your times (I’m 19) I would have been exactly like you. I do have one question, do you know if any of you ex- lovers have read your books? Because it’s seems you have been hurt a lot by some boys (Jimmy Page, Chris Hillman..) and I was wondering if maybe they ever felt bad about their past behavior (after reading you) and ended up asking forgiveness to you? Thanks again for sharing your experiences and Keep On Rockin Tessa Good question! Nobody was mad at me and when Rolling Stone asked Mick Jagger if he’d read the book, he said “I was there…” haha! Mr. Hillman has gone a bit square but I’ll love him forever… X Kisses, Pamela Andrea Writes, I too am a Canadian groupie and an aspiring writer. When I was 17 I read “I’m with the Band”. You changed my life. It would be an honor to take one of your classes. I’m currently writing a screenplay it’s a comedy. I’m hoping to write my next screenplay on my own chronicles. I have to know how did you deal with the heartbreak? I am grateful to have experienced what I have still I wonder what if things happened differently. Time is the only healer when you’re dealing with heartbreak. It’s happened to me a whole bunch just like everyone else. Of course, you have to love yourself first and foremost and don’t put yourself through too much grief… Sign up for my Skype class July 8-9! FUN! Miss P XX
Marta Writes, Pamela I have to say you are amazing you’re such an inspiration to me and you’ve shown me what it was like to live in the most beautiful period – the 60s and 70s. To tell you the truth I am jealous … REALLY JEALOUS. I was born too late…and if it wasn’t for you I would have never figured out how fucked up music and the world are today. .
Your books … they help me escape the reality… I can close my eyes and see myself on the Jimi Hendrix concert or standing in front of Jim Morrison … thank you Pamela… if it wasn’t for you I would have gone mad really thank you are my hero. Thank you thank you thank you! But there is some great music still being made! Jack White, Todd Snider, Rhett Miller, Lucinda Williams, and the greats still playing, Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Sir McCartney…but I agree, we really could use a hot,hot,hot, new hardcore yummy rock band! Love, Pamela Tonina Writes, Dear Miss Pamela! You know, there are some books that you read and you swear you’ll never read them again; you want to forget what you read. That’s not the case with “I’m with the band”. That book was just... aaarh! I couldn’t stop reading it! It left some deep trails in my mind. I admire you so much! It takes courage to put all your life down on the paper and just stand behind what you wrote. You’re like some kind of role model for me. You chased your dreams no matter what. You wanted something and you got it! That’s worth admiring. I wish I have just a little bit of that self-confidence you got. You’re still astonishing as you were when you were in your 20-s. You still have such a sincere smile and I believe you’re not regretting any of what you done. Why would you? Keep on smiling and keep on rocking Miss P. Hugs and kisses form Croatia!
I have no regrets sweetie! Go out and grab the world with for arms open! Love, Miss P Lizzie Writes, Hello Miss Pamela! I was wondering if you believe in soul mates or twin flames? Just curious. I used to be pretty cynical about those ideas, but I found mine quite a few years ago. I have no choice but to believe in it now, whether he and I are together or not. The result was a true rock n roll romance and a story that should be shared with the world. I would literally be doing everyone an injustice by keeping it to myself. (This was far more than me being a groupie.) I have it all written, but recently I have had to let him go. (It was a difficult situation, nothing typical.) The love is still there, of course, but we can’t be together now, at least not in this lifetime. I don’t know for sure what will happen in the future, but I’m assuming that this is a point which signifies moving on; we will be apart physically but together as one always. I do not feel comfortable sharing our story now, though, and it saddens me. Maybe it is because the wound is fresh and this feeling will subside, but do you have any advice? Thanks so much! Love you to pieces! XO HI doll, I believe we can have more than one ‘twin flame.’ I think after several lifetimes spent with someone, in whatever way, friend, lover, son, parent, it continues into the next lifetime…gathering more steam and a deeper connection! You should come to one of my writing classes…where are you located, doll? XX Miss P Becky Writes, Dear Pamela. I was given a copy of “I’m With the Band” back in 1989 when I was 18, and I have read it countless times. I own three different copies and I come back to it time and again. I saw so much of me in it and it also opened up a whole new world to me as far as music is concerned. It will always remain my favorite book! I just wanted to thank you for showing me that I wasn’t alone with the feelings I had. During the late 80′s and early 90′s I spent a lot of time on the music scene in London and followed bands around and got involved with musicians and actors. I have kept detailed journals of my exploits for 20 years and you have inspired me to attempt to condense it all into one book! Could I ask how you began writing “I’m With The Band”? I’m having a hard time knowing where to start with mine as there’s so much material.
Did you work in chronological order? Or randomly pick entries to write? Sorry – this has ended up being rather a long comment! I would absolutely love and appreciate any advice/pointers you could give me. Thank you for reading and thank you again for sharing your story. With love and best wishes B xxx Hi doll, just pick a poignant moment in your life to begin the book, one that triggered a life path. I started with Elvis (going back to Graceland soon, ya!) I did write mine chronologically…it just made it easier for me. I just pored through my diaries one by one…and thanks so much for the compliments! Makes me happy! Luv, P
If someone mentions the name Steve Harris, anyone who knows anything about Rock and Roll will immediately reply, “Iron Maiden”! Well, a Maiden Harris, Steve’s daughter, Lauren is becoming a well recognized and respected member of the global rock community on the merits of her own talents as a singer / songwriter. Sure she was given preferential treatment in being given an opening slot for the Maiden world tour to promote her debut self titled release, but once she is on stage in front of a massive Maiden crowd she more worked them over without mercy. Changing the band’s name from The Lauren Harris band to Six Hour Sundown for the self titled second release, Lauren continues to ‘take em on’, managing a major tour and all of the mayhem that come with the job with ease. This rocker-chick, who came out of the gate with passion and fury, seems to have the constitution to go the distance. Plus the fact that she is pretty easy to look at doesn’t hurt a bit. Tom Gentry and James Bennett , both on guitar, Mitch Witham on Bass and Olly Smith on Drums complete the current line-up of Six Hour Sundown whose sound is in the genre of Foo Fighters, 30 Seconds To Mars, Velvet Revolver, Young Guns and No Doubt. While on tour as The Lauren Harris Band starting in 2006, the bassist part of the rhythm section was held down by Randy Gregg. Randy came to the project with quite the impressive resume, having shared the stage with a long list of very name-droppable industry heavy-hitters. Coming out of Queens as part of a trio called GARLIC in 1995, Randy is currently in ‘Almost Queen’, who dish up a very visually and audibly convincing recreation of music of that is very VERY difficult to tackle by one of, if not THE best musical groups of all time, QUEEN. Industry mainstays Joseph Russo handles the Freddie vocals, John Cappadona is the Roger Taylor skin-pounder and Steve Leonard is the very Brain May-esque guitarist. Between Randy's Garlic project and Almost Queen, there were almost as many stops as there are on the 7 train from Manhattan to the outer reaches of Queens. Garlic’s two releases, “Stinks” (1998) and “Homemade” (2000) were highly rated and paved the way for the band to open for such notable acts as Cheap Trick, Thin Lizzy, L.A. Guns and Sebastian Bach. From there, doors flew open for Randy. In 1999, singer songwriter Frank DiMino put his attention grabbing, Casablanca signed band ANGEL back together after an 18 year hiatus and Randy was brought on board along with Steve Blaze on guitar, Michael T. Ross on keys and original ANGEL Barry Brandt on drums. Following that was a short stint as bassist for Dee Snider’s SMF’s before moving on to front the legendary THIN LIZZY with the tall order of standing in for PHIL LYNOTT. When that gig came to a close, the opportunity of ALMOST QUEEN came into focus as a glint of glitter in the sun, JUST before ‘in-demand-Randy’ was called off to join the Lauren Harris tour for 4 years. With the help of a few substitute bassists over the course of four years, Almost Queen keep it to a dull roar, putting off major performances until their prized bassist was firmly back on ‘royal turf’. Not knowing ANY of this, I stumbled upon Almost Queen when my pal, who calls herself 'Rocker Chick' asked me to join her at The Canal Room for a bill that included Almost Queen. Hearing songs originally performed by my favorite band of all time, recreated to perfection was treat enough alone. However, I had a sixth -- siXXth? – sense that that we were being treated to an extra dose of very capable stage presence on that particular night, the results of which is this DOUBLE interview. After the show I followed Rocker Chick to the backstage area (where she is ALWAYS invited) and happened to run into Randy, who kindly agreed to answer a set of questions and set me up with an interview with one Ms. Lauren Harris.
Here, my friends, is the skinny on Lauren Harris and Randy Gregg.
KCM: What was it like growing up being Lauren Harris with your dad constantly on tour? Was he gone a lot or did you travel with him, kind of like being an Army Brat? Lauren: It was great, we got to travel loads as kids and whenever my dad had a day off he’d try and fly back to see us if we were in school so he was around as much or more than any other dad. We did travel a lot with him too and it was always fun traveling on the buses. KCM: What is your earliest memory of being backstage and looking out to see a packed stadium? Lauren: I can remember being carried out for Heaven Can wait when I was really young. I used to get carried out by Peter, one of the crew. KCM: When did you know that, ‘this is what I want to do, too’! Lauren: I was always really shy up until I was about 17 and started singing in pubs so I never really thought about it until then. KCM: With your dad’s social circle, who were you really impressed to meet? Any ‘WOW!’ memories? Lauren: I met Ronnie James Dio back in 2006, that was a wow moment. KCM: Were there always people in the house on ‘school nights’? Other kids had parents who were, say, an engineer or a franchise owner and your dad is a famous bassist in one of the bestknown metal bands in the world. Did people treat you differently? Lauren: No not really cos I have had a lot of the same friends since I was young and a lot of my friends aren’t into music.
KCM: You have quite a large family. Do any of your siblings have musical aspirations? If so, do you ever have a family jam’?
Lauren: I’m pretty easy going I think, I love touring. I just make sure I have everything I need and I’m happy.
Lauren: I have a massive family. My brother is in a band and he’ll be doing something really soon, he plays guitar. My cousin is an amazing drummer too and he plays in Voodoo Six and the maiden tribute band "High On Maiden".
KCM: How do you stay fit and keep healthy on the road? Do you have any rules for yourself to avoid rock-and-roll crash and burn?
KCM: Having grown up around so much creativity, what is the writing process for you? Lauren: I have a book where I write a lot of lyrics down, so its happened both ways where I’ve come up with a melody and lyrics first and also when Richie came up with music first. KCM: When did you first pick up a guitar? Was the guitar the first instrument you played? Do you play any other instruments? Lauren: I picked up a guitar when I was 13 but never learnt to play it really. I’m learning to play piano at the moment. KCM: What was the first song that you wrote? Lauren: I remember scribbling lyrics down since when I was 11 years old. KCM: You’re famous as Lauren Harris; musician. What other hobbies do you have? Lauren: I love seeing my friends and family, going to the cinema. Going to see gigs. KCM: Being so young and already having had so much touring experience, how do you relate to the touring company? Are you a take-charge kind of lead singer / guitarist?
Lauren: Its so hard to eat healthy on the road cos a lot of food is service station food and its so crap. My tour manager has started bringing a blender on tour so we’ve started juicing everyday instead of eating crap. KCM: Tell me about the other members of your band, past and present. Have you forged any long lasting friendships with former touring musicians? How about people you met while on tour? Who do you stay in touch with? Lauren: Randy, Richie and Tommy are the original members of my solo stuff. Then Olly replaced Tommy. Olly is in Six Hour Sundown. I still speak to all of them. We get on amazing, we were like a family on tour and I do really miss them. The guys in SHS are Mitch, Tom, James and Olly, really great guys. Yeah I’m friends with a few members of bands we’ve met whilst touring. KCM: What would you say is your biggest challenge being a young adult leading a touring band? What do you love about it? What do you hate about it? Lauren: Its great having the responsibility but then its not so great at the same time.
The biggest challenge for me is getting people to take me seriously being a female and being the daughter of a famous successful musician. KCM: What current popular band would you love to go on tour with? Lauren: I would love to tour with the Foo Fighters cos I love their sound and think Dave Grohl is awesome. KCM: Having traveled so much, what is your favorite city? Favorite venue? Lauren: I don’t think I can pick just one, I love Tokyo, Sydney, Santiago…..I could go on and on. My favorite venue to play was the Budokan in Japan. KCM: What kind of social circle do you have? Do you have a lot of friends your own age? Do you hang around nonmusicians whose folks are nonmusicians? How do you separate people who just want to know you due to who you are vs. real friends? Lauren: I have a lot of school friends who aren’t into music at all but then I have friends who are too. I think I can tell people who are just after just the maiden connection. KCM: Is there a special significant other in your life right now? Lauren: Yes for me, it has always been Randy Gregg. I remember my life being very empty and uneventful till the day I met Randy. It was like the heavens opened up! It has never been the same since. I am thankful for everyday that he has graced me with just his mere presence. If he were to ever leave me, I would just wilt away. Life would be meaningless without him and the love we have.
KCM: At what age did you first pick up the bass guitar and why was that your choice of instruments? Were you self taught or did you take lessons? Randy: When I was younger, I knew I wanted to play music. At age 12, I fiddled around with guitar a lot, even sang in a local garage band. I was 13 when I had my first try at bass. It was with a neighborhood band that wasn't very good. Luckily for me, my bass had accidentally fallen over and snapped in half. So I continued with guitar for the next two years. Becoming frustrated with no band to play with, I agreed to give a second attempt at bass with the very same band two years prior, but this time they were outstanding. This turned out to be the moment that sparked my love for bass. So really, it almost wasn't by choice, but by chance. I did take one or two lessons, but felt I was accomplishing more on my own. Coincidentally, Dave Penna, the drummer for that band who was only 15 years old, was also an amazing musician. He had played piano for years and even had perfect pitch. Not only did he teach me the more difficult lines of songs we were covering, he was hearing the notes and relaying them to me immediately. This influenced me tremendously. I went on to adopt as many qualities and traits that I could from him. This really shaped me to understand the musical language needed to perform with many artists. I owe him a great deal of thanks! KCM: I believe Garlic was your first band. Who thought of the name and why the name Garlic? How would you describe the sound? Randy: The name GARLIC was thought up by the singer / drummer Joey Anderson. It evolved from mocking the band names that were floating around at the time, i.e.: Garbage, Bush, Tool, Cracker, etc. I believe it was the moment he opened his kitchen cupboard and saw GARLIC in the spice rack
Knowing my love for Anne Rice and Brahm Stoker, we went with it. GARLIC was majorly influenced by CHEAP TRICK and JELLYFISH with a splash of THE BEATLES and LED ZEPPELIN. Really good rock songs with pop sense. What is really noteworthy was that Joey sang and played drums standing up! I played 8 and 12 string bass and with Glenn on guitar it not only created a distinct sound, it was a cool visual as well. Live, Joey's kit would be set up downstage with Glenn and I on either side which tagged us as the "in-line power trio". KCM: How long was Garlic together? Are you still in touch with band-mates Joey Anderson (lead vocals/drums) and Glenn Walsh (guitar)? Randy: Joey and I had first played together in 1988. We had always known Glenn from the local scene. In 1995, Joey and I decided to start a new band. We fiddled around collecting new songs for two to three years. It basically got to the point where we had a good assortment of material and wanted to play live. We asked Glenn to come on board and within a month or two were in the studio recording our first record "Stinks" which was released in July of 1998. We played a ton of shows, started getting a good reputation, especially with the club personnel, which lead us to attain more high profile gigs. We recorded our second and final record "Homemade" in November of 2000. That line-up played it's final shows in 2001. I speak to Glenn every so often, but am in touch with Joey regularly. KCM: Did the band play any legendary local clubs that hosted other bands who went on to make it big? Who did you meet up with in their â€˜early daysâ€™ if anyone? Randy: We played a bunch of venues in Manhattan. CBGB's, The Continental and a few others. Unfortunately, we were playing during a time that marked the beginning of the end for local acts. Not too much was going on in the local scene, a lot of clubs were starting to not host bands or worse, closing altogether . Even bands that did make it, like The STROKES, didn't even play in the city that much. It was a bit dreary and certainly not like the decades prior.
KCM: You went on to play with a diverse group of highly acclaimed musicians: Scott Gorham, John Sykes & Michael Lee while standing in for the legendary Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy, Frank DiMino, Brandy Brandt along with Steve Blaze in the reformed Angel. You played a few shows with Twisted Sister frontman, Dee Snider. You were the bassist for Lauren Harris – Iron Maiden founder Steve Harris’s eldest daughter, opening for them on tour. How did you make the transition from NYC local band to the major leagues. What was your first big break? Randy: The transition was actually a little easy because I wasn't immediately thrown into a colossal project. For me, it was accomplished step by step and it was being in the right place at the right time. GARLIC really laid down a foundation for me. I've always referred to my years with GARLIC as "my own personal boot camp", experiencing all that was needed as an introduction to a musical career. Joey and I had always been big ANGEL fans. Joey actually bumped into Frank DiMino while in Boston. In short, talk of this incident while recording our first record spawned our label to also sign and release a record from the newly reformed ANGEL. So in 1999 when they started booking shows, the studio bass player was unable to tour. Our label knew that I would be a perfect fit. I was extremely excited to play with a band that I had listened to and loved for years. There were connections with management that led to the few shows I played with DEE SNIDER and also to my joining THIN LIZZY. Years later, another management company that had known of me through my time spent with ANGEL happened to be the new management for LAUREN HARRIS. I guess it really is who you know (laughs) KCM:
Who is your favorite bassist currently performing and why?
Randy: I'm very much an old school guy and I guess I'm not one for everything that current. (laughs) At least anything commercially current. I've always been in awe of JOHN PAUL JONES and JOHN DEACON. I also loved TIM SMITH's performance on JELLYFISH's "Spilt Milk". His playing on that record is spectacular. I mean, if you can play a fretless, without anyone actually knowing it's a fretless, then that's a job well done. But I've always been a tremendous CHEAP TRICK fan. I'm a huge fan of TOM PETERSSON, hence the 8 & 12 string basses I own. His playing has always been very flowing while staying in the pocket, and then there's moments of "what did he just do??". Plus his sound live is simply unmatchable. He gives so much backbone to that band and to me, he is very underrated and practically unrecognized. KCM: Aside from the obvious of being the bassist with Lauren Harris’s band while opening for Iron Maiden, what major bands have you shared the stage with? Randy: Oh boy, (laughs) Over the years I've also done some noteworthy tours with DEEP PURPLE & JOE SATRIANI, MOTLEY CRUE and WITHIN TEMPTATION. There have been tons of festivals, playing every summer with dozens and dozens of bands, but we were billed with and spent more time with bands like AVENGED SEVENFOLD, MASTODON, ANTHRAX, BUCK CHERRY, PAPA ROACH… I can really go on and on about this one, I've been quite fortunate. KCM: Steve Harris has been cited as one of the most influential heavy metal bassists due, in part to his signature ‘galloping’ playing style. Did you pick anything up anything stylistically from watching him while being on tour with Lauren? Randy: I have picked up so many things from Steve. Knowing him and touring with him for so long, how could you not pick up anything.
Not only is he one of the greatest bass players ever, he is a true gentleman, a genuine human being and one of the greatest rock stars I've ever had the honor of knowing! I've always been the kind of person that tries to shut my mouth and open my ears while being around people like that. I wouldn't say that I picked up on his style of playing as much as I have picked up on some of the business teachings and life lessons he has offered. I must say, I was always treated with complete respect and have also gotten some of the greatest compliments from him. KCM: Your current project, the amazingly accurate Queen tribute band, Almost Queen is making quite an impression on the rabid Queen fan-base of which I am a member. Queen has all but been forgotten by the American media except for their very commercial songs such as Crazy Little Thing. What other countries has Almost Queen played? Is Queen’s music more popular outside of the USA? Randy: In the States, I feel QUEEN holds the respect as some of the bigger classic rock bands do, but due to American radio it only goes so far. Outside of the country, they are absolutely massive. I have heard songs overseas that have not only never charted here, but have never even been aired on American radio. I've heard a QUEEN song played in probably every country I've ever been in! ALMOST QUEEN has had opportunities to perform in England, Europe and South America, but unfortunately has not been able to commit due to the financial constraints that bestow when you're not proposing a full tour. Outside of the continental US, we've played several shows in Mexico and a few cites in Central America. KCM: You went on tour with Lauren Harris for about 4 years AFTER the year you joined Almost Queen. How did you manage being on tour with Lauren Harris AND being in Almost Queen concurrently? That must have been quite a stylistic and logistic challenge. Randy: Yes, it was a challenge, but the band knew as well as I did, I couldn't pass up the opportunities the LAUREN HARRIS BAND had been given opening and touring with IRON MAIDEN. So we had to find a substitute for me, actually, we had find a few substitutes to yield to my touring schedule so ALMOST QUEEN would not have to postpone or detain any commitments. It was hard on all of us, especially the subs. It's a lot to learn and retain, musically and vocally. KCM:
What is your favorite Queen song that the band currently performs?
Randy: There are so many songs that are unbelievably gratifying to play, musically and vocally. "Bohemian", "Somebody To Love", "We Are The Champions", I can go on and on, "Under Pressure" to this day still gives me the chills. But I have to say "The Millionaire Waltz", hands down. I've been wanting to play that song since the first day I joined the band. KCM:
What Queen song would you love the band to learn?
