Sunday, April 29, 2012

Taurus Trakker
‘Building Ten’


With a sound that is bluesy, rootsy, lowdown and simultaneously uplifting, ‘Building Ten’ sees Taurus Trakker in good form with a collection of songs that celebrate the simple things in life. The first three tracks set the scene for an album which manages to offer a varied yet cohesive sound, sometimes even within one song:  Opener ‘Lucky’ begins not unlike the sort of thing you’d find on a solo album by Tyla from the Dogs D’Amour, then changes direction with some Peter Green style guitar licks, before a breakdown reminiscent of ‘Green Manalishi’.  What we have here are ten tracks of stripped-down blues rock with some punky London accent lead vocals, augmented in places by saxophone and soulful backing vocals.   As you’d hope, there’s some raunchy slide guitar dealt out on a few of the songs, and unlike many contemporary blues acts, Taurus Trakker manage to avoid ever sounding overly generic.  Punk fans might be interested to note that vocalist/guitarist Martin Muscatt is a cousin of The Clash’s Mick Jones, who makes a guest appearance on the title track.  Meanwhile, drummer Alison Phillips has previously served time in Alternative TV, UT, and the Raincoats.  Overall, a fine modern blues album that celebrates the old and offers something new.

Review by Alex Eruptor

Bonus Content: Q&A with Martin Muscatt, guitar and lead vocals

1)    The history of the band is pretty much rooted in punk and alternative music, what inspired you to get so bluesy with Taurus Trakker?

Martin: Allison and I share a deep love of the blues. She learned drums playing along to blues tracks.  John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, Howlin Wolf, Furry Lewis, Bo Diddley- those musicians are the truth. All the music we dig comes from the blues- even punk rock in its pure form.

2)    Taurus Trakker sounds like a good ‘live’ band.  Where have you played/toured so far, and what have been the most memorable shows and why??
Mostly London, a few provincial gigs, and a short tour in New York. Most memorable was playing at Mick Jones' residency The Carbon Casino in Ladbroke Grove- that’s where we first really connected with an audience that got into what we do.  Also, Brooklyn was a good vibe- we met some great people at the gigs there.

3)    Word association..... give your thoughts on the following bands/artists in one sentence or less:
·         Peter Green Finely tuned genius with a golden touch.
·         RL Burnside The deep Yin/Yang of blues, updating the form while keeping the tradition.
·         Mississipi Fred McDowell Human rhythm machine with a slide.
·         Dr Feelgood A lesson in how to attack a telecaster and make people jump about.
·         The Bermondsey Joyriders That's a cool name.

4)    Many people know the word ‘Taurus’ as a sign in the Zodiac.  Rate the following astrologically inspired songs on a scale of 1 (awful) – 10 (awesome):
·         Motorhead ‘Capricorn’ (7)
·         Deep Purple ‘Maybe I’m a Leo’ (5)
·         Fifth Dimension ‘Age of Aquarius’ (3)
·         The Velvet Underground ‘Venus in Furs’ (9)
·         Rainbow ‘Star Gazer’ (1)
·         Iron Maiden ‘Moonchild’ (1)
·         Zodiac Mindwarp & The Love Reaction ‘Planet Girl’ (5)

5)    You meet the devil at the crossroads and he challenges you to a guitar dual. Which song from your latest album do you play in order to kick his arse all the way back to the bowels of hell?
Bag For Life


6)    What’s next and where can people find you online?
Whats next is more recording, which we have started- its all sounding good so far, more gigs to come... you can find us at http://www.taurustrakker.co.uk
Photo: www.nikkiq.com / www.unit2london.co.uk

Friday, April 20, 2012

Flash Metal Suicide: Adam Bomb


Adam Bomb
Fatal Attraction
Geffen, 1985

Look, I don’t know how much is true, how much is sorta-true, and how much is merely puffs of purple smoke, but when it comes to Flash Metal Suicides, nobody’s wrists bleed more extravagantly then Adam Bomb’s. Back in the 80’s, you could crash an Aqua Net blowout just about anywhere – New York, LA, Seattle- and there’d be somebody jabbering about Adam Bomb. Sure, it wasn’t usually good - some angry ex-cohort telling tales of flying-high egos, or a stiletto-heeled cocaine bunny grousing about her trampled heart, or the cops flashing badges and A.B. 8X10’s – but that cat was most definitely IN THE MIX, baby. If you want stories, man, then Adam fuckin’ Bomb is the cartoon-monikered man to go to, cuz believe me, the dude has STORIES.

