The Leeches “Underwater”

Italian punk rockers and food lovers The LEECHES are back with a new album produced by legendary producer Daniel Rey (RAMONES, The MISFITS, etc.) Drawing the perfect line between bands like The ADOLESCENTS, ANGRY SAMOANS and hard rockin’ punk like TURBONEGRO or The DICTATORS, The LEECHES have naturally found their style through 10 years or so and here, songs like “Piranha Boys” or “Feelin’ Alright Tonight” already sound as classics!
Melodic guitars, rockin’ beats and choruses to make you sing along are rarely a bad mix for a rock band, and there’s no doubt that “Vanilla Coke” or “Too Hungry To Pray” will make the LEECHES crowds go wild before their stage diving session to the up tempo songs (“Stop The Clock”, “My Life.”) The LEECHES can’t deny the strong ADOLESCENTS influence on a song like “Nothing At All”, but they do it so well, it would be a pity to hide it! This being said, they will surprise you too with their BLUE OYSTER CULT cover “ME-262.” This decibel flood ends with “Into The Storm”, a great melodic song that only confirms that “Underwater” is one of the best punk rock records of the year!/Laurent C.

Iris Berry “Daughters Of Bastards” (Book)

Some of L.A.’s finest writers have come together to form Punk Hostage Press, delivering to you extremely progressive, underground literature and vivid poetry in the romantic but dangerous tradition of the Beats and Bukowski. They have already convened a killer line-up of some of the punk era survivor’s most cutting edge writers, like founders Iris Berry and A Razor, along with Yvonne De La Vega, and Danny Baker, who all will be imminently releasing books by this forward-leaning new publishing company. Iris is a hypnotic, old-school, Hollywood punk rocker, perhaps best known for her notorious L.A. bands, the Lame Flames and the Ringling Sisters, but she is also a movie actress, a community organizer, and an intensely gifted writer. Most recently, she was featured in the glossy coffee-table literary mag, “Slake”, interviewing “L.A. Free Press” founder, Art Kunkin. Her essential book, “Daughters Of Bastards” is a cinematic mixture of autobiographical anecdotes and true confessions from her spot-lit tinsel years on the front-lines of the L.A. punk scene, with her unforgettable poetry-scattered with the debris of hard knocks, lost loves, departed friends, spiked wrist bands, mirrored shades, and fishnet stockings. A must-own for every fan of West Coast punk rock or high voltage non-fiction, from this legendary L.A. author, spoken word artist, actress, and songwriter.

(-book review by FREE)

The Hangmen “East Of Western”

One of our favorite institutions still limpin’ along the side of the proud highway, led by the charismatic white trash poet laureate of the emergency room, Bryan Small, and Angelique Congleton, one’s of underground rock’n’roll’s hottest bass-players. For the uninitiated, my condolences, but just imagine a torn and frayed cross between the Sea Hags and Gun Club, with a severe George Jones fetish, who look like somebody’s goth girlfriend got everybody jobs at the small town gas station even though they’re all on probation. While Supersuckers superstar, Ron “Rontrose” Heathman played guitar on their latest CD here, word at the downtown Macon Greyhound station has it that Coma-Tones/Barrio Tiger/Rock City Angels gunslinger, the legendary Jimmy James has returned to reclaim his rightful place onstage, with one of America’s last enduring REAL rock’n’roll bands. Inger Lorre of the Nymphs co wrote a tune on “East Of Western”, so you know it is essential listening. Particularly, if you like Stiv Bators, Lazy Cowgirls, or Motorcycle Boy. All that praise they heap on that over-rated hack Gap pin-up, Ryan Adams ought to be goin’ to Bryan Small, if you ask me. But I’m old-fashioned. (-review by Free)

Deadbeat Poets “American Stroboscope”