Randy: I am an immense QUEEN fan. They have been one of my favorite bands my whole life so I like a lot of the deep cuts. I truly love the whole catalog but prefer the earlier albums like "Queen II" and "Sheer Heart Attack". More than anything, I would love to perform "March Of The Black Queen". After that, maybe "Flick Of The Wrist" and "The Fairy Feller's Master-Stroke". KCM: Almost Queen plays larger venues such as BB King’s and House of Blues, and does not saturate any given area; you’re not the band that plays at
the local clubs every couple of weeks or so. You also get booked for private gigs. What was the most amazing gig – private or public - that Almost Queen played? Randy: We did a gig for The Nestle Corporation in Guadalajara, Mexico. It was estimated that they had spent over one million dollars for this corporate party. I had never seen a party like this in my life, you could only imagine (or maybe you couldn't) the lengths they went to. Even the bling was "blinged out". For entertainment, they hired us, an ABBA band and a BEATLE band, who were spectacular. After they performed, I thought we were dead in the water, but surprisingly enough, these party guests, suits and all, literally attacked the stage, dancing and some even stage-diving! It was sublime and yet perplexing. (laughs) KCM: Do you see taking the next logical step to theater with the act, where a Queen show belongs given the dramatics of the original band? Randy: Without a doubt! Of all the venues we perform at, it's the theaters that really fit the part. Theaters lend that ambience and mood we are always trying to capture. It fits perfectly with QUEEN. In fact, that's what Freddie Mercury was all about and what he was trying to create. Take the opera, rock music mixed with the classical influence… I don't even think HE was thinking arena rock! It has been ALMOST QUEEN's ambition and goal to do a full theatre tour. Maybe if we are lucky, a nice residency somewhere in New York City? (laughs) KCM: Director Julie Taymor who is between gigs right now due to the ‘Spiderman – Turn Off The Dark’ challenges she endured. Julie has a musical background, having directed Across The Universe, set to a Beatles soundtrack. Do you see the band making a connection with Julie or another major director? Randy: To be honest, Julie is a perfect candidate for us to work with. Her experience with Broadway, music and opera screams ALMOST QUEEN…. tell her to call me! (laughs)
KCM-Your newest album” Lethal Dose Of” is amazing just like the other two, are you working on new material?
moved to Paris and we had to find another drummer. That is just a simple story I guess (laughing)
Swan- Yes we already made like 15 new songs and we don’t know exactly when we are going to record the next album but it should be in the next month and I can’t tell you really everything about it but we are going to work with a real famous producer who is American and he really has a big name. We can’t wait to record the new album.
KCM- I saw all the clips from the Scorpions shows, how was that experience?
KCM- I hear that you are doing a mini tour in the U.K, I have read all about it. What can be expected on this tour?
Swan- It was great! We played only two times but, it is such a big stage and we loved it. We’ve never been playing in front of so many people and we really hope that we are going to be playing on that kind of stage again. We didn’t really talk with the guys from Scorpions because they were not back stage. They come just before the show and leave right after. So, we didn’t really meet them.
Swan- Well it’s the first time we are going to the U.K so, we are pretty excited. I don’t know how it is going to be over there but I hope we are going to meet a lot of people and we are going to have fun of course. It has been a long time since we have played in clubs and we love it actually.
KCM- It must have been amazing going from playing clubs and small venues on to playing for such a big crowd. That really must have been something for the band.
KCM- Are there any other tours planned out in the near future?
KCM- That’s a major part of it, if you are going to be connected with your fans; you’re really going to get somewhere.
Swan- I don’t think so. Maybe a French tour but we prefer to wait until the next album is released. We should tour maybe in October or something but we are going to play several gigs this summer and some festivals but it will mostly be in France.
Swan- Yes. We love both big stages and clubs. It’s really different but, we love all kinds of stages (laughing)
KCM- How did Black Rain come to be? How did the band meet, how did it come together?
Swan- It’s important to take care of the people that like your music. We actually try to answer everybody when we get messages on the internet, on Facebook and that kind of stuff. But of course maybe sometimes we forget some people (laughs) but we try to talk with everybody and we like it! People are cool and it’s good to know that they listen to you and they enjoy the music.
Swan- I met Max when we were in school and Mat the bassist was a friend. So we just started to play together. Then we
KCM- Exactly! And I see even on Facebook, I actually know someone on Facebook who sees you guys a lot and has become
personal friends with you and the band just by going to your gigs.
Swan- Oh nice! KCM- And that proves how you and the rest of the members are so connected with your fans and how there is such a different vibe out in Europe and how they are keeping the scene alive there and we don’t have that here.
Swan- We would love to come to America because we have never played there and I actually forgot to tell you that maybe we will mix the next album in New York. KCM- Really!
difference. Swan- That’s really good to hear! KCM- I am very connected to the scene especially in Europe so I know everything that is going on. Swan- Then you have to come here (laughing) KCM- I am dying to especially to see one of you shows! It sucks having to watch you guys perform from the computer (laughing) Swan- (laughing It would be better in the real life! KCM- What attracted you to the glam and sleaze scene? Swan- Many things, first of course the music because this is what we love. We love when it is simple and the melodies are catchy. Then you have the other side to it, the attitude and the look you know all of that stuff. The music and the attitude are important and that’s what we love. KCM- Well it makes perfect sense because those are all the things that attracted me and it is so interesting how you and the guys are young and discovered this music. Swan- I don’t know when but it would be nice to meet you! (laughing) KCM- Oh I would love that! That would be amazing! You actually just answered my question I had about America. Would you guys come and play in America? Swan- Oh sorry! (laughing) KCM- Oh no that’s great! Swan- I’ve been to Los Angeles but we have never played and it’s quite different. I don’t think there are many rock bands or glam bands in our days so; I don’t really know the scene in America. Are there any bands of that style in NYC? KCM- Not really. There is a place in the city called St. Marks that somewhat has the rock n roll scene, which if you come you have to go there! And you do have some bands from NYC that have that style but there is very few. You will find a little bit more of the scene in LA but it is honestly dead out here. Nobody is appreciating rock n roll out here. Swan- That’s sad! KCM- You guys are already making a big impact in Europe. Most people I am friends with on Facebook
Swan- Like I told you, rock n roll and all the bands like Skid Row, Motley Crue, are not famous in France and they don’t talk about those kinds of bands in magazines. So, I heard all about that stuff from an old friend who introduced me to all those bands. That’s how I came to listen to glam and sleaze. You we’re talking about gigs and I have to tell you that we are releasing a video soon of the show we made with Crashdiet. I don’t know if you heard about that gig? KCM- Yes I have. So tell me about it. Swan- There were seven cameras at the gig and we are going to release a kind of movie actually. I don’t really know when but it should be next month and it’s not going to be on YouTube, it will be on the website Daily motion. I don’t know if you know that sight but it’s a French site. So, you got to check that out! KCM- Oh definitely! Swan- The video is going to be really awesome! KCM- That’s going to be great, I can’t wait to see it! That must have been a great experience since you guys are friends with Crashdiet.
Swan- Yeah I really love the band and they are good friends of mine. KCM- Now, speaking of your music one of the first things that attracted me was your unique vocal style and pitch. Swan- (laughing) I think you either love it or hate it. KCM- I love it and I think it’s amazing, how did you develop that vocal style? Swan- I actually work a lot on my voice and I don’t know why I have that special way of singing, it just came you know. Personally, I like it but some people think it’s too high pitched. You really just have to work every day and that’s the way it comes. KCM- What are some of your favorite bands and musicians that have inspired you? Swan- Of course Guns N Roses. Actually all the bands that have a singer like you said with that special kind of voice I usually like it. I love WASP, Blackie Lawless I love his voice. We actually listen to all kinds of music but what influences use the most are bands like Motley Crue and Guns n Rose. Like we said, it’s for the attitude and the look and we just love all of those bands. KCM- You guys have done touring over the years and I am sure you guys have experience with how crazy life on the road is; what is your craziest or favorite tour memory? Swan- What can I tell you (laughing) actually I never remember what I did (laughing). You know, just too much drinking. I don’t have a special memory of crazy shit that happened; it’s just a big party every night. We really enjoy the after party and meeting with all the people. It’s always new people and new places, I like it. KCM- I am sure it must have been very interesting when you and the band toured with Sister?
Swan- (laughing) so you want to know about the way we made the video?
Swan- Yes that was the best tour we had because, we were fucked up every day and night (laughing). It was really, really funny! Germany was a nice country to play in with Sister. We’ve been destroying some hotel rooms and the usual shit that all the bands maybe do on tour and we did it in Germany with Sister (laughing).
KCM- Of course!
Swan- Yeah really wild! (laughing)
Swan- (laughing) some parts are fake actually but most of them are real. It’s videos from many parties we had and we really burn the car. It was Max’s car (laughing) and it was a lot of fun. I have to watch it again because I haven’t watched that video in a long time and I don’t really remember everything. We couldn’t afford a big production so, we had to make everything by ourselves and I think we made something good.
KCM- I guess the only way to answer that question is to show the people the” Rock Your City” video. It basically shows right that what it’s all about.
KCM- You guys really did! The video is great and it can basically sum up what you guys are about and what you guys are trying to portray.
KCM- Oh my God that must have been wild!
Swan- You know, it’s really funny. It’s not really serious, I saw some people’s comments on YouTube and they think it’s real. People don’t know what’s true and what’s not. It’s just what Black Rain is all about; it’s a big party.
Swan- (laughing) cool! We actually thought that maybe it was a bit violent for a first song on an album because of the lyrics its quite violent and we didn’t know how it would work as the first song. And, it was good actually.
KCM- You can basically tell what the video is about. Of course naturally you guys robbing the hair salon is fake (laughing) you would have been arrested but, the parties you can tell are real. Swan(laughing) We are pretty lucky with this we have never been arrested (laughing)
KCMI think it’s a very good way to start an album because it is a very strong song and it keeps your interest especially the intro of that song the drums and the gun together it’s sick! SwanI really enjoy hearing how much you like the stuff (laughing)
KCM- Thank God (laughing)
KCM- Overloaded is another favorite song of mine off the album including the video.
Swan- Yeah really! (laughing) Comes with rock n roll I guess. KCM- I guess you guys are doing it the right way to not get arrested.
Swan- Overloaded is the first song I wrote for the album and it’s a really catchy one. And it’s also a pretty cool video. We are going to make another one for the next album and we already chose the song and I hope we are going to make it soon.
Swan- Yes we are. KCM- Going back to the songs that you have released I noticed that you speak about a girl named Rosie a lot, is she real? What’s the story on Rosie? Swan- She is a friend of ours and we haven’t seen her in a long time now. She is a very special person so we had very many things to tell about her. She deserves some songs. KCMAt least you really recognize the people around you who inspire you instead of always thinking and talking about yourselves. Swan- Well it’s good to talk about yourself sometimes because I guess it is the easiest way to find inspiration. It’s good to talk about everything and it’s very interesting actually to try and make a song for someone else like a friend or someone you really like or you love. It’s pretty cool. KCM- Speaking of that album, if you want you can explain a little about what the album is about because listening to the album there’s a lot of different feelings coming from that album and a lot of songs have different meanings
It’s really not all based on one feeling and it’s very interesting. Swan- I think it’s important to make different songs so the album is not boring. It mostly talks about girls and parties and our lives in general except for the song Get a Gunn which is not a Black Rain song. Do you know the original? KCM- No I didn’t even know it was a cover. Swan- You probably won’t recognize it because it sounds nothing like the original one but it’s interesting to hear. You gotta check that out, it’s from a French band called The “CNK”. You should really check it out so you can compare it with our version. KCMDefinitely, I will look that up. I actually love that song so it will be interesting. The first time I heard that song I went nuts! I just love the way the song starts and the attitude of the song.
KCM- That’s great! I can’t wait for the new album to come out, it sounds like it’s going to be great! SwanYea they’re really are great new songs and my voice is better than before so, if you liked it before you are really going to love it this time. KCM- Oh now I really can’t wait! Go back to the fans I see you have a fan club out called the Black Rain girls, did you guys start the group? What’s it all about? Swan- Actually, we didn’t create it. It’s some friends of us that started to send us some pictures of fans in Black Rain shirts. Most of the time the girls were really pretty and I felt like it was a waste for only us to see the pictures so a friend started to make a MySpace and we put all of the pictures of the girls. Now, it’s a good thing because it is on Facebook and a lot of girls are sending pictures in Black Rain shirts and
I think it is cool to put pictures up of people who helped you it’s a way of saying thank you guys well, thank you girls. KCM- That’s really cool that you give back to the fans Swan- Well we really like to work that way, it’s like a big family. KCM- Another thing that is very interesting is the band name including the logo, how did you come up with the name? Swan- It was just random I saw the name from the movie “Black Rain” and I found it very catchy and cool. Nobody else came up with another name so we took this one. It’s also has a cool meaning black rain is what happens after an atomic bomb explodes and we thought the aggression fits with the music. KCM- It really does fit the music. Your name is also very interesting how did you come up with it? Swanmovie.
Ok (laughing) Swan is because of the movie “Phantom of the Paradise” I don’t know if you know this
KCM- No, I never heard of it. Swan- It’s a really old movie you have to check that out as well. I can’t remember who made it but I took the name from a character. Hellion is just because of the song. KCM- WASP is great and it reflects in your music that they are a big influence. Swan- His voice is great and I can’t understand how he can sing that way! KCM- Now, I am wondering if you guys are having the same trouble that bands are having in the States with records. Was it hard for you guys to get noticed and to get signed? Swan- Oh yeah! (laughing). The problem is that no one has money any more so it is very complicated. We found a great manager/producer and he helped us a lot. He put a lot of money in the band and he gave us a lot of good advice and help. I don’t know if record companies are really useful today. KCM- I agree and the band is very fortunate that you found a manager that is allowing you to be yourselves and that is not trying to change you. It is the total opposite out here in America. It’s all about mainstream out here. Swan- Well if you find a good serious record company they will help you out with promotion too and we are hoping to find a good company with a good deal for the next album in America and I hope that the producer we are working with will give us good connections for this album. We will see. KCM- If the producer is a good producer that really likes your music and believes in it then he should help you out. Swan- Actually just his name alone is going to help us a lot. KCM- It will probably make you get more noticed in America when they see who is producing it. It is so exciting what’s happening to you and the band! Swan- We are very excited about the new album and all that stuff. We can’t wait! KCM- So basically just to sum up, what should we expect in the future from Black Rain? Swan- Good deals from the record companies and good promotion, big tours and trying to tour all around the world that would be just great and that’s really it. KCM- Thank you so much for doing this. Swan- Thank you for the interest in the band, it’s really great! I am really pleased to talk to you and to know how much you enjoy the music, it’s really important for us get that kind of feedback. KCM- Well I am glad to have had the opportunity and good luck with everything that is happening.
We will only review your latest 5 song E/P or Full CD DO NOT Send old material or single songs. All submissions can be mailed to: KRASHCITY 21-24 47th Street Astoria, NY 11105 or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Dirty Pearls Whether You Like It Or Not By: Agnieszka Wilde My love affair with the Dirty Pearls started about a year and a half ago seeing them play around town, but they didn’t completely register in my brain until I saw the making of their video “Who’s Coming Back To Who” at the legendary Don Hills. That song stuck in my brain for months and I was praying that they would put out a full length album. The CD starts off with “Whether You Like It Or Not” with some
sixties like rockabilly guitars and the band makes sure to state in their lyrics that you have no choice their coming for you, whether you like it or not. This song is followed by more melodic numbers like “Who’s coming back to who” and one of my favorites “Caffeine And Gasoline”. Personally this album reminds me of the sixties with a seventies twist where street gangs where cool and boys carried combs in their back pockets. It’s an escape back to a time where the music was hot and everything seemed effortless. “Love Sick Love”, “Bring On The Night” and the ultimate anthem “New York City is a Drug” are my other favorites and “You Got Me Where You Want Me” is a nice, smooth addition. I play the hell out of this album on daily basis, it simply gets my groove on and if you give it a chance it will surprisingly creep up on you and get your grove on too.
If you don’t like The Dirty Pearls then you don’t like music.
SEX SLAVES Call Of The Wild By: Agnieszka Wilde The Sex Slaves third CD called “Call Of The Wild” packs some serious ammunition that explodes in your face in the midst of the album. This is a Rock’n’Roll fantasy come true, from the clever lyrics to the explosive, edgy guitar riffs to the in your face drums. ”
Sex Slaves have out done themselves once again and show real musical growth. My favorites are; “My black Heart”, “I Wanna Kill You”, ”Sik Fuck” and the groupie intended “Get In Line” I was also amused by the drunkenly charming” “I Got Drunk” but I wouldn’t dream of not mentioning the opening track “W.T.F.R.U.” With the feet stomping drums and pristine vocals they leave you no choice but to scream; We’re the Sex Slaves and who the fuck are you!? And trust me with a line like that there’s no way in hell you’ll be forgetting them anytime soon.
COLD BLUE REBELS Blood, Guts and Rock-nRoll By: Rita Fabozzi Straight from the crypt of LA I bring you the fabulous but deadly Cold Blue Rebels! I have never seen a band that mixes the style’s of the
50’s rock n roll, punk-a-billy with zombie horror until I discovered these guys. This album has the coolest, creepiest intro that leads to the first song “Cold, Blue, and Beautiful” which has this awesome rock n roll beat that takes you right back to the fifties. The whole album from start to finish is pure rock n roll. It just wants to make you jump up and do the twist while dripping in blood! The musicians behind this gory magic are from the local L.A. 80’s band scene. Mickey Finn (frontman) from the most popular Jetboy. What I love about this band most is they put on an amazing live show All decked out in horror makeup, fangs, and blood along with Rock-A-Billy clothing and vintage instruments to match. Danny Dangerous (bassist) even uses an upright bass! You can’t get more vintage than that. Joe Normal (guitarist) just kills it with his great twang Rock-n-Roll riffs. This is one of very few albums that I can actually say is a classic coming from a new band. I cannot wait to hear there next album along with seeing them alive once they come back to town. Anyone who love classic rock n roll and horror rock and punk has to check out this band cause’ there’s no one else like them around! They are truly one of a kind!
PEEP SHOW JUNKIES End Decent Exposure By: Karena “Rock” Reiter Peep Show Junkies sing songs about the twists of Lust, Love, Romance and shady dealings…….. 'End Decent Exposure' is a very sophisticated and well produced piece of work. The vocals are excellent as are the lyrics, which are clearly written by someone who has lived a lot of life and endured and / or enjoyed several relationships. However, most importantly, IT ROCKS!! Peep Show Junkies was formed in 2009 by Bobby Lingo of SHARP and Brandon Rouge of SHANGHAI LILLY. There is a clear Stones feel with some BOSS undertones. The band decided to take the nontraditional but logical approach of record first and play the club circuit later, so as to have product to sell from show one. Good plan, guys. “Hurt Me”, the opening song on the CD is a standout selection
that articulated the pain of being broken up with. “She's A Mystery” is a more melodic number that examines the frustration of being involved with a less than reliable, OK, FLAKY girlfriend. “Karousel Kitten” is really catchy. I'll be dancing to this one when the band starts to play out! “The Philosophy of Greed” is one of the few songs on the CD that is not about weird, good, bad or lost love. As the name implies, it's about shady dealings. Yeah, well, this is NYC were we see more than our fair share of less than forthright dealings. “Time for a Change” could be the anthem for the OCCUPY movement. "It's time for a change, look at the shape of the world and tell me who’s to blame". “Lady Desperado” is a number that will be on auto repeat in your brain after one listen. I could go on about each number. But check it out on your own. I'll be at these PEEP SHOW JUNKIE shows A LOT. Time to hit the clubs, guys. See you on the dance floor. L.A.M.F.
JANE SESSION 4 Ever By: Fiona Lane Hailing from Sweden we have Jane Session. A group I was rather excited about listening to, due to the fact that they're rocking some female vocals! And Sweden has given us some of the best Rock bands in my opinion. However, I was sorely disappointed if I'm honest. All in all the group have the potential to make some fantastic music, but in my personal opinion they are coming off FAR too aggressive, It all seems rather sloppy, but I'm not going to compare it to road kill! the guitarists are obviously well taught but I cant help feeling it's nothing I haven't heard before. “Notorious Womanizer I must say I did rather enjoy this tune, you could tell straight away that it's going to be a tune to drive your car to. The song opens with a lovely mix of guitar work so smooth you could slice butter with it, drumming that gets your heart pounding,
and a bass line to be more than proud of! However, When the vocals kick in, I feel completely let down, the rough female voice unfortunately doesn't suit the rest of the musicians. It feels like going to the movies expecting an action film but getting a teen chick flick. No guitar solos in this song, it's a shame really, the song could really do with that boost from a painfully smooth solo. Towards the end of the song everything speeds up... I mean double bass speeds up, which I don't agree with, it was a step to far and made it seem like Jane Session are confused as to their Genre. Very much like Arch Enemy, except the vocalist sounds more like a strangled cat than a demon-woman from the darkest depths of hell. “Punk We Are” Ok, so a massive change in style and tempo, At least it fits the name of the song, VERY Punk, simple beats and guitar licks, and yet again the vocals have killed it, the recording is very tinny. To be honest it seems like hardly any time has been spent on writing the actual song, The lyrics are unintelligible and it doesn't pleasure my ears...it makes my brain hurt more. It's like a car crash… the drummer overtakes at different points in the song, I'm not sure if that was intentional or not but its not good for the song, it's either deliberate or just very bad recording.
Credit to the guitarist for helping me gain a little bit of respect for the song, The solo is fantastic, fits the style and is smooth as silk! “”4EVER YOUNG, 4EVER FREE” This song really intrigued me, upon starting we are greeted with speedy, catchy riff mixed with some sublime drumming and heart pounding bass, for some reason there's a solo in the opening, which in my opinion was a bad move, it didn't make sense! (not that music always makes sense) So, a shameful start, but guess what? As soon as that mouth opens I feel let down again. The solo in the song is impressive, but only impressive, it doesn't fit the song and feels like it's been thrown in there to compensate for everything else that is going wrong in the tune. So yeah, all in all, It started off looking like but failed as the song went on, Swing and a Miss! To sum things up, Jane Sessions have a lot of work to do, the talent is there but they are miles away from their true potential, Not something I plan to keep on my playlist.
SOUL SIGN Life In The Dark By: Rita Fabozzi Soul Sign is one of those bands that you can call a “super group”. Each member has been in the music business for many years and have worked many famous bands and musicians Quiet Riot, Leather Wolf, Yngwie Malmsteen, Uli Jon Roth, and Tony MacAlpine just to name a few. This band has a very original heavy melodic sound and this album in particular has a very heavy dark sound and feel to it. This album is filled with heavy guitar riffs, crazy solos and bass riffs with vocals that match perfectly with the style of music. The album starts off with a kick ass in your face song with a killer title “I’m Bleeding”. I was absolutely hooked the minute the song started. Each song has its own style but still keeping that dark heavy metal feel to it. The talent that these guys have is incredible; each and every member in this band amazes me.
