TOO SOHISTICATED is a hard rock band from Finland. They started back in the 90s so they have released a few records but this is their first full-length album. While the music of the band definitely sounds hard rock’n’roll, you can hear a bit of heavy metal in the vocals too (“Soul Suckin’ Day”) but also a punk touch in “Like It Or Not” and in “E.I.A.” “Lipstick Kiss of The Death” has a bit of a D.A.D. vibe and”Different Blues Song” reminds me of the mighty SMACK. The band can also gets lighter with “Restless Soul” and its drunk summer afternoon mood or flirt with heavy 70s rock in “Lazy.” “Nightmares Every Night” is taking us in darker lands not that far from the LORDS OF THE NEW CHURCH… After listening to this CD you get to think that this is far from being perfect, but like it or not, this is rock’n’roll ! /Laurent C.
“Doomsday Girls” is taken from the album ‘Anthems For Misfits’ album that was released earlier this year through Wormholedeath Records. It’s clear from the first beats of the song and video that you’re in for an energetic and fun rock’n’roll burst. Friday-Saturday-Sunday-Doomsday!
The video was edited by Eco Inkinen and shot at Suvilahti skatepark and Hietaniemi cemetery in Helsinki. These two surroundings contrast each other well and Elina Laine does an excellent job as the doomsday girl.
It’s always good to see bands that stick to their guns and PLASTIC TEARS are definitely one of them! Lead vocalist Miqu December tells us about the new album « Anthems For The Misfits » and much more!
You were one of the very first bands I interviewed back in 2000 I think. Can you introduce the band for those who might still not have heard of you?
We usually describe our music as sleazy dark rock’n’roll with a glam punk attitude. We’ve been around for a long time since, and we’ve had our ups and downs. So we’ve named ourselves the rats of rock’n’roll, we survive anything. We do what we love, good old rock’n’roll, and spice it up with a little bit of musical this and that. We’re not trying to please anyone, but I’d still say most people who like rock music might like us, as our music draws from different musical sources.
How did things change for the band in 20 years apart from the obvious line-up changes?
I guess we’ve stayed true to our musical roots, but of course the band has evolved and gotten better. We’ve always made music we’d like to listen to ourselves, so no need to make drastic changes. But I guess as we’re a bit more stable nowadays, concentrating more on the music instead of partying, I think we’ve matured much also in a musical sense.
Can you tell us about your new album « Anthems For Misfits »?
We started working on it pretty soon after the last album, Angels With Attitude, was released. So in about a year after the release of that album we were back in the studio again. We started recording summer 2019, did a European tour, and continued recording. Soon after that the pandemic showed up, and it slowed down the recording pace. So it was quite a long process, one or two day of recording, then a break for a couple of weeks, and we continued again. But this slow pace suits us well, and I think it’s one of the reasons why the album turned out so good. The album is pretty diverse, and there’s songs ranging from pop to punk, and everything in between. The opener Doomsday Girls is a fast funny rock’n’roll song that should wake up the listener immediately. Followed by the punk rock sirens of Riot Zone, at this point everyone should be awake! On the third track we lower the tempo to let the listener calm down with the pop desperation of Clash In The Night. Radar Eyes is a moody dark piece that I like a lot. Other highlights for me are the rebellious Restless Outsider, the dark gothic death waltz of Candlelight Hate Affair and the Elvis goes glam punk of Nobody Likes A Crybaby.
Your first single/video « Riot Zone » is quite appropriate in 2021 when looking at the state of the world… Can rock’n’roll still be rebellious to you?
Yeah, I didn’t guess when I wrote the lyrics how topical they would be. And when the label made the video for it just a few days before the Capitol Hill riots, it made the song almost controversial. Rebellious, it depends. Maybe r’n’r can be rebellious on a small scale. We’ve always been a band that has walked it’s own path and done what we want to do, no matter what others think. I guess that’s some kinda rebellion too.
We can still hear Hanoï Rocks/Lords Of The New Church influences in these new songs. Can you think of any other bands or artists that influenced you for this new album? « Hallucinations » for example seems to head in a different direction.
