SONIC SHOCKS Issue 21 - February 2014

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Issue 21 - February 2014



Glam Roc through space and time with

JIM HEATH Exclusive Interview



LITTLE MATADOR, SNOW PATROL and Troy the juggling guitarist...

k demon

Sonic Shocks - Issue 21

February 2014

Page 3: MARC ALMOND Interview by Cristina Massei P. 5: NATHAN CONNOLLY


Interview & photos C. Massei

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Page 18: THE GOLDEN AGE OF BURLESQUE by Sophia Disgrace Anti-Valentines: Resurrection 3, The Rocky Horror Picture Show Delight, Endless Night NY Vampire Ball. Spotlight: GothFoxDesigns

P. 7: MY FAVOURITE RUNNER UP Interview by Rev. Eddi & C. Massei P. 19: TBFM: ROLE MODELS SPECIAL + 2013 PUNK TOP 50 by The Reverend Eddi P. 9: MOUNT SALEM Interview by Matt Dawson P. 20: AT THE MOVIES By Cristina Massei P. 10: REV HORTON HEAT Cuban Fury, Her, Dallas Buyers Club Interview by Cristina Massei Page 12: TRIBAZIK Interview & photos C. Massei Page 14: DESULTORY Interview by Nelly Loriaux Page 15: BELLADONNA Interview & live photo C. Massei Page 17: SLOUGH FEG Interview by Matt Dawson

P. 21: ALBUM REVIEWS By David Lees, Rev. Eddi, C. Massei, J. Bennett, N. Loriaux, M. Dawson Aesthetic Perfection, Rev Horton Heat, The Peckham Cowboys, Basement Torture Killings, Supercharger, Falling Red, Behemoth P. 23: LIVE! By M. Dawson, D. Britt. C. Massei GodDamn, Mayday Parade, TSO, Mourning Birds, Deadcuts CONTACT US



ASSOCIATE EDITORS: Matt Dawson - Nelly Loriaux -

OTHER WRITERS: The Reverend Eddi, David Lees, Joe Bennett

EDITOR AT LARGE: Matthew Tilt -

BURLESQUE: Sophia Disgrace

PHOTOGRAPHERS: Cristina Massei, Denise Britt

General enquiries, review requests and unsolicited material: Advertising enquiries and info: PLEASE NOTE: We listen to everything but - often in your own interest - we don’t always review it...

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He’s gone a long, branched road since ‘Tainted Love’. A true artistic, exuberant soul, over the past three decades Marc Almond successfully expressed his talent in many different projects, not afraid to go from pop stardom to playing philosopher Seneca in a rock adaptation of 17th century opera ‘The Coronation of Poppea’.

As we wait for a new studio record to come in summer, Almond keeps our musical taste buds busy with a double A Side single and a new EP coming to a record store near you on February 10th. The mini album is not an excerpt from the full length: the unreleased 4 tracks are a unique offering, which see Jarvis Cocker and Carl Barat eagerly writing especially for Marc. From London to Paris, from Russia to MidWest America, from Seneca to Sebastian Horsley, here’s an interview with Marc that will take you through space and time, a bit like his art. No boundaries, no limits, no prejudice.

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CD are wonderful. Part one came out late last year and the new EP out on the 10th Feb is part 2. It was always one of my dreams to record a great single with Tony Visconti and release it on vinyl to bring to mind all the great T.Rex singles that Tony produced I bought as a teenager. It would bring it full circle for me.

Would you say these particular tracks will sound better on vinyl or digital? Vinyl definitely especially with the little scratches and crackles

‘It’s not as black and white in Russia as the press likes to portray it,

Hi Marc, great having you with us! There’s a 4 track EP coming up soon, How did you decide to write a song – would you like to tell us a bit more ‘Death of a Dandy’ – inspired by the about it and what inspired it? death of Sebastian Horley and what did his art mean to you? The songs on The Dancing Marquis E.P /Mini album were initially inspired Sebastian Horsley was the self styled by an eccentric Victorian Charac- King of the Dandy’s and of London’s ter Henry Paget 5th Earl of Angelsey Soho, he was his own work of Art. His who was known as The Dancing Mar- funeral was the most stylish I ever atquis. He wore winged hats, fabulous tended. Sebastian’s coffin was borne outfits and did erotic dances for his by 6 Soho Ladies of the Night, draped friends. Needless to say he was the in red glitter and he was bought into family black sheep. There’s also a bit the church to the T.Rex’s 20th Century of artist Sebastian Horsley, my favor- Boy. He also did fabulous sunflowers. ite Glam Rock stars like Marc Bolan and Jobriath and a bit of myself in I hear there’s an album of unreleased the songs too. It’s exorcising my Glam material coming in summer, anything you can tell us about that yet? Rock demon. The release date is 10th February and will include a collectable vinyl limited edition; is it something you will always make a point of offering to your fans?

It’s too early to talk about it as it’s not out until September. It’s called The Velvet Trail and was produced and co written by LA based British Producer Chris Braide.

I love the chance to do special editions to collect and the collectable double package of this record with vinyl and

Tony Visconti is back working with you on this EP after last single ‘Burn Bright/The Dancing Marquis’, is he

going to be involved in the recording of the album as well? Tony is not involved in the album but produced two tracks and coproduced two tracks on The Dancing Marquis EP How was working with Jarvis Cocker and Carl Barat? I’ve never met Jarvis, the song Worship Me Now came out of the blue and was especially written for me with his co writer/producer Jason Buckle. I loved Working with Carl, we met while working on the Experimental Rock Opera Poppea based on Monteverdi’s Opera The Coronation of Poppea. Carl played Nero and I played Seneca his philosopher teacher. I was a fan of Carl before Poppea and I asked him to write me a song, he wrote Love is Not on Trial especially for me. It’s a fabulous song. He added some vocals and guitar to the recording.

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Cell version of Tainted Love, how was performing that track with original author Gloria Jones at a tribute to your biggest influence Marc Bolan in 2007? It was lovely to meet Gloria. Gloria lost her singing voice mainly due to the injuries she received in the car crash where Marc Bolan lost his life. Our duet consisted mainly of me singing the song to Gloria while she banged a tambourine and added a couple of lines, but for me it was a magical moment.

Any more collaborations in view for the full length coming up? There are no collaborations as such on September’s album but the whole album is a collaboration in a way with producer and co-writer Chris Braide. In 1993 you first toured Russia, making a plea for tolerance of gay people. You even relocated there later in 2000 for your Heart on Snow project. How do you feel about the recent Gay Pride issue and the firm stance Russia still has on the matter? It’s not as black and white in Russia as the press likes to portray it. Being gay is legal and the age of consent is 16. I have never in 20 years experienced or seen homophobia in Russia and I’ve been openly gay, I even made a plea for tolerance on Russian TV back in 1992, whereas in so called tolerant and progressive Britain I’ve experienced it many times even recently. Russia is not a shouting out loud society about anything really, the LGTB are a vocal minority but many gay people are just getting on with their lives. Some are worried, some just roll their eyes and shrug. It’s just how Russia is. New legislation is wrong though and narrow backward thinking, its clause 28. We had it and came through it stronger and Russia will change in its own way eventually from the inside I believe. I’d rather people focus on places like Uganda where it is a possible death sentence or America where gay people are lynched in the mid west and the God Hates Fags brigade pickets funerals of gay men. But then again, it’s easy fashionable to leap on a bandwagon of Russia bashing. One of your biggest hits was the Soft

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You played a show at Union Chapel last year that sold out well in advance; is there any video or audio recording of that show that might at some point be released?

The concert where I performed the whole of Mother Fist wasn’t recorded but we’ll probably do it again at some point. I love the idea of people just experiencing that live show by being there. Shows become mythical and bigger than the show. That’s why I didn’t record Torment and Torero’s at Meltdown the other year. Too often I perform these days to a sea of After the success of Ten Plagues at mobile phones, people seem to want Edinburgh Festival Fringe and the a badly filmed second hand experiresidency at London’s Wilton’s Music ence rather than the real thing. Hall, is there any plan to perform it again in the future? Next you’ll be touring with Jools Holland, are you looking forward to it? I loved doing it at Wiltons and we may revive it again in the future. I adore performing with Jools and we’ll be all over the country this year. As mentioned earlier, you also recently portrayed Greek philosopher What else can we expect from you Seneca in an experimental rock ad- in 2014? aptation The Coronation of Poppea in Paris. Are we ever going to see that I’ve recorded an album with composer John Harle called The Tyburn Tree, in the UK? It’s a song cycle, part classical, ElecIt is unlikely that Poppea will be per- tronic, Ambient, Jazz and Rock and formed again anywhere. It was a very its theme is dark London its darker expensive production with a lot of Myths and mysteries and very powtechnology, especially designed for erful. We’re doing a short tour at the the famous Chatterlay Opera House beginning of March see my website for details or follow me on Twitter. in Paris. With all your travels and all its changes, do you still feel London as your home? I still feel London is my home but its changing fast, too fast, great swathes of it are being pulled down in the name of progress and I feel myself starting to feel a bit distanced from it. Southport where I was born also feels like home when I visit there. Out of all the music and culture landmarks it’s been robbed of in recent years, which one do you miss the most? I’m going to miss Soho and Walkers Court when they demolish it. It’ll be a sad day. How did you feel winning the Ivor Novello Inspiration Award? Winning the Ivor was totally unexpected but it was fabulous and a validation of all my body of work over the years.

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VS All on Nathan Connolly’s new exciting project I’m not the biggest Snow Patrol fan, can take them or leave them. When Nathan Connolly invited me to check out his ‘other band’ Little Matador at Camden Barfly, I was expecting my reaction to be something between ‘meh’ and ‘good’; instead, all I could mumble for the whole length of the set was ‘wow’. Despite the undisputed charm of intimate venues, I couldn’t help but imagine this show bigger, louder and definitely longer. Powerful like early QOTSA with all the grit they’ve lost on the way, Little Matador deserve a stage as big as it gets. Hopefully those busy Festival people will notice… In the meanwhile however, it’s time to find out from Nathan himself what’s the future for his exciting new project and where that leaves Snow Patrol, also due to release a new record this year. Hi Nathan! Congrats for the show at the Barfly, I was truly impressed. Little Matador: a much heavier sound than Snow Patrol for a start. Was that kind of a repressed urge or something that matured with age? No, I played in bands closer to this before I joined SP. It’s always been there. Melody has always been very important to me though and I have always naturally written that way. Its great to be able to do both.

as I’ve witnessed myself at the Barfly, do you feel Little Matador is developing mainly as a live band? I think we are getting stronger every time we take the stage. It’s a lot of fun playing these shows. The chemistry was there from day one, we built on that and from there we started to write more and more but the intensity has started to come across a lot more live.