It’s very hard to pick what my favorite songs are from this album but can name the ones that totally stood out for me “I’m Bleeding”, “Between The Lines” due to its insane bass solo intro, and “In The Presences Of You” . I can really relate to this album and I never imagined coming upon a great a modern metal band until I heard this album. I honestly cannot find one thing wrong this album and band. They are amazing players that are very well organized with a fantastic vocalist backing them up. I would love to see this band live, I am sure they would rock live. I hope this band gets the recognition and respect that they deserve, I can see them going places. If you are a metal fan you must check out this album!
NASTY HABIT Nasty Habit By: Rita Fabozzi I loved what I saw with this band the minute I watched their music video “Saturday Night”.
Not only did they look really cool but also they sounded amazing. The first thing I thought of was how kick ass their album was going to be when it is done. Now that I finally got to hear it I knew that my feelings were right. These four dudes from Upstate New York really know how to kick ass and rock the hell out of their instruments! The album is a total throw back of 80s glam but only modernized. The track “Tripped” is the opener for the album and a smart choice for the opening track. The riffs are heavy with an up lifting beat that gets you moving. The second song “Hip Shakin’ Fox along with the instrumental track “Hot Mess” are my favorite off the album, those two tracks really just blew my mind. I really love the guitarist (Kenny Ende) style of playing because he knows how to show off without over doing it, he has some skills! I also love the vocalist Tomy Ende, he has the whole package that every front man should have. I honestly can’t find one thing I don’t like about this album. It has a great variety of different styled songs from ballads to heavy songs. This band has so much energy that I can only imagine how cool their live show must be. The album was recorded and arranged very professionally which impressed me even more.
This album really rocks hard along with the band. If you like good glam rock n roll then you definitely have to check out this band!
LOCK-N-LOAD Lock-n-Load By: Rita Fabozzi This band from London fucking blows my mind! They are a bunch of young kids who are doing the punk style just like it was being done back in the golden age of punk. This 5 song E/P will really blow you away if you are a hard core punk fan like me. A good way to describe is it is 5 songs filled with aggression, anger, and speed. As soon as the E/P starts it just tears into you making you want to go insane and bang your head. The band is extremely tight and the guitar riffs are fucking great along with the quality of the recording which sounds like it was professionally recorded. What I really love about this band is how they are purely original and sounds like something you would have heard during the
the real punk era. I don’t have a favorite track off this E/P because they are all my favorite, yes it is that good! All I can say is this band sounds pretty epic and if they keep it up this way they could become huge! This is seriously one band that is doing it right and that really have their act together. I can just imagine the energy this band must have Live, if they keep it up they can really get places. Now I am ready for the full album because I am not satisfied! I want more!!! Punk fans you must check this out!
STAR KILLER As The Sky Is Falling By: Rita Fabozzi Star Killer is one of those bands that I have dreamed about finding and there are bands similar but they suck. Star Killer is doing it right and this EP confirms it. They have a very different style that is a mix of metal music and Industrial that I is very loud and in your face. The EP starts with the title track that is killer and just smacks you in the face the same way
that all the other 4 tracks do. My favorite track is the last track “The Hunt” it is so dirty and heavy sounding. I honestly cannot find a thing wrong with this band the music is amazing and nothing is overdone. I really love the vocals it is what I would my call “my type of vocals” and I think I can add Jasin Cadic to my list of favorite vocalists. Since I have gotten this EP I cannot stop listening to it. These guys should be huge and I hope they get to that status! If you like heavy in your face music you would love these guys CHECK THEM OUT!!!!!
BANG TANGO Pistol Whipped In The Bible Belt By: Fiona Lane If you haven't heard of these four talented veteran musicians, then where on Earth have you been? Oh yeah Bang Tango time! A brilliant group that has brought us a total of 6 fantastic studio albums. I have nothing bad to say about this album!
The work has obviously been put in, defiantly one to be proud of. “PISTOLWHIPPED IN THE BIBLE BELT” Straight away I'm impressed, the name itself screams Rock N Roll! The opening of the song is a Bass line that will send your heart into overdrive. A perfect start! Then the other instruments welcome themselves into the song...at perfect times. Perfect tone, and pitch. Basically everything is perfect! About a minute and a half in I got a lovely surprise, a nice little bit of female vocals. It gave the song a very sleazy feel and was a gleaming addition. As for the guitar, wow! a mixture of different styles are used, very upbeat and funky! and the solos are perfect for the tune, the rhythm guitar and lead really work well together. All in all a damn good track! DICK IN THE SYSTEM My friends got a dick in the system' - Awesome line. The song is blatantly about politics, it's killer! The tune opens with a really MEATY riff, instantly appealing to the ears. Very well timed drums and bass that smacks you in the face! As soon as the vocals break in you know you're in for a treat.
The vocal range is spot on for this track, Joe really puts his whole self into it. As is expected from a band with the caliber of Bang Tango. When the solo comes in, I got goose bumps, a shiver down my spine, It may only be short but trust me, it really doesn't need any more. Impeccably written. HAVE YOU SEEN HER This is simply beautiful. We are greeted with a exquisite piano score and some soft, emotional lyrics. I instantly fell in love with this song. The song is very easy to understand, obviously a love song, that's sung from a possible relevance. Joe Leste's feelings emerged and his heart exposed itself in this masterpiece ballad. As for guitars its like Bang Tango have taken everything I look for in a ballad and managed to fit it all into one angelic riff, with numerous solos throughout and it really adds to the heartwarming feeling you get with this killer piece of music. Towards the end things start to speed up, this is certainly not a bad thing, the contrast they have made between ballad and speed is perfect, a combination I thought nearly impossible. This song has crept its way into my top 5 Ballads of all time and that little red thing in my chest. Bang Tango have done an awesome job with this album and I am proud to have it on my playlist. Definitely a must buy! GO GET IT!!
SIVA ADDICTION Bad Decisions By: Rita Fabozzi Siva Addiction has all you can want in a modern rock band including vocalist Bridgette Oliver, matching what has been very common lately in the modern rock scene. This album “Bad Decisions” has a very heavy sound mixed with a modern rock sound. I discovered that each song on the album has a story to it and was written about personal experiences that the band members had, which makes the album a bit interesting. The album opens with the title track which is the best song off the album along with “Take Me Home” due to its really cool but mellow electric and acoustic guitar riff. I have to say Andy Hopkins is a sick guitar player which is what kept my interest. Bridgette Oliver is a very talent vocalist with a strong voice but I feel her style of vocals do not match the music and I personally
don’t like her voice. I am not a fan of the band nor the album due to it not being my taste of music but, I must say that every member is very talented and knows what they’re doing. Honestly what kept my interest were the guitar riffs and I feel that Andy is the best part of the band. All and all I can see this album getting a little bit of fame in the modern hard rock scene so, if you’re a fan of modern check them out.
HOLLYWOOD BURNOUTS Excess All Areas By: Agnieszka Wilde Originally the name Hollywood Burnouts struck me as another California wanna be glam implant, but that goes to show you that you should never judge a book by its cover. These guys seem to be the hottest import from Germany where they carved out quite a name for themselves from all the reviews I read. They have been compared to Motley Crue and I totally disagree. I hear Poison 1987
a l l o v e r a g a i n . “Gimme,Gimme,Gimme” is almost an exact replica of Poison’s “Unskinny Bop” and “Wild at heart” screams Poison all over again. “A part of my heart” is a well thought out ballad and I do like the fact that there’s a girl in the band and she kicks ass playing piano and also guitars. Over all the music is a total throw back to the hair metal days and that’s not a bad thing, it’s entertaining. The vocals are really good as well and in the end I hear a lot of similarities to the band “Steelheart” from the U.S. “Excess’ all areas” lacks originality and even though it’s a throwback to the mid 80’s where rockers lived on Aqua net and heavy rhythmic riffs, Hollywood Burnouts imitate that time all too well but they are missing the IT factor that sets them apart. The songs are cheesier then Velveeta on a hot summer day but I don’t doubt that if you are a glam music fan you will like this band.
ECLIPSE ECLIPSE By: Rita Fabozzi Eclipse is one of those bands that take you a while to figure out if you like them or not. The band has a very unique musical style that much I could say but it is not something that I could listen to. I cannot find any research on this band which I think looks bad on the band’s part if they don’t have a website, I am hoping that it is just me not being able to find it. I can’t find a genre to classify this EP or band but the closest that I can come up with is that they have that weird, spacey, mellow sound like Rush which is a band I never liked. They are great musicians who arranged their songs very well. I do wish that the EP did not have a fuzzy sound to it, which of course has to do with how it was recorded. At first the EP was very hard to listen to but after the third time most of it grew on me which allowed me to actually write the review.
The first song “Darkness” is the only song I honestly hate! To me it sounds like a total rip off of Rush especially the keyboard intro. The rest of the EP isn’t too bad but reminds me of music that I would listen to when I’m high because it has that spaced out effect that matches well with a high or buzzed feeling. What you will find in this EP is mellow guitar riffs, good vocals with a different style and keyboards along with a grunge sound and feel. I can’t say much more about this band because it is one of those bands that you just have to listen for yourself plus I don’t know anything about them due to lack of no information. They have a very different weird sound to them and they qualify sound wise to the modern Rush. Hopefully I can dig deeper and find something about this band. If you like Rush and mellow music you might just like them.
ELIXER Get Out
By: Rita Fabozzi Elixir’s fame began during the year of 2008 and just by looking at the album it shows. I was very impressed by how professional the album was packaged. The front cover is actually my favorite part of the whole album. When you look at the album cover it just screams 80s glam but that is the only part of the album that is glam which, I was disappointed by. When you first look at some of the guys in the band you could never imagine them playing the style that they are playing but you can’t judge just by looking. The album starts off with an awesome strong bass line then goes into a mellow intro then, kicks into heavy kick ass guitar riffs. When the vocals come in that is when I really got into the song. There is just something so different about the vocals that just wowed me and I discovered that it was the different vocal pitches that he uses throughout the song. Another thing that is great about the vocalist is that you can understand everything he is saying which is very important since they come from Brazil. As the album goes on the music doesn’t really thrill me but the vocals is what kept me listening. I didn’t like their ballad “Answers” at all. It is too modern hard rock sounding for me.
Their other ballad “Hold Me” was definitely better than “Answers” but I still didn’t like it. The thing I noticed about this band is that it lacks originality except for the vocals. I wish the music wasn’t as modern hard rock sounding and had a little more of that 80s in your face style which they say they have. Some of the songs even have a little touch of country which totally turned me off, I don’t like when rock and country are mixed. All and all they are very good musicians and know what they are doing. The album was recorded and put together very well. My favorite songs off the album were “Rock n Roll Till We Die” and “Burning for Me”. The band didn’t really keep my interest expect for the vocals and a few cool bass lines. I wish the music had the 80s rock styled like the band describes they have. I personally did not hear anything 80s sounding in their music. The only thing that had a 80s style was the front cover. This band is personally not my style or what I would listen to but if you like modern hard rock then check out this band.
This band is definitely not for me.
ZERO KING King Of Self Destruction By: Rita Fabozzi This band confuses me and so does their latest album. They consider themselves heavy but there is nothing heavy about them. This album sounds like every other horrible rock band that you hear on the radio these days. They have a mixture of different sounds but they do it in a way that doesn’t make it work with the music. For example, it’s very hard to write a good ballad that is not full of cheese. Well let’s just say that the ballads on this album couldn’t get any cheesier especially since an orchestra is used on one of the ballads and that just kills it all together. To me there is nothing original on this album or even worth listening to unless you like modern crappy rock music on the radio. The only song that was ok in my opinion was “Black Friday”. All and all I do give them credit because they play well and sound pretty tight. The music isn’t half as bad as the vocals are and I think the band would sound better with a different vocalist.
KILLCODE KillCode By: Agnieszka Wilde There is a lot of great music coming out of New York City these days and KillCode is in that top ten. Their album is more diversified than anything else I have heard and I like the fact that their influences are easily identified. The album starts with a strong and confident punch of “Still here” and call me crazy but it reminds me of Dusty Springfield’s “Son of a preacher man” not the song per say but some of the melodies. I was sort of surprised but I also happen to like the heavier numbers like “Hands up” which has an anthem-like chorus, “Tied” and “Opium Dogs”. “The wrong side” is a very commercial song and I use that term loosely, but I think if this song got a regular radio play it would definitely land the band on the whole U.S. map and hope-
Worldwide. I don’t wanna sound over confident but I have a knack for spotting hit songs. The same applies to “Trust” with the backup vocals of Angelina Del Carmen, this song shines through the album. I love Southern rock and I love that Killcode is infused with it. The opening, groovy bass in “Loose” completely stands out in my mind and I can’t stop moving my feet to “Bad Mother”. I’m totally impressed; bands like these make me proud to be a New Yorker. Killcode stirs up your appetite and makes you beg for your supper.
Electric Sister. The lost art of Rock –nRoll By; Agnieszka Wilde Oakland, CA’s based Electric Sister has the basic ingredients of Rock’n’Roll that would easily be approved by an average metal head.
Their CD “The Lost Art Of Rock’n’Roll” has a mixture of sounds and in my opinion it’s hard to sum it up to one category. My ears perked up when I head the beginning of “I Want It All” as the singers voice reminded me of Paul Stanley and the song reminded me of early kiss, so naturally that’s one of my favorites on this CD. The others are; “Monster Girl”, “Goddess” and “The Lost Art Of Rock’n’Roll. I’m typically not a fan of heavy rock although these songs stayed in my head. I was not impressed with songs that don’t have strong chorus melodies and songs which begin with crazy and long guitar licks that after a while all start to sound the same, and suddenly the album dropped from hundred miles an hour and nosedived with a song called” Echo Park” There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the tune, matter of fact I liked the hippy-like pace and just as I started getting into it the song ended. Overall this is a good album but I think it needs some minor adjustments. Sounds like all these guys are good musicians and I would definitely give them a “Hell Yeah” at one of their gigs.
Sunset Riot Uprising By: Agnieszka Wilde If you’re going on a road trip be sure to have Sunset Riot’s “Uprising” and crank it up to ten. Although I liked their previous album this one has surpassed my expectations and there is not one song on this CD that I don’t like. It Rocks from start to end and if you slice Bonn Scott and Michael Hutchence in half you’ll get Del Rio, yes his voice is that diverse and good. This is a totally feel good album and the energy of the songs will instantly uplift you and let me not forget to mention that these boys seem to fancy the color red as mentioned in the titles of their two rocking tracks “Red Ferrari” and “Red Leather”. Even with a ballad like “Stir Crazy” this album is simply great. Its music like this that makes me hold on to a glimpse of hope that there’s still amazing music out there even if it’s all the way from Australia.
What you will get from this I really think these guys rock band and EP is music and kick so check them out! ass vocals provided by vocalist Charlie. What I like the most about this EP is how they don’t forget about the bass, which is important to me. This whole album is filled with great bass lines, bass fills, and even bass solos. BEGGARZ FIXX
They claim to be emerging
the sounds of Motley Crue,
By: Rita Fabozzi
Guns and Roses, and Skid
Beggarz Fixx from the UK
Row into one but to me I
don’t hear it and from reading
band. Out of all the glam
their bio they are more origi-
bands coming out of Europe
nal than they make them-
they are one of few bands
selves out to be. If anything I
hear more of the Skid Row
right. Their seven song EP is
sound than anything else they
killer from start to finish mu-
compare themselves to which
sical and lyrical which is un-
is cool. I really like these
usual in this generation of
guys and would love to see
music especially in the rock
this band along with their EP
and metal scene. This awe-
become successful. If this EP
some EP starts off with a
doesn’t get successful I will
truly then be convinced that
right from the start. I feel it’s
with people’s ears especially
important for a band to know
if they are out there looking
how to write a good instru-
for a new, fresh original glam
mental song. This is great to
band. If you like to drink and
rock out to and I dig all the
party on a Saturday night
than you must add this to
track “It Ain’t About You”
which I feel is their least
Saturday night play list!
GENYA RAVAN Cheesecake Girl By: Bobby Lingo In my opinion, the best way to describe Genya Ravan is that she’s a woman with big balls and it comes out through her voice. “Cheesecake Girl”, her latest offering is a kick ass rock n roll album. For those few of you who don’t know who she is, she was in the FIRST allgirl rock n roll group Goldie and the Gingerbreads. Yes, before Fanny and the Runaways, Genya made her bones fronting Goldie but her BIG voice came through when she was fronting Ten Wheel Drive. As a producer, she was responsible for the Dead Boys, “Young Loud and Snotty” and Ronnie Spector’s album “Siren” and can currently be found hosting a radio show on Little Steven’s Underground Garage on Sirius radio called Goldie’s Garage. But, enough about her history. “Cheescake Girl” touches many styles of rock n roll.
It is a very New York album as her writing conjures up pictures of the streets of NYC and all that represents. From soulful ballads, a touch of country, Chicago style blues to straight ahead whiskey drinking, slide guitar playing, Stonesy, rock n roll. In the liner notes, she tells us that the songs are the soundtrack to her autobiography and she does a great job of singing us the stories of Goldie and the Gingerbreads when they toured during the swinging 60’s with the Stones and Yardbirds etc.in the opening number “Cheesecake Girl” and continued in the rocking “Cobblestones Rolling Stones”. “Angel of the Odd”, is a beautifully done soulful ballad that reminds me of the Faces with Hammond organ and piano excellently played by Dennis DiBrizzi. “Let’s Get Jack” is a funky groove that tells us don’t cross Genya because she pulls out all the stops when she gets her revenge. She does a balls to the wall version of Lee Michaels’ “You Know What I Mean”. I enjoyed all of the tracks but I think the one I’m stuck on today (and that could change tomorrow) is a song that Leslie West did on the “Mountain” album, “Baby, I’m Down” Genya tears your heart out.
PANZIE Love and Blood By: Fiona Lane Upon listening to Panzie, I felt as if I had stepped back into the mid/late 90's with their industrial feel and aggressive vocals clutching you by the throat and shaking the life out of you. With Johnny, Jonnie, DC, & John from the best city in the world, NYC.. I give you Panzie! "All American" conveys the feeling Heavy Metal from the south, like Pantera, Devildriver, and other southern great sounding bands. But what Panzie really delivers to the table is their raw dexterity and energy of the early mid 90's rock bands mixed in with influences of industrial bands like Dope. They bring an edge that allows them a step up above other bands that are around right now.
Panzie works with simple hooks and brutal riffs that are able to connect with their target audience. The aggressive lyrics give that over the top feeling accompanied by awesome lead guitar that makes you feel like you having your insides ripped out. "Angry Man" A close reminiscence of Danzig mixed with hooks from Billy Idol which is most definitely interesting, but not a bad thing. You hear songs like this coming from today's popular screamo/metalcore bands that are rather difficult to vocally understand, but what these guys do is portray it in a very hyperactive style along with some funky bass lines and pounding drums which makes this song stand out above the rest and puts today's music a step below. "Rise" emits a Nu Metal feel right from the forefront , it gives me a feel of One Minutes Silence/Stuck Mojo with a sprinkling of old school Anthrax the days of "I'm The Man" and "Bring the Noise". This cracking tune is an uplifting, power hungry, infectious, innovative mix of everything avant-garde. It shows off the bands dynamic range. This is most definitely full on metal. Fans of this metal will definitely love Panzie.
CRASH STREET KIDS
Sweet Creatures By: Fiona Lane
Crash Street Kids is a four piece who hail from the hot climates of Arizona. They definitely aren't "kids" though with their knowledge of the music they perform. Around since 2005, Dippin' in the 70's glam bucket, these guys bring it all back in a very unique way. Here is their fourth album "Sweet Creatures" The first track starts out with the self title album..Sweet Creatures opening with a very accelerated, robust sound. Pounding skins, and sharp guitar licks and In the veins of many of the 80's Bubblegum Glam/punk feel...which I personally LOVE. Mixed with 70's glam. The vocals are very dynamic. I love this song as it takes me back to the NYC Village days. Definitely one of my favorites and played frequently on my iPod. Angel has a very 70's acoustic feel that is elevated. The balance of the acoustic and remaining ensemble blend so well and immaculate
While the vocals bring forth so much emotion. Bang Bang You're Beautiful, and Bad Yeah Bad are other great tunes which is a style of their own yet exposing some Bowie undertones. In my opinion I even feel a little Dogs D'Amour in this band, which I am a HUGE fan of. So this band is easy to love. Crash Street Kids possess their sound in the likes of Mott The Hopple, T-Rex and The ever so amazing New York Dolls. Just to name a few. But they do it in their own way and they capture the 70's/80's and transfer it to us au courant. I only wish that CBGB's was still opened because these guys would own that stage. These guys are a MUST check out!!!
SMASH FASHION Donâ€™t Pet The Sweaty Things By: Fiona Lane Two good bands in a row to review make me smile. For my second smile, the credit goes to L.A.'s Smash Fashion...love that name too.
Filling my ears, they deliver pop, glam along with rock and punk. Pretty awesome. Here is Smash Fashion's Don't Pet The Sweaty Things. Haha love that! The first track that leads this album is Does Your Mother Know- This tune conveys a New York Doll beginning feel. I am in love with Rogers voice....If you're reading this..if we ever happen to cross paths, would you sing to me? :) His voice remits octaves that send chills down my spine. I love the little raspy voice too. The guitar, bass, and drums carry an effortless harmony. This is song gloriously catchy. Dancing in your chair just isn't enough. Confessions Of An Opium Eater- When this song started out I heard very early Kiss and some Cheap Trick...totally awesome. Once again, Oh those vocals! I'll make you cookies :) I love hearing this 70's sound mixed with a little bit o' blues. I can't get over how the instruments just feed off one another with their intonation, it couldn't be anymore perfect. I have listened to this whole album and have loved it all. A few of my other favs include Baby Dancer, Marionette, Sex Machine Gun...Oh hell...I just have to go with all of them.