Adam Bomb (Adam Brenner to his lawyers) was born sometime in 1965 (almost certainly under a full moon), and grew up in Seattle, where, in his early teenage years, he played guitar in a metal cover band called Tyrant. The band featured an equally peach-fuzzed Geoff Tate, future Queensryche front-falsetto, on proto-prog metal vox. Two years later, he joined legendary Seattle hard-rockers TKO. Although Kjarten Kristofferson (later of the Bang Gang) is credited on the album cover, Mr Bomb was actually the guitar player for TKO’s finest album, 1984’s “In Your Face” (Combat Records), which was actually recorded in ’81, but shelved for years. Shelved albums have been a mainstay of Bomb’s career.

Rumor has it that Adam Bomb took the TKO gig after his first audition, with Kiss, fell through. He was 16 in ‘81, by the way.


In 1982, Bomb quit TKO and moved to LA, to become a solo artist. He shared a room with a pre-GNR Izzy Stradlin, who lived next door to Black N’ Blue axeman Tommy Thayer, who gave ‘em the “Bomb” part of his name, ‘cuz ‘Adam Brenner’ wasn’t gonna cut it in a town full of, well, Izzys and Slash’s and Dukey Flyswatters. Adam briefly joined Steeler, replacing Yngwie Malmsteen after he split for that hare-brained Viking solo project of his, but mostly, he spent the next year and half recording songs for the first Adam Bomb record.
 
Adam Bomb signed to Geffen in 1984 (admittedly, not a hard thing for a metal band to do in 1984, but still) and released “Fatal Attraction” a year later. It had already been released in ’84 in Japan, but the Yank version had been re-tracked, with a cover of “All the Young Dudes” tagged on, because, well, record label guys are fuckin’ dorks. Word has it that Adam Bomb himself actually played everything on the album, but the back cover credits Billy Idol’s bass player Phil Feit, ex-Riot man Sandy Slavin on drums, and ex-Aerosmith fill-in Jimmy Crespo on guitar. There’s about 500 other people credited on this ‘un too, including AC/DC bassist Cliff Williams, who added a little extra chug on “I Want My Heavy Metal

.
Personally, I really don’t care who played what. What I do know is that this was Adam Bomb’s – the man, the group, the concept, whatever it was- finest hour. Many, many people will argue this point, however. Not that they will steer you towards other stages in AB’s career, mind you. No, it’s just that lots of “metal” dudes in the 80’s HATED Adam Bomb. Mostly because of his name, surely, and at least a little because he had a song in metal-radio rotation with the impossibly dim-witted title “I Want My Heavy Metal”, but believe me, he was not beloved amongst kids with Slayer or Iron Maiden back-patches. But so what? Sure, he wore shoulder pads and had supermodel cheekbones, but the fact is, “Fatal Attraction” was a plastic-fantastic flash metal gem that neatly sutured 70’s glitter-rock with LA preen-metal, creating a cock n’ roll sensation that paved the way for glad-rag dandies from the UK and Sweden to make a decent living outta acting like they fuckin’ invented the idea of swirling Aerosmith’s raunch with Gary Glitter’s goofball pomp. The hell of it is, although Adam Bomb enjoyed at regional accolades and probably lotsa local pussy and blow, “Fatal Attraction” never rose above ‘cult’ record, and even then, it wasn’t the cool kids forming the cult. Which is quite a tragedy, once you find out what Mistah Bomb did with the rest of his time.

So lemme rectify that miscarriage of justice by pointing out what’s on offer in Fatal Attraction’s snaky grooves. Opener “SST” sounds like Ace Frehley just joined Judas Priest. It’s motorcycles and guitars that explode in showers of confetti. It’s a party where everybody dies at the end, 'cept for Adam. Bitchin’.


Cover time follows, with a rather tepid run of Mott’s “Dudes”. Bomb does a good Bolan on both vox and guits, but it’s puffball stuff, really. Much more fun is the infamous “I Want My Heavy Metal”, which is cool on about ten different levels. One being that it’s not heavy metal, it’s a shameless AC/DC cop, layered knee-deep in Hollywood sleaze. One listen to this over-the-top ode to all that’s heavy, and yer ready to bang whatever’s available on the hood of your daddy’s car. At 100 miles per hour. Classic cock rock lunacy.