What would you say are Little MataSo, is this the record you were talk- dor’s main influences? ing about back in 2006 or are you hid- We all listen to so many different types ing more unpublished music in your of bands and music and did throughout making the album. Lots of those drawer? No, I was working on something very influences will naturally come through different then. It was a different idea but I’d like people to make up their for a band and I was just writing for it. own minds as to who they think we I still have Ideas all the time of course are and sound like. but this was the one that’s been waiting to come out for sure. I am very Would you like to tell us how this proud of it. That’s not to say that I project came to life and introduce the won’t do other projects in the future. rest of the band? It was mid 2012 I made the first call You offer a brilliant live performance to the guys. I decided I›d talked too

long about making my own record or putting a band together so any down time I had from the Snow Patrol tour that year we went into rehearsals and started writing, mainly to see if there was any chemistry. We have all known each other a long time Dave, Troy, Gav, Binzer and myself and I knew it was them I wanted to work with but that doesn›t give you any guarantee once you start that things will click. They did. What inspired the name and logo? The name came from a brilliant documentary I saw a few years ago. For the artwork we had one of my favourite artists Angelique Houtkamp design the logo and artwork for the album so we were thrilled to have her on board. She designed and tattooed a piece for me a couple of years back at her salon in Amsterdam so it seemed to fit. Are you enjoying being on lead vocal duties? Absolutely. I’ve sang all my life so it’s

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just started. I have commitments with Snow Patrol for sure, especially when touring starts but we will still be writing and working on Little Matador.

not alien to me but fronting a band is a very different thing to what I›ve been doing for 20 years. Also, I wrote the lyrics so it didn›t feel right for someone else to sing them.

It does feel a little like that sometimes but we are a new band, it’s still early days. We collectively have a lot of experience so we are enjoying having fun with it all.

You already supported Jimmy Eat World and Queens Of The Stone Age, how did that go? Amazing. What we enjoyed the most was the reaction we got, how involved their fans got for a band they hadn’t heard before or even heard off. Thank you to them for that.

10 years after ‘Final Straw’, what would you say is the most memorable moment of your career? We’ve played some big shows which is always fun but we have got to work with and collaborate with some amazing people over the years. That’s always interesting.

Next chance to see you – to my knowledge – is March with Band of Skulls at Shepherds Bush Empire. Are you looking forward to that and is there any other gig planned in the near future I still don’t know about? Yes we play with BOS on March 27th. A great band. Sweet Sour was one of the records I was listening to a lot while we were in the studio. Before that we are playing Other Voices on February 8th with a few other Irish shows before that and more coming up throughout the year. Playing support slots and headlining venues the size of the Barfly, must be a bit like going back in time. How does that feel?

The obvious next question is, where does this leave Snow Patrol? Snow Patrol just took a year off touring, bar one show in Belfast which was Tom’s last show; Gary made the Tired Pony album, Johnny McDaid has been writing and working with lots of people and Jonny has been working on Polar Patrol Publishing so there has been lots happening. Everyone has been busy.

Your composition played a huge part in shaping Snow Patrol’s sound. With ‘Fallen Empires’ marking a change of direction, what should we expect from this next record? In my opinion we are becoming more and more comfortable with who Snow Patrol are as time goes on. Individually and collectively. This is an important record Aside from ‘Liar Liar’ avail- for us, a line up change, able as a free download coming back after workfrom your website, what ing and writing with other else is out there from Little people, side projects, new Matador at the moment bands etc… Sonically we will and where can we find it? have to wait and see. We have been selling a four track EP at shows only and Gary also recently released will continue to up until the the second album from his album comes out. country project Tired Pony; how do you feel working on different projWhen is that? The album we be out in ects is affecting your April. We really just want creativity? to get it and ourselves out Yeah he did. It’s a great record. I think it’s esthere. sential for your creativity, you learn and The essential question now get better just by writis: where do you go from ing, playing and workhere? Is this a long term ing with other artists. plan or a one-off side project? It’s not a one-off side proj- You, Gary and Jonny ect. We feel we have only also funded a publishing company,

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Polar Music, signing artists of all genres without long term ties. Is that still going on and is there any recent signing we should keep an eye out for? Yes we did. Polar is going great, Jonny, Steve and Nat have done an amazing job running it and it’s going from strength to strength. Malpas and Wonder Villains both have their debut albums coming out this year. 2014 sounds like a busy year for you… Are you ready? Dreading it or looking forward to it? Yeah, it looks like it and that’s great. I’ve got my chain mail on and my armour ready. Not sure where to put my hip flask though. Is there anything else you would like to tell us about? Troy our guitar player is a professional juggler. He’s amazing. He can juggle some slightly dangerous equipment. Little Matador will support Band of Skulls at Shepherds Bush Empire on March 27th; tickets here: h t t p : / / w w w. o 2 s h e p event/61696/band-ofskulls-tickets For more info, dates, downloads at http://www.

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ALL THEY EVER WANTED WAS PETER ANDRE, FREE GUITAR STRINGS AND WORLD DOMINATION... We always get that mouth-watering feeling at Sonic Shocks when we hear the word ‘debut’. The intoxicating smell of new, unexplored, raw and slightly naïve makes us want to find out more, especially when a debut album is as good as ‘Crossroads’ and the band in question, My Favourite Runner Up, has already been sharing a stage with the likes of Madina Lake, Kids in Glass Houses, Blitz Kids and Bury Tomorrow. In case you’re feeling a bit curious too, here’s a Q&A with the band who equally dreams of playing with Mallory Knox and Peter Andre. I truly hope that’s a joke. If it isn’t, I’ll make sure I run off before the main act.

es? We’d never made a full length album before. With the EPs, we wanted them to flow and have impact. With the album, we wanted it to take you on a journey with more mellow tracks and faster tracks to help break it up and keep us interested. It was definitely a challenge trying to achieve the right mix and we had to throw away loads of tracks.

Any particular stories during the recording you would like to relate to Sonic Shocks? Well we recorded in Cardiff, which is nearly three hours from home, so we lived in a Congratulations for the release of your motorway service station for three weeks. debut album ‘Crossroads’ coming up on I took my whole house down and we made February 17th. To all those who don’t the rooms our own. It was awesome! know MFRU, how would you describe your sound in 3 words? You already have an EP out, ‘Thoughts, Epic British Rock Feelings, Actions’, which was very positively received; are the songs from the EP Please introduce yourselves: names, in- included in ‘Crossroads’, and if not where strument, biggest music influence. can we get a copy? Christian Evans, Vocals/Guitar-Rise Against Nope, Crossroads is all new material, with the exception of a very very old song ‘StoAndy Towell, Guitar - Blink 182 rytelling’ that we had on our much earlier, Tom Hawkes, Guitar - Mallory Knox self recorded stuff. You can get both our Lee Walker, Bass Guitar - Beyonce previous EPs from iTunes and any other good online store. Tom Carr, Drums - The Ataris I hear great things about your live shows. Is there any tour planned following the release? We think crowd interaction is key and anyone coming to see us will definitely leave with a smile on their face! We have dates throughout Jan/Feb to support the release. All can be found on our Facebook Talk about some of the themes that you page at to explore. erunnerup We’ve been in this band for almost 8 years now, and were in other bands before that. It’s meant a LOT of time in a van togeth- You’ve already shared the stage with er and a lot of time away from our fam- the likes of Madina Lake, Kids In Glass ily and loved ones. We’d reached a point Houses, Blitz Kids, Save Your Breath, Bury where we were wondering whether or Tomorrow, The Hype Theory and Neck not to carry on. This was the ‘Crossroads’ Deep; which one was the most fun to tour with and which one did you learn and we had to choose which way to go. the most from? It was amazing to play with Madina Lake. What were the challenges and success- I’ve love that band for years and never How much fun did you have whilst recording this album? None. Recording is like punching yourself in the balls continuously for three weeks, but it was awesome to work with Romesh Dodangoda again on this journey.

thought we’d get to share the stage with them! The funniest would be Blitz Kids. Those guys know how to party almost as good as us so it’s mental. What would be your ideal touring partner of those you haven’t yet scored? We’d love to tour with Mallory Knox, or Peter Andre. Hopefully we’ll get to do both! Have you had - or made - any phone call yet in relation to the coming summer Festivals? Our team and us have been working hard behind the scenes securing festival slots, so hopefully it’ll pay off and we’ll get to share the stage with more awesome acts. What’s your aim over 2014? WORLD DOMINATION What’s the best place to find out everything about MFRU? We’re always sharing what we do on our Facebook page, so head on over to www. With my budget I can only afford to buy one CD every month; tell me something about you so special to make ‘Crossroads’ my February choice. There is a song to suit every mood on there. I guarantee it’ll stay in your CD player or on your MP3 player’s current playlist at least until we release another album. Also, if you buy it, we will be able to eat real food, which always helps. Fake food’s never as good. And to finish, instead of the usual ‘last famous words’, what’s the question you always wanted to be asked in an inter-

view and no one ever thinks of? I’ve always wanted to be asked: “Would you like us to give you a year’s supply of guitar strings for free?” YES.

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As Mount Salem get ready to release Endless on Metal Blade and look into the future Matt Dawson discusses with vocalist Emily Kopplin about playing live, Bandcamp and plans for the next album.