One song that I will elaborate on was the remake they did of Elton John's Benny And The Jets...altogether impressive. Such an amazing cover. Of course it's more rockin' than good Ol' Elton. Yeh, I think I like this version better. Especially....yes, again..those vocals. Don't worry Roger..I don't have a crush on you....just your voice. Ok so these guys NEED to be heard and you can find out more about them here
BLACKLIST UNION Til Death Do Us Part By: Rita Fabozzi I have a lot of mixed reviews and feelings about this album. Half of the album is very good while the other half is pure nauseating due to its extremely modern rock poppy sound with horrible styled vocals. It through me back when the album was playing and the songs went from having a mellow heavy
feel with awesome vocals then turned into songs that had a typical modern radio rock sound that is filled with just as much cheese as the new “Emo” pop rock bands. It was a true disappointed! The music is cool sounding with some catchy mellow riffs. Vocalists Tony West proves to me that he knows how to sing but is just way to whinny for me. I do really like the song “Til Death Do Us Part” it is my favorite song off the album. “Lick Kitty Split”, “I Do”, ”Feed The Snakes”, and “Blown Away” are not bad and I could listen to without getting sea sick. All and all this album was a disappointment for me. I was excepted something totally different when I saw the cover , band pictures, and heard the first song off the album. I hope their fourth album sounds better than this.
STRIPLETTE The Days Of Blame By Rita Fabozzi These Russian hotties by the name of Striplette have not only the looks but also the talent that created an amazing 7 song EP filled with ruff sexy vocals and heavy riffs. Not only is every song on this EP a hit but also it’s complete with great song titles. They have a dark heavy sound that is put all together with a sleazy sound and look. Many new bands are starting to have a darker sound but most of them do not sound original and unique like Striplette. Even though this album was on repeat for days my favorite songs are “Lethal Kiss”, “Holy Novocaine” (which is such a kick ass title!), “Celebration”, and “Christ To Crucify”. I really hope that this will not be the only EP this band puts out. I would love to see this band become popular along with the EP getting the recognition it deserves!
the incredible ballad that leaves you with nothing but chills and the instrumental arrangements blow me away with Queen like vocals. “Love you till the end”, “My Fire” and love the opening bass on “We are the damned “which leads to the song to perfect explosion. “This ain’t Hollywood” and “Motherlode” might be the last two tracks STREETLIGHT CIRCUS on this CD but they definitely Streetlight Circus stand out on their own merit. By: Agnieszka Wilde This band deserves more recognition so give them a The New York City scene listen. is definitely heating up and I smell the competition in the air. Streetlight Circus are not love starved puppies from the gutter but rather seasoned musicians who got their shit together from the packaging of their CD to the fundamentals of their songs. David Shaw’s voice has a little bit of a Paul Stanley twang in it and each song is very well put together. There’s no doubt this CD is loaded with power punch riffs, melodic hooks, in ANTIQUA your face vocals and feet “Sangre, Sudor y…buen stomping drums, everything a Rollo” great album is supposed to be By: Agnieszka Wilde made of. What I like best is the impeccable production Antigua is everything I and I say that because I can love about classic rock and clearly hear all of the extra this follow up CD to “Trece added instruments such as razones para seguir” is once the piano and violin, and let me not forget to mention that again in my top ten favorite the guys harmonize really albums right up there with well together as well. My fa- all the big fish and the vorites are “Downside”, smaller New York City art“Paper walls” ists.
I don’t know what it is but all I have to do is listen just once to Antigua and the melodies stick to me like bees to honey and I find it easy to sing along to the songs.“Sangre, Sudor y…Buen Rollo” is the perfect example of what Rock’n’Roll is made of and Antigua puts a lot of wannabe bands to shame. Spain has evolved tremendously in the last fifteen years with great bands I just wish there was a way to get them out of their native country and expand globally. The musicianship here is exceptional and Juan Olmos vocals are electric with passion and accentuate each song to the max. If you have never heard of this band you must do yourself a favor and give them a try. You’ll be addicted on the first take. My absolute favorites on this album are “ Solo Soy un Sueño”, “Quiero Volar”,” Es Nuestro Momento” Sangre, Sudor y…Buen Rollo” but to be quite honest this whole album will rock your socks off. I only picked the tracks that immediately stood out in my mind but trust me you will be rocking from the opening song down to the finish line and I have to acknowledge the kick ass musicians that make up Antigua.
Nacho Ortiz (Guitars), Fran De Adres (Bass), Ernesto Sanchez (Drums), Abraham Blazquez (Percussion) and the one and only Juan Olmos who’s been blessed with theatrical- like demonic voice that sends lighting down my spine. This album clearly deserves five stars.
and “Straight In The Tank” which is the best song off the album especially powerhouse drummer Violet Cannibal ‘s amazing drum intro. Adam is sounding just as good and strong as he did when he first came out along with his current line up bassist Paul Del Bello and Violet Cannibal, which all three musicians fit perfectly together. If you like pure hard rock than this album is for you, hopefully he comes back to NYC again I would love to see him live!
ADAM BOMB Rock On, Rock Hard, Rock Animal Part 1 By: Rita Fabozzi I love Adam Bomb and always enjoy his music. “Rock On, Rock Hard, Rock Animal” is definitely an album I would call pure kick ass hard rock. The album has a Kiss feel to it especially the cover but the music is still original with awesome, classic Adam Bomb guitar solos and riffs. Some of my favorite songs off the album are “Stay Connected”, “Powerhouse”, “Last Night On Earth”
L.A.Guns “Hollywood Forever” By: Agnieszka Wilde It doesn’t take much convincing after listening to “Hollywood Forever” to know that L.A.Guns are at it full force except for the minor line-up changes. Phil’s voice has always been and always will be the backbone of this band no matter what changes they go through.
The opening track” Hollywood Forever” starts off with guns blazing letting you know that these Hollywood Boys mean serious Rock’n’Roll business and if you listen closely to the lyrics you’ll realize that the sexual content is as sleazy as ever and that’s one of the great things about this band. “You Better Not Love Me “ is filled with easy memorable melodies which brings me back to their very first album, and songs like ”Queenie”, ”Dirty Black Light” and “ Vine Street Shimmy” happen to be my favorites. This band has never lost its true essence and even though music has changed a lot, a true L.A.Guns fan will love this CD regardless. The music is tight and it still makes you wanna throw your fists up in the air and bang your head like in the good old days. I could have done without “Arana Negra” which Phil sings in Spanish, although it is a good song and I understand that they’ve done it to show their appreciation to all of their Spanish speaking fans. I dig this album which is filled with variety of songs and Phil’s voice on songs like “Underneath the Sun” and “Crazy Tango” still gets my panties in a twist. If you want dirty, sleazy motherfucker Rock’n’Roll then you must own your own piece of “Hollywood Forever”!!
MIA KLOSE London By: Fiona Lane A little bit of Sweden meets London is what you get when you infuse two musically talented dudes, and a blonde bombshell with a powerful yet angelic voice. That mix would be Mia Klose, and here is their debut album "London" Lady Killer commences with roaring guitar, hammering skins and a deep bass. Mia's voice kicks in with an amazing two octave range with power behind her vocals and can carry a note to the high heavens. The musical content just spews the 80's sound straight from the gut. I love this song, after hearing it the first time, you'll want to hear it again. Very captivating. Activate Never Too Late with massive guitar production and double bass drums, which I thought was rather cool and how fitting
it was for this track. Mia's "Leather And Lace" vocals just explode with emotion yet so much aptitude. Even though Mia has a style of her own, her voice had some Pat Benetar and Lita Ford undertones. This band is going places! Hopefully we will be lucky enough to have them here in the U.S. If you want to listen to a female fronted band that will take you back to the days of Lita and bands like Whitesnake Mia Klose will definitely take you there. This album is a MUST have.
LITA FORD Living Like A Runaway By: Agnieszka Wilde The ultimate Vixen of Rock’n’Roll is back with vengeance and she has more balls then a burly biker guy speeding down the highway on a Harley. It’s amazing how someone can be inspired
by someone else’s pain and that’s the case with me. Lita gives it to you straight, the lyrics are straight forward and to the point and from the sound of it this girl has been through hell and back. The raunchy, edgy guitar riffs and melodies push you right to the edge but not far enough to make you free fall. The songs are strong and bad ass and to me it sounds like her soul has been healed through them. “Branded”, “Hate”, “Living like a runaway”, “Relentless” and “Devil in my head” are just some of the few tracks I’d recommend. There’s also the beautifully composed “Mother” which sure will pull on anyone’s heart strings. She sounds and looks amazing and she brings a breath of fresh air to the good old sounding Rock’n’Roll. I must admit that my very favorite song on this album is called “Love to hate U” which is a duet with Gary Hoey one of the song writers on this CD. Lita is back and she makes sure that you are aware of her presence with “Living like a runaway”.
LESLIE WEST Unusual Suspects By: John Irizarry There comes a time in everyone’s life where they take inventory of who they are and how they got that way. The CD Unusual Suspects by rock icon Leslie West is how a musical artist living life in the public eye does it. The CD is not only reflective and introspective, but also a soul searching open letter to one who is near and dear to him. Don't get me wrong, there is plenty of fire in the way of Guitar God soloing on Unusual Suspects, but there is so much more happening here. What hits you first is the CD cover, a picture of a peace sign made, of hardened steel, with pieces missing, but still very much intact on a working musician’s road case with his name beneath as if to say, "this is who I am". This serves as gateway to the songs offered here on "Unusual Suspects." The latest chapter in the book of Leslie West and a recap of his life so far.
This is where he now resides in the universe. In this collection you’ll find some usual suspects that who, like Leslie, play loud and proud guitar without excuses for the world's perception of who they are with image removed. Steve Lukather, Slash, Billy Gibbons, Joe Bonamassa and Mr. West’s spiritual son, Zakk Wylde. They not only pay respect by trading licks with the tone Master himself, but are of the same ilk, all are comfortable in the setting Leslie provides. Usual Suspects(Provogue/Mascot Label Group)is produced by Fabrizio Grossi. Along with the legendary drummer Kenny Aronoff, Grossi fills out the rhythm section on bass. Producers with Italian names seem to bring out the best in Leslie West, and this is a strong effort by this now veteran producer. Leslie West invites you to open up the road case of his life to full view for the listener. Unusual Suspects opens with the ok-boys-and-girlshere we-go rocker “One More Drink For The Road”. Next up, “Mud Flap Momma” is a down and dirty expression of desire for his bride Jenni, who Leslie married onstage (where else)I n 2009 at the Woodstock 40th Anniversary concert in upstate New York.
Now, Mr. West invites you deeper into the guy inside. With “To The Moon” we find him describing the battle to achieve, and the realization that he already has all he's been fighting for. Moving on to “Standing On Higher Ground” Leslie confirms his better place today than yesterday revelation. Again with a bow to Mrs. West, he avows that someone has changed his life throughout the CD. In covering Eddie Boyd & Willie Dixon’s “Third Degree”, we get the perfect dirty blues expressing how you can be twisted by people’s false impressions, of which Leslie has had his share. “Legend” is a welcome song of humility with the lyric, “Don’t call me legend, I came here to play." Here West shows the person deep within, the person he’s been protecting for a lifetime, the hard shell now removed. In “ N o t h in g ’s Changed” West casts off demons both internal and external with fierce attitude and ferocity. A rejoiceful rendition of Lennon/ McCartney's “I Feel Fine” along with the songs “Love You Forever” and “My Gravity’ find West playful and humble about his life with Jenni. With open honesty he declares, “I finally like the way I am, ‘cause I never liked the way I was before”.
Heavy stuff indeed from a guy known for his tough guy persona. “The Party’s Over’ closes this chapter of the book, declaring “I was born ready.” This is the story so far, this song sums up West's goodbye to yesterday and welcomes gratefully his tomorrows. Oh, and “I Don’t Know (The Beetlejuice Song)” is well, I don’t know. Leslie West has never been a bigger man than at this moment. Unusual Suspects is a CD his fans will not only welcome, but relate to in their own lives. Bravo Mr. West. And Congratulations.
KCM: First of all, I want to thank you for taking time to do this interview while on tour. So thank you from all of us here at KrashCity Magazine. We are really happy you agreed to do this.
Jonny: Shit, I think I'm already out of words *laughs*
Jonny: It's all good. Ya know what, we ash...we drove our bus...we have to drive our own bus *laughs* we had to drive our bus under a bridge that was a little too low for our bus, and fortunately we're all ok, everyone is fine. We didn't crash or anything, but we took all of the three air conditioning units right off the bus. So we're just hanging' out having our bus fixed and having a barbeque, so it's all good.
Jonny: Ya know what, I can describe it in ONE word.
KCM: Oh well, it worked out then, I mean in kind of an unfortunate way but..*laughs* Jonny: Totally! But things happen for a reason. KCM: They do. Ok well how was Art Of Dying established? Jonny: Ya know it was many years of different musicians coming together like basically I moved to Vancouver from a small town which is just North of Seattle in Canada, and started playing my guitar on the street I was trying to learn how to sing and play at the same time, and some people walked by and liked my voice and asked me to come jam with them and turned out to be great. The guitar player from Art Of Dying. We basically started a really long friendship and started playing music together then we eventually met Jeff Brown our drummer, in Vancouver. That was about four years ago now and we just all get along famously as people and we all love playing music together so it was perfect. KCM: Simple and cool. Jonny: Yeh, ya know it's great because we're just having beers and grilling steaks hanging out in the parking lot, and we'd probably be doing that anyway even if we weren't in a band together *laughs* KCM: Sounds like you guys have a really closeknit friendship going on.. Jonny: Oh totally, yeah it's a brotherhood. Like we look out for each other, trust each other and play music together which is a huge bonus. KCM: In five words or less, describe the music from Art Of Dying Jonny: In how many? KCM: Five words or less.
KCM: *Laughs* Well that's cheating
KCM: Ok Jonny: Us. KCM:.....Us? Jonny: *Laughs hysterically* KCM: Uh yeah, you might need to elaborate on that, because I can see readers reading this saying "what does that even mean?" So you might need to do a little elaboration on that *laughs* Jonny: *Laughs* Sure. You got through life and you are influenced by different bands, and different concerts you went to and different albums and when you meet the four other people that you want to play music with and you eventually jump on stage together, creating this sound together, you just, it just becomes you. Ya know so really the only way to describe our music is the five of us. This is who we are, how we sound, this is what we love to do, We're very, very into the real, the reality of the music ya know what you see is what you get. Everything we sing, we sing live. Everything we play, we play live and that's part of our sound is that we're ya know, 100% organic. KCM: That's great that there's no screaming or auto-tuning in your music, cause that seems to be the thing these days *laughs* Jonny: Exactly yeh, we are very pro- live experience ya know I believe seeing a band, you put down 20, 30, 80 bucks..whatever it is to see a concert, man do I not want to see a band playing parts or having parts that aren't there, I want to see the band I bought tickets to. I want to see them play and know what they sound like for real. We really pride ourselves in that. We sing three-part harmonies and there's ya know guitar battle solo-dual whatever you call that stuff *laughs* And we just love doing it. And as soon as the show is done, we go back to our bus and we watch the show and we're all excited about how well we played that night everyday, and it's part of who we are.
KCM: When you do that, when you watch videos of your own performance that night, do you ever say "Oh we should have done this, or maybe we shouldn't have done that. Or are you pretty much ya know, "it is what it is, that's how it happened" and just let it go? Jonny: Ahh ya know, we're our worst critics of course, and there's always room for improvement. You want your guitar being in tune, you want your vocals to be ya know never stray from the pitch. Like my drummer always gives me critiques like you can lay back here, you're rushing there, you're leaning forward too much with the vocals and we're all open to that. We'll all do the same for each other. That's what a live band is. Like I definitely don't want to hear the same thing every night and if something amazing happens in the audience and we're really excited, we might just lose it and play a little faster. Or if we're down on our night, or having a bad day hopefully it wouldn't affect the show, but if it did you'd know why maybe start off with something a little slower. But we are out here with Shinedown right now on this amazing tour and it's like, we're feeling it every night, cause every night is another sold-out show and an amazing vibe. KCM: Well you pretty much may have answered the next question I had for you. You know, you're currently on this ample tour with Shinedown, so how is the tour going, and what's the best thing about this tour? Jonny: It's amazing ya know it's Shinedown, Adelitas Way and us so it's a really good group of people, and you know it's the Avalanche Tour which we played last year with Stone Sour, Theory Of A Dead man, Skillet and Halestorm so this year it's a few less bands, but it's just still pretty amazing. And just for the record, we're the only band to ever play back to back Avalanche Tours. KCM: Really? wow. Jonny: Well but....*laughs*
KCM: *laughs* Ok fair enough. Jonny: But that's still good right? *laughs* KCM: *laughs* Yeah, definitely. Absolutely. Ok, so everyone in the band is from Canada, correct?
Jonny: Yes KCM: Ok, well how is your fan base in your neck of the woods compared to outside Canada? Jonny: You know we spent years as an independent band in Canada. So we toured a lot starting at home in Vancouver played in small bars, and played in the bigger bars, and just played all over the place. It was just a great experience to build up a really awesome Canadian following, and so we feel really great at home. Now we are signed to Warner Bros. So all of a sudden we're on a bigger stage we're world wide and it's amazing to be in the States, and we love...we just love America and we love touring here, being here. I think people here are just naturally, really fully excited about music and it just gets us really fired up. Even if we're just gassing up at a gas station and people get really excited about who are these five guys in this crazy bus and we just feed off that excitement and I love America for that. I think it's just a sensational place. KCM: Well we are more than happy to have you here. *Intermission convo about the band not coming MY way* KCM: How has Art of Dying since 2005 grown musically? Jonny: You know I think we grow musically with every experience, every show. Especially when we're recording. I find that when you go into the studio and you have this opportunity to really nail it like do it until you're happy and work with the producers and engineers and gain their experience and their knowledge. You just keep taking these mental notes constantly and you know we just stepped out of the studio with Dan Donnigan, the guitar player from Disturbed and he produced an acoustic version of our current single "Sorry". So now when we play "Sorry" on stage, it's different to me because of that experience. I think really we've grown so much because every time we get together, every time we sing, every time we play we grow a little bit more. KCM: I think you might have some type of hidden camera here or something looking at my questions, because you pretty much went right into my next question...again. *laughs*
Jonny: Ya know, I'm a little bit Clairvoyant I gotta warn you. KCM: Oh! *laughs* that's creepy. Jonny: Tiny bit, tiny bit. Hold on think of a color...think of a color. KCM: Go ahead. Jonny: Blue. KCM: No *laugh* Jonny: Oh, shit. KCM: Purple! Jonny: Not blue?! Ahh! Oh wow! I was gonna say Violet...damn. Actually violet is a really important color to us in the band...kind of. So it's really strange that you picked purple because it's kind of violet and long story short, basically we have a group of followers called the "Diehards"
and anyone who's an Art Of Dying to the extreme is what we consider a "Diehard" and there's "Diehard" Facebook groups and they're starting to make these violet-purple T-Shirts with our logo on them and they wear them to the shows. Long story short, it's our color of protection. So it's kind of cool that you just picked it out of the air there. KCM: Awesome. Ok, so you were talking about your single "Sorry". Which was actually my next question Mr. Clairvoyant psycho -person...Ahh! I said psycho! I meant psychic! *laughs* Jonny:
cho!...what do ya mean psycho
KCM: Nahh! I actually meant to say psychic *laughs* Jonny: What kind of an interview is this?! *laughs* Fiona just called me psycho in an interview. I think you owe me dinner.
KCM: *Laughs* (Cue intermission on settling on a menu) haha. *10 minutes later* KCM: Right. So, let's continue on with this before I lose track *laughs* Ok, so I was on your website, and saw a video of the band playing the acoustic version of "Sorry" and I just love acoustic, so is this completed? Jonny: Yeah, it's done. it's just not mixed. We are actually waiting for the call of when we are mixing, but we definitely recorded it, and we had so much fun. We just did it in like a day and a half in Chicago at Johnny Kay who he did the first couple Disturbed records and he just has this amazing building that used to be an Al Capone building in Chicago and just all tricked out for recording, so we did it there with Dan from Disturbed and wow! we just had a blast. We brought in a twelve string acoustic, we brought in a Mandolin, we brought in just tons of acoustic things. I don't know if any of that will make the final mix, but we had a blast doing it. KCM: I'm sure it will be great. it's a great song and what I've heard so far from the acoustic version, I was like "Oh this is awesome". But, what made you chose that particular song? Jonny: Cool. Well it's our current single, so it just makes sense, and it sounds so good with acoustic. Like we basically traveled all over America last year playing that song at radio stations on the acoustic guitar, so we just decided it would make sense and actually do a recorded version. KCM: What is your favorite thing AND least favorite about being on the road? Jonny: Most favorite thing is the shows and the audiences and just hearing....actually after the shows is pretty awesome. We get to hear stories from people from all over the place that connected with our music. Like I can't even talk about it. Like I almost had a breakdown last night at our show with this one story a woman told me at the merch table. She said that her ex husband ummm..drowned her two kids, and then shot himself and that she somehow made it through it and he didn't...uhh..he didn't kill her. And she basically told me that our music is keeping her alive right now cause she's missing..missing her kids so much and it was just the most horrific story I have ever heard, but at the same time for me, it was just so emotional and overwhelming to have somebody say that about your music so I almost lost it, I'm almost in tears right now. KCM: That's deep. That's really deep. I mean when people tell me things , like personal things..I get really uncomfortable and don't know what to really say, so I can't possibly imagine what that was like for you, but on the other hand being told something like that about your music is just such a big, huge compliment. Jonny: It is..it is. I was just taken back and to get back to your statement on that, there's nothing in the world like hearing something like that about or music and it's not the first time that somebody has told us about our songs helping people get through this and that and trying and whatnot. it's helped a lot of people in a lot of different ways and different situations, so we get to hear those stories first-hand when we tour, so definitely my favorite thing about touring. KCM: That's pretty amazing. It really is. I'm pretty sure I have asked people that question before, but never ever have I received an answer like that. That's just seriously mind-blowing. It tears at the heart strings for sure. Now, you're least favorite thing about being on the road. Jonny: My least favorite thing is probably the infrequency of showers. I mean just like feeling rushed. Every time you wake up, there's not a lot of downtime, you're rushed you know you're like "Oh my God the show, is soon. This is crazy, I haven't showered in three days. I slept in my clothes last night" You get used to it though. it's not really THAT bad, it's just..it's just something. but I do like to shower *laughs* I enjoy a good shower. KCM: *Laughs* Nice. Ok, I'm going to ask you to name five uses of a stapler, without the staples in it. Jonny: Ok. *laughs* Alright, I've got this. What are we doing now?
