The Backstabbers “Full Blast!”

Two years ago, I got a BACKSTABBERS demo CD from Jes Reckless (Guit./Vocals) who happened to be playing with JETBOY on their last Euro tour. It was a pleasant surprise so it’s good to hear about the band again with this first official release that includes 7 high-energy punk’n’roll songs.The first one “Get Up N Go” hits hard in a NASHVILLE PUSSY way while the following songs such as “No Time For Nothin'” and “Subpar Superstar” (a very catchy one!) sound more like Scandinavian rock’n’roll (The HELLACOPTERS, GLUECIFER…)
The BACKSTABBERS also add a little rockabilly in “Over This Town” and this mixes well with their style. The record title is not lying to you ; powerful punk rock for hard rock’n’roll lovers is what you’ll get! Moreover, these guys sing “You scratched all my records and you broke my heart” so it would be hard not to love them, right?/Laurent C.

Torpedohead “Greetings From Heartbreak Key”

Somewhere between hard rock’n’roll and pop punk, TORPEDO HEAD is following the path of powerful yet melodic guitar riffing bands like The WILDHEARTS or AMERICAN HEARTBREAK, so it’s not surprising that we’ve always kept an eye on these German guys since their debut album “Lovesick Avenue” (2009) and their 6 song EP “Let’s Go For A Ride” (2010.)
On this new album that comes out with a darker cover-art, TORPEDOHEAD hits hard from the start with songs like “Gasoline”, “Bleed On Me” and “Love Is A Dog” (killer tune!) and things never get worse after these 3 songs since you’ll get to hear a very sunny “Rock’n’Roll Satellite” (a song that could be a jam between The WILDHEARTS and The BEACH BOYS) and “Heartbreak Key” that displays more of the band’s STONES/early KISS side.”Red City Lights” reminds me of the quiet/acoustic D.A.D. songs, which is far from being negative to me!
Other strong moments on the album include the hard rockin’ “Brave New World”, “Black Rain” or closing song “Rotten Radio”, but the fact is that there’s no real downers on “Greetings From Heartbreak Key”.
No need to say more as you should already know if you like TORPEDOHEAD or not by now!/Laurent C.

Biters “Last Of A Dying Breed” (EP)

How come The BITERS are not the biggest new band around yet? Let’s face it: They’ve got the songs, the look and I’ve heard that they’re even better as a live band. You would think that opening for bands like ACE FREHLEY, DANKO JONES (which is quite big in Europe) or SOCIAL DISTORTION would help… Ok, it probably does, Rome wasn’t built in one day they say, so let’s wait again and listen to this new EP released by Pipeline Records before these guys make Atlanta the new world rock’n’roll capital.
Despite a not very attractive cover, these 4 new songs show that The BITERS are still the band that rock’n’roll/glam/power pop fans have been waiting for these last years. Sure, The BITERS wear their influences on their sleeves (CHEAP TRICK – “Hallucination Generation” or THIN LIZZY – “So Many Nights”) but they know how to write and get you hooked on a song (“Hell Is For Babies” is the perfect example), and that makes a huge difference these days. On this brand new EP, the band also explores a new side of their music, slowing down the tempo with “Evil Eye”, a quite interesting 70s influenced rock ballad with an epic ending.
I’ve heard that The BITERS might be touring European clubs in March 2013. By then, hopefully Rod Stewart/SLADE haircuts and glitter rock shirts will be the new cool./Laurent C.

Pipeline Records website

Ashliegh Wolfgang

If you’re into glam punk, then you probably remember or heard the name The ORPHAN PUNKS. Their lead vocalist Ashliegh Wolfgang now writes books and tells us about it… A good occasion to talk about The ORPHAN PUNKS as well!

