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.

Walter Lure “Live In Berlin” (2008)

Mostly known as a member of The HEARTBREAKERS, Walter Lure decided to come and rock Europe in 2007 and this wasn’t a bad idea! With the help of a solid backing band from Belgium, Walter toured the old-school way in most European rock’n’roll clubs.
This live album was recorded at the famous Wild At Heart in Berlin, Germany and allows us to hear kick ass live versions of classics such as « One Track Mind », « Chinese Rocks », « Born To Lose », « I Wanna Be Loved », « London Boys », « Too Much Junkie Business » among others. And yes we’ll never get sick of hearing these tunes! You’ll also find an amazing wersion of « Cry Baby » on this CD.
Fans will love it and if you just need a good compilation of these songs, then this can be for you too./Laurent C.

Rebel Rebel “France Comes Alive” (2007)

Punk shock rockers REBEL REBEL started to terrorize their homeland back in 1990… After all this time, the terror show had to be exported to Europe and landed in the country of Guillotine, France. I was lucky to be part of this wild and chaotic ceremony in 2005 in Paris. Of course, the visual aspect is missing on CD but you’ll find all the raw energy and destructive craziness of that night on this live album. REBEL REBEL has never been a typical Sunset Strip band, their music and attitude has more to do with The STOOGES, The PLASMATICS and SIGUE SIGUE SPUTNIK. This SPUTNIK influence is even more obvious on the studio tracks/ads (there’s even a Sputnik 2 Martin Degville ad) that have been added at the end of the CD. “Harness All The Energy” is now of one of my favourite REBEL REBEL song!… French kids have fallen for them, the rest of the world will follow!/Laurent C.

Black Halos “Alive Without Control” (2005)

The HALOS are back (in black of course, hm.)with new gutiarist Adam (that you might have seen with the new LORDS OF THE NEW CHURCH or AMERICAN HEARTBREAK in the past.) I don’t know if he’s responsible for this but it seems like the Canadian band worked more on the melodic side of their punk rock’n’roll this time and I can only congratulate them for this. Produced by Jack Endino, the album starts with “Three Sheets To The Wind”, a killer song with a bass drum kick sound that will make every drummer jealous. Then the first riff of “Last Call At The Toothless Saloon” reminded me of HANOI ROCKS’ “Malibu Beach” but then turns into a raw street punk anthem. It seems like the BLACK HALOS have mixed all their different influences to make this new album, whether they are punk rock, glam or dark rock and the result is a strong, very tight record with songs that all have their own charm, you’ll even hear some piano on “Alive Without Control” and organ on “Mirrorman”, a beautiful song in which you’ll find a surprising Nick Cave touch and a brand new vocals approach from Billy Hopeless. D GENERATION also comes to mind on songs like “Darkest Corners” or “Broken”. This album is out on Liquor & Poker in the U.S and will be released by People Like You in Europe and this is definitely one of the best thing that came out in 2005 to me. /Laurent C.

Acey Slade & The Dark Party “The Dark Party”

It might appear as a bit surprising when you first see the names SLAYER and GWEN STEFANI listed in the band’s influences on their MySpace page. But think about it, SLAYER has been one of the darkest and most powerful band for more than 25 years now and it’s hard to think about any 2000s pop music album that is more catchy than GWEN STEFANI’s “Love Angel Music Baby”.
Dark yet catchy, this is where ACEY SLADE & THE DARK PARTY are heading to! After the short and almost EBM intro “Darklexia”, the band offers us “Here Today”, a song reminding of BOWIE when he was experimenting with jungle/drum & bass beats. Notice that the album is produced by English drum & bass producer Shaun Morris (DJ Stakka.) This is a quite risky way to start an album, especially for an ex-MURDERDOLLS/DOPE/TRASHLIGHT VISION! But we all know that “safe” often means boring in music nowadays, don’t we?
The catchy/poppy side of the band then shows more in songs like “Sugarcum”, the electro rock “Nothing’s Gonna Change” (and its DANZIG intro guitar riff) and goth rock single “She Brings Down The Moon” (helped with female backing vocals reminding me of the SISTERS OF MERCY.)
Other great moments on the album include dark pop ballad “Baby The Stars Shine Brightly”, electro glam song “Plastic Lego Queen” and closing track “Reptile House”, a slow and heavy industrial rock song. And since a dark party wouldn’t be a good one without a CULT song, you’ll also find a cool dancey version of “She Sells Sanctuary” on the album.
This is out on British high quality label TrashPit records and you’re all invited to the party!/Laurent C.

Pink Grease “Mechanical Heart”

Sheffield’s electro-glam band PINK GREASE were my favourite 2005 band (though their first album “This Is For Real” (Mute records) was actually released in 2004. The band really managed to mix the best of 80s new wave to 70s glam rock with fresh energy and style on “This Is For Real”.
This second album “Mechanical Heart” was planned for a 2006/2007 release but various record label problems made it all different and the record was sadly never officially released. Very sad indeed, especially when you get the chance to listen to killer songs like “Alien”, “Carlights”, “Right With You”, “Never Darken”, “Climax Pt. 2”, or very personal ones like the disco dark wave “Distraction” or the electro epic punk song “Ordinary Girl”.
The band also shows his more experimental side on “Solid” for instance but never gets annoying to listen to. Whether you like DEVO, BLONDIE, HANOI ROCKS or just all of them, you will find something for you in these 12 songs. These last few years, many bands tried the electro-glam thing but failed, lacking real good songs or soul and this makes the difference with PINK GREASE.
I also had the chance to get the “Fever” single on both CD (including two unreleased songs: “Shiver” and “2003” which actually is an electro remix of their song “Pink G.R.EASE”) and vinyl (with the incredible “Killer Killer” as a B-side) to complete my collection. There’s so many boring bands around, it all became too safe… The world needs more PINK GREASE!/Laurent C.