KCM: You want me to repeat it again?! *laughs* *Repeats question to the forgetful Jonny* Jonny: Ahhhhhh.....Really cheap court room gavel? Ummm...door knocker. Be a pretty cool door knocker, right? Not like a brass lion or anything..but it works. *both laughing hysterically* Really big set of tweezers. Oh! I got one! You go out for Sushi and they run out of chopsticks..bam! there ya go...stapler. *Laughs* I need one more. Ummm...massage tool? KCM: I don't even want to know. Jonny: *Laughing uncontrollably* I like the substitute chopsticks. Let's go with that one. KCM: Yeah, I like that one too. Let's just stick with that. You were pretty off the wall with the whole tweezer thing..that's just kind of scary. Imagine something like that coming towards your eyebrows...not cool. *Johnny and KCM laugh* *Intermission conversation about staple Sushi. Inside joke between Jonny and I* Have fun figuring out that one. KCM: Ok, so what are one of the things that has basically kept you going throughout the years of climbing the musical ladder? Jonny: Ya know, just sheer determination and just relentless passion. Like I never felt like I was born to do anything else. It just feels right everyday of my life. There's no stone left unturned in my world. I love doing it, I love every part of it. KCM: So tell us about Johnny outside from Art Of Dying. What are your hobbies, what do you like to do? Jonny: Well it's funny, cause now you are Clairvoyant cause I just spent the last three hours cooking Filet Mingon, Barbequed Salmon, Portobello mushrooms, peppers, onions and like sausage links and...I love cooking. I love food, I love wine, I'm a beer connoisseur, I love cigars after a meal. So there's just so many awesome things that combine with dining well and I just really enjoy being active in not just dining, but also just learning how to cook. It's what I do all the time. Just like today in the parking lot I pulled off a pretty good meal. The guys are all super happy about it and stoked. KCM: Ok, I'm going to give you five questions to answer in one minute with multiple choice answers. Jonny: Go. KCM: Ok. Jack Daniels, Patrone to Budweiser.. Jonny: Jack Daniels. KCM: Twitter, Facebook, or Pintrest.. Jonny: Facebook. KCM: Rolling Stones or The Beatles.. Jonny: Rolling Stones. KCM: Awesome. Godfather, Scarface or American Gangster.. Jonny: Scarface.
KCM: Nikki Sixx The Heroin Diaries, Slash, or I Am Ozzy.. Jonny: I Am Ozzy. KCM: Ok awesome. Whiskey and/or Vodka and side effects of both? Jonny: Whiskey! Get's me a little crazy after 12 light beers! I love vodka too... Chilled Grey Goose straight up... oh ya! All of Travis's guitar solos in the studio we're quad vod infused. KCM: What do you think of porn? Jonny: Tasteful porn... LOVE IT! Keep it classy San Diego! KCM: Who was your favorite support act that you have performed with? Jonny: Actually last night was pretty awesome, we supported Halestorm and they supported Sevendust - 2 of my favorite bands to play with. Last year at Rock fest in Kansas City we went on right before Ten Years, so I caught their set, and they blew my mind. Cale and I and 2 of the guys from Ten Years were the last 4 people standing at that festival! Good times. KCM: Do you have any secret hidden talents that you would like to reveal? Jonny: I'm really good at swallowing pills. For real... I take a shit load of vitamins every day (like 20) and I can easily swallow them in one gulp. Is that a talent? KCM: *laughs* I guess anything goes. What advice would you give to upcoming artists? Jonny: If you believe in yourself (truly believe) then never give up. Happiness is doing what you love every day, so do that and persevere. Eventually you will become an expert and that is an amazing accomplishment in itself. Forget about money and live your life by chasing your dream. And as we say in Canada, just fucking giver!!!! KCM: Well it was great talking to you. Thank you so much for taking the time out for this. I'll be talking to you soon. Enjoy the rest of the tour, stay safe and enjoy your day off. And just kick ass at your next show and just do your thing. Jonny: Thanks so much I can't wait to sit down and have that dinner with you. KCM: Alright, sounds great. Talk to you soon. Jonny: Take care babe! KCM: Bye-bye.
Date of Birth: 11/08/82 Birth Place: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada Height: 5”8 Weight: 110 Waist: 26” Hips: 34” Breast: 35C Shoe Size: 7 Tattoos: Full Sleeves, Lower Back, 60% of left leg Piercings: Navel
My Ambitions: To expose my music and perform around the world My Turn-on’s: Danger, Confidence, Jags, Free Speech & Rock n’ Roll Turnoffs: Ignorance, Apathy, Selfishness and Dirty Finger Nails My Current Crush’s: Davey Havok, Pete Wentz, Sabina Kelley My Fetishes: Completely hairless bodies My Favorite 5 Bands: AFI, The Stooges, L7, The Sex Pistols & Led Zeppelin My Favorite 5 Movies: Natural Born Killers, Sucker Punch, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Trainspotting & Pulp Fiction Last Read Book: Desire in Seven Voices My Political View: Liberal If I was the U.S. President I would: Legalize Marijuana Any Final Words: Fight for your own reality. My Headstone Should Read: Lived Her Dream www.Sleezrecords.com
KCM: How was CJ Sleez born? CJ: I had been in couple of other bands before that but I have never really gotten too serious about it. When I was about 18 or 19 I started CJ Sleez and it was originally called CJ Sleez and the STD’s (Sexually transmitted diseases) it was just a joke but we were trashy, loud, sleazy that I don’t give a shit type of Rock’n’Roll. We ended up dropping the STD’s part later because it was easier for people to remember us this way. KCM: What else do you do besides singing in a band? CJ: I’m a writer as well and I’ve actually published an autobiography years ago called” Poor Little Bitch Girl” with Manor House Publishing. It’s a collection of stories about my life, totally non-fiction and it’s a really fun book. KCM: Do you model as well? CJ: I used to model professionally but not so much anymore. Right now I’d just like to focus on my music. Modeling as a career is really a full time job and you have to really focus on it when you have to be able to travel at a drop of a hat and that’s tough when you have to schedule band stuff. It came down to choosing one or the other and I chose music because I can’t imagine living without it. KCM: Have you played outside of Canada?
CJ: Probably one of the times when I died. I died a couple of different times, they’ve all been from overdose, two of them accidental and it’s really amazing when something like that happens to you. It really helps you put things in perspective and it helps you appreciate every little thing. You appreciate every moment a lot more after something like that happens. KCM: Which would you rather date: A Biker, Geek or a Playboy? CJ: None of those really appeal to me right off the bat. It would depend on the individual person. KCM: What do you find attractive in a guy? CJ: Good looks, sense of humor, honesty, confidence, generosity. KCM: What inspires you in daily life? CJ: Emotions, situations, people, music, thoughts. KCM: Who are your personal idols in music? CJ: I used to love Axl Rose but he is not as great as he used to be. (Laughing) Circa 85 Axl Rose. Iggy Pop he is an example of somebody who managed to stand the test of time, and he is just as cool now if not cooler than he ever was. I like bands like L7, some stuff from the grunge days. As far as garage bands that would be New York Dolls, MC5’s really love them. In the glam section I love bands like Motley Crue. I have a really wide variety of influences. KCM: What’s next for CJ Sleez? Will you write a new album?
CJ: Yes we’ve toured Spain, Portugal which was really fun. I just released a European CD from an Italian label in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Italy so hopefully I’ll be heading out there. If not later this year then next year which should be fun. We’ve toured quite a few places in Canada and we have yet to make it down to the States. KCM: Who were some of your favorite bands that you’ve toured with? CJ: That’s a tough one, because there were so many. KCM: What hidden talents to do you have that people don’t know about? CJ: (Laughing) I try not to hide any of my talents. If I feel that I’m good at something or have an exceptional skill, I like to put it out there. You have to focus a hundred percent on the things you do well and not worry so much about the things that you can’t do. KCM: What is your favorite part about performing live? CJ: Definitely the energy that I get from the crowd. It’s so nice to go out there and actually connect with people face to face and to have them feel something from your music. You can see that they’re appreciative and that they really enjoy it. You can actually see the small impact that you’re having on their life at that time, making their life a little bit better or helping them out with the stress they’ve had that day. That’s what I really love about it; it’s what I get back from the crowd. It’s so gratifying. KCM: What’s one life altering experience you’ve had that changed your life for the better?
CJ: We are taking the whole August off from playing any live shows just to spend as much time as we can together in a rehearsal studio and work on new songs. We really are craving new material so it’s important that we focus on that. It’s important that we spend our time wisely rather than playing every weekend. It’s hard to get writing done when you’re busy with other stuff. Hopefully we’ll be in an actual recording studio this fall working on that, and the plan is to release a new album next spring. I’ll be writing an advice column about sex, drug and Rock’n’Roll for a Canadian publication out of Vancouver called” Absolute Underground” which will come out every two months I believe, so that’s kind of exciting. KCM: If you had a drink named after you what would it be called? CJ: Strawberry Sleez! I love strawberries. It would be like a frozen Daiquiri. KCM: What would you like to say to your fans? CJ: That I love them and that I appreciate every single one of them and thank them!!!
VAIN “No Respect”
Released: July 1989 By: Michael Pate of Electric Black Horse
A lot has been written and said about this Klassik release, but I believe that I'll be giving this record the "be all, end all" treatment at this time. How you say? I say there is none more qualified than I!! The release of this album has a direct correlation to where I've landed musically today. I was weaned on this album. Truly. The story unfolds like this……. In 1989 I was an awkward 15 year old trying to figure out how to be cool, talk to girls and play guitar. 1989 was a watershed year for sleazy, cool rock and roll for sure! It saw new and/or debut releases from L. A. Guns, Dangerous Toys, Princess Pang, The Sea Hags, Skid Row, Pretty Boy Floyd, Enuff Znuff, Faster Pussycat, Bang Tango, Junkyard…it seemed like in 1989 everybody was gunning for it! What all these bands had in common was that they were just somehow……dirtier than say Poison, Warrant and Bon Jovi, you know? Not so poppy. They were grittier and ballsier. They were SLEAZY! Yeah! That funky mix of dirty AND sexy. With street cred to boot. Kinda like "Too Fast for Love" era Motley Crue, early KISS and Aerosmith. You know what I'm talking about. So much to hear and I was a hungry, young listener. However, there was one record that stood out like a slipped nipple shot. That record was "No Respect" by San Francisco's own VAIN. I had first heard of Vain through my old friend Rob. We used to be frequent shoppers at the coolest record store on Long Island at the time, Slipped Disc Records in Valley Stream, NY. Rob came to school one day claiming he'd heard "the coolest shit ever!". He whipped out a "sampler cassette" of a band called "VAIN". I remember my other friends and I thinking right away, "whatever Rob, this shit probably sucks, look at the guy crawling on the floor, looking at the camera! GAAAAY!" Look, we were 15, we didn't know shit! Rob insisted that it rocked hard and would blow our minds. So that weekend, we gathered around the T.V. for Headbangers Ball where every show they would usually bust off some new bands that we would judge mercilessly! I remember going to take a leak and Rob screaming, "VAIN IS ON! VAIN IS ON! HOLY SHIT!". As I walked into the room, I began to say "calm down dude, I'll bet they su….". I was mesmerized immediately. Rob dimed the volume on the TV and we sat there in awe as "Beat the Bullet" blew us the fuck away. First of all, these guys had THE LONGEST HAIR I'D EVER SEEN ON DUDES. At 15, this was extremely important. Second, they were hanging out in front of XXX joints with hot chicks! They were dressed all in all leather and dark colors. They wore a little makeup but not even to look pretty, they looked like they'd been up for 3 days, hanging out and partying. Holy shit, they looked cool. Fuck those nerds in Warrant and Poison, VAIN looked BADASS! Then came the MUSIC! Holy shitballs! Funky 70's wah-wah intro to a tour de force of SEXY GUITARS. This band had attitude out the wazoo. The music sounded just like they looked: like they were going to steal all your girlfriends and then fight you afterwards. I was HOOKED. The VERY next day I ran my ass to Slipped Disc and got "No Respect" on vinyl! Yes! Vinyl!!! It may have been the last piece of vinyl I ever purchased. Seriously, because I remember buying the CD very shortly afterward. I played this album night and day. After listening to "Beat the Bullet" probably 1,000 times I felt different, I walked with a swagger if you will. I started dressing more 70's sexy. My hair got long and trashy. I was a changed kid. I had attitude and the 15-18 year old chicks knew it. I walked down the street with lyrics like "New York, LA, Frisco..boy they got somethin', boy they got somethin'…I've been around this world…what's it got for me, what's it got for me" and "I see your poker faces…I'M A BAD MOTHERFUCKER TONIGHT!" ringing in my ears. I had achieved….THE ATTITUDE.
This record unfolds like a live show…"Secrets"…what other song could have opened their record and as I learned shortly thereafter seeing VAIN's live show?? "SO YA THINK YOU KNOW MY SEEEECRETS?????? WELL YA DOOOOOOON'T!" Oh hell yeah man! This is track 1! Sexy guitars everywhere! It was overwhelmingly amazing. I put track 2 , "Beat the Bullet" in the era of "hair bands" or whatever people are calling it, at the top of the heap. Dripping with snotty, cocksure attitude and rib-cracking guitars to boot it was everything Rock and Roll was about to me. Loaded with hooks and players who could….ACTUALLY PLAY! As a band, VAIN is criminally underrated as far as they guys that make up it's parts as musicians goes. Danny West's wah-wah intro and solo in this jam were just VITAL! As a kid, I went right the hell out and got me a wahwah pedal! Thanks Mr. West! "Who's Watching You"….yeah man! The follow up video with more snakes and chicks! Nothing but hits here people, let's go! "1,000 Degrees" just oozes the hot, sex vibe! Jamie Scott just tearing shit up on lead guitar! Sick stuff! SEXY GUITARS!!!! I distinctly remember wildly hi-fiving my buddies because of that line at the end of "Aces"…"THAT'S RIGHT BABY! I GOT THE HEARTS, DIAMONDS, CLUBS, SPADES AND YOUR ASS!!!!!" "Smoke and Shadows"….clearly the tune you want on when it comes to making' out! "Mom's not home wanna come over to my place?". Haha! Totally. That HAPPENED. The hits just keep on coming! "No Respect"! Title track, classic intro that unleashes a balls out classic! I saw VAIN live for the very 1st time a year later in June 1990 at L'amour in Brooklyn. Me, front and center against the barricade surrounded by 1,000 half naked chicks. Unbelievable. I just remember absolutely losing my mind and making out with random girls. Total grope fest in the crowd. I was absolutely the youngest dude in there and there I was, thanks to VAIN getting shown around the block by random babes in their late teens to early 20's. Sexiest show I've ever been to. To this day. Amazing. I still have the set list that was scrawled on a torn out Penthouse magazine page. Changed my life. Got on the tour bus after the gig, but that's a whole OTHER tale! On to "Laws Against Love", produced by the keyboard guy from…Winger? Yeah! Coolest thing that dude ever did I'm sure! Thanks Winger guy!!!! THEY GOT LAWS!! Awesome. "Down For the 3rd Time" is a personal favorite. One of the hookiest things I've ever heard. Classic VAIN formula! I learned how to write songs in the VAIN method: HOOKS, HOOKS and then add……MORE HOOKS! Amazingly sexy bridge in this one with dueling lead guitar sickness after. On the bass and drums tip, Tommy Rickard and Ashley Mitchell just shot right for the crotch. DIRECT HIT! "Icy"! This one was for the kooks who thought Vain might just be a little soft…WRONG! "RED LIGHT, BLUE LIGHT…BUT SHE'S A HARD GIRL!". What the hell does that mean? Who cares?! Turn that shit up! I have a friend named Isis and this song will always remind me of her! Smokin' Hot! "Without You", the girls loved……slowing it down for the ladies…..great guitar solos and fade out jam session…..yeah man, VAIN could jam….Davy doing some leads too! Now "Ready"……just a barn burner with the intro that anybody who loves VAIN will never forget…."MR.WEST!!!!!!" Danny West peels the fuck out, GTO style with the Chuck Berry flavor and "Ready" just burns the whole damn thing to the ground! Davy, Jaime and Danny all taking leads and then………. "SHOOT IT!" You were exhausted after this album was done but you wanted MORE! Then it seemed….VAIN just slipped off the radar……what the fuck? We could speculate about this forever but forget that noise, they're still doing' it! They have released more records that kick ass! (perhaps I'll do a write up on those too…hmm) I'd like to personally thank Davy Vain, Danny West, Ashley Mitchell, Jaime Scott and Tommy Rickard for making one of the best Rock and Roll records of all time. It still sounds fresh, ballsy and SEXY as hell! I'm always turning people on to it to this day over 20 years later! That's the mark of greatness. VAIN, you have achieved that. Be proud of yourselves. If not for that then for the fact you gave an awkward kid the guts to get up and write his own songs too. ALL DUE RESPECT TO "NO RESPECT" and VAIN! Now and Forever! RN'R4EVAH! XO, -Michael Pate ELECTRIC BLACK HORSE!
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Perhaps the best surprises come in the most unexpected ways, and that would be the case with Cold Blue Rebels. I have never heard of this band and I happen to accidentally stumble upon them when they opened up for Wednesday 13 in New Your City. Their Psychobilly, punk, horror show was unlike any other I have ever seen and at that moment I realized that they were the most original band I had seen to date. This probably comes with a lot of experience since most of the members used to be in well-known bands. Mickey Finn (vocals) used to be in Jetboy, Joe Normal (guitar) used to be in The Zeros along with Danny Dangerous who plays an outstanding standup bass and Spazz Draztik (drums) who used to play with the Glamour Punks and thatâ€™s a winning combination in itself. Immediately upon leaving their show I wanted to speak with their front man Mickey Finn and I was lucky enough to interview him while they were still on tour in Texas.
An Interview with Mickey Finn of
KCM: How did this whole concept come about? Mickey: When Danny and I hooked up to start a band we definitely knew that we wanted to have rockabilly in there and our roots go back to the roots of Rock’n’Roll and Blues, country, metal, punk rock so when you combine all those elements….I guess you can call us Psychobilly but it’s really more than that. The way we like to say it is that we combined our three favorite things which are Rock’n’Roll, horror movies and punk rock. We love theatrics as well so when we have the budget to do so and at our shows in L.A. we have zombie go-go dancers and a coffin on stage and we rip the guts out of girls and stuff like that. So that’s really where we would like to take it if we ever get the budget to do that on tour. KCM:
You guys are signed to a label right?
Mickey: Yeah the label is called “Horror High” and it’s actually the same label that Wednesday 13 puts his stuff out through . KCM: How would you say the tour has gone so far, where would you say you’ve gotten the biggest response from people? Mickey: The whole tour has been great and we’ve never really gotten a negative response even though we kind of took a big risk to do this tour. We were pretty sure that Wednesday’s audience would take to us well. We spent the last two and a half years playing mostly Psychobilly and Rockabilly shows and car shows and Viva Las Vegas
and those kinds of things so we knew that to expand our audience we needed to get on bills with different bands. Some of the biggest shows, New York was great and last night in San Antonio was great because we got a big response. This was our second time through the east coast, the last time we came through with a band called the Rockets so we did play to a lot of the same territory although like I said it was a different audience.
We’ve been received well and we’ve been selling tons of merch which is always a good sign, tee shirts, CD’s and all that. KCM: The variety of your merchandise and the packaging of your CD are absolutely amazing. Mickey: For the merch store I have to give a shout out to our bass player Danny Dangerous because he really put a lot of time into making sure that we have a lot of variety on the road and we learned early on that’s what works and you need patches and buttons and stickers and all kinds of stuff because you know a lot of kids if they don’t have money for a tee shirt they can get a patch or sticker and it all helps to advertise the band. The other thing is to try to keep it affordable to everyone. KCM: How did you come up with the band name? Mickey: Danny and I got together and we decided to start the band and before we had the drummer and the guitar player we started tossing some names around and some of the song title’s for the first record and the band name came out of just a list of stuff that we compiled and that one just jumped off right off the page and I just did a Google search to make sure no one else had it and it didn’t take long for that one to click with us. KCM: The name kind of goes with the whole concept and the imagery. Mickey: Yeah exactly but it’s not too typical and not too specific. It’s just a good sounding name. KCM: It sounds like everything clicked for you guys just at the right time. Mickey: Yeah that’s exactly true. Really we wrote six songs and then we booked a gig and then the
phone just started ringing off the hook and really for the next few months we played shows with only six songs and there were many night’s where people wanted more and we were like; we don’t have any more songs. Then we took a break and wrote the second half of the record and got in a studio and it’s been really, really busy two and a half years. KCM: So where did you play your very first show, L.A. right? Mickey: The first gig we played was at a club called “Bordello” which is right off the First street Bridge down town and it’s a great venue. A lot of people do photo shoots there and it’s decorated like oh I don’t know L.A. KCM: How was the reception? Mickey: : It was great! Actually a woman named Shane from Libertalia our booking agency that we just signed with in the last couple of months she came to our first show and she remembered us from our former bands in the 80’s and 90’s and she was impressed enough to give me her card and say; Give me a call when you’re not too busy and that’s what we did because we just couldn’t handle all the bookings and offers coming at us so we contacted her and it was like another year of her fighting to get us signed to the agency convincing the owner and everybody and also them making some room on their roster. So now we have Libertalia, we’re getting better shows and better money and we’re gonna just keep on plugging away. KCM: A lot of people wish they were in your place. Mickey: Well it’s a lot of hard work. KCM: Exactly but there you go. You came up with an original idea and I have to say
when you first jump out on stage with the big upright bass and the sound that you put out it’s a little bit overwhelming at first. Feels kind of like being punched in a face, but you kind of have no choice but to like it because it’s so damn different. Mickey: Well that’s the thing too. When we get to a club or when we come out and people see us some people will go; Oh who are these clowns? They’re just expecting that we are relying too much on that which we don’t. We’re all are great song writers we all have twenty plus years of experience writing songs. You gotta have good songs and good performance and the makeup just adds to it. Have you check out any of our videos? KCM: Yes I have checked out all of them. Mickey: The “Zombie love” video I think and all of them are colorful and creative. We did them all on no budget we just worked with friends and people who’ve had experience with making videos. KCM: If you had a great idea that you could seal in a bottle, what would the label say? Mickey: I would call it Inspiration. KCM: Name three things that you must have with you on the road at all times? Mickey: Layrite which is the wash out hair pomade which I use to get my Mohawk up and stay up all night through the show (Laughs) of course our makeup and my lip service skinny stretch jeans. KCM: If you had a chance to speak to Sid Vicious for five minutes what would you tell him? Mickey: (Laughs) I’d probably tell him to get off the fucking heroin.