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music will be purchased online and downloaded directly onto your phone or computer because of convenience. However, nothing can replace the sound that comes from vinyl or the feeling of shopping for new records. I can’t imagine people stopping that altogether, especially For those who haven’t heard of Mount Salem before – with this genre of music. describe what can be expected from a live show. We like to try and make our show a little more interesting You toured last year with Uzala and Mike Scheidt – how than just playing our music. We usually change the was it being on that tour? lighting up from the other bands and tend to play in a We had so much fun hanging out with those guys and little darker setting. We set the mood the way we want it exchanging stories. Chuck from Uzala and Mike both have before we start playing, I think it makes us feel better as been in touring bands for years so they gave us some well as the crowd. really good advice. The tour as a whole felt really laid back and everyone got a long really well, it was also just great experience being able to play with such amazing How do you feel being part of the recent upswing in amusicians night after night. We can’t wait to see them occult/psychedelic rock that has occurred through the again! likes of Witch Mountain, Ghost and Blood Ceremony? Which bands do you see becoming It’s really cool to see this kind of music big in 2014? making a resurgence recently. I think people have been very supportive of Some people may know these this style because it’s nostalgic and bands and some may not but a really gets back to the basics. I think couple that come to mind are our this genre in particular can appeal to good friends from Texas Mothership, a wide variety of listeners because of they did a bunch of touring this past the different elements that go into it. year opening for some great bands We’re very excited to be a part of it all. and I think this year they are going to hit it even harder. Another newer Texas band called Crypt Trip recently How does it feel to be releasing caught me ear and I’d really like to Endless on Metal Blade? see them get out on the road. Lastly Working with Metal Blade really has Satan’s Satyrs could really blow up I been a dream come true. When we think. We played the Autumn Screams originally released Endless ourselves Doom fest in Baltimore with them last year we never thought it would have the and they put on a really awesome live chance to come out as a re-release. It’s very exciting show. Check those bands out if you haven’t already! because they’ve given us the chance to re-examine the album and record two additional songs. We also had everything mixed and mastered again so it will be How are plans going with the follow up to Endless and a slightly different version from the first one. This will any plans regarding UK shows? also be the first time Endless will be on vinyl, which is We have already started writing for the next record and something we’ve wanted from the beginning. are hoping to record in the fall. Since we wrote the songs for Endless over a year ago, we are definitely ready to some new songs out there and show people what Given the band’s use of Bandcamp – how do you feel get we’ve been working on. We have been throwing around the future will be when it comes to releasing music? Do the idea a 7” as well. As for overseas shows, you feel it is going slowly towards an all digital nature? we’d loveoftoreleasing get there as soon as possible! We’ve been Bandcamp is a pretty incredible tool for bands nowadays. working on the details for a European tour (possibly in It enables people from around the world to hear your fall) so stay tuned. music. It has been a great way for us to be heard and connect with people. I do think the music industry in rd general is moving toward a more digital era where most Endless will be released on March 3 via Metal Blade Records.

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CH A E T E LET M OW TO YOU H N’ROLL ROCK’ Rockabilly, next to all things vintage, has seen a strong resurgence over the past few years. Doesn’t matter how young you are, if that’s your poison you surely have a few albums in your collection from the Reverend Horton Heat. After five years of studio silence – despite an ever hectic touring schedule – the Reverend is back, not just with an album but with a genuine, old fashioned rock’n’roll one, after flirting with country in 2009 release ‘Laughing & Crying’. Titled quite simply ‘Rev’, the new record came out January 21st, just the day we managed to get icon Jim Heath on the phone for a chat… To begin, how’s the US tour going? It’s a really hard tour but it’s going real well, the shows are great. How’s the reception for the tracks off the new ‘Rev’ album? We’ve actually been playing more songs off this album than any other new album we’ve had in about 15 years! It’s hard for a band that has as much material as us to get our new stuff in there. Our fans pay the ticket prices to hear a lot of the old songs and I can’t really blame them, but we threw caution to the wind and played 7 songs off the new album. They’re going over real well so it’s working out pretty good. How is the feedback going for the album as the release date hits? I always think of the release date like this kind of election day, with people calling you to say how it’s selling… [laughs] Yeah… I don’t ever look at numbers or whatever, I don’t even like to look at reviews that much because

for sure we’ll get some good reviews but sometimes you get bad ones and if you start believing the good ones you’ve got to start believing the bad ones too! It’s a bit more difficult with the internet where anyone can comment on everything Yes. Anybody can comment on the internet and say a bunch of stuff that they would never say to your face, also they’ll say a bunch of stuff just to get a reaction out of other people. Do you feel that Rev is a comeback to your roots type of album? A little bit, I think it goes back to what we did in the mid 90’s. We started out as an authentic rockabilly band then morphed into something a little more aggressive and edgy. I think this album is a return to what was that period. That being said it’s a lot like that but there’s some of our earlier stuff and some stuff we haven’t really delved into a little bit too. Was it a conscious effort to go back to that? A little bit because our last album [2009’s Laughin’ & Cryin’ With The Reverend Horton Heat] was leaning towards country, it was going to be a straight country album but it ended up not being, so we decided it was better to stick to what we do – our rock ‘n’ roll thing! Now that you’re back to that are you still as passionate as you were back in 1985? Oh yeah, I’m definitely as passionate as I’ve always been. I guess I’ve matured some and there’s certain aspects of this bit that aren’t as much fun as they used to be – the travelling, being in crazy places all the time; but playing

the shows I’m just as passionate, I have as much if not more fun than I ever did. What has changed in the aspect of touring? You used to do runs of 275 shows – quite prolific! That was in the van days too! It’s easier because now we have a bus and a driver so we get to sleep on the bus as we go but it’s still the tediousness of spending all this time in cheap hotel rooms, truck stops and stuff like that – I’m kind of over truck stops now! [laughs] What’s been going on in the five years between Laughin’ & Cryin’ to Rev? Well the drummer on Laughin’ & Cryin’ was a guy named Paul Simmons – he was a great friend and toured with the band for about 5 years but you get to the point where his family didn’t like him being gone and it ran its course. He didn’t want to quit the band artistically but he had family issues. We got Scott Churilla back in the band – he’d been in the band 11 years before he quit last time so he’s been on most of our albums by far, when he came back it was a seamless thing then we worked on the new album and toured a lot – we tour no matter what, whether we have an album or not. It’s still fast and furious – not 275 days, more 130 now! Did Scott’s return help the band get back to their old sound? Maybe a little bit, it was basically my conscious decision as it was happening before he came back – several of these songs we started working on and recording before he came back. How is working with Victory Records? It’s good – they’re a solid music pro-

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moting machine and that’s what we need. The better we get promoted, the better it is. Two of my personal favourites are ‘Never Gonna Stop It’ and ‘Mad, Mad Heart’. What inspired those two songs in particular? Never Gonna Stop It - the music is kind of rock and roll, straight ahead/high energy with a little bit of Del Shannon influenced vocal but the lyrics border on political more than I’ve ever done because I start talking about the New World Order, banks controlling the Government so it’s a little bit out there. It’s high energy and fun to play live! Mad, Mad Heart – that was intended to be a straight rockabilly song. We had a hard tour of Europe a couple of years ago and I wrote that while on tour, it hung around for a while and whilst we were doing the album I pulled that one out one day and finished writing it, it seemed to work really well. One thing too about the recording on that – I was trying to channel how Dave Edmunds recorded the first Stray Cats stuff but I don’t know if I actually got it! [laughs] Another song is the one you made a video for, ‘Let me teach you how to eat’; I’ve read various interpretations of the humorous lyrics, from ‘there’s a message about healthy eating’ to plain ‘dumb’. Where do you draw the line between humour and corny plus what were you aiming for in that track? That song is more about sex, it’s all innuendo! The way I got the idea is a guy decided he was a food guru and trying to teach me how to eat crazy micro-biotic food, I’m sure all that’s real good, I like to eat healthy, we love vegetables and the right kind of balance. I wrote down the title and when I started writing the lyrics it ended up being a song with sexual innuendos. Some songs come out funny, some come out serious, it’s like divine intervention – it just comes out of the blue. If Quentin Tarantino were to call you and ask if he could use one of your songs out of ‘Rev’ in a movie but you pick the one, which one would it be? I’d probably give him ‘Victory Lap’ because it was meant to be a movie themed song, a bit of a fanfare – high energy, rock and roll type of fanfare. With this album are there any limited editions/vinyl or merch that we should look at? Victory’s released a lot of t-shirts and they’re doing vinyl too so you can order that – at least 3 different colours. Do you think the album sounds better on vinyl than CD? I like vinyl because I’m used to it, it depends on which stereo and what you

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like. I’m curious to see how the vinyl’s going to sound but it’s pretty fun and hard to beat. You collect quite a bit of 50’s themed memorabilia – do you have a favourite item in your collection? There’s a pretty cool ’52 Ford Hotrod that I don’t drive as much but I’m hoping since the album’s done I’ll have more free time now because it’s been very hectic the past couple of years – when we were off we were in the studio then we’d be back on tour. I’m into Levi jeans – the reproductions of the old jeans. It’s my wife actually that gets the cool stuff now – she still goes to the vintage thrift stores. Do you let her drive the car? No, I don’t let her drive the car [laughs] Did you notice a change in fan base over the past couple of years with rockabilly making a comeback? One thing that has happened over the years is that young people are the ones that seek out new bands – new to them – they’re the ones more likely to go out and see a live band. As a lot of our fans got older, got married, had kids what have you it was harder for them to go out whereas a lot of young people go out no matter what. We still have some of the older fans come out but by and large it’s stayed young – they want high energy rock and roll music. Is there any band that you feel you’ve influenced? I can’t really speak for that but I know there’s quite a few around that say they like my stuff, I wouldn’t know who’s coming along. If you could bring back a rock and roll legend and play a show together who would that be and why?

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Elvis. Early Elvis. We got to play with Jerry Lee Lewis a couple of years ago and that was awesome since he was a bigger influence on me. I got to meet him briefly, that was pretty thrilling. We got to meet Johnny Cash and June Carter, Carl Perkins and got to meet a lot of unsung heroes in Rock and Roll. What’s the one that left you star struck? Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis. The best one was Carl Perkins who talked to me for an hour and a half with crazy stories, I’ll never forget that. We did a recording with Willie Nelson and played golf with him, he was really fun. What do you consider to be your career highlight so far? I don’t like to think about that because if I think about the past it kind of means that was the pinnacle and I like to look forward and that the high point is far ahead. What is the goal that you feel you still need to achieve? Any of my friends that play way outside the realm of pop music , they all wish to have a hit record and that’s something we’ve never really had. We’ve done well with sales but never had a hit record. It would be pretty cool to have a song that takes on its own life! Finally when will we see you in the UK and Europe? I would love to come back to the UK and right now we don’t have any plans but I’m sure we’ll be talking pretty soon – we have a lot of US festivals so that’s kind of thrown a wrench in the plans, maybe this fall. Thank you Jim, it has been a honour and a pleasure talking to you! Thank you for your kind words!