You’ll Never Know” is cotton-candy power balladry that sounds more like Def Lep than even Heavy Pettin’ did. Typical 80’s junk, really, remarkable mostly because Adam sounds completely insincere throughout, which is funny.

Side A finishes off with the gooey, keyboard-laden prog-glam confection, “Fatal Attraction”. “FA” mixes 80’s Sweet with stripper anthem era Motley Crue. A manic and catchy song, which also contains the immortal line, “Watch out, she dissolves in water!” I’m still trying to figure that one out.

Side two opens with “Shape of the World”, a hook-heavy glam-rocker that sounds like Aerosmith and Kiss at the same time. “Shape” was Fatal Attraction’s planned hit, and was even made into a video, which I have never seen, but which surely featured Adam’s cheekbones. Contains the line “I’m gonna play in a rock and roll band/Gonna live in rock n’ roll land”, which I woulda wrote myself in 1985, if Adam hadn’t beaten me to it.


Take Me In” has biker-rock riffs and weird backwards drums. Which is enuff, I reckon, for the middle of side 2. “Russian Roulette” is another example of Adam Bomb’s glam-Priest alchemy, mixing up heavy-devy motor-chug with a booming, cock-rock chorus. It’s about Adam’s media-induced paranoia, and, speaking of booming, has a bunch of gun sound effects. “Russian Roulette”, see?

It’s a Bust”, fittingly enough, IS a bust. It makes an attempt at being a full-blown power-ballad, and a Hanoi Rocks-style glam rave-up, complete with saxophone and bloozy slide guitar. Mostly, tho, it sounds like the theme song to Saturday Night Live. Closer “Prime Evil”, strangely enough, actually IS a metal song, and a doom metal song, at that. Well, like the Tigers of Pan Tang attempting doom metal, but still. It’s got Randy Rhoads“You Can’t Kill Rock n Roll” licks mixed with stomping Sabbath nastiness, and it smells of sulphur and burning record contracts. And of Flash Metal Suicide, of course. Righteous.

Despite suffering from major-label concessions at every turn, the high-flying glitter-metal of “Fatal Attraction” showed great promise, and even today, tracks like “I Want My Heavy Metal” and “Shape of the World” sound like a young, horny Slade with stun-gun guitars, declaring war on phony rock n’ roll. Which is what ALL Flash Metal records are supposed to sound like.

Looking to capitalize on their buzz, Adam Bomb and his band went to England to record a new album, “Pure S.E.X.” (original title: “Dangerous When Lit”), but it would be another 100 or so years before it would see the light of day. Meanwhile, the band toured with Lords of the New Church, and Bomb himself appeared in Playgirl, in a Mick Rock-shot spread entitled “The Bad Boys of Rock”. I don’t know who else was in said spread, but I betcha nobody called GG Allin, El Duce, or any members of the Replacements for it.


In 1988, Adam Bomb-the-band still had no new record out. Adam-the-man, however, was having a hell of a year. He jammed with Chuck Berry on New Year’s Eve. He did a solo three week tour of the UK, using ex-Babysitters drunk-glam legends The Last of the Teenage Idols as his backing band. Then he went to Stockholm and played guitar in the fuckin’ Johnny Thunders band for two months. ’88 was a good year for me too, man, but not THAT good.

In ’89, Adam wrote and recorded songs with Steve Stevens, but you know how it goes with that cat. A year later, “Pure Sex” was finally released. However, it was on a French label, Musidisc, which was really no fuckin’ help to you and I. Meanwhile, the studio in New York where Bomb and Stevens recorded their new flash metal tracks went bankrupt, and their master tapes went missing. Or so the story goes. A year later, Adam emerged in the UK, where he formed the Last Bandits, with Dogs D’Amour bassist Steve James. They toured England throughout 1991.

Then Little Steven asked him join his band. Then Axl told him Izzy almost asked him to join GNR in’84. Then somebody held his master tapes from the Stevens sessions for ransom. Then Adam played a few gigs with Mike Monroe. And so on. It’s the craziest goddamn rock n’ roll story you ever heard, and almost all of it is true.

Last I checked, in 2003, Adam Bomb (the man) released a 9/11 themed album called “Third World Roar” and toured England with Swede sleaze-rock sensations the Diamond Dogs. According to his online bio, “His goals are to promote the electric guitar and keep rock 'n' roll alive”. And I believe him, brother. That part I KNOW is true.