That’s been my theory in life. I have lived a very decadent life but I always preach to people to stay away from crystal meth and stay away from heroin and do everything else in moderation and you’ll probably be fine. I watched a lot of bands go down and even die from heroin so that would be my message to him; GET OFF THE JUNK MAN. KCM: Describe yourself and your band mates in three words only. Mickey: Blood, guts and rock! KCM: What is your favorite song on your current CD? Mickey: Probably “Zombie Love” just because I think it’s a little bit ballsy to do a doo wappy ballady song and you know I just think it has really nice vocal harmonies and it stands out. We don’t play it live all the time especially on this tour we have our six or seven songs and that’s a good thirty minutes but whenever we do play it we get a big response even from the more hard core guys who seem to like it. KCM: Who are you looking forward to tour with in the future and what’s next for you guys? Mickey: Next we’re gonna get back to L.A. and get back in the studio. We already have most of the material written for our next record. We are auditioning a new drummer. Our drummer that played on our first record is having problems in his life and we need somebody else. We have a guy that’s ready to start so we’re gonna audition him and hopefully that works out nicely and then we get in the studio to do our follow up record. As far as tour for the rest of this year we’ll probably do mostly headlining stuff. Probably mostly the west coast and the month of October is our best month because everybody wants creepy bands
and we can make more money if we stay at home. On my wish list of bands in the Psychobilly world would be Nekromantix and Mad Sin would be up there, but on the other side I think we’d do good with bands like Social Distortion, Rancid and the Misfits and then also I think we’d like to go outside of that realm and jump on tours with punk rock bands, metal bands even some of the older bands like Faster Pussycat I think we could do a good run with and again that would be expanding our audience. We’d probably play to people who never heard of us and that’s how we’d win over a whole new fan base. We spoke to Taime about it and we’ll be pursuing that. KCM: What’s to your advantage actually is that you can fit on tours with bands from different genres of music. Mickey: Yes for sure and that’s how we’re going to grow our fan base by playing to people of different musical genres. KCM: These days a lot of the younger bands don’t think that way and I think it’s because they lack experience which certainly you have a lot of. Mickey: Yes and nowadays it’s hard to get an agent, it’s hard to get a manager and it’s hard for a label to give you any support so you gotta figure it all out on your own. Kids today they do have the internet, they have Facebook and these type of social networks which we didn’t have back in the day, but on the downside you’re now competing with bands all over the world and the market is definitely over flowing. It’s not good enough to just be on MySpace and Facebook and Twitter now you gotta be a master at it and you gotta figure out how to get the most plays and the most views so it’s definitely tough. KCM: But in your case I think that you have the upper hand on everything.
Mickey: Yeah, we just have to keep on touring and we have yet to lose. We have yet to play a losing show. KCM: You have a lot of tattoos on your body, could you possibly pick a favorite? Mickey: I have some favorite work. I have a friend in L.A. and he owns a tattoo studio on Melrose called Zap Tattoos his name is Von Shock he did my whole back piece and the masks on my side which are actually from an old Ed Hardy design and then I have another friend named Justin Lewis who’s working out of Burbank and he did the flying pumpkin with bat wings in the center of my chest, so that’s like my most recent one and he’s an amazing artist. Yeah those are probably my favorite two. You know Danny’s gotten all of his work from Mark Mahoney at Shamrock Tattoos. We’ve been fortunate to get work done by a lot of amazing people and then there’s the little stuff. I got a little hot sauce bottle when I was in Louisiana and I got a little alligator head in Florida. I like to get things that represent States that I had great time in. KCM: After Jetboy ended what did you do all those years? Did you ever want to reunite with them? Mickey: Well Yeah we actually just did reunite. We did a Jetboy reunion show on June first at The Whiskey and it was the original 1990 Damned Nation tour line up so we had the original drummer and we had Charles Norman on bass who was in the “Evil” video and did that tour with us and the original guitar players and it was great, we’ve had a great time. We’ve done a few Jetboy shows over the years. In the last five or six years we’ve done the M3 Festival a couple of times and Rock the Bayou and Midwest Rock Fest we’ve done a bunch of those and we’ll probably
do a few shows here and there. After Jetboy I did get married and moved to San Diego and I became a DJ and got sucked into the whole rave culture. I was producing drum and bass tracks and I moved to Hawaii and I was Djing and promoting my own parties over there. Then I came back to L.A. in 2006 and got right back into the Rock’n’Roll world. Now I married again on June 10th and now my lovely wife is the zombie girl in the “Cold, Blue and Beautiful” video. She’s also one of our lead zombie go-go dancers, so we’ve been very happy. KCM: Back then what was it like to work alongside Sam Yaffa? Mickey: It was amazing. Hanoi Rocks was the biggest influence on Jetboy, they were our favorite band and he was the dream bass player to get when our bass player died and he’s a super talented musician and songwriter and bass player and a super nice guy. He came to the show at The Whiskey got up on stage and played “Feel the shake” with us. Rikki Rachtman came and Tamie and bunch of people from the glory days of the Sunset strip. KCM: What are your own personal influences? Mickey: My earliest musical influences came from my parents. I grew up in New Jersey and I remember listening to my Mom’s old 45’s of Chuck Berry, Elvis and Gene Vincent that was the first big influence on me and I’ve also always been heavily into Blues so I play harmonica and I love country music, hillbilly music, banjo, slide guitar, fiddle but then when I got into punk rock I was in my late teens and that really was a life changer. I always say you can take the kid from the punk scene but you can’t take the punk out of the kid. I use the term ”punk” loosely but I like that kind of alternative attitude, always keeping it interesting, creative, artistic and wild you know.
KCM: Do you have any strange talents or skills that most people don’t know about? Mickey: Yeah so many….I’m one of those Jack of all traits master of nothing kind of a guy. I’ve always been a pretty sporty guy like into skate boarding, mountain biking and most recently into snowboarding. I lived in Hawaii for almost seven years so I went surfing and spear fishing and kayak fishing. I was a total nature boy you know. With jobs too, I went through everything from flipping pizzas to selling insurance to cleaning air conditioners I just did what I had to do. KCM: You don’t have a boring life at all. Mickey: No, and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. KCM: What would you like to say to your steadily growing fan base? Mickey: Thanks for the support and tell your friends, spread the word about the Cold Blue Rebels because Rock’n’Roll is a hard world these days and we’re out here killing ourselves and not making much money and funding everything ourselves so my word would be if you love it then tell a friend about it and come out to the shows and buy our merch cause when you buy merch from bands at shows they get more of the money. Stop downloading music from bands that are poor. I wanna give a shout out to David Frizell. He is the guy who did our whole CD package and he does a lot of stuff for Horror High. David is out of Chicago and he’s done work for Sevendust and Avenged Sevenfold and a whole bunch of bands but he worked very cheap for us to put that whole thing together.
KCM: Hi Tuk. Tuk: Yes. I think it’s funny how you call me from my fake Facebook name (laughing). KCM: Oh well I don’t know your real name. Tuk: I know I just think it’s funny but you can call me that I just do it because I don’t like weirdo’s following me on there. KCM: I don’t blame you trust me I have a lot of weirdo’s that request me on Facebook too so I understand. Tuk: Yeah I haven’t responded to friend requests for about a year and I finally started again and there’s like 500 people and it’s all these weird Emo kids. I didn’t know this cult existed, They all like Jeffery Star and stuff like that its f***in crazy. KCM: Oh yea I agree. I actually requested you after I saw Ace Frehley the end of October and you never responded, you actually responded the day and I had asked you about the interview. Tuk: Yeah that’s when I finally decided I should start doing the Facebook thing. I took a break for a while..
KCM: Whatever you prefer. Tuk: I just don’t want it to be boring. KCM: No, no it won’t be. Tuk: Well I started the Biters after leaving another band that I was in the guy was on heroin and went to rehab it was really bad. There were a lot of drugs and I needed to get rid of them and we happened to get a letter from a techno band with the same name so I had to change the name and I got new members. I had a clean slate and it all kind of worked out for the better and that’s how it started. KCM: That’s great. I hear you guys have a new album out could you tell me about the new album? Tuk: We have a new vinyl out it’s an LP and it comes with a CD in it but it’s the second and third EP that are sold out so we just decided to repress them and release it like our first full length album because we don’t really have a lot of money from the labels and stuff. KCM: Oh ok so it’s basically going to be your first three EP’s all together released in vinyl and CD. Tuk: Yeah just the second and third one. Our first EP is still out of print. KCM: That’s really cool. I honestly think the whole vinyl thing is really cool and a lot of bands now are coming out with vinyl and I think it’s great. I love the whole vintage thing.
KCM: I understand because I get a bunch of crazy people and you really have to watch out especially being in a band. Tuk: Yeah exactly. KCM: So, how are you doing? Tuk: I am ok. I had to work at 7 in the morning and when I got home my eyes were burning and I fell asleep. Then when I got up I realized I had the interview and I felt terrible I apologize. KCM: No don’t worry about it we understand. So before we begin do you mind telling me a little bit about the band’s history? Tuk: The band’s history sure the short or the
Tuk: I personally love records and I think it also goes beyond vintage of course that’s the ascetic. I’d want to put out vinyl because it’s a lot cooler but you know people collected CD’s for a while and you had the art work and the packaging. Now CD’s are basically obsolete because you can download it. So if you are actually a fan of the band you would want to have the actual artwork and collect it. That has been missing for a while and I guess vinyl fill that void since a new form of format came of music like mp3 and whatever. KCM: I agree 100% I don’t support the downloading and buying albums online because I like the whole visual of the CD and especially the vinyl and it’s awesome that you guys are doing that. I am personally a very big fan of the band and I can’t wait for the vinyl to come out.
Tuk: You are exactly right because everything now in the music world is being thrown away and it’s just made for the moment and people put out an mp3 or throw it up on sound cloud and it’s like real disposable but when you get the vinyl it’s just more of a classic way of doing it. KCM: Also you can easily just forget about a band from an mp3. You know, you can never forget a band by their visual stuff. Tuk: Exactly which I think it’s missing in rock n roll along with cool imagery. It’s like no one wants to be a band anymore or have that. KCM: I agree and now speaking of that your band has a very different look you know musical and visually so let’s talk about that whole style that you guys have. Tuk: Well I guess to me when I was a kid I was really into punk rock and ever since I was like 6 years old I was raised on ACDC and CCR basically classic rock and it was always audio visual to me. The music is what it’s about but it was always
the visual too and my favorite bands are all audio visual bands. I’m not saying I am gonna like a band because they don’t have a look but I do like that and that’s what I am drawn too. Like I said I think we are missing this in today’s music. I don’t know how the Ramones would have been if they didn’t look the way they did or The Clash, Kiss, and Alice Cooper. To me that was part of the allure the excitement of rock n roll. Right now the whole aesthetic in any scene is that it’s not cool to care and everyone wants to look like they don’t care and I just want to have a rock n roll band. I want it to look like a gang; I want it to like a gang as if we were in “The Warriors” or something like that. The Ramones looked like a gang you know, so I kind of want to bring that back and have it fit in with the music if I’m explaining it right. KCM: No I get what you’re saying because when I first saw you opening for Ace on the last night of the B.B Kings shows and I had looked you up before and I thought oh my God this band is so punk and they look like a bunch of brothers like the Ramones did. That’s the first thing I thought of and it’s great because no one is really doing that anymore and I think it’s important to keep punk alive specially being such a big punk fan. I just have to throw something at you here do you know Johnny Thunders? Tuk: Of course I love Johnny Thunders. KCM: Wow not that many young people know or like him. Tuk: Are you serious? KCM: I am very serious. Tuk: I am a music person and my religion is rock n roll. I love it so I try to know as much as I can. KCM: I am the same way. Other people that I associate with are not into rock n roll and are clueless about it and other people that are into rock n roll still don’t know everything and Johnny Thunders is one of them. Tuk: Really? I mean he’s like one of the classics how can you not know him. Every person doing the head movement and every 80s guitar player ripped off Johnny Thunders moves. KCM: Oh totally. Tuk: He had the hair first and there wouldn’t be Nikki Sixx if there was no Johnny Thunders. KCM: Of course and people don’t understand that. Of course people from the 80s would but people from our time just take everything for granted.
Tuk: Oh they definitely do. The whole generation gap there has been a huge f***in disconnection. KCM: Yeah it’s very pathetic. Tuk: It is. Well that’s why there are people like me trying to keep it alive and trying to be real which is the most important part. KCM: And I give you you’re props 100% I really do. Tuk: Thank you. KCM: How was your experience opening up for Ace Frehley? Tuk: You know, I was in another band called The Heart Attacks and we did some bigger tours and sometimes we’d get booed off stage. They would call us fagots or whatever and then they said that we were going on tour with Ace Frehley. I knew it was going to be awesome because no one was going to call me a fagot for how I looked. And I am using that term for how they called us you know what I mean? So you don’t know how the crowd would be when you’re opening for a classic act and if they would only want to see Ace Frehley or whoever you are playing with. We had really good response and it was one of the best tours we’d ever been on because everyone there was a rock n roll fan and liked it. It was just awesome. The band was awesome, I didn’t really meet Ace but I did see him twice. His girlfriend really liked us but I did get to shake his hand once, so there you go! KCM: I remember looking at your face book page and you guys were wearing the Ace Frehley ski masks on stage and I thought that was hilarious, Tuk: Oh yea I did that on Halloween and I couldn’t breathe or see (laughing) and we played a few songs. It was funny. KCM: And I got to say, I go to concerts a lot and most the bands opening I do not enjoy I literally want to just shut my eyes and when I saw you guys I had already listened to your music and I just wish you had played a longer set. Tuk: Oh yeah you only get 30 minutes when you are an opening band. Well that’s good though I am glad. KCM: I know it wasn’t your fault but I did of course want to see more. I did look for you guys after the show because I wanted to meet you. Tuk: What show was this? KCM: It was the last night of the B.B Kings shows. Tuk: Oh night number two. I would have hung out with you if I had known, next time. KCM: Yeah hopefully. You know I didn’t want to leave my spot because it was my first time seeing Ace. You probably don’t remember me but I was literally the only girl in the front row. Tuk: (laughing) Oh I could believe that! KCM: I was the only girl in the front row with huge Johnny Thunders like hair that was me. And I was the one who actually made a comment about the blue Epiphone guitar that the other guitarist used. Tuk: Oh I remember that! KCM: Yup that was me. Tuk: That was you! Oh ok awesome nice to meet you!
KCM: (laughing) Nice to me you too! So, the band has been doing some touring around, do you have a favorite place that you have played in and why would that be your favorite place? Tuk: Well as far as the US goes I love playing in NY .I love playing in Chicago it’s amazing. I only played LA once but we are going back soon so that will be great. We played Spain, which was really awesome too. KCM: Well that’s great to know that you love playing NY because we want you back! Tuk: Ok we are coming back pretty soon. We will be back! KCM: I believe in LA you are doing a record release party is that true? Tuk: No we are doing it in Atlanta where we are from. KCM: Oh ok I thought it was taking place in LA, and that is going to be for the vinyl right? Tuk: Yes. The thing is that we have another record written but we need a label so we are kind of in between that limbo part so we are trying to talk to some labels. Its ready to be recorded but we didn’t want to wait around so we released three EP’s in a year and a half and we just wanted to keep it going. A lot of it is still new to people so instead of trying to do a record without having a lot of money we just decided to re-release the EP’s so we can keep putting out stuff. KCM: You honestly have to keep feeding the people new stuff, and speaking of fans how is your fan base? Tuk: You know it depends. In the bigger markets we do well like in New York we do really well and that is one of the reasons why I like playing there. You know you tour a lot, you live like an animal, you’re in a shitty van, and you eat f***in subway twice a day but then you start seeing fans come around and you’re like this is why I am doing it and this is why it’s worth it. So a lot of places we do really well which I am grateful for because there is no scene for us to hold on to. So it’s kind of just us and a handful of bands across the country doing this. So you really have to earn everything you know it’s not a built in crowd. KCM: Well that’s how you appreciate it and I have realized that the musicians that are doing it your way are the ones who appreciate the fans and they treat them with respect. Tuk: Yes of course and we try to talk with everybody and it would be nice because that’s what we are doing it for. KCM: What type of music were you brought up on? Tuk: Well I am from the south and grew up below Atlanta and my mom brought me up on Credence Clearwater and ACDC. When she was pregnant with me she went to see ACDC and she said that Angus Young touched her and the sweat that dripped from his pores is where I got it from, she’s really funny. I also grew up on Lynyrd Skynyrd and stuff like that. Then as a teenager I got into a lot of punk 70s bands of course and that led me to get into all that other stuff. I was into Johnny Thunders in high school. KCM: So basically from the sound of it you were brought up in a very musically influenced household. Tuk: Kind of, my mom was into it but it was not free like she wouldn’t make me wear what I wanted or do anything and they didn’t want me to have a guitar. She just liked these bands and it was ok to like them but not be a musician. It was kind of weird but my mom did give me a good taste in music when I was young, if that doesn’t sound too cocky. KCM: No, no it doesn’t at all. How did you actually get influenced to pick up and instrument since you weren’t really allowed to and actually know that you wanted to be in a band? Tuk: I don’t know I swear to God this sounds like a cliché and so fake sounding but when I was eleven or twelve I saw that movie “Over The Edge” with Matt Dillon and the part that got me was when the
started playing my step mom’s old acoustic and that was it. KCM: That kind of reminds me of how things were in my house it was a musically influenced house but no one pushed me into playing an instrument especially my father. Tuk: Well you’re allowed but you’re just not pushed into it because it’s not a musical family. Like if I wanted to play Baseball of course I can get a Baseball bat you know if I wanted to do something else it was fine. KCM: Yeah it was the same way for me because nobody in my household played an instrument and plus my father not being for it so to actually pick up something was very hard but that’s why I rebelled and picked up the drum sticks. Tuk: Well there you go that’s the same thing with me. KCM: Do you have a favorite memory of anytime in your life? Tuk: Oh I don’t know that’s a big one. There have been a lot of good ones so I don’t know I’ll probably have one next week and then replace it. KCM: Anything worth talking about? Any interesting stories? Tuk: Well that’s too much because there’s a lot of interesting stories we would have to write a book. There’s nothing in particular that I could think of right now. KCM: That’s ok I understand. Cats or dogs? Tuk: I am more of a dog person right now because I have a yard so I can have one. KCM: Punk or Heavy Metal? Tuk: Oh man I don’t know it’s equal. KCM: I like that a lot! So I am guessing that you are into Heavy Metal? Tuk: Yeah I am into not as much but I still can’t pick. I love them both. KCM: Black or white? Tuk: Black. KCM: I am gonna throw you another weird one, do you have any interesting talents or hobbies that no one would ever think you’d have or would do or even a favorite pass time? Tuk: Oh yea well I am into the occult really big, I am a conspiracy theory nerd which nobody knows and I can’t really find people on the road to talk with about it, also about the new world order. I am kind of paranoid about it and I also have an organic garden in my back yard. KCM: Oh nice. I will tell you a little secret of mine it will probably make you a little happy I have kind of the same paranoia that you do about what you just said. Tuk: Really? KCM: Yes I have done lots of reading up about it. Tuk: Good! I’ve written some songs about it for the next record and I had to tell some people. KCM: I’ve always kept it to myself. Tuk: Yeah people think you are crazy. KCM: Yup people do think you are crazy but there are things about it out there.
