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Monday
Jul022007

Thrill Pistol

tigertailz.jpgRecently, Bring Back Glam! spoke with drummer Matt Blakout of British glam band Tigertailz. During the interview, Matt opens up about the illness of bassist Pepsi Tate, playing Rocklahoma, and the unfortunate circumstances of relying on a record label for promotion. Transcription follows.

Bring Back Glam!: Talk about your new, upcoming album Thrill Pistol. Who wrote most of those songs, and are they the typical Tigertailz sound?

Matt Blakout: We're really excited about the album, I think it's the best ‘Tailz have done. There's something for everyone as usual with a ‘Tailz album -- the first two songs will rip your face off! All of us contributed, in the main Kim (Hooker, lead vocals) brought three or four, Jay (Pepper, lead guitar) the same and he also penned “Thrill Pistol” and “Brain The Sucker,” which kicks the album off. Pepsi (Tate, bassist) wrote three or four also. The sound will surprise some but on the whole, we love it.

BBG: Pepsi Tate recently underwent a biopsy. How is he doing now, and did his illness deter the recording process?

Matt: I spoke to him about an hour ago; he just came out of hospital today. He was in good spirits. He's going to have some further work done but on the whole he's very positive and pleased with himself on the things he's done with the new DVD and Thrill Pistol.

BBG: You recently played the Gods of Metal festival. What was it like playing with Glam bands White Lion and Motley Crue?

Matt: Motley Crue are my second favorite band of all time behind Kiss. You say Glam bands, but I always think of Slade, Sweet and T Rex as Glam. I think out of all the bands around today, the Crue are the closest to us or us to them. They were great guys, meeting your heroes is everyone's dream! They treated us with great respect. Personally, it was just awesome for us to be on the same bill and my drums on the same stage as my all time hero. White Lion were lovely guys, too. I think they've had really bad luck getting booted off the Poison tour, but that’s the politics behind things when all they wanna do is play some good gigs. It’s a shame, they kicked ass in Italy so people will miss out on that though it’s a great tour for Vains of Jenna. Good luck to them!

BBG: Let's talk Rocklahoma. How was it that you got added to the extra night bill, and what will it be like for you to play in the U.S. after all these years?

Matt: Rocklahoma, yes great to be added to what seems to be a big event of all our contemporary brothers. You know 99% of the bill is in my record collection. I was a huge Slaughter, Winger, Poison, Firehouse fan as well as Vince in Motley Crue of course. We'll make an official announcement regarding Rocklahoma very soon. We really can't wait to come over and play in the States.

BBG: What is the status of the Blast DVD...when will it be released, and what footage can fans expect?

Matt: I spoke to Pepsi today, and he mentioned the DVD. He's still pretty weak from his illness, but he's keen to get on with it. He's putting it all together himself and he says there's some really funny stuff on there. We don't take ourselves too seriously and I think that comes across when people see stuff we've done in the past. If you've ever seen Video Frenzy, which was released back in the day, you'll know exactly what I mean!

BBG: The Gypsy Pistoleros are a new Glam band from the U.K. Do you have plans to tour with them in the near future?

Matt: I haven't seen them and the Rocklahoma gig is a good boost for them. I think they have a great new twist on things and we wish them the best of luck in the future. As for touring with them, who knows? The roller coaster ride can lead anywhere! I'm never amazed…I always expect the unexpected!

BBG: There's a growing Glam resurgence in Europe and Sweden. What do you think this means for the current state of music?

Matt: All music seems to be coming back, I think Iron Maiden are bigger now than they ever were, so I think it's all types of rock. It's great that Motley Crue and Twisted Sister are about, so that new fans can get into them and experience what I did growing up with Theatre of Pain back in '85, nothing wrong with that. It's all good; we're just pleased to be along for the ride.

BBG: Are there any plans to make a video to support Thrill Pistol?

Matt: We would love to and there are so many great songs that could be done, we'll just have to wait and see.

BBG: Bezerk 2.0 is a great album. Were you surprised you didn't see more sales of the disc?