You were the singer in The ORPHAN PUNKS. Can you tell us a bit about the band’s history? When did the band start? What have you released? Best memories? What are the other members up to these days?
The Orphan Punks were formed in 1993 in Chicago, we were one of a very few glam/punk bands that weren’t huddled up in New York City or Los Angeles at the time, so we were definitely a bigger part of the punk scene than the glam scene in Chicago. I’d be remiss to not mention Thee Trash Brats from Detroit (about 6 hours away), who certainly were in the same boat. We played a lot of shows with those guys and it was always cool to know they were more punk than pretty. We could certainly relate.
The Orphan Punks officially released one full length CD in 1996 “Running with Scissors, and one 6 song EP “Pogo –A-Gogo: The Pirate Tapes” in 1994…I think. I know there are a lot more recordings floating around but those are the only two I recall actually releasing.
Among my best memories with The Orphan Punks are getting to open for Cheap Trick (Who we adore!),Playing shows with crazy billing like Anthrax and GWAR, Getting to be the back-up band for Billy Idol, and getting to do radio shows with guys like Brian Setzer.
Sadly our drummer Brian, passed away from complications due to Leukemia about 10 years ago. Everyone else in the band has families that occupy a lot of our time. To the best of my knowledge Darrell (bass) is the only one that is still playing in a band currently. He’s in a really cool surf band called Roger and the Wraybands. Jimmy (guitar) built a studio in his home and still plays. I think Billy (guitar) is a poker champ or something.  We did get together a few times a couple years ago to jam…we always joke that someday we’ll do a reunion show.

Have you completely stopped music?
No not completely…I’ve been writing songs with other artists for a while now and that’s pretty rewarding in itself. I think I still have an album or two in me before it’s all said and done.

When did you start writing? What have you published so far? Can you introduce your books?
I’ve kind of always written but I’ve only recently begun to get it organized enough to publish. Currently I’ve published the first three parts of a planned five part series called Ramblings of the Damned. The books are derived from the journals of Christian Laurent who finds an ornate silver flask and drinks its contents, only to discover that the drink has granted him immortality. The first book The Devil’s Serum is more of a supernatural love story but the theme changes a bit as the series progresses.

Your favourite authors?
My favorite classic authors are Edgar Allan Poe and H.P. Lovecraft, I love the twists of Poe and the strangeness of Lovecraft. My favorite contemporary authors are Anne Rice and Clive Barker…beyond those I really enjoy Bukowski and Kerouac, William Burroughs and Stephen King, Bret Easton Ellis, and Shakespeare.

Favourite books?
The Great and Secret Show by Clive Barker, Memnoch the Devil and The Vampire Armand by Anne Rice, Barflies by Charles Bukowski, It by Stephen King, Naked Lunch by Burroughs, American Psycho and Less than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis and nearly any book about David Bowie.

The topics of immortality and vampires have been popular again in mainstream culture for a few years now. What do you think about this trend?
I think it’s a cool thing, I’m a fan of all of that stuff and if its popularity helps me sell a few more books than I am all about it. I welcome the opportunity for my books to get turned into a horrible movie franchise like twilight. It means that it would afford me the time to write and not be so concerned with trying to sell my books. I think it’s cyclical and it always seems to come back around, but for a lot of people like myself it always remains a favorite theme and topic.

Favourite vampire movies?
Let Me in and Let the Right one in which are two adaptions of the same story and I think they are just brilliant. I love Salem’s Lot and as much as I am not a fan of Keanu Reeves, Gary Oldman is awesome in Bram Stoker’s Dracula…Martin by George Romero is another that I really enjoy…and Daybreakers is a great story and highly underated. I love all of the Hammer films with Christopher Lee as Dracula.

The music industry has been suffering from the whole download thing and seems to be struggling to find new ways of making money. Do you think the book industry could go the same way?
I think it’s always possible but I think that for whatever reason books have appealed to a less diverse audience than music and you actually have to invest time into books and don’t get that instant gratification. So my experience is that just because someone got something for free is no guarantee that they’ll even read it. Those that want it will usually go about getting it through the proper channels. I’ve given away hundreds of copies of my first book in hopes that anyone that enjoys it will hopefully purchase the rest.