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LIFE, DEATH, FAITH, THE UNIVERSE AND BIG BROTHER We meet Jerry, Hedge and Syan on a windy and wet London afternoon at their own Old Street Studios to film a couple of live tracks. Intense, powerful, intellectual, mesmerising, Tribazik’s sound defies labels and genre classification, but if I had to give you an idea I’d say they very much remind me of Killing Joke, a band they’re exceptionally close to. Was Paul Raven who offered Tribazik their first important support slot, while Youth mixed upcoming album ‘Data Warfare’ and will be proudly attending the album launch at Cargo on February 13th.

lyrically and conceptually.

There are certain books which have influenced me over the last couple of years such as: ‘A Brief History Of Time’ - Stephen Hawking - which is the journey into the universe of a genius. Without the fairly ‘down to earth’ explanations of Stephen Hawkins, I would have found it difficult to grasp the concept of space-time. ‘Alien Agenda’ - Jim Mars, a study of the alleged extraterrestrial presence among us. As a big fan of fiction, as well as factual books and movies, We asked singer/guitarist Jerry Kandiah to tell us more science this book blurred the boundaries and gave rise to the about Tribazik and ‘Data Warfare’- out on February lyrical themes in songs such as ‘Bloodline Crossbreed’ th 17 . In the meanwhile, head to our YouTube channel to and ‘12th Disclosure’. enjoy one of the live tracks we recorded: http://www. ‘Stardust’ - John Gribben - exploring the cosmic recycling of stars, planets and people. This book is interesting because it proves scientifically that all life You have a very eclectic, distinctive sound; how would on Earth and all matter around us is made up from you describe it to the uninitiated? elements formed during the explosions which occur at A high-energy alternative take on thrash and dance the end of a star’s life. music with psychedelic landscape passages, breakbeat and electro influenced sections, all played live. You were given your first big live opportunity by Paul Raven; what’s your dearest memory of him? What are your main musical influences? During our first gig supporting Killing Joke in Belgium, Primus, Faith No More, Sepultura, Isis, Early Metallica, Slayer, Soulfly, Aphex Twin, Chris Liberator, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Nadja, Shining, Venetian Snares, Captain Beefheart, Secret Chiefs 3. Where do you get inspiration for your lyrics? You mention Zecharia Sitchin’s much criticized work, how much of it do you actually believe? Zecharia Sitchin’s beliefs are all theoretical so of course they will be criticized because there is really no solid evidence. However, having always been fascinated with the origins of humanity, Sitchin’s theories make for great song themes,

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final result? Having our own studio which we know inside and out and being able to use it whenever we want gives us the opportunity to experiment and develop the sounds, passages, riffs How was working with Youth on and rhythms to a higher production level. ‘Data Warfare’? We’ve known Youth for years and we find him pretty chilled to work UK Festivals are already getting their with, he says what he thinks and line-ups together, are there any you’d it’s always all about the ‘vibe’ in the particularly like to get an invite for? Is there any touring planned after the world of Youth. release? It’s been almost 5 years since your On the festival front, so far we are debut album ‘All Blood Is Red’; currently booked to play Bearded what took you so long and how Theory, Alchemy and Surplus. We does ‘Data Warfare’ compare to would like to play Fusion in Germany and Dour Festival in Belgium. the first after all this time? The obstacle which has put us back Following the release of the album we most was when our manager/ have a string of UK dates including: record company chief Gary DS London – Cargo – 13.2.14 died tragically and suddenly a couple of years ago before ‘Data Warfare’ was originally scheduled for release. It took us a while to get back on our feet and now we are releasing the album on our own label, Skyride Records. Data Warfare represents us as we are now, with Syan’s new bass passages and more of a focus on the electronic sounds, we have been able to expand on previous themes and spend more time developing our music. as we started to play Raven was standing at the side of the stage making weird faces at us, trying to put us off! He was one of the funniest men on earth.

‘Data Warfare’ takes its name from the imminent hostilities facing the human race. What are they? Cyber control, lack of privacy and the ongoing collection of personal data. You started working on ‘Data Warfare’ in a barn in Sussex before going back to your studio; how did you feel that time away from everything affected the album? Playing in one room, together as a band away from the daily distractions of the city gave us the space to focus on being a unit and jam together organically. And the barn we recorded in had an immense acoustic reverb which added to the sound and feel of the drums.

Cambridge – Portland Arms – 15.2.14 Bristol – Exchange – 6.3.14 Cardiff – Koko Gorilaz – 7.3.14 Followed by a European tour in april. For more info check our website:

real life near death experience.

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2. Atom An exploration of nuclear and quantum physics. 3. Life Force Energy This is the first song we ever wrote and finally found its way onto the second album... as the single. It is now a dedication to the 2 people who were behind Tribazik the most and who are now no longer with us, namely Paul Raven and Gary DS. 4. 12th Disclosure The story of the Majestic 12, who were allegedly a secret government organisation assembled in the 1970s to monitor a vast amount of extra terrestrial activity that had been occurring in that era. 5. Sonar Sumeria Influenced by the work of Zacharia Sitchen, namely his studies of ancient civilisations such as the Sumerians, who seemed to have an unnatural connection and knowledge of our solar system. 6. Hacktivism This song is about cyber warfare and the impact a virus could have if planted in a national security network. 7. Spacetime Collapse This song is about the fact that we as a living planet relay on the universe being stable. Any distortion of spacetime could have catastophic consequences to live on Earth. 8. Bloodline Crossbreed It’s about the recycling of stardust and how matter in the universe is constantly evolving. 9. Absence of Proof Covers the age old subject of where we came from and the issues concerning faith.

Tell the story about each track on the album 10. Tools of Mass Creation It’s about the immense power of You guys have your own studio and 1. Too Dead to Care nature and the planet’s ability to do most of the work yourselves, A study of mortality based around a create and support life. how do you feel that affected the

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DESULTORY, AKA Belgian born DJ Angelo Jansen and Time Ibiza Residents founder’s Rafael Bertran new protégé, is a young gifted DJ to watch out for. Leading a new wave of talent from Belgium, his potent mix of dance floor anthems, vocal led classics and clean cut sound is gathering a faithful following, transforming the most subdued of parties into an ecstatic, bouncing rave within a matter of minutes. Firstly, tell us a bit about yourself? Hello, I am Angelo, 18 years old DJ from Belgium. I live in Antwerp and I am passionate about music, particularly progressive and electro.

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danceable and very special. In particular I enjoy the, what you could call, ‘younger people’ music with lots of noise, base and drama. With so many DJ’S fighting for a share of the dance floor, how do you differentiate yourself from the others? I think that the choice of the set is very important. I always chose the music I like but I also keep an eye on the audience and change the set accordingly.

Every audience is difWhen did you start listening to Elec- ferent and has special tronic music? needs which I am happy to accommodate on the At a very young age, I reckon when I spot. All DJs need to be was about 10. My parents gave me flexible and tune into my first DJ set as a birthday present. their audience. I was ecstatic but had no clue on What about Itchycoo Records (Lonhow to use it, so I plunged into a self And of course being professional and don, UK)? study and soon my first mixes came well prepared, that is of the utmost out. I was so proud! Ronstermusic & Itchycoo Records acimportance. cepted the cooperation with Time How would you describe your I understand that you have played Ibiza/ Allright2x1 last November and sound? in Ibiza, in some of the best beach should bring out my new track ‘Let’s club such as Bay Bar, KM5, Lips... Fly’. It will be a great step in promotMy sound is a heavy base and very What was it like? ing my new remixes. melodic tunes. Difficult to combine. I work with very big contrasts be- For a young DJ like myself, it was Tell us about your new release tween the breaks and drops, but still amazing to be able to be part of the create enough grooves to make it Ibiza vibe, which is famous all over My latest track ‘ Let’s Fly’ was prothe world. I was pleased with this duced in Ibiza. It’s a very recogniopportunity and looking forward to sable tune with a lot of the island’s working in even more famous clubs. vibes. This is obviously a dream come true What is your vision for the future? for every DJ on the planet. I also played at the YES2DAY festi- I certainly would like to perform val (, loved it and even more in Europe and the world. the audience really digged my set. USA is definitely on my wishlist. But for now, my main goal is to create So what does it feel like to work good music, entertain my audience and have fun doing it. with Rafael? We have just started working together this year. And I hope for a long term cooperation and good results. I am confident that he will be able to work it out.

Thanks for talking with us. Hope to catch your live set very soon and all the best for 2014.

February 2014

Recognized by many as the fathers and creators of Rock Noir, Belladonna seem finally ready to seriously invade the Kingdom. With a large strong following in their native Italy and some of Europe, previous appearances in smaller London venues attracted fans from every corner of the UK, passionate and loyal fans, yet the numbers took a bit longer to build. On 10th February, Belladonna’s latest album ‘Shooting Dice With God’ is finally being officially unleashed on our territory through Cargo, followed by a show at the iconic Borderline in London on the 26th. Has the time come for our heroes to spread the Noir love across the land of Albion? We had a chat with esoteric lead singer Luana and relentless riff architect Dani as they prepare to come, see and conquer…

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The Noir Within

You’re about to play at one of the last legendary music venues still standing in London in the Borderline, how does that feel? 
 Damn exciting!! Playing in the most prestigious rock’n’roll club of one of the world’s capitals of rock’n’roll is a real thrill and honour for us. How would you describe your live show and why are we not allowed to miss it? 
 It’s very much a 70s style rock show, we play with no backing tracks or click tracks, and vast sections of our show are totally improvised, with lots of interplay and jamming amongst us. Playing live is always a sacred moment for us, a ceremony where the emotional intensity is meant to be total in order to make magic happen. In some shows it does not quite happen – that’s the beauty of r’n’r I guess - but when it does it is truly unforgettable, and that’s why you should not miss the Borderline show: we have a premonition that there it will happen in a most supernatural way.

your fourth album and it’s being officially released in the UK through Cargo. Do you feel this is the one that could open you the doors to the UK market? Well, we never really think in terms of “market”, but more in terms of sharing music, experiences and emotions. But yes, we’d love to engage an emotional connection with UK audiences, and hopefully “Shooting Dice With God” will provide the spark for that very special fire.