It’s not intentional, but I guess we come from the same school of rock as they do. And we do love those bands. I can’t say any band, at least consciously, has directly influenced this album. I listened a lot to Masked Intruder, The Interrupters and Cheap Trick before the new album, but I don’t think we sound anything like them. Songwriting, for me at least, isn’t usually anything that’s planned. The ideas just come from sudden bursts of inspiration. Hallucinations is actually an old song that we demoed ages ago. We wanted to remake it, as it was too good a song to be left unheard. It’s a really special song, and I really don’t know what to compare it to or to what genre it might belong. It’s one of the songs on the album that stands out, in a good way.
« Divine » is really catchy, was it the kind of songs that just come out naturally and was easy to write?
That’s the second old song remade, it was also demoed in the beginning of our career. That version was like a ska punk glam rock song, or something. Sounds weird, but it was really funny and catchy. Still, we wanted to make a more straightforward version, as we felt the riff and bass line were meant for a rock’n’roll song. So it has a long history, but if I remember right, it was a song that came out fast and easy. It just took it quite many years to find it’s final form. In the end, we’re really happy with how it turned out, it’s a catchy fun song that could cheer you up even on a bad day.
The last two songs on the album, « Communication » and « Imaginary Virgin Mary ” are great, one being a glam punk hit and the other one an amazing dark rock’n’roll song. Can you tell us about these two songs and why you chose to put them at the end of the record?
We gave a lot of thought to the song order, and wanted the album to be strong and balanced, yet highlight the differences between the songs without making it inconsistent. As you said, Communication is a glam punk song with funny lyrics about the invention and use of the telephone, with an underlying message about loneliness. If you stayed awake during history classes in school, you know that A.G. Bell, who is mentioned in the lyrics, is Alexander Graham Bell who was declared the inventor of the telephone. History lesson over! Imaginary Virgin Mary is probably the heaviest song on the album, but it’s still a rock song, not metal. It has a kind of creepy ominous feel and tells the story of being bullied and taking revenge. We wanted to end the album with a bang, so two tougher tracks at the end did the job. And the piano ending of Mary was perfect to close the album.
Is there going to be a vinyl release of the album?
We would love to have a vinyl version too, but it’s not part of our deal with Wormholedeath Records. So if anyone is interested in working with us on a vinyl version, please get in touch!
You released a split CD with Paradise Alley in 2019, can you tell us how it happened? Both bands seem to be good friends.
Yeah, me and Steve of Paradise Alley met already in the nineties and we’ve stayed good friends ever since. Paradise Alley got active again after a pretty long break and they wanted to release a new song, but they didn’t have a drummer yet. So they asked us if our drummer Eco could play the drums on the track, and he was happy to help. Steve and I shared the lead vocals, and most of us shouted the backing vocals. It was a fun and different collaboration, as we recorded in Helsinki and Paradise Alley in the UK.
What do you think about streaming shows? Would you play one?
I guess they’re an ok substitute for real live shows, but of course it’s not the same. Not at all. But I understand why they are done, and I’m not saying we’re never gonna do one. But to tell you the truth I’m not too excited about them. The intimacy and intensity of real live shows can never be achieved with a stream show.
Last albums you’ve been enjoying?
In the last couple of weeks I’ve been listening to the unreleased third album by Beat Angels, it’s great! I’ve also been spinning the new albums from Suzi Quatro, The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs, Alice Cooper, Pat Todd & the Rankoutsiders and Jason Ringenberg. All good albums, so give them a listen if you haven’t already.
Any new bands from Helsinki we should check out?
They’ve been around for a while and have already released two albums, but Daggerplay is a band I sincerely recommend. Their mix of punk rock’n’roll and power pop is very convincing and catchy. They’ve also just released a new single, so check that and the band out!