There’s a dark romantic influence in your work, have you ever been into dark/goth rock bands?
I love Bauhaus and Peter Murphy, Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Cure and The Damned and more recently I’ve dug a lot of H.I.M. …I’m sure I’m forgetting other bands but those are the first that come to mind.

Last records/shows you’ve enjoyed?
I had Duran Duran tickets last week and they cancelled which bummed me out. I did see Cheap Trick and Aerosmith last month and both bands still put on great shows, it was even more evident having seen Van Halen a couple weeks earlier. I’m most excited about seeing Adam Ant in a couple weeks…I’ve had the tickets for nearly a year, since the moment it was announced he was playing the US.

Are you working on a new book?
I am and I’m pretty excited about it. I’ll let you have the exclusive because I haven’t told anyone else about it. The brief synopsis is that the main character is a 16 year old girl that meets a guy on the internet and ends up putting herself in a horrible situation that leads to her getting raped. After being left for dead by the rapist she is found and turned by a vampire (yes I’m actually writing a vampire book) so now as an eternally 16 year old girl she starts putting herself out there as bait for other pedophiles in an attempt to find the man that raped her as well as thinning the herd of guys looking to do similar things with young girls. It’s definitely a departure for me to write the character of a 16 year old girl but I think that it will also have a wider appeal than my previous books. So far it’s coming together better than I expected.

In closing allow me to say thanks, Laur and Veglam for giving me the chance to help spread the word, and for more shameless self promotion:  All of my books are available on Amazon sites worldwide and for anything else I can be found at

Miss Guy

TOILET BÖYS’ flamboyant singer Miss Guy just released a new video for “Don’t Stop”, from his first solo EP “Dumb Blonde”, so we had to ask him a few questions about his solo career, the BÖYS and more.

You released your first solo EP “Dumb Blonde” in January 2012, how was it received by TOILET BOYS fans, the media and other people?
I can’t speak for all Toilet Boys fans of course, but I got some really nice responses from some fans. I don’t think they expected me to do a solo project that sounded like Toilet Boys but they did seem to like the harder, more rock sounding songs on the EP. I got some great reviews as well which was exciting for me since this was my first release on my own.

Tell us about the song writing. Were all the song ideas recent? Did you have the finished songs before recording them?
I started writing about six months after Toilet Boys broke up. I had one idea that came to me on our last tour which is the first song I wrote and recorded called Crying InThe Rain. That’s going to be on my next EP. I did about 20 songs with producers Super Buddha over a five year period.

Have you played these new songs live? If so, who plays with you as a backing band?
Yes, I’ve done a handful of shows and worked with different musicians, trying different things. I’ve worked with Matt Katz-Bohen who plays keyboards in Blondie. He plays guitar in my band along with Dave Purcell on drums and Mike Greco on keyboards. They’re all incredibly talented and it’s great to work with them.

You had the chance to sing with some of your favourite singers (Deborah Harry, Boy George…), didn’t you think about a featuring with one of them on your EP?
I didn’t want my first EP to be about guest vocalists but I’m releasing the song with Debbie next. As for the song with George, he wants to re-record it and release it on his next record.

What are the TOILET BOYS up to? You guys had the chance to open for GUNS N’ ROSES at The Ritz in last February. Can you tell us about this crazy experience?
We haven’t done anything since the Guns N’ Roses gig. We will eventually play more shows and possibly record some new material but as for now, I’m focusing on my solo project. The G N’ R show was hectic leading up to the show but ended up being a fun very fun night.

TOILET BOYS opened for a lot of bigger bands. Any special memory? What do you remember about your European tour opening for The RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS?
It was a highlight for us for sure. They were such nice guys and treated us very well. It was a perfect way to end our run as a touring band. We didn’t know it’d be our last tour when we were doing the tour but things had been brewing for a while and deep down I kind of knew it was over. I’m sure we all did in fact.