These guys are the best new classic college-radio/power-pop/rocknroll group since vintage Dramarama, or “Unguarded Moment”-era the Church, or “Summer Teeth” era Wilco or Tom Petty’s best stuff of the past two decades. Youngstown’s Deadbeat Poets feature former members of power-pop cult-faves, Blue Ash, and the Stiv Bator “Disconnected” band, and write songs as good as the Posies or Van Dyke Parks era Beach Boys. I wish they’d tour with the reunited Redd Kross.
These guys are way more vital than most bands half their age, which is why they are attracting fans of Cheap Trick, Big Star, The Byrds and Raspberries like flies to sherbert. Smart lyrics, amazing guitar work, really fabulously recorded and arranged pop tunes of all kinds. I’m only sad R.E.M. broke up before Deadbeat Poets could open for them and tap into that huge audience they established before the evil empire killed-off MTV, and the mainstream-media ate itself, during the early 90’s “Alternative” marketing hoax. They are one of those All-Americana pop bands who have something for everybody. Your intellectual, philosophy major, drinking buddies will like the impressionistic lyrics that are as clever and poetic as old Costello or Westerberg, but those who just love a sugary pop melody, or like to rawk will find plenty to clap along to, as well. Those of you in the cheap seats, rattle your jewelry.
“Down With The Lonely Boys” is the kinda poignant tear-jerker that aged songwriters like me waste the skinniest years of our wretched lives trying to write! I keep advertising for sidemen to help me launch the next new wave, but nobody in my neighborhood remembers my kind of music, anymore. The Deadbeat Poets remember! They may be the last great American pop band before the crash, and the backlash, the riots and the round-ups that the Department Of Homeland Security is preparing for, by building all those camps, and purchasing all that ammunition. Apple was just granted a patent to disable i-Phones near political events or government buildings, they’ve already made protesting a crime punishable by 15 years in jail if they don’t like your message and you’re anywhere near anyone protected by the secret service. Other early faves from “American Stroboscope” include “Jenny Burgh Hill” and “2,000 Miles Away From You”. Also strongly recommended: The Deadbeat Poets last album, “Circus Town”. (-review by FREE)

Garbo Dastorg “Black Sheep Syndrome”

If you’re familiar with Andy McCoy’s (Hanoi Rocks/Cherry Bombz/Suicide Twins/Shooting Gallery/Grease Helmet) solo discography, you are a likely candidate for loving this French artiste, who is still another black Fedora wearing Johnny Thunders disciple, but who draws influence or inspiration from every generation of rock’n’roll. These songs immediately conjure shades of McCoy and Thunders, but then, the versatile array of sounds and swirling musical accompaniment carry one on a journey through different textures, shades, and sonic dimensions, like Kevin Junior’s Chicago pop under-dogs, Chamber Strings, Prince & The Revolution, The Rolling Stones’ psychedelic “Their Satanic Majesties Request”, early Gene Loves Jezebel, the Faces, and does anybody remember Darling Cruel? Garbo is all over the musical map, but his voice and imaginative, enigmatic style are clearly throwbacks to Andy McCoy and Keith Richards. Haunting and vibrant songs like “Triple Six Barrel Shot Gun” and “Let’s Pretend We’re Dead” would be in frequent rotation, if I still had my short-lived radio-show. If fame had any meaning whatsoever, this agonizingly talented songwriting and recording mastermind, Garbo, would surely be famous, but sadly, since the entire corporate-media has been consolidated into one big weaponized war propaganda echo-chamber, owned by just five media-corporation bull-horns for the war-profiteering elite, you’ll have to hear always more from line-dancing Mouseketeers and absurd lap-dancers, whose only talent is being bulimic and receiving boobs, to distract you from the NDAA, TSA, NSA, hackable Diebold voting-machines, proxy wars, torture, airport molestations and cancer inducing porno-scanners; and GMO tumors, sterility and early death; while brilliant and inspired, undiscovered geniuses like Garbo Dastorg are tragically ignored. This cat is a special artist/entertainer, just fantastic. A rare diamond, talent-wise. Dig him out! (-review by FREE)

Ricky Rat “Songs In C Major Love”