It’s hard to plan anything these days but please tell us if you have any future plans yet…
We’ve got some cool shows lined up for the summer, but it remains to be seen if those can be carried through. Otherwise, I think we’ll continue banging our heads against the wall and see which one breaks down first. At the moment we focus on promoting the new album online, as there’s not so much more that we can do. Have a load of ideas for new songs, so we’ll start working on those at some point. So our future plans are to stay safe and keep rocking, and we hope you do too!
|Finnish Hard Rockers PLASTIC TEARS proudly unleash the single & video for “Riot Zone”, track taken from their upcoming album “Anthems For Misfits” due for release on 26 03 2021 via Wormholedeath Records worldwide.|
|Statement about the single & video:Are you ready for a rock ’n’ roll riot?!!“Riot Zone is a fast loud punky rock song about standing up for yourself, freedom, peace and fighting the injustices of the world. About being the underdog, finding your way and standing up for your rights. It’s a song that makes you wanna raise your fist, bang your head and pogo like crazy! The lyrics are meant to be uplifting rock ‘n’ roll rebellion and defiance, with a slight socially critical undertone. So don’t take life too seriously and strengthen yourself through the power of rock ‘n’ roll! Plastic Tears new album ‘Anthems For Misfits’ is released this year through Wormholedeath Records.”|
PS. Plastic Tears condemns all violence and violent riots.
Plastic Tears fourth album ‘Anthems For Misfits’ is almost ready.
The band though they could finish it in good time before their fall UK tour, but since the pandemic messed up almost everything the album release is delayed. It’s also possible that the tour gets canceled.
To keep themselves busy Plastic Tears released a video for ’Communication’ on the 24th of April. The song was originally released as the b-side of ‘Look of Lies’, the first single from the upcoming album. Besides clips from their native Finland there’s also video material from Sweden and the bands recent European tour. The video fits these times well, when traveling is just a beautiful memory and touring can’t be done.
Faithful to their style the video is a punk rocking package, and you might want to watch it a few times to notice all the details.
Anthems For Misfits is released first thing when the circumstances are right.
Watch the video here:
This song celebrates the friendship between these two bands. PARADISE ALLEY (England)’s frontman Steve Vincent met PLASTIC TEARS (Finland)’ frontman Miqu December in 1992 at the Hellfire club in London. These weren’t the best times for rock’n’roll, but there was still a scene and both vocalists were about to start their own bands. PARADISE ALLEY and PLASTIC TEARS have been through various up and downs and line-up changes, but the two rock’n’rollers remained friends and now share vocals on this song. We don’t often review singles on Veglam, but there are some special occasions/exceptions: The song is a mix of their HANOI ROCKS and LORDS OF THE NEW CHURCH influences with an anthemic chorus and sleaze rock guitars, the kind of music we all need in 2019. Cheers to the Class of ’92! /Laurent C.
Helsinki’s 70s rock influenced band The EMPIRE STRIKES are back with 12 songs. I guess opening an album with a song called “The End” is an interesting move especially when the song has a tragic and grandiloquent feel to it. Even though songs like “Danger”, “Leeches, Lies and a Mighty Hoax” or”Amor Por La Vida Hasta La Muerte” have a bit of late HELLACOPTERS into them, they still have their own identity with a bit of radio friendly rock in their choruses. Indeed, the band always sounds melodic thanks to Tommi’s vocals and lots of arrangements (violin, trumpet, backing vocals…), they’re sometimes even close to early ELTON JOHN in “Blinded ByThe Light.” Roky Erickson probably smiled from up there when he saw the song title “Theme From Roky”, and he might even have liked the song as well as “Tigerlillies” that both have an interesting 60s vibe to them. Nevertheless, The EMPIRE STRIKES still enjoy playing their good old hard rock’n’roll in songs like “Rainmaker” and its 70s KISS touches or in “Blackheart.” The album is out on September 6, so you know what you have to do if you need to add some new rock’n’roll in your life! /Laurent C.
Helsinki street rockers Plastic Tears released their third album ‘Angels With Attitude’ in June.
A new single and video for the track “Dark Passenger” from the latest album is released on March 29th.
“Dark Passenger is a song about the dark side of the mind and dual personality. When the dark side makes you do things you wouldn’t want to do and how you try to rid it. The song itself is hard rocking and Nauri Nykänen’s role as a psychiatrist with understated but meaningful expressions tops off the video. The video is made with a dash of humor despite the serious subject.” – Miqu December
Video directed and edited by Eco Inkinen. Filmed by Mikke Strandberg, Juha Kinnunen ja Eco Inkinen.
Lead role as psychiatrist played by experienced actor Nauri Nykänen and Elina Laine as dancer.
‘Angels With Attitude’ was released in June 2018 through City of Lights Records and has received great reviews globally.