- Sleaze

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Advanced Demonology Podcast Episode 5


Greetings Demonologists, Earthlings,  and Groovy People everywhere and welcome to the Advanced Demonology podcast! This month's lesson: In Space, Everyone Can Hear You Scream!

Join cosmic retronauts Ken and Swilson as they journey to the furthest reaches of rock n' roll to bring you the greatest, weirdest, and most far-out space jams of all time! Four plus hours of space glam, space rock, space disco, space-billy, space-funk, and lots more!

Now strap on your space helmets and let's get real, real gone for a change!

Listen/Download HERE!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Gypsy Pistoleros






Gypsy Pistoleros




Forever Wild, Beautiful & Damned






My first encounter with the Gypsy Pistoleros was circa 2006, they were the opening act on a rock show at Camden Underworld, possibly headlined by Love/Hate (the memories of that night are a tad hazy due to the imbiding of a few ales!) Despite hitting the stage to an audience that you could probably count on one hand, they tried hard and by the time they had finished a sizeable audience had gathered. I do remember that their sheer enthusiasm was impressive and that the guitarist looked as though he had beamed down from another planet (one of his own creation where the rivers flowed with whisky, Iggy Pop was responsible for the gene pool, and the year was permanently 1986).
In anyone else’s hands the flamenco-sleaze fusion might have been a mere gimmick, but when delivered by the ‘Pistoleros, it is a swashbuckling rockfest which puts a new spin on a well worn genre. The ‘Pistoleros appear to be a lifestyle choice as much as a band and this compilation of highlights from previous releases serves as an excellent introduction. Great production ensures that the energy of the live show is captured, delivered, and at times enhanced by brass and other ‘authentic’ instrumentation, adding even more of the Spanish/Romany swagger than I remember from the live show.
Opener ‘Living with the gyspies’ sets the pace with wailing guitars, overdriven bass, cowbell up high in the mix, and an anthemic Spanglish chorus. Lead-off single ‘Living la vida loca’ (a cover version of Ricky Martin’s career defining smash hit) flys by, and then they hit you with their sucker punch, ‘Un hombre sin rostra’ which showcases the light and shade dynamics that mixing flamenco with rhythm n booze sleaze rock enables them to do. ‘Una para todo es bandido’ and ‘Shotgun kiss is ay que dolor’ are pretty awesome, ‘Sangra de las roses’ brings to mind the Dogs D’Amour at their most epic, or a more interesting ‘Hotel california’, and then ‘Hotel de la muertos’ really does reference that Eagles staple, chews it up and spits it out with punk attitude. Other highlights include ‘Forever is para siempre’, which packs the kind of chorus that LA Guns would be proud of, and parting shot ‘1 2 3 4 Kiss me then I’m damned for sure’ which seems like a fitting way to shoot out the lights, down that last drink and ride into the sunset. Sure, this is a ‘greatest hits’ which cherry picks the highlights of their existent couple of releases but ‘Forever Wild, Beautiful and Damned’ is a strong collection; the songs, performance, and the production all hit the spot.
The accompanying press release mentions the movie directors Morricone and Rodriguez, and it is no exaggeration that the Gypsy Pistoleros would certainly sound at home on the soundtrack to some ultraviolent dustbowl shoot ‘em up. Their sound is however closer to sunset strip sleaze rock than the bluesier tones on Desperado or From Dusk Til Dawn.
All in all, a whole lot of fun from beginning to end and fear not sleazegrinders, this definitely ain’t ‘the band I heard in Tijuana’ jamming Pretty Boy Floyd outtakes. Message to Robert Rodriguez: commission these guys to soundtrack your next movie!

Review by Alex Eruptor





Bonus Content: Quickfire Round – Six Shots with The Gypsy Pistoleros

1. ‘Gypsy Pistoleros’ sounds like a band that tours a lot. Do you have a caravan, and do you own any guns?

Lee Pistolero: Hey Alex tio! We sort of Tour on a Tourbus? Suppose it does resemble a MILF Hareem, a trashed bordello, featuring forbidden spices , a true life touring medicine show after a few dates on tour. As for Guns...I've got two old style pirate muskets tattooed just above my cojones amigo. So they're always close to my heart

2.
Where did the idea come from to mix the Spanish and classic rock influences, and how have the Spanish speaking audiences responded?