From the Post-NAFTA, hard-hit ruins and economic devastation of a burnout junkyard, Detroit, where the police union warns you to “visit at your own risk”, comes the debut solo lp from Trash Brats guitarist, Ricky Rat, who has recently relocated to Indiana. For decades, the flamboyant punk-pop pioneer, Ricky Rat, has entertained fans all over the globe with his glammish brand of punk, or punkish brand of glam, reminding some of Mick Ronson, some of Ace Frehley. This exciting new vinyl long player from Tornado Ride Records will appeal to fans of power-pop and 70’s glitter greats like T.Rex, the Romantics, the Records, the Boys, Generation X, Celebrity Skin, and Hollywood Stars. He covers “Time And Space” by eighties new wave pin-ups, Flesh For Lulu, while his other poppy, singalong anthems will remind you of being young, fireworks, cook-outs, all night drunken singalongs, smokin’ cigarettes and starin’ at the moon, and the painful break-up’s that followed. Kid Rock and Jack White may get all the glory and the cash, but beautiful loser, Ricky Rat, is the one with the real, authentic, “Creem Magazine” heart! (-review by FREE)


We’ve been following TORPEDOHEAD for a few years now (since their debut album “Lovesick Avenue”), but never interviewed them before… “Greetings From Heartbreak Key”, their new album gives us the occasion to talk a bit with Germany’s most promising rock’n’roll band.  Sven (lead vocals/guitar) answered our questions.

Can you tell us a bit about the band history?

Torpedohead was formed in winter 2008 and since we have been giging relentlessly in Germany and other European countries, supporting international rock acts such as the legendary New York Dolls, Nashville Pussy, Dan Baird, and Prima Donna among others.
After hitting the streets with our self produced debut Album ‘Lovesick avenue in 2009 and a change behind the drums , we set up our home in 2010 at the famous Woodhouse Studios in Germany to record the five track EP ‘Let’s Go For A Ride’ with producer Siggi Bemm (Kreator, Lacuna Coil). The release kickstarted an avalange of great reviews in the press and left fans screaming for more. So wasting no time, we returned to the Woodhouse studio shortly afterwards to record our new album ‘Greetings From Heartbreak Key’.

You’ve just released a new album “Greetings From Heartbreak Key.” Can you tell us about its writing and recording? How would you compare it with your previous releases?

“Lovesick Avenue”, our first album was written and recorded before we ever played a live gig and we were still looking for a sound that would fit us at the time. For us we didn’t focus on making a record to please the press or the audience, it was all about having a blast and making music that we love. So there’s a big range in style on our first record, that focuses around the rock n’ roll river and all it side arms. We just let our selves drift along and got back to shore whenever we liked. In the end we had a very fresh sounding record that we produced by ourselfs.
When we started touring and playing shows, we found out more and more what sound fit us and we worked on shaping that to its best. We wrote a ton of songs that all had a more fast forward rock drive than our debut album. After recording a lot of demos we decided on working with a producer who has a big name in the german rock/metal scene called Siggi Bemm, because he is known for his huge rock sound.
We wanted to move away from the garage sound of the first album and take it to the next level.
The EP “Let’s Go For A Ride” was a preview for our second album. Not only production wise but also from a song point of view. We made the fast rock tunes faster and we made the melodies bigger. So what we’ve got now is a rock album that leaves no questions un-answered. You’ve got action, riffs and killer hooks, All you need for a good drive on the highway !

What were your favourite songs to record? What are the ones you like to play live the most?

It aint that easy to pick one of your own songs, cause they are all our babies. But there is a bit to tell about some of our fave. songs: Rock n’ Roll Satellite has been a hit in our live set since day one. If our show did not grab you untill that song is played in the set (which is highly unlikely if you’re into rock n’ roll !), you will be singin’ along to this track.
Crank it up and check for yourself.
The Songs “Red City Lights” was recorded completely live without any overdubs. It’s just Sven sitting in his kitchen strummin’ the guitar. We tried to record that song with the whole band, with overdubbs, but in the end it just sounded best to play it simple, just sitting down with the guitar and singing it live in one take. It’s also a bit of reminiscent to our first record, which featured a lot of acoustic guitars.