Matt: I agree that it is a great album. It's always down to the record company. We had no support in the U.K. with the release, promises were broken, [and] we just have to get on with it as best we can. We've moved on now and hopefully Sanctuary (Records, Tigertailz new label) will give us the support I think we deserve. I think Bezerk 2.0 would have done good business if it was supported, but labels can be short sighted. Every artist in every band who's ever released an album will tell you that record labels never do what they promise. It's a sad reality of the business we're in.
BBG: Do you still live by the mantra: No Hair Extensions, No Wigs, No Surgery?

Matt: Sure we do, [and] we have a few more onto that: no exercise, more make-up, and more bars of Twix!

BBG:
Is there anything you’d like to say to your fans?

Matt: Thank you for sticking by us! I would hope everyone prays for Pepsi and we can't wait to be giving you some Thrill Pistol as soon as we can!

Sunday
Jul012007

Baby, Baby, Baby...

endeverafter.jpgLast summer, Poison and Cinderella invited California-based sleaze rockers EndeverafteR on tour.


Since that big break, EndeverafteR has been plugging along, recording new music and making a music video to support their new album. That disc has a planned release date of August 21, 2007.


EndeverafteR is singer/guitarist Michael Grant, rhythm guitarist Kristan Mallory, bassist Tommi Andrews, and drummer Eric Humbert. They signed a major label deal with Epic and have opened for other big acts besides Poison including KISS.


Here's the video for "Baby x 3, 2007." Warning: it is explicit.

Saturday
Jun302007

On the Road Again

I've got to hit the road today, en route to a high school reunion (yikes!). Thinking about going home always means finding good music for the drive.

Let's say you're going on a massive road trip, and can take only ten songs with you. Not ten ALBUMS, just ten songs. Would you play it safe, and just grab a CD from your favorite band, or would you put in a little effort and create a  mix-CD?

After much thought, my mix album would look something like this:

1) "Wasted Time" - Skid Row
2) "Lit Up/Let Down" - Vains of Jenna
3) "Dr. Feelgood" - Motley Crue
4) "Danger" - Motley Crue
5) "White Lightning" - Def Leppard
6) "Hole Hearted" - Extreme
7) "It's a Miracle" - Crashdiet
8) "Eal" - Empyrios
9) "Bathroom Wall" - Faster Pussycat
10) "Set the Night on Fire" - Pretty Boy Floyd

So, what would your list look like? While you're thinking, watch this video: Extreme "Hole Hearted."

Friday
Jun292007

Creepy Crawley

It's finally Friday, and the glam mistress is exhausted. Unfortunately, I have a full weekend and lots of work to do, so I won't be getting much rest. When I get tired, I start having loopy thoughts. Last night, I was thinking about RATT and their "Lay It Down" video.


Last week, I purchased Ratt & Roll 8191. It's a greatest hits album and is relatively cheap. One of my favorite RATT tunes is "Lay It Down." Over the weekend, I caught the video on VH1 Classic Metal Mania. Great song, but the creepiest video ever made. A scary looking boy, a young girl painted up like Jon Benet Ramsey and a clown at a birthday party.


Suddenly, the "birthday boy" blows out the candles on his cake and we fastforward 25 years to an adult Stephen Pearcy, singing lead in RATT. Not a bad wish mind you, but now he's following around the adult version of Jon Benet in a very stalker-esque manner.


Maybe it's just me. Watch this video: RATT "Lay It Down" and tell me if you think it's the creepiest video ever produced.


Thursday
Jun282007

Opening Night: Downstage Thrust Tour 2007

bandacoutic3.JPGLast night, Def Leppard kicked off their Downstage Thrust Tour 2007 in Cincinnati, Ohio. For a first night, there were few - if any - noticeable flaws.

The Brits opened their show with “Rocket,” and continued with “Animal” and “Excitable.”

“Foolin’” came next, and then lead singer Joe Elliot asked guitarist Vivian Campbell to join him on the catwalk.
Vivian obliged.

Turns out, the Leps were about to play “Mirror, Mirror (Look Into My Eyes)” from High n’ Dry! Joe told the crowd that the band hasn’t performed the song since their Pyromania tour. That means Vivian has never played the song for a live audience, so a little Def Leppard history was made in the Queen City!

By this time, it was pouring and the hordes of people in the lawn were running for shelter. Even with covered seats, I still got wet. The band competed with the vigorous thunder and lightning for center stage. Finally the band gave up, walked down the catwalk and addressed Mother Nature, thanking her for the light show.

bandrain.JPGOccasionally, there were small technical mishaps, including popping and echoing microphones. During one song, Joe pointed to his ears and mouthed a complaint to a roadie. Otherwise, things seemed to move smoothly.

