Be afraid! Be very afraid! subnormal magazine is now BACK online, WEEKLY! (With daily updates).
Jefferson Airplane’s Paul Kantner will be greatly missed. I had the honor to meet and hear this legendary guitarist with Jefferson Airplane live, many years ago, as a guest of Janis Joplin’s band Big Brother and the Holding Company. Paul Kantner was amazing. When I first heard his work on “White Rabbit,” and (Don’t you want) “Somebody to Love,” I was blown away with his bands phenomenal sound.
Glenn Frey, legendary guitarist, singer and songwriter who co-founded the Eagles, passed on Monday in NYC. His eerie hit song “Hotel California” placed him legendary, cult status, above the fray of other classic rock bands. He will be missed.
subnormal magazine’s tribute to David Bowie can be found on this site by clicking on the Letter From the Editor tab to the left on the table of contents. The icon will forever be remembered.
LIVE MUSIC REVIEW
CHRISTIAN DEATH, January 15th, 2016
The Whisky a GoGo, as anyone that knows rock and roll will recall, is a legendary venue that used to feature The Doors as the weekly house band back in the day. Most every major band of importance from rock and punk has played at the Whisky a GoGo, and you can read all about that and the venues history further online. The last time I saw a band at the Whisky a number of years ago, the sound system was awful, so that was the first thing I noticed when hearing sound check for this show, was the nice new sound system which finally captured all of the ranges needed. I was happily surprised and impressed. The house staff here are very cool, and treats the bands, managers, and promoters with decency and respect.
Unlike certain L.A. clubs, which have in house staff door people, and micro-manage every person through the door during load in before the doors are open, load in at The Whisky is very easy and relaxed. The only problem The Whisky has is their hired out help of bouncers. Consisting of about maybe four to six muscly to big and fat men of varying ethnicity’s, these guys have a long and ugly history of groping people at the door. Possibly moonlighting for the TSA on the side, these grope happy guys seem to get off on grabbing mens groins, and grabbing God knows what else on the ladies. So Whisky, unless you want to open yourself up to future claims of sexual harassment or sexual molestation, I suggest quickly replacing the Grope Squad.
The band ‘Dinner Whore’ was added to this bill the very last week before the show, evidently. At first, numerous people were making fun of their name, with people calling them different variations of their name, or in my case, simply; The Whores. While a ridiculous band name, I was actually very surprised to see that the band was actually quite good. Three of The Whores are chicks. The singer, who was nice when I met her, has a good stage presence, and a solid voice ranging from melodic to screaming in the style of Courtney Love. Musically, they are a bit like L-7 mixed with the Cramps. The Whores gave us dirty garage rock that was totally un-predictable and unique.
‘Maension’ played next, another name some people were having trouble with, but after they took the stage, proved that they are a major act with a really solid vocalist who was also a nice guy when I met him. They also featured a tall, pretty female on handheld keys who didn’t crack a smile the whole show. A bit of a cross between Tool and A Perfect Circle, also with a very powerful drummer, these guys rocked.
Sexy DJ Amanda Jones rocked the night between all the sets, spinning some great classics including Skinny Puppy, Bauhaus, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Echo and the Bunnymen, and more. They just need to turn up the volume for her next time. The volume for all of the bands was just right. Not to quiet, and not too loud. The crowd varied from old school goths and a few punk rockers, to metalheads, a few jocks, and even a couple of Mexican guys in top buttoned flannel with baseball caps on. While not a look a care for, I appreciate that the Whisky don’t have some fascist no hats rule like some stupid clubs, and I appreciated the one guy really seemed to be digging the show.
‘Christian Death’ finally played, taking the stage at 11:30pm. With Jason on drums, Maitri on bass and vocals, and Valor on vocals and guitar, the crowd this night was solid, at about 150 heads. The show opened slowly, with Valor talking over some pre-recorded tracks, and then following into their second track off of their new album. Newer songs followed, including my favorite new one, “Illuminazi,” which is not only a great title, but a great song.
Most of the Christian Death set was slow compared to the three opening bands, who are not even in the same genre as Christian Death, yet the crowd dug them all. With the economy of how the clubs are structured these days at least in L.A., the venues fill up the bill as fast as they can for headliners with bands that can either guarantee a draw that will pay their amount wanted at the door, or will take the financial responsibility for the amount they want themselves–essentially what they call ‘pay to play.’ Despite this challenge which often creates bills of genres that don’t fit together, the night was still a great success and all seemed to have a good time.
Some slower songs followed, until Christian Death treated the crowd to the searing “Church of No Return” which was great. The band then left the stage. Some silly person shouted, “Church of No Return!” As others of were clapping, or in my usual case, pounding the stage periodically for the band to return. Valor returned, humorously telling us that he was not coming back to play, but that he just needed to say something. “I heard someone shouting ‘Church of No Return?!” He continued, “What do you think that just was?! We just played ‘Church of No Return!’ He chidingly laughed a bit then started to walk off the stage then walked back. “OK, I’m here!” He said, and added, “I’m ready to sing more, but if you want those two to play, you need to call for Jason and Maitri! I don’t know what they’re doing! Who knows?! They’re probably getting drunk or having sex people or something. If you want them, you have to call them.” The crowd then started calling a bit for Maitri and Jason, and in less than a minute, they took the stage and everyone clapped more.