Lee Pistolero: I was living in Zaragoza (Spain) in 1992 after running away from London (Lords of the New Church, Kill City Dragons years) & then L.A.! I started a band there,The Last Gang ( Supported UFO, Motorhead, Sepultura, The Cramps, Dio, Ozzy, etc) discovered flamenco & rumba pop (Spanish late 70′s/early 80′s gypsy pop). Loved it!! Jammed with Katama ( Now a major flamenco/fusion band) , jammed with Juan from Heroes Del Silencio. I wanted to really rock up Flamenco!!! Everyone said it was sacrilege & that you couldn’t play it in a rock n roll band! I’ve always hated someone telling me i can’t!!! So we played a couple of flamenco/rumba tracks when we supported The Ramones in 1993 Spain & it worked!! It rocked up really well!
When I eventually came back to the fukked up Rock N Roll Circus I wanted to do something frikkin different & unique. Gypsy Flamenco Glam Sleaze Rumba Punk Rock n Roll ! Guns n Roses meet the Gypsie Kings or Motley Crue jamming after a messed up party, with Los Lobos. So in 2005 after meeting Iggie &forming GYPSY PISTOLEROS & 2 Months rehearsals, 9 songs written , we went straight out on the road supporting ADLERS APPETITE in Spain ( Where else?) It either worked or we get shot, laughed at, abused! We went down a storm.

3. You guys have frequently appeared on the bill at the Rocklahoma festival. Tell us about your experiences there. Anything crazy happen to you? Any ego clashes between all those different bands?

Lee Pistolero: Bro, it used to be a complete f$$ked up Rock N Roll holiday camp! Too many things have happened to us over the 5 years. Waking up in empty tents with just bra & knickers in em (3 occasions), trying to set Joe Leste up with a 62 year old Go Go dancer ( He ran out of the tent), Iggie pulling the grill off the Hard Rock Hotel room window, so we could smoke out of it & falling out of the window with it, landing on the front foyer roof, setting up a Bar outside the Hard Rock Cafe ( Tulsa) to meet & greet all the bands flying in. Not being able to talk to Steve Adler when he was just out of rehab ( His Security wouldnt even let him look at us, coz we were a bad influence? WTF??) Iggie handing Brett Micheals a bottle of Absythe as a present ( He was just straight out of rehab, his security went ape. Shouting “ You just fukked up Rocklahoma buddies”. Brett wouldnt let them have the absyth. Too, too many other stories that we cant ever repeat. Loved Davy Vain, Tommy Lee, LA GUNS, Faster Pussycat, Twisted Sister, Brett Micheals, ZZTop ( Billy Gibbons) watching us from the side of the stage & Warren ( Ratt) Vain, Tracci Guns, Chad & Danny as well, were some great moments. Too many cool people, the ROK crowd was special. Knobs were the last few years AEG new wannabe's, puppets, no soul or heart. Actors & about as rock n roll as Baywatch!

4. Rate the following songs by other bands out of 10:
LA Guns ‘Electric Gypsy’ 10
Kiss ‘Love Gun’ 6
Cinderella ‘Gypsy Road’ 8
Skid Row ‘Big Guns’ 9
Iron Maiden ‘Tailgunner’ 6
Guns N Roses ' welcome to the jungle 10
Crystal Pistol Rockstar 10
Aerosmith 'Janie got a gun' 10

5. What is next for Gypsy Pistoleros? And where can the world check you out online?
Lee Pistolero: The single 'Living La Vida Loca' was out this week, the album 'Forever Wild, Beautiful and Damned. Greatest Hits. Volume1 is out April 9th instore UK & Europe & out in US & Canada 9th May instore through MVD
Check us out on http://www.gypsypistoleros.com/ , http://www.heavymetalrecords.com/
http://mvdb2b.com/s/GypsyPistolerosForeverWildBeautifulDamnedGreatestHitsVolume1/HMRXD274

6. Any final words of wisdom to share?
Lee Pistolero: Fuck, life is short! Laugh, have fun & smile. Fuckin’ live! Always chase your dreams & never, ever say “If only!!! ” & only give up when they bury you!


We then repeat the questions in Spanish for Lee to answer for his Spanish speaking fans, but he politely declined to partake:

“A tomar por el cuelo, cabron...”
And on that note, we say Adios Amigos and keep rockin’!


By Alex Eruptor


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