Reflections and Predictions of the Last Great Dreamer
New-year's reflections, I always predict that glam/sleaze rock will return the
following year. Even at the end of 91 when the Seattlescene earned almost unbelievable
recognition and support, I was sure that it was just a matter of months before
those ugly Kurt-Cobain clones washed and put on some lipstick. Hell, I
was still high on Pretty boy floyd, Vain and Electric Angels which all were
released 1-2 years earlier. I know that I was naive, ignoring the cycles of
music. That naivety, or idealism, probably hepled me survive or at least
made the suffering bearable during the decade of depression (the nineties i.e.).
If someone would have told me back in 91 that I had to wait for almost a ten
years on another glamrock revival, I might have killed myself! Or even worse...
converted. For the first time ever, I may be right when say that things will
get better, that the stars will shine even brighter and that glamrock will return
to the masses. Last year, 1998, indicated such a scenario.
1998 saw glamrock conquer the moviescreen in "Velvet Goldmine" - starring EwanMcgregor and Jonathan Rhys myers. The Movie polarised the musicpress. The Reviews were either very positive or extremely negative. Dove or turkey? As usual, I didn't fit in any of the categories. The Critics aimed at the fact that "Velvet Goldmine" didn't reflect the truth. I wrote on the subject "'Velvet Goldmine' captures the flash but also the flesh of the early glamrock. Haynes /the producer/ has put the focus on the revolt. Underneath the mascara, eyeliners and lipstick, was a reaction to the then musical climate which did nothing but shoot the weekend in the head. 'Velvet Goldmine' emphasizes the sexual revolution, the gender-bender movement and breaking down of traditional roles. Unfortunately Haynes has given this aspect a bit too much exposure. There were heterosexual glamrockers, quite a few actually. The story is fictional however and doesn't have to outline the truth.". Regardless of the amont of truth, "Velvet Goldmine" reinvented the glamrock fashion in London. God, even Culture Club reunited!
European glamrock took several steps forward during 1998. Germany's Hollywood Teasze released an impressive second album - "No Flakes" (can someone please sign these guys!). England's Paradise Alley successfully toured the U.S. and will hopefully return for a second round. Sweden's Backyard Babies ran out of the cellar with their popular "Total 13", a tremendous glam/punk affair. Guitarist Dregen was voted as a top-50 of the coolest rockstars in Kerrang. The underground scene in scandinavia flourished. Finland's Silver City Bandits and Sweden's Plan 9 will hopefully earn some major attention during 1999.
Los Angeles have been the capital of glam/sleaze rock for several years. Motley Crue, Poison, Faster Pussycat, Guns n Roses, Warrant and Pretty Boy Floyd all emerged out of the city of angels. The L.A. scene seemed to hibernate last year though. It will certainly return in 1999 when Foxy Roxx, The Mistakes, Mother Mercy and Guttersluts release their second albums. Second albums? Isn't that a great relief? At one time it seemed like all my favourite bands broke up after their debut. Legendary Spiders & Snakes, featuring Lizzie Grey (formerly London), will also release a new album in 1999 - "London Daze".
Francisco seems to be the place to be right now. The City of art hosts two of
themost promising glam/punk/pop bands at the moment - American Heartbreak (featuring
Billy Rowe of Jetboy fame) and Romeo's Dead. Both will release their full-length
debuts in 1999. Romeo's Dead's will be produced by Davy Vain.
1998 was the year of reunions. Babylon AD, Warrant, Quiet Riot, Ratt, Motley Crue and Pretty Boy Floyd all decided to come back with their original line-up's (PBF excluded but two out of four original members ain't bad). I'm not that fond of reunions, it rarely creates the same flash as the first era. The Major record companies should try to sign some new talent instead. Those old jaded rockstars aren't as safe an investment as they seem. The old posters may fall off when the new generation are knocking and rocking on the door, bangin' their balls to the walls.
Summary: 1998 was a good year without peaks. The future looks bright... as I always say at the end of the year. Faith makes out my survivalkit.
Adolf Chri$t, god damn it!
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times - it sucked, it was great - or was it just '98?
1998 saw Glam coming back into the forefront, but slowly. The Rock Never Stops tour saw older bands coming back to a mixed reaction. Some with adulation, some with ridicule.
The big surprise (for some) was the Bowie-esque makeover of ex-Death Metal Lite posterboy Marilyn Manson. Some called it stunningly original, some called it going back in history from Iggy Pop, to Ziggy Stardust. Hey - next year he might be Little Richard!
1998 saw the release of new albums by Manic Street Preachers, L.A. Guns, Philip Lewis, Girl, Pretty Boy Floyd, Michael Monroe,Syl Sylvain, as well as 40 Seasons , thebest of Skid Row and god knows how many others.
The movie Velvet Goldmine was released and (perhaps in retaliation) David Bowie has decided to put together the long awaited movie adaptation of "The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars". Still no word of the Johnny Thunders movie "The Last Rock 'n Roll Movie" (originally titled "Stations of the Cross").
On local scenes, there seems to be more glam on the collective horizon. In Toronto alone, a city where Glam is traditionally a small market, we've seen the rise of such bands as Plasma Blast, Tylenol 5, White Sluts, The Spice Pistols, Peel, Tuuli, Dead By Dawn, The Hellz Kitchen Show, Red Autumn Fall, Kai and the War Milk Boys as well as the new front runners Robin Black and the Intergalactic Rock Stars.
Things are lookin' good.
Reflections and Predictions of the last great dreamer by Andreas Persson
Adolf Chri$t, god damn it! by Adolf Chri$t