Valor then resumed his earlier talks about why he hated the Catholic Church, how the new pope just met with Obama, how 99 percent of the wealth is controlled by 1% of the population, how the elitists had us where they wanted us but it would not last, and how the 99 percent would rise to control all of the wealth, that would be controlled by just 5 people, and he said, he knew who those 5 people were. Maitri started drinking a beer, and Valor kept complaining that she just wanted to drink or get drunk. “No!” Maitri protested, “Your sitting here talking about the f-ing Pope, so I’m having a few sips!” This banter when on for a few minutes, when finally they led into the classic “Heresey.” Valor then announced they were not playing any more, it was over, but to be sure to come meet him, that he was going to meet everyone, at the merchandise table. The house turned on the stage lights. At least 50 if not 100 people rushed to the merchandise table and waited to by picture disc records with Gitane DeMone on the cover, t-shirts, black hoodies with the Christian Death logo, and more.
The always handsomely beautiful Valor looks as though he has not aged a day, sounded perfect, and did great guitar, working the crowd into repeated frenzies with newer and older classics. Maitri, who is equally incredibly hot, wearing sexy black fishnets and stiletto boots, played great bass and sounded divine. Jason on drums, who we could not really see for this show due to he and the drum kit being hidden way in the back of the stage, did a great job on percussion.
One of the pioneers of the so called Gothic genre, along with bands including 45 Grave, The Damned, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Bauhaus, and a small handful of others, Christian Death tore onto the scene in Southern California after being launched by then vocalist Rozz Williams and later taken over by Valor. Gitane DeMone and various other members rounded out the band including Rikk Agnew (The Adolescents), now performing with Gitane who earlier left the band to be replaced by Maitri. A soulful, unique voice in the world of music, Valor has made some of the most brilliant compositions in rock music. Maitri carries the reigns on vocals further with passionate power and a vocal beauty rarely seen in rock. It was, as always, a great pleasure to see this show with one of my favorite bands. I only wish they would have played longer. –Bruce Edwin
This content © 2016, Bruce Edwin, The Hollywood Sentinel, all world rights reserved.
Happy New Year! subnormal magazine was the hard copy punk rock, avant-garde film and human rights magazine from the late 80’s, 90’s and early 2000’s that was a brave and defiant voice for freedom, and featured exclusive poetry from writers around the world, as well as exclusive interviews with some of the greatest and most creative and daring recording artists on the planet including Sonic Youth, Shadow Project, Marilyn Manson, Bauhaus, Lydia Lunch, and countless more. It returns back here now each week online here at The Hollywood Sentinel, until it launches back later this year on its own.
The four greatest, and most important new recording artists of the past decade are not surprisingly, all female. Anyone that knows subnormal, knows that we have a great love for female vocalists; from punk legends including The Slits, Fuzzbox, and Patti Smith, new wave legend Blondie, so called no wave pioneer Lydia Lunch, Kim Gordon with Sonic Youth, Gitane Demone and Eva O. with Christian Death, Shadow Project, and The Superheroines, and later Diamanda Galas, PJ Harvey, and of course, so called gothic legend Siouxsie Sioux, among hundreds more. There is nothing like the female voice, and female artists. This past decade has brought us at least four particular brilliant legends of our own time; Karen O. with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Warpaint, Lana Del Rey, and Grimes. We will focus on the aforestated artists later on, but for now, we give here a quick blurb on a young singer / songwriter, producer from the Toronto area, who counts none other than fellow Canadian’s Skinny Puppy as one of her many diverse influences. She’s already been around over six years, and she just keeps getting better and better.
Undoubtedly one of the most brilliant artists to emerge in the past decade, is none other than GRIMES. Light years ahead of her time, Grimes merges her genius songwriting, other worldly voice, excellent production, and beautiful look and video imagery to give us some of the best new creative works of our time. Influenced by punk, new wave, industrial, pop, experimental, and the coolest of the cool, GRIMES is in a class by herself, deftly hip, and like none other. With a vocal range similar to Bjork, Grimes knows her limitations as an artist, and they are few. Constantly progressing, experimenting, and mastering her craft, GRIMES, aka Claire Boucher, is stunningly beautiful, looking like a fashion model, yet her sex appeal is beyond physical, with her sweetly cool persona and dynamic artistry, GRIMES does not need sex or cheap gimmicks to sell, for her talents dominate. From the dancey to the ethereal, GRIMES single handedly catapults pop music into another plateau for this generation. With her innovative mixes, minimalist producing, and her lovely voice that is really, truly exceptional, this young, beautiful, and artistic mastermind has in a few short years, implanted herself forever into the music worlds’ history of true greatness.