You’re considered by many the fathers of Rock Noir; could you tell me how that came up and what’s your definition of Rock Noir? Rock noir seemed to aptly describe what we do. Our lyrics are deeply rooted in the noir tradition of storytelling: drama, erotism, murder, sensuality, mystery and passion all meet up to create musical paintings meant to depict the inner and most secret workings of our psyche. So, no gothic nonsense and no cheap satanic silliness, but a search into the Do you intend to re-release your metaphysical, a search that we put previous work in the UK at some into being for pure self-discovery and point, and where can we find it in the self-healing reasons, and that’s in our meanwhile? opinion what songwriting and making music is all about. You’ve been touring the rest of We had not thought about this yet... Europe at the end of last year, how so you’ve just given us a great idea! You included in the album a very did that go? Our UK friends can currently find our particular version of Sweet Child It went amazingly well, the more we previous three albums (“Metaphysical o’ Mine... play live the more intense the shows Attraction”, “The Noir Album” and We felt that the song had a deeply become…. like in a great relationship, “And There Was Light”) and the single melancholic side that is only hinted the more you have sex the better made in collaboration with Michael at in its original version, a “noir” it gets: a well-worn metaphor, but Nyman (“Let There Be Light”) on side if you like, and we loved the always so very apt. iTunes, Amazon, Cd Baby and many idea of bringing that side to the other online music portals. fore emotionally by rearranging the Shooting Dice With God is song completely till it sounded like

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plethora of diverse names in music business, including producer Sylvia Massy and composer Michael Nyman. Who would be your dream collaboration for the future? Obviously working with Nyman was a dream come true for us, since he’s a living legend and one of the two reasons why we choose music to express our souls (the other is Jimmy Page, in case you are wondering). But we’d love to collaborate with anyone (no matter how popular he or she is, we do not give a damn about that) whose talent inspires us.

Belladonna. Your latest single ‘If I was God’ is available for free download; can you tell us what it is about? 
 It is a song about mad, mad, mad love. But we prefer to not reveal too much of the actual meaning of our songs... we much prefer the viewer to break down the fourth wall of the stage and become an active part of the scene, literally entering the songs and living them.

together, we actually see ourselves as songwriters first and foremost: we put the band together just so to spread these songs to the world and to make them come alive on stage. Our songs are the reason we live. It sounds like a typical interview exaggeration, but those who know us personally know how true it is.

Your lyrics are sophisticated, meaningful, poetic; is it challenging to express yourselves at this level in English? Thank you very much indeed for your So if you were God, what would be words, Cristina! The real challenge the first thing you would do right is to unearth what words, what tale now? 
 any given melody we write is hiding Make all advertising disappear forever, within. The language we use is not so to restore absolute meritocracy on even an issue to us, since we can Earth. express our inner feelings in English as accurately as we can in our native You’re already writing material for Italian. Nabokov wrote his best works a new album. Anything you can in English, despite his mother tongue anticipate to our readers? being Russian, so he’s a real inspiration Dani & I are constantly writing songs to us in this regard. and in the last year we’ve written more than enough tracks for a new Dani, you’ve also been conducting a album. We are thinking of doing ‘noir’ radio show for some time now; some guerrilla live sessions to record what is it about and how can we tune them in true Belladonna-style (all in? live, including lead vocals) the Spring. It is called “The Noir Hour” and it is Here’s some titles, for your readers’ on air every Sunday night at 11pm eyes only!! “More More More”, Italian time. It has become a real cult “Dopamind”, “Mengele in Disguise”, radio show here in Italy, with a very “We Belong To Hell”, “Rising In Love”… strong and devout following, the it will be very very intense, we can “Noirhourers”. It is a visionary show, guarantee you. almost scripted as a drama play, with a final climax, and it is another avenue Who’s the main songwriter? for me to reach out and connect I (Luana Caraffa, vocals) and Dani emotionally with other souls. Macchi (guitar and artistic producer of the band) write all the songs You’ve been working with a

So now that the album is officially out and The Borderline is ready to welcome you, are you giving our famous summer festivals any thoughts? That would be a thrill obviously, and yes, we’re working on it! I hear you started producing your own wine: I need to know more! Yes, we have our own brand of wine, the Belladonna Wine!!... And it is a most excellent wine: the Leuta Merlot “1,618”, rated as “excellent” the top vote - on the Veronelli Guide, the Italian wine Bible. An absolutely delicious nectar, we can assure you. Is there anything else your present and future UK fans need to know? First of all, thank you so much for having read this far!... If you enjoy our music please feel free to contact us on our Facebook page: www.facebook. com/belladonnaband. We love to get in touch with our followers and we’ve become firm friends with many of them over the years, so write in, we always, always reply to every single email.

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like they’re going to lose their memory capacities because they can look everything up on their phones every time they need some information and they would not be able to survive without their cell phones or laptops. As things get easier because of technology, we may become weaker as we become more dependent. I really can’t say for sure if the benefits are greater than the drawbacks—I’d have to know the future to say that, but I just wish that people did not depend so much on technology to do their thinking for them - maybe this is the bias of a teacher—but I see it every day, kids are becoming more reluctant to actually think their own thoughts - to them learning is just repeating what they see in front of them on the screen, and this is not learning. A computer or a tape-recorder can repeat. Only a brain can process information and mentally “digest” it, think it through, add their own thoughts and create something new from the info given to it. I’ve noticed this capacity dwindling over the last five or six years among students, and this is what scares me. Free and creative thinking is underappreciated, and becoming more and more scarce. George Orwell was right, and it scares me. Matt Dawson catches up with Slough Feg’s mercial sounding. One really great concept Mike Scalzi about concept albums, technolo- album that was quite inspirational to me How do you feel technology is affecting the gy and the madness within plus his thoughts though, is The Tain by Horselips. This record education system? is all about a cattle raid in Ulster (cased on It is destroying it and making it very difficult on education as it stands today… What was the mindset when coming up the Irish Epic the Tain) and features a song for teachers to do their jobs. But honestly, we covered called “Derig doom”. That’s I believe there are ways to overcome this, with the concept for Digital Resistance? probably my favourite concept album. Of Well, admittedly some frustration, but also course there are some almost-concept we must simply find new techniques - funny just fun. Frustration at not wanting to do albums I really love, like Black Sabbath’s for me to be saying this, because maybe the the same thing over and over, but I had fun Sabotage . That’s pretty much a concept al- proper response for a metal band, ala the two years ago when I first started writing bum and it is of course completely fantastic. early eighties, should be “Fuck the education system! I wanna rock!!” Don’t think for the album, coming up with songs like “Laser enforcer”, just fun metal songs, and What would you say in 2014 are your big- these thoughts don’t go through my head every day!! But as a teacher, I believe the I had no idea what to sing about anymore, gest influences musically? only way to overcome this right now is to go so I just started writing about what happens in my daily life and in my job—which is frus- Pretty much the same as they’ve been back to the old ways - just like in metal— go tration with technology—resisting technol- for the last twenty years. I’m a dinosaur: “OLD SCHOOL” LITERALLY! Turn off all the ogy, or at least what it’s doing to the human Maiden, Priest, Sabbath , Alice Cooper, computers and cell phones and just give mind - making it lazy and ‘flabby’. Some of Scorpions, Thin Lizzy, Beatles, Black Flag, them a pencil and a sheet of paper and test the songs though are not about this, they Queen, Yes, Genesis, Dean Martin, Frank them right there in the classroom - that’s are just about growing up and becoming Sinatra, Sammy Davis, Elvis (Costello or what I do. You cannot cheat with a pencil in middle-aged in a world you do not under- Presley, depending on the day), XTC, Bro- your hand and a blank sheet of paper in front stand. Very simple, many people go through cas Helm, Billy Joel, Chuck Berry, AC/DC, of you. The most important thing though this especially today when musicians don’t Doors, Legend US, Solstice, Horselips, Mi- for teachers today is to FAIL students who particular don’t want to grow up they want nor Threat, Van Halen, Wagner, not much cannot perform either verbally or in written things to stay the way they were when they has changed. The two new bands I’ve form in the classroom. That sounds negawere younger, when you get older you tend grown to like in the last few years are Ghost tive, but it’s the only true way to test them to think the world is getting older, or dying and The Devil’s Blood. I’m sure there are anymore: if you have them write a paper at with you. It’s hard to accept the changing other good ones that I have not heard yet. home they will just copy it all from the internet, so have them write it down in class, world. I am no exception. I don’t understand what’s going on in the mind of most Ameri- Given your thoughts towards technology or even better, talk about it and if they are cans, it scares me. SO I write songs about it, itself how do you feel about the growth of so dependent on technology that they can’t think, fail them until they are able to unlike “Warrior’s Dusk” and “Magic Hooligan”. social media? I try not to think about it. It’s hard to say. derstand and express their understanding You mention Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts The benefits may be considered benefits without the aid of technology. That’s really Club Band when signifying that Digital Re- by modern standards— but they may be the only way to ensure that people come sistance is not a traditional concept album drawbacks by traditional or old standards. out of school educated. Perhaps some – what would you consider your favourite I guess it’s helpful to unite old friends and older, harsher standards all in order here! family members but the problem is it makes concept albums of all time? We’ve done concept albums and albums people more likely to stare at a computer Any plans re UK shows? that were taken to be concept albums that all day rather than walk down the street Not sure yet. We’re coming to Europe in were not. This one I would have to say, is and talk to someone face to face, maybe four months, but not sure about UK yet. a concept album in the sense that the people said the same thing about the teleBeatles Sgt. Pepper“ is a concept album,it phone 10 years ago. I try not to constantly Which bands do you see making it big in 2014? has somewhat of a consistent lyrical theme stare at my phone. When I am doing my job No idea. Honestly do not know—probthat runs through several of the songs, but (teaching classes) I make all the students ably some 18 year old kid in Orange county not every song - it is not a concept album take out their cell-phones and turn them who’s sitting in front of his/her computer in the sense that our ‘Traveller” album is. off and put them on the table in front of right now who has an uncle who works for I don’t like that many concept album to them. But again, like everyone, I try not Sony. Metal is gaining popularity, so I prebe honest, I like the idea, of the ‘concept’ to drive using automated directions (GPS). dict that there will be “boy-metal” bands of concept albums but I’m not crazy about But like I said there is no escaping it re- coming out of LA soon, if there aren’t al‘Tommy’, or ‘the Wall’, and I think ‘Opera- ally. I just worry about the younger people ready (there probably are, I’m just too out tion Mind-Crime’ is way too slick and com- and what their minds are becoming, I feel of it to realize it).

