American Heartbreak “You Will Not Be Getting Paid $” (2004)

If you still don’t have a copy of ‘Postcards From Hell’, you’re just missing one of the best rock’n’roll album released by an American band these last years. As we speak, AMERICAN HEARTBREAK are almost ready to offer us their brand new super rock album but, since every fan of the band is dying with impatience, they decided to put out this CD which consists of 5 live songs recorded in France during their last tour, 5 acoustic tracks and a 2003 remix of their debut EP ‘What You Deserve’. The live songs manage to catch the raw side of the band for those who haven’t seen them on a stage yet while the acoustic part -including covers of “Come on, Come On” (CHEAP TRICK) and “Outfit” (STARZ)- shows us a new, quieter, softer side which sometimes reminds me of the TESLA acoustic CD. The addition of the ‘What You Deserve’ EP was a good idea since most fans don’t even know about it. This CD should be released in Europe by People Like You Records so get your hands on it when you see it and, if you don’t know the band yet, this is a very good way to get introduced to them.
/Laurent C.

LTNO “Sea, Sex & Burn” (2003)

Limited Teenage Noise Orgasm is back with this second album, the first one (“Global Cut”) was released in 1999. This new CD definitely has an electro influence but still keeps rock roots, it could be described as a mix of electroclash and glam (especially because of the vocals and catchy choruses.) The first song (“Inflatable Idol”) is a powerful one with some heavy guitar riff reminding me of MINISTRY, then two other hits follow: the killer “Sea, Sex & Burn” that you’ll sing to yourself night and day and the sexy “Number Five”. There’s no bad songs on here, most are interesting and innovative and the last ones are in a darker (“Lucifer Rising” and its MANSONish vocals) and more experimental vein. You’ll also find an awesome cover of Sabrina’s “Boys, Boys, Boys” as a summer bonus track as well as two videos. I’ve been playing this CD a lot and I’ve come to the conclusion that you really need this.
/Laurent C.

Murderdolls “Beyond The Valley Of The Murderdolls”

As if they haven’t been hyped up enough over the past couple months here I come to add my two cents worth to the fuss getting kicked up over the Murderdolls. Its kinda  difficult to review this cos by now all the lazy ‘Will the Slipknot fans like it?’ angles have been snapped up  and done to death by every hack on Roadrunner’s payroll. All the ‘new direction’ and ‘commercial liability’speculation is a bit like trying to read the deep, hidden meaning of poncey French sub-titled cinema into what is basically the aural equivalent of a low-budget ‘tits-lesbian zombies-tomato ketchup’ style B-movie. All you really need to know is that this is a spot on piece of throwaway genius. The utterly infectious chorus to ‘Grave Robbing USA’ while you love it now will almost certainly drive you insane in 6 months and this definitely sound dated in 10years time, hell, it even sounds dated now, with 80’s Motley influences a go-go worn unashamedly on its sparkly spandex sleeve. This is a band who with calls for ‘geetar’, accompanied by the customary widdly solo are desperately unfashionable, they’re not out to make a piece of art or a chart-topping product, just have a great party on record in the time honoured tradition of Poison, with name-drops to Psycho and The Exorcist and lyrics about necrophilia and murder this ain’t high-brow angst, and thanking fucking Christ – this is a band who aren’t trying to be ‘cool’! If we’re honest this wouldn’t have caught a sniff of hype or even interest among the music press were it not for the Slipknot connection but so fucking what – stop analysing and just enjoy this brilliant flash in the pan before we’re all bored of it and have moved on anyway. Pour yourself and cliched Jack and Coke and just *try* to not headbang, horns aloft, to the stomping likes of ‘Die My Bride’, ‘197666’ and the Dee Snider saluting ‘Twist My Sister’.

Queen Adreena “Drink Me” (2003)

Blindingly bizarre performance art live that thrives on spontaneity, crowd-band dynamics and free form improvisation its is difficult to envisage Queen Adreena’s gothic-white noise translating to the infinitely more rigid and 2D language of record without at least a few meanings being lost and embarrassing misunderstandings. This long awaited second CD opus however goes well beyond 2000’s debut ‘Taxidermy’ in attempting to grasp the vision of beauty and violence QA evoke live and shove the blighter onto a 4-inch disc. While ‘Taxidermy’ possessed a vulnerable, introspective beauty, full of delicate piano melodies and classical vocals ‘drink me’ distinctly heads more for the latter element of the bands dynamic, a brash, raw noisy record which is far more representative of where QA are at today. Despite its rare and surprisingly catchy, almost tune-like quality opener ‘Pretty Like Drugs’ sets the mood fairly aptly, portraying one grown woman in the midst of the most horrific child’s tantrum. Almost embarrassingly personal as they say ‘Kitty Collar Tight’ and ‘Siamese Almeida’ don’t let you off one bit, keeping up the same pounding, screeching, kicking and scratching pace. When things slow down forth track in on ‘Razorblade Sky’ they are by no means calmer, sounding just as abrasive as the title would suggest. There are rare reprises to the twisted lullabies of ‘Taxidermy’ on ‘Sleeping Pill’ and ‘My Silent Undoing’ but these only proceed slabs of pure, tuneless white noise, almost as wholly unlistenable as Katie and Crispin’s Daisy Chainsaw days on ‘Hotel Aftershow’. An alternately beautiful and horrific album which is perhaps the closest you can come to bottling and marketing one girls rage, ultimately however, its still totally incomparable to the visceral energy of experiencing them in the flesh.