From the clever ‘Rosa,’ ‘Oblivion,’ and ‘Genesis’ to the legendary trancy, pop ‘Vanessa,’ among many more, GRIMES conquered with her cross-over hit ‘Blood Diamonds’ that sears, and proved her further grace with the retro brilliance of ‘Be a Body.’ If all this wasn’t enough, she made one of the best electronic, pop, dance songs of all time with her timelessly perfect ‘Realiti.’ Gothic, pop, rave, raw, part DJ, producer, sound artist, and avant-garde chanteuse, GRIMES is about as perfect as music can get, and we love her.
UPDATE: Grimes is now on tour! L.A. dates include Lightning in a Bottle, Coachella, and The Shrine.
IGGY POP is also touring soon.
Sweet Bronco, a relatively new band led by Chris Horgan is worth hearing. It doesn’t matter that they don’t look like models, or that they are even off key and out of sync during their harmonizing. It doesn’t matter because what this band has is superior to all of that. This band has very strong songwriting by Chris; who has a good voice. They also have decent musicianship, and best of all, a unique sound with some exciting guitar. These guys (and their backing female vocalist which is another strong suit) reminds me of early bands including Eleventh Dream Day. Check em’ out.
Keznamdi, who just got picked up by Sony, has released his latest single, the cut “Champion.” Keznamdi co-wrote “Champion” with Justin Bieber’s writing partner, multi-platinum Grammy winner Poo Poo Bear. (Just kidding, actually poo bear). This very sparsely yet well mixed and well produced track reminds me of the nice, rare occasion I’d go to the Ethiopian Restaurant for injari and vegan cuisine on Belmont, and then pop next door to the Reggae club for some dancing hanging with the brothas and sistas to some Bob Marley and more back in the day in Chicago. Spread the love.
“This is a sad day for rock n roll. At the dawn of glam rock, Motorhead tore up the scene in 1980 with a brutally classic cut, ‘Ace of Spades’ which was better than most anything we’d ever heard. Lemmy made rock unpredictable, dangerous and raw again. Even the hardcore punk rockers, who mostly quit listening to metal, dug Motorhead. Lemmy was a legend, and there was and never will be another quite like him. He will be missed.” – subnormal magazine
Hollywood Hot Spot
31st, Morrissey, Galen Center at USC
Insomniac Count5down, with Kaskade, etc., San Bernardino
Belinda Carlisle, Sierra Ballroom, Universal City
28-31, Motley Crue, Staples Center
3, Merle Haggard, Saban Theatre
6, Todd Rundgren, Saban Theatre
7, Autograph, Whisky a GoGo
8, 9, Patti Smith, The Wiltern
9, Metal Allegiance, Whisky a GoGo
15, Christian Death, The Undead Hearts, Whisky a GoGo
Van Morrison, The Shrine
19, Panic at the Disco, The Tower Theatre
21, Venom, Glass House; Pamona
22, The Muffs, echoplex
Chuck Negron of Three Dog Night, Saban Theatre
28, Killing Joke, The Regent
12, Lamb of God, Anthrax, Palladium
13, Dweezil Zappa, The Regent
20, At the Gates, Glass House; Pamona
27, Reagan Youth, Viper Room
Judy Collins, Saban Theatre
28, Megadeth, Suicidal Tendencies,
Children of Sodom, Palladium
9, Unwritten Law, Glass House; Pamona
21, K’s Choice, Viper Room
24, Michael Graves, The Undead Hearts, The Whisky a Go Go
Ra Ra Riot, Teragram Ballroom
26, Greg Duli, Teragram Ballroom
15, Dokken, Whisky a Go Go
21, Prong, Whisky a Go Go
17, Agent Orange, Motorcycle Boy, Whisky a Go Go
subnormal Christmas Playlist, currently spinning, in no particular order:
1, Reagan Youth
2, Suicidal Tendencies
3, Sisters of Mercy
4, Killing Joke
5, Christian Death
6, The Cure
7, Misfits (with Danzig)
8, Yeah Yeah Yeahs
9, Sonic Youth
14, Ill Repute
15, Death In June
16, Siouxsie and the Banshees
17, Patti Smith
18, The Doors
19, Escape the Fate (early)
20, Empire of the Sun
21, David Bowie
CHILD ABUSE REPORT
Mark Salling, formerly of the hit show ‘Glee,’ has been arrested for possession of child porn. Also in 2015, director Jace Alexander was arrested for ‘possessing and file-sharing illegal and obscene performances of sexual conduct by children less than 17 years of age.’ Former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle was arrested on charges that he received and distributed child pornography, and engaged in sexually explicit acts with children after drugging them. He was sentenced to fifteen years in prison. (source: Deadline Hollywood dot com) Pedophile scum that abuse and rape children must be stopped!
Kashi Foods has settled a class action suit against them in Florida, in which they have allegedly lied about not having GMO ingredients in their food. Needless to say, we will be avoiding food by Kashi.
Vitamin Water has been sued with a class action for fraudulent advertising, as has Red Bull.
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