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Burlesque! This month’s velvet curtain reveals... Welcome to your one stop drop for all the news on the best burlesque nights, in the capital and beyond! My name is Sophia Disgrace and I’ve performed at numerous events in the U.K and abroad, Burlesque Spotlight! from festivals to the most exclusive clubs. I tend perform in a neo burlesque style and incorparate other elements, such as fire play, into my routines. Yup I’m keepin that badass ValenBurlesque - or ‘the art of tease’ as it’s also known, first rose to prominence in the 1950’s; in recent what?! vibe alive to the bitter end! years it’s enjoyed something of a revival, with stars such as Dita Von Teese helping to popularise the scene once again. Kit yourself out with a Molotov Here are my pick of all things burlesque this month - 2014 stylee - with an ANTI Valentines twist from Velvet Heart Eye Patch by U.S far(ish)flung corners of the world: ditch your loved one this Valentines for some Euro/Stateside loving!

based designer

Resurrection - Anti-Valentines 3 @ The Altar Bar - Pittsburgh, U.S.A

Friday 7th February - 10pm-Late This one of a kind music venue used to be a church apparently, these days it plays host to the cream of the crop music wise - Snoop Dogg, Misfits and more infamous figures have all played here. They also host regular club and performance nights and are promising onehelluvashow this Valentine’s! Check out silk contortionist Serotonin, fire performance by Anira Pixel, burlesque displays of Mystery Girl and DJs keeping the party going all night long baby pre 14th Feb! Tickets $10 - please call (412) 206-9719 for further information

The Rocky Horror Picture Show Anti Valentines Delight! @ The Sugar Club - Dublin, Ireland

Friday 14th Febuary 2014 - 8pmLate bitches! I absolutely adore the theme of this event, sounds like so much fun - check out the event pitch and you’ll agree with me: ‘Love may be in the air, but we can only smell lust. P.S. Partners and Pants not necessary!’. Expect burlesque from Dotty Potts aka Miss Belle a Go-Go, plus guaranteed debauchery and prizes for the best dressed and most naked! Tickets- 15Euro, limited number of pre-sale tickets available from

GothFoxdesigns Have a gander online and order from just $14! http://www. gothfoxdesigns?ref=l2shopheader-name HEARTBREAKER!

Endless Night New York Vampire Ball ‘Anti Valentine’s’

@ The DL - New York, U.S.A Sunday 16th February 9pm-Late, late. late... The Endless Night parties are usually held every Halloween in New Orleans, but have got so popular over the years they’ve been popping up all over the shop: Paris, Berlin, you name it... This Valentine’s indulge your blood lust with a night that’s part Venetian masquerade, part rock concert, 100% depraved entertainment! The Cirque du Vampyre will be performing, plus there will be mucho absinthe, actual blood baths, and much,much more! Tickets from $16,66, visit for info

Photo Gianni B

February 2014

Sonic Shocks - Issue 21

Page 19

Rev Eddi meets It was an early Christmas present for TBFM to welcome the Role Models into TBFM Towers. There was a heavy police presence at Barking station for the arrival of Rich Ragany and James Sullivan; a portent of things to come maybe? Opening up this extended special was the gig event of the year and a choice by the guys with The Replacements ‘Favourite Thing’. Next up one of Shock Treatment’s top 20 songs of the year and The Role Models ‘This Eventually Leads To Nowhere’. What was clearly evident throughout the special was that Rich was the entertainer, whilst James had probably the silkiest and most seductive radio voice heard on the show. This was a great chance for another world premiere / TBFM exclusive with the debut of the only just recorded new single by the guys. Tracks like ‘Suffocate’,

‘Saturday Night’ and possibly the A-side ‘Lost In The City’ showed that the guys are going in a great direction. I certainly heard a Cheap Trick and Replacements influence. What was great was to hear James’ and Rich’s choices for the special, The Biters, Poison Arrows and The Adjusters sitting alongside Kiss, The Dead Boys and New York Dolls. Lost In The city proved to be rather apt, as during the show Rich decided to go on a liquor run and promptly got lost, even when given a map to guide him. His alcohol sniffing nose disappeared it seems. The chatroom (tbfmonline. was alight with humorous comments from Chris (The Briefs) and Rich (The Loyalties). 2014 is going to be a great year for The Role Models if their new songs are a guide.

December 2013 saw the first of TBFM’s and The Reverend Eddi’s Shock Treatment show’s Top 50 punk rock songs of the year. I got a few of the regular listeners and a special guest, Tom Halpin from 16 Guns, to review over 85 songs and score them. I took this idea from when I was a teenager listening to John Peel on radio 1. The highlight of my year, being the rundown over 2 weeks before Christmas. My favourite song of the year, Direct Hit! ‘White Robes’ didn’t even make the top 50, settling in at 52. My favourite bands of the year, bands I would have personally put in my top 10, Johnny Madcap and The Distractions and the 21st Century Fugitives also failed to make the top 10. The idea behind this was to give some unsigned bands good exposure and in Ipswich, fresh off stage The 4130s tuned into Shock Treatment to find out they had crept in at 8 and 11. Surprise hits were the Guitar Slingers in at 4, The Creepshow at 5 and Old Man Markley at 6, it was also good to see some home town Chicago punk rock at 12 with Back Alley Riot. It just goes to show that the unsigned bands I promote on Shock Treatment can compete on radio and deserve their place alongside major label acts such as Offspring. The Top 3 had been a foregone conclusion throughout the year. Viewers had heard pretty much every track of the Dropkick Murphy’s album ‘Signed and Sealed In Blood’ and 2 of the videos staying at the top all year. Social Distortion being another Shock Treatment favourite band and their cover of the Creedence Clearwater Revival song ‘Up Around The Bend’ was a serious contender for the number 1 spot, but narrowly missing out on that. To those who tuned in throughout the year and who helped with the show, a big thank you from the Reverend Eddi and I think I speak on behalf of all the bands who were included and voted for. DROPKICK MURPHYS – THE BOYS ARE BACK SOCIAL DISTORTION – UP AROUND THE BEND DROPKICK MURPHYS - ROSE TATTOO GUITAR SLINGERS – TRASH CITY THE CREEPSHOW – CREATURES OF THE NIGHT OLD MAN MARKLEY = FOR BETTER FOR WORSE LOYALTIES – ‘TIL THE DEATH OF ROCK & ROLL THE 4130s – HEARTS AND MINDS THE BRONX - YOUTH WASTED THE BRONX - RIB CAGE THE 4130s - GIVE EM WAR BACK ALLEY RIOT - WHISKEY OVER YOU OFFSPRING – DAYS GO BY THE TOSSERS – THE BREAK OF DAWN GRAVEYARD JOHNNIES – STREET BLOCKS AND CITY

3 2015 0 p o t NK PU GS SON

Eddi verenidn (16 e R e h By t Tom Halp & Guns)

TBFM and Sonic Shocks are certainly going to be keeping real close with The Role Models, so stay tuned. h t t p : / / w w w. m i xc l o u d . c o m / Re v e r e n d E d d i /s h o c k- t r e a t m e n trole-models-extended-special-13thdecember-2013/


February 2014

Sonic Shocks - Issue 21


Drama/Romance/Sci-fi, 126 minutes - 14th February Director: Spike Jonze Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson, Amy Adams Can a man have a relationship with a machine? Many Apple fans already have a rather morbid one with their iPhones. But what are the risks putting your life and feelings in the hands of an OS – even if it comes with the sensual voice of Scarlet Johansson? Windows users look doubtful, RIM victims terrified. In this romantic flick – coincidentally out on Valentine’s - Joaquin Phoenix has a go, and OS dating seems to be trending in a world hung up on Mr & Mrs Right. Theodore (Joaquin Phoenix) is a modern day Cyrano de Bergerac, writing love letters on behalf of romantically challenged customers. The only feelings he seems unable to express are his own, after a painful separation with his childhood sweetheart. He’s a compulsive user of voice recognition technology, one of those guys you see talking to themselves all the times; when he buys a new super advanced OS, things take an unexpected turn. Forget OS, forget Android: the revolutionary creation not only uses personal info about the owner to set itself up, not only can be given a gender and a name, but keeps evolving (maturing?) at shocking speed as it accumulates experience. Samantha’s thirst for learning and discovering the world is a machine’s equivalent of the most acute lust for life, something Theodore has been longing for since his split up. She sees the world from his eyes, understands him and is even a prodigious PA of course. Aside from cooking, the perfect woman… like every other girlfriend you had for the first three months or so, also known as the ‘honeymoon period’. Yes lads and gals, even a virtual being without an actual physical body can be Mrs/Mr Right in that wonderful early phase, when most of the person holding your hand is really your own projection of her/him. The use of warm sunny colours throughout the movie helps heat a story that might sound cold and sterile - and maybe a bit sad - on paper. Don’t be fooled by the techno sci-fi tone of the plot: like colour contrast, the ‘perfection’ of the machine highlights the beauty of human flaws, the blessing of having a past and the importance of enjoying what the present throws at us in our brief existence. Even if it’s a fantasy the world might not understand. Who knows who else is sharing exactly the same one after all…


Biography/Drama, 117 mins - 7th February Director: Jean-Marc Vallee Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Jared Leto, Jennifer Garner

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Comedy, 98 mins - 14th February Director: James Griffiths Starring: Nick Frost, Chris O’Dowd, Rashida Jones, Ian McShane Simon Pegg’s eternal sidekick takes the lead in this irresistible comedy, showing not only that Real Men Dance, but that he can indeed take charge: Nick Frost passes his first spotlight test with flying colours. The colours are the warm reds of salsa, as overweight ex enfant prodige Bruce Garrett takes his dancing shoes out of storage to get the girl. Our hero, a rather clumsy and uninteresting young man, hides a skeleton in his closet: a natural born dancer at the age of 13, he was put off a potentially blinding career by a bullying incident on the streets of London. His salsa championship days are now a well guarded secret and Bruce won’t set foot on a dance floor if his life depends on it. Until… New American boss Julia seems quite out of Bruce’s league, until he discovers her secret past time: salsa. He follows her to a clandestine class, something just out of the Dirty Dancing’s staff quarters. They now have something in common. With moral support from his lively sister, he traces back his old salsa teacher – a brilliant Ian McShane – trying to find the moves once again. And the fun begins. There’s obviously a love rival, obnoxious Drew (Chris O’Dowd), the horniest, most chauvinist work colleague one could ever have. I would have honestly enjoyed ‘Cuban Fury’ much more if I could have kicked him in the nuts at least once. If O’Dowd’s performance is a bit too exaggerated and often annoying, camp dancer Bejan (Kayvan Novak) makes up for it, hitting the perfect comedy spot in its character’s hyperbole. Some hilarious gags, Frost’s clumsy and sweaty attempts at salsa, the amusing latino stereotype of McShane, Novak preparation rituals, all culminating in a dance-off that cannot be unseen: ‘Cuban Fury’ has every element to put a smile on your Valentine… and there’s no better date than the one you can laugh with.