Tuk: Definitely. KCM: And I’m sure that you and I can have hour long conversations about this. Well you know I am on Facebook so we can always talk unrecorded (laughing) Tuk: Yes we can (laughing) that’s funny we can send links back and forth. KCM: Yes of course (laughing). So is there any place where you would like to tour? Tuk: I would like to go to England, Austria because I like so many bands from Austria. I don’t know I would like to go anywhere where there’s a good rock n roll scene. KCM: You guys have never toured in Europe? Tuk: Yea we did Europe with Danko Jones. KCM: And how was that? Tuk: It was good you know we were a new band and some of the cities the crowd is so big like a thousand people a night which is great and some cities loved us and really got it and other cities they just didn’t get it. Like this one girl in Amsterdam she came up to me and said that I was trying too hard and that I was wearing a costume. I really wanted to knock her the f*** out. KCM: Oh my God. Well I can relate to that when I walked into a deli in New York City the guy working behind the counter tells me oh I like your costume what are you supposed to be? (laughing) Tuk: Here’s what pissed me off, it’s not cool to look like this right now I don’t get pussy for it, I don’t get free shit for it, nobody comes up to me and goes you look f***in awesome I love it and all this is a life style. I mean if this was the old days and everyone looked rock n roll I can understand if I was jumping on a bandwagon or you but in our days it’s not popular like mainstream goes so when people that they are f***in idiots. KCM: I agree. Well I like your style. Tuk: Good! KCM: It’s very much like mine (laughing). So I get the same stuff I feel you, you I are in the same boat basically. I am surprised in Europe that a band like you would get eaten up alive out there because our scene is somewhat going on there. Tuk: It was weird we didn’t go to Sweden or Finland. We didn’t go to the really cool badass rock and roll country. Nobody really gave a shit in France but I am not talking shit on these places I am just being honest. Nobody cared in France or Bulgaria or any other places we went to. I just really wanted to go to Sweden. KCM: Oh I get it. You went to the places where bands don’t even play. Tuk: Yeah it was our first time and Danko Jones invited us and we were stoked to play. Like we played Switzerland and I couldn’t understand if the people were fans of rock n roll or fans of sports. It was like so sub cultured it was shocking. I thought it was going to be this crazy rock n roll scene and some of the shows it just like regular preppie people that like football. And again I am not talking shit but you understand. So it was weird but Spain was awesome that place rules! KCM: Spain has a rock n roll scene and hopefully next time you go to Europe you will get to play all the cool places because you guys would just fit in perfect. Tuk: I really want to go I would love to. There are so many cool bands that have come from there. KCM: You would be a very big hit there. So can you tell me a little bit about the record release party? Tuk: It’s just a show that will be in Atlanta that is basically a kick off show. We are going on tour and just getting ready to go on the road through July so we are kind of doing a kickoff party in our hometown and try to sell the LP’s which I haven’t sold to anyone and just try to make some extra cash.
KCM: Sounds good. So basically in the near future what are we going to be expecting from you guys? Tuk: Well starting this May we are going on tour with Riverboat Gamblers I don’t know if you know them but they are good. And then we are going on tour with Manitoba and then we go on a full US tour with Wednesday 13. So then hopefully we can have enough money to get into the studio. And then I think Europe in the fall. KCM: That’s sounds great! Well that concludes it. Thank you so much for taking the time out to do this. Tuk: Thank you. And I’m so sorry that I missed it before. KCM: No, no don’t worry about it we understand. And I will definitely be at your next show in July. Tuk: Oh do please and I will do my best to put you on the guest list. KCM: Ok great thank you and maybe we can have that long conversation. Tuk: Sounds good to me. KCM: Thanks so much and take care.
I discovered Electric Black Horse at an event that KrashCity was sponsoring and right away my attention was focused on the flamboyant stage presence of Michael Pate, the lead singer. The thing about the band was that they also had good songs which were very memorable and I walked away that night singing â€œCapricorn Girlâ€? which is one of my favorite songs on their album. I came home and wrote a review about the band pointing out that the lead vocals needed to be amped up because I thought they sounded out of key. I love when people take constructive criticism as a tool to better themselves. Michael did and the last time I saw him play, he sounded amazing.
KCM: How long has the band been together? MP: I put up a Craigslist ad in November of 2011 and at that time it was just me, I had made the record already and I needed a band to get behind it. KCM: So the record is all you? MP: Yes it’s all me. It originally started with this other guy but it didn’t work out so we split the songs. I took the ones I wrote and he took the ones he wrote. At the time I only had three songs so I had to write a few more, so I got together with a producer and we finished it all. He played drums and I played everything else. I used the album as a tool and my guitar player answered the ad like a week later and then the bass player answered and they were both super gun ho about being in the band. So we played together without a drummer for another two months and then we found Shane in January. Shane is probably the most experienced musician in the band and the youngest guy in the band. He’s a professional Jazz and Rock drummer so it took some coxing to get him into the band. He had five or six gigs going on at the same time, but then he decided that he really loved what we were doing and he decided to stay. KCM: So why Electric What’s behind the name?
MP: This is kind of funny but it’s a true story. I travel for a living and I happened to be in L.A. I went to a bar and they had one of those mechanical bulls. I got really drunk and I was thrown from the bull and when I fell my head hit the wooden post like a corral. That ended up to be a big joke of the night. The next day when we were driving my friend said” Hey man you almost got killed when you got thrown off that electric horse” and that name just stuck in my head “Electric horse” so then later we drove by this horse farm that had all these race horses and when we stopped at a light there was a sign on this stone wall that said “The Black Horse”
and I was like “Electric Black Horse” that’s the greatest band name of all time! I went home that day and bought Elecrticblackhorse.com and yeah I sort of built the band around the name. KCM: It was a sign! MP: Yeah totally, and even to this day if people don’t like the music the first thing they say is Electric Black Horse it’s a great fucking name. I’ve given the record to people like Dee Snyder and Scott Weiland and the first thing they’d say was; Electric Black Horse what a great name. I don’t know if they listened to the music because if they did I’d probably be little bit farther along but at least they liked the name. KCM: As a front man you’ve created this character, so who is he? MP: It’s probably every Rock’n’Roll front man all rolled up into one with me trying to be myself as much as possible. Listening to the album is one thing but if people are going to pay and come to a show, I wanna give them something that’s out of control. KCM: My first impression of you was Bowie meets T-Rex but with no hair! MP: (Laughing) two guys that I love! I love Bowie and Marc Bolan. All that stuff Mott the Hoople, Sweet, Slade especially T.Rex. To me the music is great already but what they were doing visually just enhanced it all. KCM: Who are your favorite bands of all time? MP: I love funk, Sly and the family Stone are one of my all-time favorites. Kiss, Cheap Trick, Ramones, and Aerosmith. Vain is one of my more current super-duper influences. I like the stuff that reels the girls in and makes the guys wanna stay. KCM: If you could have the perfect musical era right now, what would you call it?
KCM: What’s the idea behind your song “Capricorn Girl”? That song drives me nuts, I love it! MP: I had the title first and I wrote the song around it. “Capricorn Girl” is not anybody I dated, I just like the way it looks on paper and I like the whole Sci-Fi twist. The video was very easy to make, and it’s very straight forward. When you hear a title like “Capricorn Girl” there should be a whole back story (laughing) I call it inter planetary love affair. KCM: If you were famous and you got into trouble with the law, who would be the one famous person you’d call to bail you out? MP: Steven Tyler! KCM: You said that without hesitation! MP: I think he’d appreciate a guy that wears make up number one, and the guy has been in enough trouble his whole life so he’ll probably care about me. We’re gonna be really good friends one day. MP: Rock’n’Roll in the grand tradition of Rock’n’Roll! KCM: One thing that bugs me is all these reformed bands without any or just a few original members for example Quiet Riot still using that name but not even sounding like the original outfit. MP: Well it’s the same thing with Guns’n’Roses. I think Axl Rose would have been more successful if he just called the band Axl Rose. There’s no one in that band from Guns’n’Roses so what’s the point? KCM: These reformed bands do well in Europe and South America. MP: So what am I still doing here?(laughing) apparently they appreciate sexy Rock’n’Roll more overseas. I gotta go over to Europe; this is ridiculous (Laughing).
KCM: Speaking from personal experience, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Steven several times and I have to say he is a fantastic guy! There’s no one like him in the music business today. MP: I have a funny story about him. I was hanging out with this guy one night who used to be a personal assistant to several famous lead singers and he happened to be really drunk. I picked up his phone and started scrolling through it and I was like “Look at all these phone numbers you have; Nikki Sixx, Eddie Van Halen” and he was like “Stop, stop!” I saw Steven Tyler’s number and I memorized it, I remembered it. I saved it in my head and I saved it to my phone and that was like five years ago, but occasionally I’ll call it and it’s still the same number. So one of these days when I get a good reason I’ll call it and actually say something but for now I just gotta keep it on hold.
MP: (Laughing) I don’t call it that often, just once in a while to check if it’s still the same number. Hopefully he and I will become BFF’s and he can show me the ropes. What was I supposed to do, throw it away? I remembered it for a reason and hopefully one day it will come to fruition. This guy’s phone was like the Fort Knox of Rock Stars phone numbers and I couldn’t remember anyone else’s number but I remembered Steven Tyler’s. KCM: You never know, sometimes you plant a seed and it grows so keep on watering it! MP: That’s what I’m saying. He’s my spiritual Father! KCM: If you were to be a super hero who would you be and why? MP: My favorite super hero from a young age is Spiderman because he wore a cool costume and he was just a regular dude from New York who could climb tall buildings and swing around and he had a hot red haired girlfriend. KCM: So you would do it just for the hot red head. MP: Yeah, I’d do it just for the hot read head! He was like the KISS of super heroes. KCM: I was sure you would say Batman. MP: Batman is a little too Goth and Spider man is little more glam rock! I’m gonna make it totally okay for the middle aged bald headed guy to go out there and play his guitar and be a rock star! KCM: Call Steven Tyler and tell him to shave his head (both laughing). KCM: What were you doing before this band? Were you in another band? MP: I never had a band before Electric Black Horse. I would do like little side things but I never did anything that went anywhere.
I played maybe four or five gigs in my whole life because I didn’t think I was good enough and I couldn’t write songs. I played bass and drums but I always wanted to be up front. I never really started singing until like two years ago. KCM: So what gave you the confidence to say Fuck it and go for it? MP: It was more like; I hate the job that I have and I figured why not try it now. This is probably the last chance I’ll ever get in my last years where I still look somewhat youthful. I’ll try to get it out of the way and throw it against the wall to see if it sticks and if not, than I can at least say that I tried because I would hate to gone through life without even trying. I’m putting everything into this. I have a lot of great support from my family who are like “All these years really you’re doing this now?, what’s the matter with you?” I have always been kind of introverted but wanting to be extrovert. All of my heroes were extroverts and I was an introvert. I guess it didn’t do me justice but everything happens when it’s supposed to happen so I’m surprised at the reaction we get now. What I think we do is very youthful and I’m lucky enough to have a youthful sounding voice and when you have no hair it kind of hides your age little bit. You can’t see if I have any grays or if I’m actually bald. That’s why I made it a point when I got guys in the band that they had to be as good looking if not better looking than me…(Laughing) KCM: What’s the one thing that you have not tried yet but would like to? MP: Acting…I always fancied myself as an actor when I was a little kid. That’s another thing that I never gave myself a real shot at doing. KCM: Name one of your pet peeves?
MP: My pet peeve is really the puckishness of the music scene or so it seems these days in New York particularly. People treat music like football now, it’s not even this communal thing where you wanna go and check out something cool, it’s more like; Electric Black Horse, never heard of him who is he? Just be friendly, we’re all doing this for the same reason so why not be cool to each other and not be so competitive. There are a couple of guys out there that I’ve become friends with and we’ve done a few gigs together and shared equipment with and that’s the way it supposed to be. KCM: Give me some words to live by…. MP: Ahhh (sighs) here’s my moment so I better choose my words carefully. “Have a good time all the time!” KCM: Oh my God! You know who told me the same exact words when I interviewed him, Keith from Buckcherry. MP: I love Keith but I think we both stole that from the drummer from Spinal Tap. It’s a great mantra; I like to hum it to myself like a Tibetan monk. Electric Black Horse which is E.B.H. and it stands for Everybody Be Happy! KCM: When you become extremely famous and you’re long gone, what would you want to be remembered by?
MP: That I was exactly the same guy that they knew all the time. That nothing ever changed me because money and fame donâ€™t buy class. I pride myself on being a nice, fair and classy dude.
KCM: How are you?
KCM: Do you have a motto that you live by?
Andy: Oh fine it’s just that I’m hoping for an art exhibition and got an album worked up that will come out in September I suppose in Europe and Japan and I don’t know about America just yet. I have to wait and see.
KCM: How have fans responded to your paintings?
KCM: Do you have a title for it? Andy: Actually (Laughing).
Andy: No I never think of life in terms like that, the music should speak for itself. I like good songs with good melodies period.
KCM: What is the sound on the album going to be? Andy: I have a band called Grease Helmet and its pretty hard Rock’n’Roll and it’s got some funk and stuff. It’s hard to explain music you have to kind of hear it. KCM: When did you know that you were going to play music for the rest of your life? Andy: Oh shit..That’s a hard question. I think I was a pre-teen and I became so obsessive about it. I mean not in a sick kind of way or anything like that. I just loved music. KCM: When did you start painting and what inspires you to paint? Andy: Painting started to be a thing in my teens but I dropped out because the band thing started to take up too much time and all the usual stuff that went around at that time with Rock’n’Roll. Touring, making records and so forth. KCM: at this point in your life, what do you find more satisfying painting or playing guitar? Andy: There are two different science required. When you play it’s usually in a studio of course and there are a lot of people listening to your stuff. With painting you’re pretty much a hermit you know. The creative process between writing a song and recording is a turn on. They are both pretty parallel in my opinion.
Andy: Paintings…it of course draws a different crowd then you would live, but there are fans young and old who like my paintings and it gives me the means of not being on the road so much. KCM: Is there a website that people can view your art or is it by private showing only? Andy: www.iq.nl then you have to press a flag for your language. There is a lot of my work there but it’s not even half of what I have, but there are some paintings and stuff. KCM: What is it that you paint, musicians, landscapes, Icons? Andy: I just let it flow freely. Sometimes I do portraits of people and of course sometimes I have a bigger picture of how I want things exactly to look. Usually I just start and see where it leads.
There’s a saying here in the States that says” From your mouth to Gods ears” what do you hope that God hears when you ask him a question? KCM:
Andy: I hope for something beautiful. Do you listen to any current bands? KCM:
Andy: It’s such a wide from Reggae to Blues to Classical and I play Jazz. draw lines between more
range. Everything Rock’n’Roll. I play It’s hard for me to about the songs.
different genres of music. Music is just music to me and as far as having a favorite band; maybe as a kid. I loved T.Rex, Chuck Berry, and Little Richard stuff like that. It’s always been more about the songs. KCM: So you’re a true music fan where
you listen to every genre. Andy: Always have been yes. KCM: Do you have a funny stage story,
like a little Spinal Tap moment if you will? Andy: Funny or tragic, sometimes it was both… (Laughing) Oh yeah I once lost my way to the stage but that’s not that unusual. I got sprayed with angel dust once and that was awful, that was just a pisser..(Laughing) KCM: In which country was that?
Andy: It was in New York City and that was not a nice state of mind when you don’t know who the fuck you are yourself…Excuse my language, especially when you have to go out and play but somehow I pulled it off. I still don’t know how? It could have happened anywhere but it just happened to be New York. KCM: Do you have a favorite memory with
Hanoi Rocks that brings a smile to your face? Andy: I don’t know. There were so many gigs and so many tours. It becomes kind of a blur when you look at it afterwards. Mostly we did a really good work you know. There were some trippy ones when we played Bombay now it’s called Mumbai. No body there really heard of western bands and we weren’t really that famous yet and we just getting around. The usual set is thirty minutes
but we played over two hours and they said” What the hell? You gotta play longer or you might cause a riot, here bands play all night” and we were like, what do you mean like eight hours? (Laughing) Well we managed to play for four and a half hours or something and yeah it worked out fine. We must have played everything, every jam to every Blues song. Drum solos and guitar solos Jesus we’ve played everything!, but what were we supposed to do you know. KCM: What was the experience like be-
ing in Bam Margera’s film called “Where the fuck is Santa”? Andy: Bam just turned up and I didn’t know he had a camera crew when he showed up and that’s exactly what it was, totally improved. It basically feels like a documentary at least the scenes with me. Nothing was pre -planned, we were just hanging out. KCM: He talks about you all time.
Andy: Well he’s a friend of mine. He’s a funny guy and he seems to constantly get himself into trouble. Every other week I hear that he’s been beaten or arrested. Well perhaps he’s one of those people that shouldn’t grow up then or he wouldn’t be Bam. I hear that you make your own clothes, Jewelry and stuff, how did you get into that? KCM:
Andy: I’ve always been into creating stuff. Like I said painting isn't that different from writing a song and then drawing is not that far from painting. It’s kind of like painting without colors you just do little bit of shading and a faint color.
KCM: So what’s next for you? You have a new album coming out and…… Andy: We start things off in I believe October with this band and I’m gonna start working on a solo album. We already made a video but there’s no point of putting it out until the album comes out. Basically I wanna lay low this summer. KCM: What would you like to say to your fans? Andy: I hope to see of everybody more soon since I’ve been leading a very private life for the last three years. First time in forever I suppose and I’m enjoying it but I’m starting to miss the stage too you know and I hope to be seeing a lot of them soon. KCM: You have a lot of friends and you are definitely loved. Andy: Yeah somebody blessed me. Angela McCoy: Andy has a side project going on called Grease Helmet and they will be debuting in Japan in October
It would be crazy to think that a good variation of music solely exists in the States when countries like Sweden, Germany and of course Spain are bursting at the seams with good old Rock’n’Roll. Lipstick is one of those bands that light up the streets of Barcelona as well as their native Spain. They are on the brink of releasing a brand new album “Anthems for Life and Death” and you can also see two of their brand new videos which can be found on YouTube. One called “Love’s like Crack” and the other called “Reaction”. These veterans of rock know exactly how to leave their fans wanting more……
KCM: How was this band formed, how did all of you meet?
Frank: Because it’s only Rock and Roll and we like it (in English).
Sugar: Back in 1987 Dave and I met in a record store, buying KISS bootlegs. Both of us were Ratt, Motley and Kiss fans so we knew we were meant for each other. Then Frank came along and finally David…
KCM: Who are your favorite three bands that you have so far toured with?
David Lipstick: A long time ago (in a galaxy far, far away…) I was the last one to join the band. I found them in a store buying Poison’s merchandise at the end of ’89, and none of them were more than 18 years old. We were only looking to have fun, and music is what brought us together. But later, in 2002 was when we decided to make a serious project of this band.
David Lipstick: I have a special memory with the “Chelsea Smiles”, great musicians and very nice people. With Twisted Sister or Misfits, it was an incredible experience to play with legends of rock. But I will never forget the insane nights with our friends Guitar Mafia (Mafia Boy) and The Punishers…still hurts today!
KCM: In my opinion you are a little bit of Glam, little bit of Punk and little bit of Rock’n’Roll, so why did you name the band Lipstick? When I hear that, I hear total glam. David Lipstick: It’s true, we didn’t decide which style we would do, we just stared playing and composing without limitations… it’s what we like and our music is the result. The band is like a lipstick, might be red or it might be much darker, depending on your mood. Frank: Believe me, in the time we got together we were one of the most glam bands in Barcelona, taking into account that this has always been a bullfighter’s country. Sugar: It was from the New York dolls demo: “Lipstick Killers” KCM: A lot of bands from Spain sing in Spanish, so why did you decide to sing in English? David Lipstick: That’s easy to answer, because we like it. We may sing in Spanish, or Catalan, but all the music that influenced us is in English, that’s the only reason.
Sugar: Twisted Sister, the Dogs D’amour and Nashville Pussy.
KCM: Have you ever played outside of Spain and if so which place was your favorite? David Lipstick: Never, but we really want to do it soon! KCM: What was the inspiration behind your brand new video “Love’s like Crack”? Sugar: David created the script and the whole idea of the video and when I see it, I see an impossible relationship between a man and his muse. It’s very dark and romantic at the same time. I love it! David Lipstick: The song talks about tragic love, like Sid and Nancy. To make this video we thought of massive hysteria, and in this case, contrast it with the image of an innocent girl…Everyone can be vulnerable and fall into a tragic love story. All our videos are made by us; we love that freedom to do anything we want. KCM: What sets apart your new album from all of the other musical work you have done?
Sugar: I really think that it’s the best album that we’ve made; it represents what Lipstick is at this moment. David Lipstick: We wanted something much more direct, with a rawer sound, a collection of songs that express very different things. KCM: Do you guys do everything on your own (tours, merchandise, etc.) or do you have a management company or record label behind you? Sugar: The previous record was edited through “Lengua Armada” a record label from Madrid, for the new album it’s likely to be self -published. But still don’t know. KCM: What would you like people around the world to know about Lipstick? Sugar: that we are an honest band. What you see is what you get. KCM: Name one band that would be your ultimate dream to share the stage with?
KCM: Describe each band member with only two words. Haha! David Lipstick: (this can be dangerous but it will be good! Haha) Sugar: Diplomacy and passion… Dave: Creativity and impetuous… Frank: Reason and madness… Me: It’s better not to talk about yourself!! Sugar: Frank is a Friend and a Beast. Dave: Great composer but someone crazy. David: great musician and excellent person. KCM: Please complete this sentence in your own words; GROUP ANSWER I Rock like ? FUCK. and I drink like a ? SPONGE. but you can call me ? FUCKIN SPONGE???.
David Lipstick: Well it wouldn’t be too bad to play with Motley Crue!...haha
KCM: The ultimate Rock’n’Roll Cliché’ is Sex Drugs and Rock’n’Roll……..Name another ultimate cliché’.
Sugar: The real KISS (with Peter and Ace, of course!
Sugar: Herpes, talc and techno pop!
KCM: What’s next for Lipstick?
Frank: Sex, drugs and nursery!
David Lipstick: We are now finalizing the album “Anthems for life…and death” this September it will be for sale, and then we’ll start to play live to support the new album. First in Spain, and later who knows! Sugar: I hope to play a lot of gigs and make as much trouble as possible! KCM: Where can fans buy your merchandise? Sugar: Don’t have merchandise; we are a serious Punk band! Hahaha!