Your music both combine hard rock’n’roll and pop punk. How and when did you get into these styles? Do you think that being in between two or more styles make things more difficult for a band?

That part has a lot to do with the fact, that all three of us started playing in bands in the early
90s. As you know that was the hightime of grunge, alternative and punk. Although we started out listening to stuff like AC/DC, Guns N’ Roses or Mötley Crüe you could not make up a band as a teen in THAT time with THAT music. You would get no gigs at all ! So we all wound up in punk-kinda influenced outfits. At the time we got heavily into bands from the UK like The Wildhearts or 3 Colours Red and also old 70s Stuff like The Clash. Bands that played a modern kind of punk rock with catchy chorouses, but with a midtempo rock n’ roll backbone. Well, as the story goes on we wound up wanting to sound just like these bands with our old outfits.

Today we don’t “try” to combine anything or try to sound like. We just have this influence of hardcore rock n’ roll fans that where raised in this pop-punk surrounding and that’s what we sound like and what the people might hear.
And yeah, it’s difficult if you have your own style and don’t fit in to the usual labels.
That’s what the song “Love is a Dog” of the new record deals with in some aspects.
“I ain’t a one trick pony”. There’s more tricks we got up the sleave.

You’ve played quite a lot of shows so far, sometimes opening for bigger bands. How did it go?

Yeah, we played with with some of our fave. bands like the New York Dolls and Dan Baird (Georgie Satellites). Those are always great shows, when you can share the stage with one of your idols. And they all have been very nice people so far and you can always pick up some advice or learn something while playing with theses old heroes. Very inspiring and pushes you to keep getting better !

It seems like conditions are getting harder and harder in Germany. I remember, like 5 or 10 years ago, every band wanted to tour there, it was like a promised land for punk rock/rock’n’roll… Has it changed for you? What other German bands should we check out?

Well… the payment is not as good as it was years ago. You earn much more if you are a cover band playing other peoples songs. With original music it’s really hard. But the food and of course “the beer” is still great ! You should check out our friend “Mike Zero”, he’s been singing the backing vocals on “Moonshine Highway”. His last record features Captain Poon (bloodlights, gluecifer) on guitar.
Great album !

5 important albums for you?

Hard to break it down to 5, but here are some…

The Clash – London Calling
The Wildhearts – Earth vs the Wildhearts
AC/DC – If you want blood … live 78
Alice Cooper – Welcome to my nightmare
Nirvana – Nevermind

Most underrated bands?

Strange Fruit
Spinal Tap

Last movies you’ve seen and last book you’ve read?

Tim Dorsey – Gator a go-go
Charles Baudelaire – Les fleurs du mal
Gene Simmons – Sex Money Kiss
Duff Mckagan – It’s So Easy (and other lies)

Foo Fighters – Back and forth

Are you planning to tour and promote the album in the following months?

We will be touring in Italy around feb. and in march we are planing to cross the channel over to the UK. France is also in the making and we hope to rock there soon. And for our French backstage rider: ” Je voudrais deux bouteilles de vins… une bouteille de chateau du haut pleateau et une bouteille de Lussac Saint-Emilion !” HAHA ! Rock n’ Roll !!

Down To Rock #8 (November 2012)