Now it was time for some heavy hitting and that means “Love Bites” from Hysteria. The 12,000 or so fans went completely bonkers. A man directly in front of me started jumping and yelping. I think he was having some sort of religious experience. In just a few short songs, his shirt would be gone, twirling around his head like a cheap stripper.

The ever-sexy bassist Rick Savage climbed to the highest point of the two-tier stage for his solo that eventually turned into “Rock On,” from the Yeah! covers album.

From fast to slow, the Leps do ballads best. The quintet went “intimate” with “Two Steps Behind” and “Bringin’ on the Heartbreak.” This time, all band members – save for drummer Rick Allen – joined Joe on the catwalk. Joe strummed his guitar while singing, and crazed fans below the catwalk nearly knocked the rockers off their platform.

A highlight of the show was when “Bringin’ on the Heartbreak” switched from acoustic to electric.

The band also played “Switch 625” while Joe took a breather. This also allowed guitarist Phil Collen to demonstrate his savindark.JPGabilities. Later, the band played “Hysteria,” “Armageddon It,” “Photograph,” and “Pour Some Sugar on Me.” This is the point of the show when the aforementioned man took off his shirt and bounced around like an idiot. Having fun at concerts is wonderful; jeopardizing the safety of those around you because you’re flapping around like a fish out of water is something else.

I was stunned the band didn’t save “Sugar” for their encore; instead, they went with “Rock of Ages.”

All in all, it was a great first night of a tour.

Joe Elliot sounded strong in voice, and everyone in the band looked both happy and healthy. I must admit, the pauses between songs seemed longer than at other Def Leppard shows.

A note about the stage: Def Leppard is touring in many sheds this summer. As such, the stage design is fairly basic with a raised platform parallel to the drum riser. There are several microphone stands all along the stage, allowing each member to roam freely. There are no pyrotechnics, but there is a gigantic television screen projecting images during each song.

usablecollenallen.JPG

Wednesday
Jun272007

Back on Trakk

Bring Back Glam! recently spoke with Eric Young, drummer for Swedish glam sensation Crashdïet. During the chat, Eric spoke about working with Mick Mars of Mötley Crüe, recording a new album, life after Dave Lepard and growing up. Transcription follows.

crashdiet2007.jpgBring Back Glam!: Let’s talk about your new album. How is it coming along?

Eric Young: It’s coming along great actually. Next week we’ll work to complete five new songs, for a total of eight songs completed, with vocals, arranging and everything. Then, we need a couple more tracks. So, in pretty much one month, it should be done.

BBG: So, the new album will have ten tracks total?

Eric: Exactly.

BBG: Do you have a tentative title for the new album?

Eric: We haven’t really nailed down a titled yet. We have a lot of ideas, none of which are decided on.

BBG: Can you tell me about the ideas?

Eric: Well…I don’t really have them on my right now. We have about 50 different options. It depends on the outcome of everything. You know, surrounding the album. The photo shoots and everything. The title needs to be something that really sums it up in a good way: striving how we are now, restoring ourselves and ramping ourselves for the future.

BBG: When do you expect the album to be released?

Eric: For Sweden actually, it’s planned for September. In Europe, the beginning of next year…something like that.

BBG: What about America?

Eric: I’m not sure for the date over there…I’m positive it will be released there as well, but I just don’t know the date.

BBG: Mick Mars of Mötley Crüe recently traveled to Sweden to help you write some songs. What was that like?

Eric: Well, it was quite amazing (laughs) if you want one word. I don’t know. I wasn’t actually the guy recording with him. But, Martin (Sweet), our guitarist and songwriter told me a lot about it. He was so excited, meeting a guy that’s his idol. Pretty unreal situation. In some ways, it kind of levels out after a while, I mean, they spent the whole day together. At the end of the day, it was like they knew each other quite well. I mean he (Mick Mars) is a person just like you and me. They went along really great. He (Mick) started riffing the second he put his stuff down. He went in the room, sat down, got his guitar out and started riffing. It was…he’s just a riff machine that guy. So, we built two or three songs around his riffs. Hopefully, we’ll use some of that material on the upcoming album.