Make no mistake: this is no Philadelphia. Dallas Buyers Club tells the true story of all Texan Rodeo cowboy Ron Woodroofs (Matthew McConaughey), a straight, rather homophobic alpha male diagnosed with HIV and a 30 days life expectancy back when AIDS is still a plague purging the world of gays and junkies. Next to the shock and fear to the sudden news his life is coming to an unexpected abrupt end, lies the sense of injustice, as he finds himself to the other end of the prejudice he himself shares so strongly. Is he a saint? Not the slightest. In fact, aside from heroin and sexual choices, Ron is everything society would commonly rate as immoral. The viewer will be well into the second half of the movie before actually feeling any sympathy for its main character. The main villain is however the FDA (the US Food & Drug Administration), incarnating all that is wrong in a system procrastinating on bureaucracy and legal mumbo-jumbo to hide a very precise agenda devoted to the old usual God: money. Again, Woodroofs is no hero: he starts fighting that system moved by his own will to survive, and as he finds alternative drugs in Mexico that are still unapproved in the US, he starts smuggling them for personal financial gain. The Dallas Buyers Club is born, sharing the new found cure for a $400 monthly fee. As injustice and social uprising run in the background, is Ron’s personal journey that takes centre stage, highlighted by the progress of his relationship with addict transgender Rayon (an excellent, surprising Jared Leto) and therapist Eve (Jennifer Garner). Still no saint, the last image of Ron sees him riding a bull, likely to horrify the morale majority by today’s standards; as he overcomes selfishness and prejudice however, most will be likely to forgive him. Dallas Buyers Club gives us an exceptional performance by McConaughey, unrecognizable after major weight loss; Matthew continues to mature solidly, a far cry from his early comedy characters. Note his uncanny resemblance with The Darkness’ Justin Hawkins with that moustache... Jared Leto chooses an iconic role for his big screen return after taking time off for his musical venture and shines in his touching, deep interpretation of such an uneasy character. Absolutely brilliant and growing throughout the movie. On the surface, Dallas Buyers Club will tell you a true story and make you hate ‘the system’ a bit more; go a bit deeper, and might even affect your boundaries and change your epicentre of morality. Watch more than once.

Sonic Shocks - Issue 21

February 2014

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ALBUM REVIEWS AESTHETIC PERFECTION – Til Death Metropolis Records - 11 February

By David Lees Aesthetic Perfection have been one of the most interesting bands to come out of the industrial scene in the last few year. I say come out of, because with every release they have moved further away from “The Scene”. A lot of online commentators took quite a virulent dislike to them when their second album, All Beauty Destroyed, refused to stick to the template set by the popular A Violent Emotion. Well, they’re probably going to be even more pissed now because ‘Til Death is certainly a different beast altogether. Not that Aesthetic Perfection’s Daniel Graves really cares what those people think. He’s committed to doing what feels right for his music, not following a formula. In fact, judging by the fact that the b-side of the recent single release of Big Bad Wolf, featuring Combichrist and X-RX, was titled “Fvck Industrial”, it seems he positively enjoys provoking reactions, negative or positive. ‘Til Death’s new direction isn’t too obvious at first. Happily Ever After opens with church bells and a martial beat while the wedding-based lyrics are delivered with a contradictory vocal performance which is despondent and veers between hissing and yelling on the chorus. Antibody and the tracks that follow are initially quite a surprise after such a dark opening, and it’s here we see the pop influence on this album shine through fully, though it is often belied by the lyrics and Graves’ distinctive vocals. Antibody is about feeling unworthy of love while knowing it is your only salvation while Death Rattle is about clinging on to a dead relationship. Big Bad Wolf takes things to a sinister, fairytale place with lyrics about obsession and is followed by the carnival-esque Showtime which is about seeing someone truthfully, for better or worse, when in love, and swings from an almost Manson-esque riff to a sweet, soaring chorus. Oh, Gloria is hand-clapping anthem that shows just how far Aesthetic Perfection have moved away from their roots. It’s also a total earworm of a track and has been stuck in my head for two days now. This is followed by The Dark Half which is the closest to an aggressive dance track you’ll find on here. It’s good, but feels a touch out of place as if Graves felt obliged to put something in for the club DJs. The New Black takes a break from the romance to criticise fake people who think they’re being unique and creative by buying into fashions and trends. Lovesick is a slower and emotional finale, about trying to hold on when life is at its darkest. Anyone still hoping for A Violent Emotion Mark 2 should really just give up. It’s not going happen and all the griping in the world won’t change that. What ‘Til Death gives us is an artist who is dedicated to pushing his boundaries and expanding his sound and the result is an extremely catchy collection of electro-pop dark love songs that hangs together beautifully. Give it a try with an open mind and you’re sure to be impressed.

REVEREND HORTON HEAT – Rev Victory Records – Out Now

THE PECKHAM COWBOYS 10 Tales from the Gin Palace Cargo Records – 14th February

By Reverend Eddi

By Cristina Massei

Ok it’s only 4 weeks into 2014 and here is this reviewer’s album of the year. It’s been a four year wait since ‘Laughin’ and ‘Cryin’’ and the band have put out their strongest yet with another feast of rockabilly, blues, punk and roll. Themes in this album will not disappoint, as it is more of fast cars, fast women, food and yep more rock and roll. ‘Victory Lap’ kicks things off as the album enters the area and without a pause for breath, ‘Smell Of Gasoline’ rocks its way into proceedings. ‘Never Gonna Stop It’ adds a sizeable slice of boogie into Rev and ‘Zombie Dumb’ has, with its B-moviesque feel, to be the best instrumental with minimalist vocal lines (Zombie Dumb) out there. ‘Spooky Boots’ is a love story of sorts with that Horton Heat twist to it and ‘Schizoid’ delves into mental illness again with the bands take on it. ‘Let Me Teach You How To Eat’ is typically a song about food, but upon listening its apparent that there are some sexy undertones lying beneath the surface. It is by far the sexiest song on Rev and something to seduce the ladies with. ‘Scenery Going By’ and ‘My Hat’ are stompers that in no way are album fillers, but see the band cruise their way through. It is only when we get to ‘Longest Gonest Man’ that this album goes into the bands other love, country. Then it is all set up for the grand finale of ‘Hardscrabble’ and ‘Chasing Rainbows’. The band have been together for over twenty years and this album certainly gives the listener a real feel for what they are like on stage and will definitely pick up new fans along the way. Rev is thirteen more sexy sassy and humorous tunes from this Texas trio, who are tighter than a nun’s knickers and the next best thing to one of the hardest working bands around. Now where is my partner when I need her?

South London blues is back with the Peckham Cowboys second full length, after a few legal issues and line-up changes that didn’t at all affect the spirit or the warm, raspy tunes. The Gin Palace, recorded live and dirty in a junior school hall (!), will not disappoint fans of the band with its raw alcoholic swagger, yet shows an evident maturation and an greater diversity compared to debut ‘Flog It’. We particularly like the added reggae vibes of ‘Don’t Damn the Hypnotist’, a musical picture of the multi-ethnic streets characterizing the London area our heroes named themselves after. Influences from the usual suspects – Dogs D’Amour, Quireboys, Hanoi Rocks – are enriched by classic rock riffs, with the first notes of opener ‘Not Guilty!’ taking a page out of Aerosmith’s book. Marc Eden and Dale Hodgkinson might have lost Guy Bailey along the way, but the current line up of Timo Kaltio (Hanoi Rocks, Izzy Stradlin), Nigel Mogg (Quireboys) Duncan McKay (Primal Scream) and Ryan McCormick (Steven Adler) sounds cohesive and convincing, bringing together a concoction of tastes and experiences that is harmonic in its variety. ‘She Was Sweet On Me’ is very much a Quireboys song for example, while ‘Knocked Senseless’ has more of an early Hanoi Rocks vibe. Put it all together, give it a geographical collocation and you get a band that is finally finding its own sound and having fun while at it. An album to keep you warm this winter, out just on Valentine’s Day: get yourself a copy, fill the liquor cabinet and you might even get lucky. Fireplace optional but strongly advised.