Being pressed up against the barricade front row at an Ace Frehley show is something that every true Kiss/Ace fan should Experience. Thinking that this show was going to be similar to the last time I saw him I was pretty ready for what I was going to see, I was totally wrong and was in for a real ‘Rocket Ride’! Almost an hour after the opening band was done Eddie Trunk along with Don Jamieson came out on stage to introduce Ace, which was nothing unexpected but still cool anyway. Now was when the real magic began, the lights went out except for white lights that glowed on the stage. In the distance church like bells rang and “Fractured Mirror” emerges from the PA system. It was as if I died and went to rock n roll heaven! One by one his amazing backup band comes on stage and starts the intro to "Rip It Out". Ace runs on stage cherry burst Les Paul in hand and the show begins. From "Rip It Out" he goes into “Parasite" then "Sister" from his last album " Anomaly". Few songs later he goes into the Ace anthem “Rock Soldiers” which was one of my favorite parts of the show. The crowd became one, chanting every single word as if we were “rock soldiers’ following our leader. He played a classic Kiss tune “Hard Times” which is one of my favorite Kiss songs along with “She” and “2000 Man’ which he always plays live. There’s nothing like hearing “Back in the New York Groove” live in the heart of New York City while his light up guitar shined in my face, it just brought chills down my spine. What happened next was a total shock to me along with the whole attendance and I am so happy that I witnessed this cause who knows if it would ever happen again. Richie Scarlet along with Anton Fig joined Ace on stage and played “Foxy Lady”. It was like a little reunion the only thing missing was John Regan on bass, which would have been really cool. That was definitely the highlight of the night for me along with his “Shock Me” solo where he performs his famous smoking guitar trick. He had a great encore that included “Love Gun”, “Cold Gin” and “Watching You”. It was a shock that he played “Watching You” and was another favorite part of the show for me. He ended his 20 song set list with “Cold Gin” and “Black Diamond” outro. Ace has one of the best and tightest backing bands that adds to Ace’s great performance. Anthony Esposito rocks the bass along with vocals on “Love Her All I Can”, “Shout It Out” and “Strange ways”. Ace’s new drummer who I didn’t find out his name was good but I can’t say that he can replace Scot Coogan especially vocal wise, I really do miss him. My favorite member who I can’t take my eyes while performing is guitarist Todd Youth. Along with being a monster guitarist he also has such great stage presence, personality and a killer look that ties it all up.
I love when he performs lead guitar and vocals on “Flaming Youth”, that is always the highlight of the show for me. Basically an Ace Frehley show is like traveling through a time line and experiencing the golden era of Kiss all over again in a whole new way. You get a great variety of Kiss songs along with Ace’s solo material. Seeing Ace live is 100% better than seeing the “fake” Kiss for loads of money. Ace is sounding better than ever and it especially showed this night. Ace is back and stronger than ever!
When I discovered Aerosmith I always had a dream to see them live before I died or before they stopped playing. I can officially say that my life is now complete and I can walk the road of the afterlife a happy woman. The show started off very disappointing between finding out how crappy my seats were and how boring Cheap Trick were. Even though Cheap Trick bored me to the point of falling asleep all and all they sounded amazing especially Robin Zander who’s voice has not changed at all. I must admit I did jump up and started dancing when they played their classic hits “I Want You to Want Me” and “Dream Police”. Finally after a 2 hour set that felt like 4 hours it was time for the greatest American rock band. At this point I was so upset with how I had stage lights in my face and tall people preventing me from seeing. Somehow a miracle was upon me that night and my friend managed to sneak me up to the front pressed up against the huge runway. I couldn’t have been in a better spot it felt like I was right up on the stage with them. The house lights go out and the Aerosmith logo glows up on the stage as Steve’s scarves start to appear from underneath the stage. He jumps up from underneath the stage and breaks into “Draw the Line”. I have never been so star struck but I couldn’t help it since I had Steve Tyler and Joe Perry right in my face the whole night and feeling Steve’s eyes on me as he moved along the stage. They had an awesome set that contained most of their hits with a few classics thrown in there that they haven’t played in a while like “S.O.S (Too Bad)” and “Combination”, it was great to see Joe sing and it was one of my favorite parts of the night. “Last Child” was amazing live and was another highlight for me. Brad started off the song by having a little jam that blows my mind before going into the main riff. That man can fucking play! The song ended with a classic Joey drum solo that turned into “Rag Doll”; Joe Perry killed it on the slide guitar! “Legendary Child” was kick ass live and I am looking very forward to hearing the new album. Tom Hamilton has to be one of the coolest bassist especially to see live. His bass solo for “Sweet Emotion” was killer including his gold bass that had I Phones attached to it. Ending the 18 song set list was “Walk This Way” which featured Darryl McDaniel from Run DMC. It was cool and all but I would have rather seen the regular version instead. “Dream On” had to be the best part of the show. Steve came up from under the stage with a white piano and looked like an angel as the spot light shined on him.
Joe Perry claimed on the piano playing an amazing solo that brought me to tears. That had to be one of the most beautiful things I had ever seen, my mind is still blown away. The show ended with “Train Kept on Rollin” and even though they played for 2 hours I still wanted more. Aerosmith is one of those bands that will never lose it and will only keeping getting stronger. Every member still has their spark as if they are still young. Steve Tyler is one of the best front men and I can confirm that officially now that I have seen him live, along with Joe Perry being one of the best guitarists. Aerosmith is truly America’s greatest rock band!
Friday had finally arrived, the excitement rose in me and with the full moon up in the sky, I knew a crazy night was ahead.. It is so true when people say that crazy things happen on a full moon. The night officially started when my good friends Stiletto performed right before The Faster Pussycats. They were absolutely amazing and what made their performance even more special was that Danny, Ace, and Chad (from Faster Pussycats) made a special appearance and performed the song Star, Star (by The Rolling Stones) with them. All I can say is Stiletto is an amazing band that every performance I see just gives me a natural high. They seriously blew everyone away! Finally it was Pussycat time, and this band always knows how to make an entrance. The first thing you see as the curtain opens and smoke rises is Danny’s big fur hat and Taime with his cigarette in his hand, legs crossed and his sleazy signature smirk on his face. They open with” Jack the Bastard” and the place exploded! A few songs in they played” Poison Ivy”, which was a really nice surprise since they haven’t performed it in a long while. “House of Pain” was my favorite part of the show. I had the pleasure of Taime sitting right in front of me as he took my hand while performing this amazing song. . Let me tell you he can still belt out that song! They played a great mix of classics and new songs along with a cover of the song” Pretty Fucked Up” (by Supersuckers) that they went into during “Bath Room Wall” which featured Danny on vocals. Even though I love the original line up this line up kicks ass just as much if not more. The band sounded really tight and Taime still has an amazing voice. They ended the show with” Shut up and Fuck” and Danny going into the crowd when the song was over. I was so lucky to have hung out with them they are the nicest guys I have ever met. This band never disappoints me and always puts on an amazing show no matter what. They are sounding better than ever and I will never get sick of seeing this band live! It sure was a crazy night and one to remember….
Let’s just say that any time you are going to a Manson concert you must be ready for an insane night. From the minute that I got to the theater the insanity already started to happen. It was a sold out show and the waiting line was all the way around the corner. Finally I made my way in and fought my way to the front. The opening band was horrible it was like watching a porn star trying to front a rock and roll band. Finally they were done and the black curtain went up along with the crowd already going crazy. I knew this was going to be a wild fighting crowd so; I prepared myself for a fight. The lights go out and my blood is rushing through my veins giving me a natural high. The curtain drops and Marilyn Manson is right in my face along with my idol Twiggy Ramirez who is now on guitar. I was freaking out! It was a strong opening with their brand new song “Hey Cruel World” followed by two classic hits “Disposable Teens” and “Love Song”. “No Reflection” another new song sounded amazing live along with “Mob Scene” and” Dope Show” which during all this he was throwing out fake cocaine. During this half of the performance I honestly could not enjoy it because I was too busy being thrown by the crowd. Seriously, who crowd surfs to Dope Show. I made my way out of the pit and tried to enjoy the rest of the show all the way in the back which sucked.” Slo-Mo-Tion” one of my favorite songs off his new album was just kick ass live. It was so good to hear “Rock Is Dead”, “Personal Jesus” and “Tourniquet” which hasn’t been played in a while. The last half of the show were songs for early Manson days. “Hate Anthem” got everyone including the people in the back crazy along with “Sweet Dreams”. I must say even though I hate that Twiggy is on guitar he really kick ass especially when he played the Sweet Dreams solo.” Antichrist Superstar” was my favorite part of the show. He brought back the whole set that he used on the Antichrist Superstar tour. It seriously felt like 1996 during that performance! And of course he ended with” Beautiful People” which left the crowd screaming for more. I really couldn’t enjoy this show and I was left totally unsatisfied because of the crowd. Sorry but New Jersey crowds are one of the worst! The band is sounding better than ever with Fred Sablan who is a perfect replacement and Jason Sutter on drums. Last time I saw this band I really thought that they were not going to last but I was totally wrong. Seriously all Manson fans must go see him. This is one of his best era’s including his new album “Born Villain” which is one his works. All I have to say is that MANSON IS BACK!!!
What a fucking night! I couldn’t wait for this show and I must say that the night came and went with many surprises. It was one of those nights where you wish you could relive just one more time because you know it will be a long while before you will experience another night like this again. The first band that started off the night was the amazing Demon Boy This band can really put on a damn show and know how to get the crowd rocking from start to finish. You could never get bored at one of their shows with all their cool characters, killer props, and their mascot Skully. They started off their six-song set with “Born Dead” which got the crowd going immediately. You never know what to expect during their set whether it’s Demon Boy pulling out a dead corpse lady during “I Kissed a Dead Girl” or, Skully creeping up behind you. I really can’t pick which songs were my favorites but the ones that really stood out for me that night were “I Kissed a Dead Girl”, “Ravenous”, and “Little Red Riding Bitch”. “Little Red Riding Bitch” is my favorite song to see live because he acts out the song by having little red and the Wolf join him on stage. This time Little Red was a belly dancer, which added a cool effect. Demon Boy is seriously original and one of a kind, which, is hard to find in a band today. The whole band is just amazing live and I was very happy to see the crowd get all into it. I can really see this band going places and I really hope they do because the music world is missing a new act with true originality which is exactly what Demon Boy has. The next band was a band that I never heard of before called Cold Blue Rebels. They were added to the set last minute because they got signed to Wednesday 13’s label and they deserve it! Cold Blue Rebels is a rock n roll band with a horror theme with a fifties and sixties feel. Each member was decked out in horror makeup, blood and had a character of their own. They were such a fun band to watch and I really enjoyed them. All I wanted to do is dance the whole time they were playing and I would have if I wasn’t crushed from the crowd. I look very forward to seeing this band again. Once their set was over my heart was beating so fast that I thought it was going to jump right out of my chest! The Biters have been my drug since I discovered them a year ago and I just couldn’t wait to see them live again! It felt like it took hours for them to set up but I know it was just me being impatient. Finally they hit the stage and I just totally lost myself in their energy and music. They played all their hits “Born to Cry”, “Breaking Your Heart Again” and “Melody for Lovers” just to name a few. During their performance I kept sticking my middle finger to the crowd because they had no reaction to them at all which killed! There had to seriously be something wrong with everyone because they were stealing the show. In my eyes they were the stars of the whole night.
Their set almost got cut short but Tuk (vocalist/guitarist) came to the rescue by extending their last song for almost 20 minutes! that was the best part of the show and it all started with Tuk asking the crowd if anyone knew how to play guitar. So, some guy from the crowd played Tuk guitar while Tuk unexpectedly jumped into the crowd then jumped up on a ceiling pipe and started swinging upside down from it, then danced around the stage. I cannot even describe his whole performance it was just something you had to experience in person. This finally got the crowd going and it seemed like they won people over and just left me speechless. Tuk is an amazing front man who really can get any crowd going and this was proven after that night. Once their set was done I had lost every ounce of energy I had. It was one of the best performances I had ever seen and they are on the top of my list as one of the best bands! I can really see this band being one of the biggest bands in a year from now and if it doesn’t happen then I have lost all hope in the music world! I cannot say it enough times how much I love this band and if you check them out you will find out why I have been a friend since I’ve gotten into them! Of course last but not least it was time for the one and only horrific amazing ghoul of all times Wednesday 13. When the stage turned dark and I saw his shadow on the stage chills ran down my spine! I couldn’t take my eyes off of him from the moment he began performing until the minute he walked off stage. He along with his band mates put on a show that one can never forget. He has great stage presence along with his unbelievable great looks. I was very excited to see him especially being a fan for so long. He opened with “Calling All Corpses”. He sounded amazing live along with his band. I was very happy that he played two Murderdolls songs “1976666” and “I Love to Say Fuck” which is one of my favorites along with “Curse of Me” and “I Want You Dead”. One of my favorite songs was” R A M B O” because I love when he wears this awesome black hat holding this laser machine gun pointing it right into the crowd. He had the whole crowd going crazy, there was not one person who was not singing along. It’s like Wednesday 13 puts a spell on the whole crowd. It was a great experience meeting him after the show and exchanging words. He was so warm and friendly. He makes you feel like you’re a longtime friend who he hasn’t seen for a long while. He did not rush away from any of his fans. I will never forget the feeling I had when I approached him and he extended his hand to mine and when we were done talking our conversation ended in a hug and kiss on the cheek. That will be a moment I will keep in my memory forever. I can’t wait to see him again! I just love Wednesday 13 to death. This night will definitely go down in history and will be one of those nights that you can never forget.
This was an exciting night at Webster Hall not only because I was there to see Acey Slade and the Dark Party but also because the bands on this bill were very diverse and they had never played together. The show opener The Wild ones a Runaways tribute band was not bad for only their second time of being on stage. Heather Ashley the bands lead singer is easy on the eyes especially when wearing a silver body suit. They played some of the Runaways hits especially “Cherry Bomb” and that got the crowd into a total frenzy. Heathers heart is totally into performing, you can clearly see it as she takes over the stage but in my opinion she should focus more on her Vocal pitch and technique instead of being so self-conscious and trying to please the crowd because whether she knows it or not she’s got that part down. Next was Bad Dog Bad, a biker sounding band that I never heard of before but they could hold their own as far as playing goes. I did like some of their songs. In fact I could hear in my own head a few songs which I could say easily had that ZZ Top flare. I’d have to see them again to make a better assessment of this band. The Black Angels had followed and these guys are New York City’s music veterans. They are the perfect example of a rock scene in the Johnny Thunders days. They have that ear pleasing Rock’n’Roll sound that keeps you planted firmly on your feet and you have no choice but to bop your head from side to side. By the time Acey Slade and the Dark party hit the stage the place got very crowded, as they opened up with “Here today, Gone Today”. If you have missed this show and you were a fan of their drummer Matt Kepler you will be very sad as this was Matt’s last performance with the band. Next on the agenda was “Suicide Lullaby” and this song is pure perfection live as is The Cult’s cover “She sells Sanctuary”. I have never heard anyone sing a cover song as well as Mr. Slade does. They continued to rock the show with “She brings down the moon” and “I dare you” before being told that they had to get off stage, but Acey totally refused and continued to play few more songs ending their set with the awesome, energy filled “Coming Down”. This show was a first for me as far as seeing all of the first three bands I mentioned, but I will be checking them out again because they are definitely worth it.
I have to admit that I’m a newbie to the St. Vitas metal head bar but I like it and I like the fact that it’s nestled in kind of a remote location in Brooklyn. I was looking forward to seeing Electric Black Horse once again and of course L.A.Guns who I have not seen in years. The night had opened with Strotakin IV, a band I have never heard of but I have to admit that the drummer could pound the shit out of his skins. I liked the first two songs and then everything started to sound the same. To me there were no distinctions between songs and I became bored, however that all changed when Electric Black Horse hit the stage. The singer’s flamboyant style changes the whole energy in the room to a high octane powerhouse and that’s exactly what it was as the room started filling in with people. They opened up with “Rave up” and “Champagne on ice” and by the third song “Capricorn Girl” which is one of my favorites they had clearly won the crowd over. The party continued with “Birthday Bitch”, “Long way baby”, “Cheap party favors” and the set ended way too soon with “All over now” The band was amazing, energetic and most of all very entertaining and by the time it was over everyone wanted more. L.A.Guns kept everyone waiting with anticipation until everything was set up just the way they wanted it to be. The set had opened up with “Over the edge” and you could see Phil’s smiling face as he was walking over to the mic strumming on his guitar. They continued to kick in with the crowds favorites ”Sex Action” and “Never enough”. Those two songs brought back memories of one of the best times in my life as I was jumping up and down re-living those moments with total abandon. The show continued with a few songs off their new album “Hollywood Forever” before swinging right back to the 80’s with “ Sleazy come easy go”,” Electric Gypsy”, “ Ballad of Jayne” which seemed to be the crowds favorite and of course the one and only “Rip and Tear”. After all these years I can honestly say that Phil Lewis and his original partner in crime Steve Reilly don’t miss a beat, you can still see the amazing chemistry between them that carried through the years and they both still got it in a big way. Phil is one of the best front man I have ever seen and Steve is one hell of a drummer. I also think that L.A.Guns is doing quite well without Kelly Nickels or Tracii Guns from the original line up. Plainly said Stacey Blades and Scott Griffin have got their shit together and they can play with the best of them. Stacey has no problem picking up where Tracii left off without too much of an effort and Scott is filling Kelly’s shoes without a problem as well, as he plays in a very similar style and I think Mr. Nickels would have been proud. They played all the songs as if they had been with the original line up for the last twenty years and that’s fuckin’ impressive to say the least. I’d say that Stacey is the serious one on stage and Scott and Steve are the clowns in the band making funny faces and getting everyone going. This was one hell of a show and I’d definitely see those guys again because they know exactly how to recapture memories from the past and make them real again through the sound of their amazing songs.
The highly anticipated night had finally arrived and although other great bands performed, I have to admit that I was solely there for The Dirty Pearls as the band celebrated a milestone in their musical career by making this their “Whether you like it or not” record release party. You bet your ass these guys know what they are doing as they always put on a high octane show. As Tommy London said it “This is their Fucking Chinese Democracy album” except that it’s actually good. Well it’s better than good; it’s like a super food for your fucking soul. One listen and you’re hooked; no way can you go a day without taking a listen. As the light’s when down you could see the shadows of people walking on stage to the drum beats of Marty E. filling Gramecy Theatre with high pitched squeals of excited female fans. They kicked it right into “Whether you like it or not” followed by “Caffeine and Gasoline” and of course their well-known track “Who’s coming back to who” which by then everyone seemed to be singing the lyrics to. They kept the fast pace going with one of my favorites “Love Sick Love” and the electric” Bring on the night”. There were also a few songs they indulged their hardcore fans with such as “Gimme, Gimme”,”Rockstarlivin’” and “Hollywood La,La,La”. The set was only halfway through and the intensity was building up before bringing the show to a total explosion with their anthem “New York City is a Drug” and though I am not a big fan of ballads “You got me where you want me” is a simple song that tugged at my heart strings. This band knows how to deliver the goods, no wonder that they are the biggest local band on the New York City scene and no offense to anyone here as there are quite a few other bands who are a close second. Tommy London, Dougie, Tommy, Marty E. and Sunny Climbs (the newest member) got it going on and they are definitely on the right track to reaching the top. Tommy London is not afraid to get his hands dirty and give his fans what they want especially those few young girls who were pinned against the stage cheerfully flashing the band with their perky boobs. Now that’s true Rock’n’Roll for you and just when you thought it was over the crowd was not leading up and persistently yelled “ONE MORE SONG, ONE MORE SONG” As if the night could have not been more perfect the band came back out and kicked into an awesome rendition of Aerosmith’s “Sweet Emotion”. Uncontrollable screams filled the theatre as the guys marveled in every note of the song proving once again that they have every intent of sticking around for the long haul and that the “Static” between them and their fans will always be kept alive with the electrifying performances that these guys deliver time and time again.
It was a very cold Friday night at Hooligans in Jacksonville North Carolina. Walking from the car to the venue in shorts and fishnets...leave it to me to not even care. We noticed there was no line, so that was a good thing. You wouldn't have thought there would have been a crowd until you got inside. It was definitely a packed house. We decided to hang around the bar area and wait for Black Stone Cherry to go on as where the concert area is was rows deep with people. To my knowledge there were three bands before the headliner. After each band, the crowd would pour into the bar area for drinks, socializing, or bathroom breaks. Either way, each place was crowded regardless. Finally, it was about show time. Fighting our way thru the thick crowd with the record rep to get to the side of the stage behind the barricade was crazy. Everyone anticipated with cheers and cell phones ready to snap pictures. The band walks on stage , lights go on and the crowd welcomed the band with enthusiasm and excitement. Black Stone Cherry opened with the song "Change" The song had so much energy. the vocals were clean and the music was tight. Chris Robertson; guitar and lead singer possesses a southern rock voice with deep meaning. Ben Wells on lead guitar just explodes with energy, running and jumping around everywhere. Jon Lawhon ; bass player.....let's just say that Ben and John definitely feed off of each others energy. They are like flashes of lightning that pours out amazing sounds of music thunder. And let me say that John Fred Young; drummer I have never seen a drummer like that. I called him "the octopus" It was hard to see he had two arms as it looked like eight to me. And hair flying everywhere! He was just amazing! They then broke into the song "Star" When an unfortunate fight broke out...well attempted to. Amazingly enough the band stopped playing and the lead singer basically told it how it was, how they are not there for that. They want to rock and have a good time. Needless to say, whoever the imbeciles were that couldn't control themselves had some enemies, but the band made a joke or two and just continued on with the show. It was almost like the crowd had so much respect for the band stepping up to that situation. Which pumped the crowd up for more. Black Stone Cherry played for a good 45 minutes. It was definitely one of the most interesting shows I've been to in a while. It's just one of those shows where you know is going to let you leave saying "Hell yeah! That was a great show!!" Black Stone Cherry exudes in getting the crowd excited and keeping them there. They really know how to put on a great show and leave the crowd smiling. As well as buying tons of merch at the merch table after the show as I noticed. If you get the chance to see them...do it!! I promise, you will not be disappointed.
Additional Thanks to: Bobby Lingo, Nick Kuschner, Pamela Des Barres, Desk Estevez, John McMurtrie, Michael Pate, Silvana Breur, Gui Brigaudiot, Ozirith, Nicolas Gaire, M. Legrady, D. Walters, Angie Valente, Ville Juurikkala, Charlie P. Murcha III, Laura Conforti, Giovanna Fabozzi, Philip Paratore,