What are the best places to hang out in New York these days? Any new band you’ve enjoyed lately?
I like to hang out at Hotel Chantelle. I actually DJ a super cool Thursday night party there. As for current bands, I like Hussle Club a lot. I love Fiona Silver and Neon Music. The Nuclears are a cool hard rock band. I think Breedlove is doing something new and innovative. Shadow Lover are making some fun music too. These are all New York bands and artists that I like. Beyond New York, the list gets too long.

Do you like SEMI PRECIOUS WEAPONS? Were you familiar with Lady Gaga before she got famous?
I love Justin and think he’s a dynamite performer. I’ve seen the band once or twice and he is what I love most about the band. I think they’re talented and play well. I knew who she was though the club scene and we have mutual friends but we never knew each other personally. We’ve met once or twice and she seems very nice. I think she performed at a party I used to DJ at in the mid 2000s. I like her music and what she does quite a bit.

Were you ever asked to perform in Hedwig & The Angry Inch?
No because that was John’s thing. He was great when I saw the show but I never saw it again or with anyone else playing Hedwig. And I have no interest in doing that type of performance, so I’m glad I was never asked.

What about “A Rock’n’Roll Fairy Tale”, the documentary about Jobriath? Are you in?
No, but I was interviewed for the Divine documentary coming out soon. I’m a big Divine fan.

You’re also a DJ. Do you usually have play lists ready or just choose the songs on the spot? Some of your favourite songs to play?
I only have an idea of what I’m going to play if it’s asked of me when I’m hired and that’s usually for corporate gigs or special events. I like to play whatever I feel like hearing and I’m good at reading a crowd, so that usually dominates what I play.

5 favourite albums with blonde singers?
Eat To The Beat by Blondie, Too Fast For Love by Mötley Crüe, the first Runaways record, the first Madonna record and Beauty and the Beat by The Go-Go’s. And Dumb Blonde by Miss Guy of course!

You wrote for a few magazines/websites in the past. Can you tell us about it? Do you still occasionally do it?
Yeah, I’ve done that on and off since the 90s. It’s a fun thing to do once in a while but I didn’t really like doing it regularly. It’s something I prefer to do a few times a year, not weekly or monthly. I still write for a few different magazines. I just did a really silly interview with Debbie for the 35th Anniversary of Punk Globe.

What about the self-portrait pictures you post every day on Twitter? Are they part of an art project or something?
It was something I did about five years ago. I photographed myself everyday for a year starting on my birthday. I decided to do it again since I’m on Instagram now and figured it’d give me a reason to post photos everyday. Sometimes, however, I’m not in the mood or I feel like I look awful so then I do things like wigs or hats or sunglasses and that makes it interesting for me. I love Instagram.

Any plan to come back to Europe?
I haven’t been since last summer and I’m ready to go again. So yes, I suppose I’ll be there at some point in 2013. I love music fans there. They’re so much more open minded than they are in the USA. Rock is dead in America and has been for many years but thankfully it’s alive and well in other parts of the world.

Sassy Society “S/T” EP

SASSY SOCIETY is a new band from Hamburg, Germany (great city by the way!) They introduce themselves with these 6 hard rawkin’ songs that could be described as a mix of classic heavy rock and 80s US sleaze rock (the singer is sure influenced by Axl Rose!)
“There’s No Right Way To Die” also shows some melodic hard rock (bands like GOTTHARD) influences and “Drug Store” leans more towards the 70s rock side. We can also find some obvious GUNS N’ ROSES traces in “Infectious Love” for instance as well as in most guitar solos.
We have a bunch of solid players here and these guys could share some stages with French band AESTHESIA, but overall the songs need more hooks and identity to really stand out from all the 80s revival bands around these days. Their next release will tell!/Laurent C.