My name is Teddy Heavens and I’m bringing you the latest Sleaze/Glam/Punk and Trash rock and roll news from the Golden State and the streets (and gutters) of Hollywood, California! From the Valleys to the alleys, I’ll find the coolest bands to report on and let you know what’s up from the Rock and Roll capital of the world!
The summer in Los Angeles and Hollywood was full of some good rock and roll shows and glam events!!!
The Return of The Glitter and Glam Fest
The Glitter and Glam Fest returned after a 10 year hiatus, sponsored by Deadline Records and presented by Tim Yasui at the World Famous Whiskey A Go Go. The Fest featured old school Hollywood bands that have continued to perform on a regular basis: Willow Wisp, Spiders N Snakes/London and Rebel Rebel (all Glitter and Glam fest vets from the Coconut Teazer days), along with newcomers like Tramps Like Us. The Highlight for me was when London singer Nadir D’Preist, filled in for Lizzy Grey, who did not make it to the show from Las Vegas. They played Spiders N Snakes and London classics and the crowd really enjoyed seeing the true old school Hollywood Rockers. According to Tim, the Glitter and Glam Fest will be presented whenever a date at the Whiskey A Go Go can be secured. Disclaimer, my band Rebel Rebel tore up the stage, which was really my highlight of the Glitter and Glam Fest!!!!
Hedwig and The Angry Inch
Another cool Glam event took place when the play Hedwig and The Angry Inch was presented for a week run at a local Hollywood Playhouse. The lead was played by NYC actor Adam Enright, who was fantastic, not only with his dialogue performance, but he really tore up the vocals with the band. Another disclaimer, I played bass in the Hedwig band, but the whole performance was fantastic and clips can be seen on YouTube here: Note: There is currently a week long run of Hedwig at the Roxy Theatre in Hollywood with Donovan Leitch in the lead, but tickets are too expensive for my like.
LA Guns Hollywood Listening party
Being part of the “media” in Los Angeles has some perks, such as private parties and elbow rubbing with rock stars. Since I knew I’d see one of my favorite singers at this event, I brought my GIRL “Do You Love Me” 45 record for Phil Lewis to sign, along with a live in Japan Girl CD, which Phil was surprised to see. The LA Guns new CD, Hollywood Forever, was played on a loop while we all consumed the free libations, courtesy of Deadline Records and Tim Yasui. There were a lot of the local and national rockers there to see what the new LA Guns record was like, and we were all pleasantly surprised. Ran into a hometown rocker from Albuquerque, Lorraine Lewis from Femme Fatale, and offered my guitar services for the reformed band. We were in bands that played around Albuquerque together, before Femme Fatale and Durtie Blonde moved to Hollywood. See my first band Girlfriend here for a taste of the Glam scene in Albuquerque in the early 1980’s!!!
Live at Hollywood Park Concert series
The local horse racing park has been kind enough to present some good bands during the summer, when the horse racing ends on Saturday nights. To make it even better, they have all the best food trucks show up so you can stroll in and eat, grab some drinks and then watch bands like Joan Jett, X and The Jesus and Mary Chain. I was lucky enough to see one of my favorite noise bands ever, Jesus and Mary Chain (heavily influenced by the NY band Suicide), and they were as noisy and sloppy as ever, even when playing the hits, what a great show and treat, as this band rarely tours. Was also able to see the best Los Angeles punk band, X, perform, who had the biggest pit going that I had ever seen at a punk gig, and who sold so much merchandise, that the line to buy merch never let up right up to closing time. Hollywood Park is a nice and comfortable placed to see good, cheap ($10) shows when visiting Los Angeles in the summer, they do it every year.
Crash Diet/Glamour Punks live at the Whiskey in Hollywood
Old school meets new school in Hollywood. The Glamour Punks opened for Crash Diet, who are hot in the USA right now, judging from the sold out crowd, and they were musically tighter now than they have ever been. The Punks were loud and powerful with Alley Useless, ex Rebel Rebel bass player, filling in for the missing bro Dizzy Damage!!! Crash Diet are very cute and polished and with the aide of sample backing vocals and tracks, they are arena ready, much like Steel Panther. Not my cup of tea, but they sold out the Whiskey, so cheers to them!!!
Bands to look out for:
No Sympathy-Dolls With Balls
This band took 25 years to get their first release out there, but the guys are good friends, Gary and Catfish, and the tunes are cool and catchy glam gems, so show your support!!!
Spent Idols-For Your Ears Only
This San Diego based punk rock band was the shit back in the day, and their stuff is now available on CD. I’ve included this band on the DTR tip as a memorial to this band being kick ass, but also to the memory of drummer Jesse Spent, or Jesse Atom as he was known when he played for Rebel Rebel, who passed away this summer from cancer, RIP brother. Get it at
If you want me to review your music or write about your event, send it all to:
Teddy Heavens
27750 Firebrand Dr.
Castaic, Ca. 91384