BBG: Does this mean Mick will have a writing credit?

Eric: Well, I don’t know how that will fall into place. I’m guessing he’ll be credited as a co-writer in some way on the album. Just the idea of having Mick Mars helping us out and doing these collaborations is really cool!

BBG: So, who came up with the idea to bring Mick into the recording process?

Eric: Well, that was actually from our record company. I think Mick heard about us in some way. We met up with him – well, not “we” actually – but our record company and his management met when Mötley Crüe were here. Mick said he would come back to do a writing session. It felt like the most obvious thing for Sweden’s most up and coming glam rock band. So, I think that was really how it came about.

BBG: When do you plan on posting some of your new music on your Myspace page?

Eric: Well, it seems we will be holding onto that…until we get all the mixes ready to go. Not sure about the process of that. We’re going to release a single later in August. I would say, maybe in August or something like that.

BBG: Are you planning an international tour after the album is released?

Eric: Yeah, probably. I mean, that would go hand in hand with the release of the album. Like I said, we’re releasing the album in the beginning of 2008 in Europe, so by then, we will probably do a European tour to support the release. In Sweden, we’ll do a tour around the September release and we’ll probably do the same for the American release, whenever that will happen I’m not sure. But it will happen!

BBG: There are a lot of American fans that would love to see you play live.

Eric: I’m sure. That would be awesome to get to the states to play, actually. We have a lot of contacts with different people. They say we should come play and it has never been possible. This time it’s going to be possible, for sure.

BBG: It’s kind of amazing to think that the band who recorded an album as strong as Rest in Sleaze has never performed in America.

Eric: I know. Well, we were on our way in some ways, and then the whole thing happened (the death of former lead singer Dave Lepard). That really stopped everything form developing.

BBG: What were those first live performances without Dave Lepard like?

Eric: It was sort of natural in some ways. We had already rehearsed with the guy (H. Olliver Twisted, new lead singer). We first met him in November. We would hang with him a lot. It wasn’t a strange thing at all for us to perform with him. We noticed by the reaction of Dave’s family and the fans that they we’re like “It’s so strange to see you guys on stage with a new singer.” I never really thought of that. It was so natural, you know? We had so much fun, and it was really a blessed evening even though it was a tribute for Dave (Rest in Sleaze Festival). The whole idea of the night wasn’t to mourn his death or something like that. It was to celebrate his memory. It wasn’t a bad evening at all. We had a lot of fun.

BBG: What’s the typical scene backstage at a Crashdïet show?

Eric: Lots of ladies and stuff like that. We’re quite professional in some ways. It sounds quite boring, but we’ve grown up since the last time we were out on the road in 2005. We’re more keen on doing a great job this time. We choose when to party and when to not party, you know? I think it’s average, like all rock bands. There’s a place and time for everything.

BBG: Where did the band get its name?

Eric: Laughs. The thing is – Dave – when he started the band back in 2000 or 2001 with the first line-up… he was trying to find a name. I remember he told me he was having difficulty finding a name to suit the band. I think the former drummer actually told me that Dave had called him in the middle of the night – like 4 a.m. or something -- and he (Dave) was really, really, really drunk and said “I think I have a name for the band: Crashdïet.” And then he hung up. The next day, the band members met to continue drinking or rehearsing, and they said they’d thought about the name Crashdïet: “Sounds pretty good!” Dave was like “Crashdïet?” He didn’t remember it at all! Actually, he never could tell us where he got the idea from. I think there’s some disease that old sailors used to have, when they ran out of food on the seven oceans or whatever you call it. Anyway, I think that’s called Crashdïet when you run out of food and you die of starvation. Dave used to tell me stories about that. I guess that’s where he got the name. I’m not sure, though. No one is.

BBG: Finally, why do you think Sweden is such a hotbed for glam music?

Eric: I don’t know. I think…the new scene with all these different bands. You know the new bands - the emo rock bands - isn’t something that’s so big over here in Sweden. In a way, the old bands - the 80s bands - didn’t become a real big thing over here before the emo scene reached Sweden. I think the whole glam thing got really big around here amongst the youth before they got a chance to hear the stuff from America and the U.K. I’m not sure; maybe the kids didn’t have anything better to do. The young guys and girls started doing their hair and rebellion against their parents and being glam rockers – which they do best! They have really developed an anti-emo thing. Of course, you have the emo scene here as well, but it’s a bigger thing to be in a glam rock band here.

