Ashtones “Who Are The Leper Messiahs?”

Lille’s undisputed street punk rock’n’roll  kings ASHTONES are back with a new 10 song album, and opening song “We Are Your Leper” shows us that they still have things to say when it comes to rockin’! This time you’ll hear more melody in “Any Lou Reed At Night”, “Success” (you’ll hear some slight DOGS D’AMOUR and GUNS N’ ROSES influences in this one) and in “Ballad Of The Lower Fives Side.” At times, the guitar riffs tend to sound more hard rock (especially in the song intros), but the usual ASHTONES ingredients can still be found in this new album, which means you’ll still hear some ’77 punk influences, as well as some out of control vocals and wild backing vocals. “Porcupine Gigolo” and “Tonight, Eating Pizzas” bring early TURBONEGRO to mind and songs like “Dirty Romance”, “Rattlesnake” or the street punk “Let The Monkey” must hit you right in the face when played live. Actually, it’s a good thing that the production of this album is definitely on the live edge.
The MANIC STREET PREACHERS used to sing “Condemned To Rock’n’Roll”, and ASHTONES join them when shouting “Victims Of Rock’n’Roll!” If you haven’t heard of them yet, then it’s never too late… /Laurent C.

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Ashtones “Let Us Be The Legends… (You Think We Are)”

LetUsBeLegendsVinyl suits them better! I wish I could say this about any other rock band that releases an album nowadays. Unfortunately, I’m afraid that polished sounds and perfect (boring) productions don’t deserve the vinyl format.
Here, you can’t go wrong: Simple black vinyl, black and white pictures of members wearing HANOÏ ROCKS, LORDS OF THE NEW CHURCH, CRAMPS and TURBONEGRO shirts on both front and back covers, and 10 songs keeping the rawest, wildest punk rock’n’roll spirit alive. Names such as The DEAD BOYS, The STOOGES or The DAMNED come to mind while listening to this album, the smell and sound of late 70s rock’n’roll dirt can be found in songs like “Harlot Trick”, “Hobo Of Loboten”, “They Drowned Billy Doll” ; and some rather poisonous choruses (“Waiting For The Century Drug”, “Holy Ride”…) make sure you will sing along when you see the band live.
The ASHTONES also offer us a cover of TURBONEGRO‘s “Rendez-vous With Anus” that perfectly fits on the album, and you’ll even get some cool 60s garage rock guitars on “Legend, You Think I Am”, a song that leaves you wanting more, but these guys know that you don’t need more than 10 songs on a rock’n’roll record.
Let them be legends, right! But most importantly, let them rock and roll!/Laurent C.
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Ashtones “… From The Outskirts Of Town”

AshTownThe ASHTONES from Lille, France are not your typical week-end punk rock band. They’re for real and they still do what they do best despite tragedy trying to stop them (two guitar players died in a year…)
Opening with the TURBONEGRO flavoured “Hobo Of Loboten”, The ASHTONES display their natural tendency to slide into the glam punk territory on this album (“Old Junkie Two-Step”, “Street Credibility”, “Teenage Hunting”) and even add some 60s garage guitars (“Legend (You Think I Am”) when needed. This doesn’t mean that they stopped playing high-energy punk’n’roll and 77 punk songs (“Howlin’ Degenarate”) , this especially shows at the end of the album with songs like “Toxic Troopers” or “Undefinite Monster Crew” and “Monkey On Yer Back” (quite of a TURBONEGRO touch here too!)
Just admit that “… From The Outskirts Of Town” should be on your punk rock’n’roll buy list./Laurent C.
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Ashtones/Asphalt Tuaregs “Savage Salvation” Split 10″.

The ASHTONES have been in the French news lately, but unfortunately for other reasons than their music as their guitar player got killed by some stupid hunter while driving the band’s van…
2 bands and 10 songs on pretty pink vinyl, this looks good for sure. The ASHTONES’ opening song “Teenage Hunting” is a damn great start! The band’s music still stands somewhere between garage rock and 77 punk rock but they also do justice to TURBONEGRO’s “Monkey On Yer Back” on this 10″, quite a good cover song choice as The ASHTONES aren’t musically far from early TURBONEGRO. Their 77′ side can especially be heard on “Howling Degenerate” and is always more than enjoyable.
ASPHALT TUAREGS seem to be more influenced by the Australian punk rock scene and grunge with a bit of MOTORHEAD thrown into it. Unfortunately, the poor muffled production make them sound quite messy so it’s hard to get a real opinion about the band while listening to these songs. You just feel like they are better than what you hear on this split 10″ and can tell that they have a very good bass player.
Anyway, if you like it raw, this vinyl is for you!/Laurent C.