Sonic Shocks - Issue 21

February 2014

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ALBUM REVIEWS Basement Torture Killings A Night Of Brutal Torture Grindscene Records - 27th January

SUPERCHARGER Broken Hearts and Fallaparts Gain Music – 17th February

FALLING RED Empire Of The Damned Crowdfunded Out Now By Nelly Loriaux

by Joe Bennett

By Reverend Eddi

A Night Of Brutal Torture is the forthcoming So it comes to pass that pretty release from London based death-grinders, Basement Torture Killings. Since forming in 2007, the band has made a name for itself with a number of strong releases, coupled with a rigorous touring schedule supporting some big names, such as Deicide and Malevolent Creation. With this release being the follow up to their debut album, The Second Cumming (and the debut EP, The First Cumming), it certainly packs a punch, giving a healthy dose of aggression. From opening track, Progressive Depravity, to finisher, Kill For Satan, this is a blistering 30 something minutes of savage and relentless metal. Blast beats a plenty, fast-riffing and gut wrenching vocals, the record stands strong throughout. With some gruesome tongue-in-cheek intros, as well as plenty of in-song sound effects thrown in, the scene is really set and completely absorbs the listener, engulfing them in A Brutal Night Of Torture. Standout tracks are the humorously named Car Trunk Caroline, again with one of those crude sound-bite intros, Gorgasmic Movements In The Dark (where you can get a sense of the Exhumed and early-Carcass influences) and the absolutely slaying Kill For Satan, closing the album off with a powerful 3 minutes and 22 seconds of shredding and blasts, a la Aborted. With some twistedtorture album artwork and a hailz to Rose West as their ‘Basement Bitch’, it’s clear to see these lads have a cracking attitude and like to have some ‘good friendly violent fun’ ( quote Exodus). If you are a fan of death metal and grindcore music, possessing a sick and twisted lyrical theme, with a sprinkling of gore on the side, then you need to give this a listen! A Night Of Brutal Torture is an aggressive speed-ridden piece of brutality, bringing 2014 in with a strong start. Fans of Suffocation, Deicide and Dying Fetus (as well as the aforementioned bands) will appreciate this and should definitely pick themselves up a copy.

much one can forget all one’s favourite bands and songs over the last twenty years, as Supercharger have written THE album for hard rock fans. Overladen with a thick slice of metal, if Supercharger was a barbeque sauce this listeners taste buds would have exploded. As third albums go and if this is to be Supercharger’s breakthrough album, by the end of 2014 the hard rock genre is going to be sewn up. ‘Broken Hearts and Fallaparts’ is going to be in every top five chart in every magazine, forum and radio station across the planet. From the moment the album begins, it literally comes at one Like A Pitbull. Supercharger then Supercharge(d) proceedings into track two. By track four I was told on Hold On Buddy and at this point I was; otherwise I would have been leaping around my room. Broken Hearts and Fallaparts is a swinging rock and roll album that certainly ain’t a thirty odd minute ride and if left on repeat ain’t going to be Five Hours Of Nothing. By track six and Yeah Yeah Yeah, guys I was already at the ‘yeah yeah yeah’ with a few ‘f*** yeahs’ thrown in on top. Suzi The Uzi shoots down your eardrums and if you’re guilty of loving rock and roll, you will Get What You Deserve. There simply isn’t a throw away or album filler in sight. Each song a potential hit in its own right. Supercharger have thrown down the gauntlet for hard rock albums this year and I really do not see anyone coming close. It’s insanely that good. Hard rock album of the decade so far.

Since forming in 2007, the Hard Rock quartet from Carlisle has been working hard, bringing their super charged live performances throughout the UK. Labelled as the ‘’jewel in the UK’s Sleaze-Rock Crown’’ by Classic Rock AOR magazine, the rising rockers’ post-sleaze metal has evolved from a smouldering wildfire to a full blown volcanic eruption, a conflagration of punk’n’rock with the ‘de rigueur’ attire: leather jacket, tousled hair and smeared black eyeliner. Combining top notes of rebellious Punk and intoxicating Glam Rock heart, Falling Red sophomore album is full of soul burning venomous anthems from stomping ‘The Devil You Know’ to punk-infused ‘We Escaped A Cult’, whilst title track ‘Empire Of The Damned’ takes a somewhat different approach: a rollercoaster of reflective dips and fist pumping rises with an atmospheric thundering rainfall in the background. All in all, the album manages to recreate the raw energy from their energetic live shows, each track blasting their high octane flamboyant riffs and brutal heavy hooks onto its unsuspecting audience.

BEHEMOTH The Satanist Nuclear Blast 3rd February By Matt Dawson When news broke that Adam ‘Nergal’ Darski was suffering from an aggressive version of leukaemia, fans and peers of extreme metal alike feared the worst; however thanks to a bone marrow transplant we can be thankful that Behemoth survived for another day. By managing to cheat death (and some might even say defeat the plan ‘God’ had for him) Nergal has created an album that by his own admittance is his most profound work yet – never has a statement of triumph been more fitting than the opener ‘Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel’ .In fact where The Satanist truly shines is the intent behind it: one of true power and a proclamation that Behemoth have transformed to an even more powerful force in the world of extreme metal – listening to tracks like Messe Noire and the title track it’s hard to disagree. A long time ago Behemoth had a creed that included the words ‘Fuck Weakness!’; by coming through possible death Nergal has created an album that not only is their most powerful, but one of the strongest metal records in a long damn time. Hail Behemoth. Hail Nergal.

Sonic Shocks - Issue 21

February 2014


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God Damn, Spring Yard and Pedro Don Key The Sugarmill, Stoke - Friday 17th January 2014 By Matt Dawson There’s no better way to start 2014 than a night mixing instrumental math rock, post hardcore and pure rock with a side of grunge and noise. Two-piece Pedro Don are reminiscent of acts like Pelican and bring a relaxing mood to proceedings and, given how the rest of the night is to shape up, it’s quite frankly the calm before the storm. Spring Yard continue their rise by admitting in a tongue in cheek way that with a 20 mins set and quite short songs they may have to stretch it out a little bit, but what does it matter when they have as much energy as they do; snappy and to the point, with titles quoting Simpsons episodes plus an ending involving part of the drum kit ending below the stage and the smallest stage

dive ever. It has been a rollercoaster year for God Damn; the highs of acclaim were followed by a car accident forcing them to become a duo for a long period of time. Regardless of being a duo, trio or a choir of Polyphonic Spree proportions, the true strength of God Damn lies in their ferocious power as Thom Edward and Ash Weaver make sure that every eye in the room is watching and every ear is perked up right to the moment that ‘Dangle Like Skeletons’ closes the set. Needless to say – if you want to know a band that should rightfully get big in 2014 God Damn deserve it. Never has a band’s name been this fitting before the crowd’s every expression of approval.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra The Lost Christmas Eve Frank Erwin Center, Austin (TX) 26th December 2013 By Denise Britt To be honest this review could be summed up in one word: WOW. I seriously consider this the highlight of my career as a music journalist. Christmas music and classical music had a baby and named her TransSiberian Orchestra. This would be the last tour of their famous show, The Lost Christmas Eve, a touching story; in the end love wins. However, I was not there for the story: I was there for the spectacle that is TSO, and they did not disappoint. I was literally rendered speechless for part of the show, scared if I spoke I would somehow break the spell. It was as if I had stepped into another world, a place of wonder if you will. From the lasers and fire that were perfectly timed to the music to the wet, cold snow that fell upon me on several different occasions. Now I have seen some elaborate stage shows in my time but never anything close to this. I laughed, I cried, I cheered and just

about fell out of my chair due to sheer joy. Piano duals, guitarists hovering above the audience on lifts, violinist and guitarist walking about the crowd: this show had it all. The dudes were all swinging around their long, beautiful rock star hair, the women were smoking hot. I literally cannot say enough good things about this show. Next year do yourself and your family a solid and go see this group, you’ll never witness anything like it. I must individually recognize this group of extreme talent from the West Coast troupe: Al Pitrelli - Guitar, music director, Angus Clark – Guitar, Vitalij Kuprij

– Keyboards, Jane Mangini – Keyboards, Johnny Lee Middleton – Bass, John O. Reilly – Drums, Asha Mevlana – Violin, Phillip Brandon – Narrator, April Berry – Vocals, John Brink – Vocals, Ava Davis – Vocals, Nathan James – Vocals, Jodi Katz – Vocals, Chloe Lowery – Vocals, Dari Mahnic – Vocals, Andrew Ross – Vocals, and finally the amazing Jeff Scott Soto – Vocals.

February 2014

Sonic Shocks - Issue 21


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By Cristina Massei It’s a wet January midweek evening in London; it’s easy to be won by the warm thought of homemade soup and hibernation. Tonight, however, no deluge should keep a respectable music lover away from Shoreditch’s live hotspot Cargo, and those who gave in to temptation shall feel sorry for themselves. There’s a more than respectable turn up considering the timing and elements, a great atmosphere and an eclectic crowd, covering everything from hipsters and regular types to rock chicks and old school punks. The bill on offer is as rich as the audience attending; as I make my way in, Healthy Junkies have just started their electrifying set. Energetic front woman Nina commands the stage, a naughty rebel in her frilly dress exuding confidence and grit to spare. Healthy Junkies play a straightforward punk rock with that female vocals’ sexy edge; Iggy Pop-meet-Courtney Love with a Blondie flair, my first taste of this up & coming London-born outfit demands further attention. Next is Jonny Cola & The A-Grades, and we’re transported in a glittery 70s fantasy of early Bowie and Marc Bolan. Mauro Venegas’ guitar antics make an explosive frame for Cola’s theatrical flamboyance, a vibrant show complimenting some excellent tunes. The singer’s past health problems seem to be a distant memory, as he subdues the audience with his extraordinary vocals and charisma. It’s finally time for headliners Deadcuts to hit the stage. This is my third Deadcuts gig in two months – I might in fact be addicted – and what once again left me speechless is how much this band is improving from one show to the other. As the chemistry grows stronger, their personal bond translates into seamless musical cohesion; increasingly consistent, ever more passionate, this is THE band to keep your eyes on. That hint of Joy Division I got 3 shows ago is now a distinct influence, yet Deadcuts are maturing their own sound, and it’s a sound you have to witness live. With very little available on the internet –mostly homemade recordings or low quality YouTube videos – and still putting together their very first album, Deadcuts are generating an enviable following by simple word of mouth only thanks to their live performances. You owe it to yourself to see them now – and then again and again – and be part of it. The one band in a very long time I’d be proud to wear a t-shirt of; shame they haven’t made any yet (hint hint!).


By Cristina Massei

The Good Mixer, London – 25th January

With a little help from The Good Mixer’s happening atmosphere, Mourning Birds put up a little raw gem of a gig: their half hour set packs a punch and wows an excited Saturday night crowd. From the iconic picture on the wall, even Amy seems to smile in approval. Celebrating just this month their first year

as a band, the up & coming British outfit keeps it simple, dirty and raucous just the way punk is meant to be, yet the garage catchiness of first acclaimed single ‘oh yeh’ is not alone: next to latest offering ‘the last thing (i needed)’, Mourning Birds unleash an array of raspy infectious tunes, leaving us begging for more AND for a full length album. The hype all in all appears to be justified, and there’s definitely more to this band that a lucky first single. If you like your rock’n’roll to grab you by the air and slap you in the face, filthy and irresistible in its unrefined delivery, come down to the next show. Sure, it’s a long way to the top and all that, but there’s nothing like a good start. A toast to new beginnings and to much needed new genuine rock bands.