Tuesday
Jun262007

Year of the Cock

henzerlingbigcock.jpgBring Back Glam! recently chatted with guitarist David Henzerling of Big Cock. The band is bringing back glam with their decadence-driven lyrics and heavy guitar solos. Henzerling has been making glam-worthy Metal for years, performing with Lizzy Borden, Keel and King Kobra. He talks about forming his dream band, musical influences and why every image-conscious rock star should have at least two names. Transcription follows.

Bring Back Glam!: How did Big Cock form?

David P. Henzerling: Big Cock is a band all of us have wanted to do for a long time. John Covington (the drummer) and I have been friends ever since high school and when we talked about it with Robert Mason, his reply was “Big Cock…and why not?” Colby we just found wandering the streets, so we gave him some leather pants, a bass and pointed him to the stage. That’s a true story, except for the part about the leather pants. Look, when all you sing about is cars, booze and girls, it’s pretty clear that we’ll never grow up – and that’s just what you’re gonna get from Big Cock.

BBG: How long did it take you to record Year of the Cock and who did most of the writing for the album?

David: Year of the Cock took about a week to record. We did everything live in a great, big warehouse out here in Arizona in the middle of the summer, so it was fucking hot. I wrote most of the songs and even borrowed a few from my King Kobra days (“Take it Off” and “Mean Street Machine”). In fact, “Mean Street Machine” was one of the first songs I ever wrote back in high school. You’d never know I went to Catholic school from writing a tender love ballad called “Hard to Swallow. ”

BBG: What was it like producing Year of the Cock versus other albums?

David: It was much easier, more fun and cheaper. We did everything our way and didn’t have to answer to anyone but ourselves. After all, what label in their right mind would sign a band called Big Cock with songs called “Bad Motherfucker” on an album titled Year of the Cock? God Bless us for going out on a limb and making this a reality, otherwise the world would have no Big Cock. We know you love Big Cock, Allyson!

BBG: How is performing in Big Cock these days different from the glam days of Lizzy Borden, and Keel?

David: It’s much more fun now, since it’s our own band and we can - and do - whatever we want. Listen to the songs and you’ll see what I mean. The great thing is that people have really responded to our no-holds-barred, aggressive, arrogant cock-rock. It also helps that Robert is such a bad-ass singer.

BBG: What is your greatest tour memory?

David: Two, really – the first was King Kobra’s first opening slot for KISS in front of a huge festival audience. It was a great rush and I’ll never forget the roar of the crowd when we started playing. The second was a few years later, when we played a concert in Mexico with Quiet Riot and La Toya Jackson. La Toya refused to ride on the bus with us to the gig. I guess us long-hairs were a little too unsavory for her champagne tastes.

BBG: What's the deal with Big Cock and Rocklahoma? You had a contest running to play the festival. Is there a definitive deal in the works?

David: Nothing special – we just entered the (Jpot Music) contest like anyone else. It looks like a fun show and it would be great to be a part of it. Of course we would surely kick ass.

BBG: What made you first pick up a guitar?

David: Ace Frehley of Kiss and Ritchie Blackmore from Deep Purple.

BBG:
Your brother is also a musician. Did you grow up playing together?

David: My brother Dan used to play drums and we had a band when we were kids that only played Kiss songs -- because they were easy enough to be able to learn. He later played in an early version of the Gin Blossoms here in Arizona and then switched to guitar.

BBG: What's the deal with the dual names (David Henzerling vs. David Michael- Philips )?

David: My real name is Dave Henzerling. Back in the 80s, you had to change your name into something Hollywood, like Steve McNasty or Sting or Nikki Sixx . It was the law, you know.

BBG: Do you play songs from your collective former bands during your Big Cock shows?

David: We play two King Kobra songs (but not in the live set) and a cover of Tom Jones’ “She’s a Lady” from our second CD.

BBG: Are there plans for a follow-up to Year of the Cock?

David: We will keep making Big Cock records as long as the fans keep listening; we are simply filling a void - pun intended - in an industry greatly lacking music in the cock-rock genre.