Sugar Shock “First Date” EP (2004)

First, let me tell you that the cover of this promo CD from Sweden is just great ! I mean, it’s nice, original,quite funny and romantic at the same time. This little boy standing up could symbolize every broken-hearted outcast glam/punk rocker, you know who you are! 🙂 In fact, it perfectly illustrates the lyrics and this atmosphere full of broken teenage dreams and passionate rebellion. It makes me feel like I’m 15 again ! The first song called “Promqueen Daydream” is a  poppy glam punk jewel dipped in bubblegum that makes every part of my body move.”Baby Doll” starts like “Cry Tough” (POISON) because of the drums intro but is indeed closer to HANOI ROCKS. Then, “Goodnight Kisses”proves that glam is punk, it sounds like a glitterversion of The RAMONES. The last song (“First Date”) is also a very good glitter punk pop anthem. SUGAR SHOCK do what they want and are damn good at it. Some will complain about the sound but I  won’t, damn& blast it ! This is a good punk sound to me, we don’t need powerful metal guitars and FM sounds here and there’s a lot  of charm in the punk side of the band. I’m sure that punks will  appreciate… So now,  I urge you to come and walk with me on GlitterGlue Avenue and greet SUGAR SHOCK with cheers ! Laurent C.

Supergroupies “La Musique Pornographique” demo CD (2004)

We’ve heard about many good punk’n’roll/glam punk bands from Sweden lately. Even though The GROUPIES are not that far from this genre, they definitely have their own identity which is more influenced by early (70s) glam rock. There are four amazing glitter pop songs on this demo CD that you will really enjoy if you’re into  sweet sexy glamourous pop rock. Damn! listen to “You Will Do” and you’ll think that these guys are the new T-REX!! That’s just awesome! The band has a thing for the French language (the title of this CD, the French part in ‘Scream Shout Adore’ -no doubt that French girls will love that accent!- and the title ‘Hot In Paris’.) I was waiting for a band like that and as a consequence I can’t wait to hear more from SG!!
/Laurent C.

Thee Trash Brats “American Disaster” (2001)

It seems like nothing can stop the Detroit BRATS from rocking, and it’s like they’re becoming better and better as the years go by. Indeed, “American Disaster” is a first class TRASH BRATS album, it has the maturity as well as the wildness of their first recordings. Some songs like “Rocket To Heaven”, “Imitation Generation”, “Nice Girl To Visit” or “Who Put The Words In Your Mouth” are all glam punk rockets that will reach the target, that is to say your heart. As far as the sound is concerned, it is still raw, punk, defying this age of technology. The voice is still tuneful, which is not going to disappoint any old fan and could please every NO FX fan. Now, everybody should be aware that the band goes straight to the point, just listen to ‘Must Be The Cocaine”, this is pure rock’n’roll !This is one of the sweetest disaster that America has created. Thee TRASH BRATS keep on doing what they wanna do, come hell or high water, and with this album, they keep their undisputed status of US glam punk heroes.
Laurent C.

Velvet Condom “Safe & Elegant” (2008)

While most French electro bands just take the easy DAFT PUNK way turning into DJs who do nothing but play their own music on CDs at shows, you’ll still find some more underground minimalistic acts that have more in common with German robotic genre originators KRAFTWERK. VELVET CONDOM (I know, you have to get used to the name!) is one of them, adding electric guitars and a noisy rock touch to their 80s synth driven pop. The vocals may sound familiar to some of you Veglam readers since Alice Von Glass is actually Alyss in Sparkling Bombs. As you would think that the digital duo is just one more 80s revivalist with opening track “Never Ever” (one of their best songs this being said), you will quickly change your mind after “Teenage Innocence” reminding more of experimental early 90s pop/shoegazing (a musical style that can be boring on the long run but also interesting when used thriftily like they do) and bands like MY BLOODY VALENTINE. “Talented Boy”, “Spiritualized” or “Self Injury” are closer to 80s new wave such as The CURE or NEW ORDER but the duo borrows from the style without falling into kitsch or cheap imitation like it has been happening too many times these last years. VELVET CONDOM also has a tendency to experiment with styles and is not afraid to give into the difficult electro ballad genre with songs like “My Own Tragic Escape” and its DEPECHE MODE/AIR references or “Seduce And Kill Her”. The darkest side of VELVET CONDOM can be found in tracks like “Numbed” (one of my personal favourites on here) and its SUICIDE-like synthetic rock’n’roll bass or in the creepy incestuous “Silky Lolita” and its bluesy guitar mixed to mechanical drum machine beats. As you probably have guessed by now, VELVET CONDOM is not your typical 80s revival party electro band dressed up in flashy colours and I won’t complain about it since they managed to mix the danceable pop elements of the genre to darker experimental ones ingeniously on this first album. Elegant for sure, but probably not as safe as the album title suggests./Laurent C.