1. Armored Saint - Punching The Sky My favorite metal band of 2020 was my favorite metal band in 1984…the mighty Armored Saint. This is their best in a decade and one of the best of their career. John Bush is the Paul Rodgers of metal, a swaggering bluesy beast over vintage yet modern power metal. I fucking love this band.
2. Kix - Midnight Dynamite Re-Lit Producer Beau Hill went back and stripped away all that bad ‘80s reverb and my favorite Kix album it sounds the like AC/DC meets Aerosmith album it always should have. And the demos are way cool, junior!
3. Fiona Apple - Fetch the Bolt Cutters The piano in the opening song “I Want You To Love Me” literally made me burst into tears when I first heard it. And every time since. Not kidding.
4. The City Kids - Things That Never Were Best OC Punk band Leeds ever produced! These guys got a Social Distortion by way of Backyard Babies vibe that just won’t quit.
Los Angeles-via-Detroit underground punk legends The Dogs have unleashed a new digital single “Under The Coast” that was co-written with and features fellow rock ‘n’ roller Frank Meyer (The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs,James Williamson & The Pink Hearts) on guest vocals and guitar.
The socially conscious, topical song is available now through Chicanery Chick Records/Die Laughing Records on all digital formats, and deals with the chaos and dissonance of modern times.
Plenty of people won’t “get” this record. That’s the inherent risk when you move forward and don’t stay comfortably treading water in one swimming pool.
It’s the second solo album for James Williamson (third if you count the live one with The Careless Hearts) and “Behind The Shade” doesn’t kiss-off his substantial Iggy & The Stooges legacy. More pointedly, it reinforces that Williamson is no one-trick pony.
Of course you should know James for inventing one of the most brutal guitar styles ever. Iggy himself paid him a back-handed compliment by saying that his former collaborator filled every possible space in their band’s soundscape. He did say it was to the point of claustrophobia, or words to that effect.
Motherfuckin’ Rock ‘n’ Roll – Frank & Spaghetti (Kitten Robot Records)
Hello Barflies! The Farmhouse has been rocking these past few weeks because the principal members of two of my favourite American bands, The Streetwalkn’ Cheetahs’ Frank Meyer and the fabulous Supersuckers’ Eddie Spaghetti, have joined forces as Frank & Spaghetti to release a long player, “Motherfuckin’ Rock ‘n’ Roll”.
“Motherrfuckin’ Rock ‘n’ Roll” is just that and follows a couple of digital singles by the duo (and friends), the epic “Shit’s Fucked” and a cover of Tom Petty’s “Jammin Me”.
Frank Meyer flanked by Cheetahs bandmates (from left) Bruce Duff, MIke Sessa and Dino Evertett on bass. AP Murray photo.
In these COVID-fraught times, asking Frank Meyer what he puts on his curriculum vitae is a valid question. The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs vocalist-guitarist doesn’t skip a beat, down the line on Zoom from his home in Long Beach, California.
“Right now, I mean, I'm basically freelance film producing and directing. You know, my last full time job was at Fender as directing and producing their digital content. But at the beginning of COVID, they laid off a lot of my team, including myself. And then showbiz kind of shut down.
“But now I've essentially just been doing music and freelance editing and online production, and a lot of session work, singing and playing, recording and producing. In the last few months, digital production has picked up and I've been getting a bunch of field production gigs. And I've got some book deals happening. So things are looking good right now.”
Black Leather Soul - Angus Khan (Nickel and Dime Records)
Hello from the Farmhouse, Barflies. This is one from the archives, originally issued in 2009, but this most rocking album has been re-released in July and is already on all good music streaming services with a extra track, "Silver and Green" (acoustic.) I, for one, love this tune and the album.
Angus Khan was formed in the summer of 2006 by three Streetwalkin' Cheetahs and two B Movie Rats in sunny California. They were Frank Meyer and Bruce Duff on guitars, Dino Everrett on bass, Derek Christenson (vocals) and Andy Baker of the B Movie Rats on drums. What a cracking line-up.
That's some pedigree and they didn't disappoint. This is a hard rock album that just kicks from the first track, the wonderful "Midnight Moses".
These tunes are a must for any Barfly who loves Rock 'n' Roll played hard with witty lyrics. "Call Me Motherfucker", "Hot Pants", "Bop City", "Chainsaw Betty" and "Scene Bitch" are perfect examples of what I love in a rock band: Don't take yourself too seriously and have some fun. Angus Khan most certainly does both in abundance.
"Black Leather Soul" takes listeners on a journey of stomping riffs. Oh, those guitars just blast out of the speakers. No bullshit here. It's a must have album.
I was lucky enough yesterday to have a conversation with Frank Myer about why he decided to branch out from the Cheatahs and form Angus Khan. Just quickly before I let Frank loose on the public, you should know that they derived their name from Angus of AC/DC and Genghis Khan, leader of the Mongol Empire. So name alone, you know this album ain't for pussies.
So I'll let Frank explain the origins of the band and I'm most grateful for the time he took to speak to a dirt farmer from Dimboola, Victoria
When the Cheetahs and the Rats both broke up, Derek and I had been plotting on doing a heavier band for some time. We wanted to do something kinda like Zodiac Mindwarp meets Turbonegro - a really dirty sleazy biker metal music with dashes of punk and glam.
At the time I was also writing for Cherie Currie of the Runaways on a solo album that would return her to her Runaways roots. Unfortunately that album never ended up getting done so a bunch of the songs like "Scene Bitch" and "Big Balls" we just took and continued that direction, making it more extreme and as we continued writing new songs.
When we were writing songs for Angus Khan we where listening to a lot of music likeAlice Cooper, Aerosmith, Nashville Pussy, ZZ Top and evenMegadeth andMetallica. We wanted a sound to be steeped in '70s hard rock but with a metal twist.
There's a lot of fun and cheap humour in the lyrics; We wanted the music to be fun and funny, with lyrics that were cool yet ridiculously over the top.
Each member of the band had a character. I dressed like a Army guy and went by the name Sgt Rock. Our biker singer went by Dirty D, our bass player was Droogie from the movie "Clockwork Orange', the drummer was Tarzan and the other guitarist was a '70s rock god. We all dressed the part and kept the whole thing as over the top as possible.
So Barflies, this is a must for lovers of hard-riffing, good time, over-the-top rock 'n' roll. Download or stream this most wonderful album on Spotify, Apple or Amazon music, and if you're not familiar with The Streetwalkin' Cheetahs, give them a listen also. They just kick fucking arse.
Six Beers Please Barman AND keep them coming
From The Farmhouse, enjoy your week and don't run out of bog rolls.
Hello Barflies! Well folks, The Farmhouse has been rocking these past few weeks. Los Angeles’ Sweet Justicehave released the follow-up to their debut album - and it's only taken 18 years.
Why so long? Well, these boys are always busy, what with their other band the fabulous Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs (among other projects) keeping these fine musicians very busy.
Sweet Justice is a three-piece band featuring Frank Meyer (guitar and vocals), Bruce Duff(bad ass bass) and Mike Sessa on the skins (replacing original drummer Chris Markwood.) What as pedigree these blokes have. having worked with James Williamson (Iggy & the Stooges), Eddie Spaghetti, Jeff Dahl, ADZand Wayne Kramer (MC5). So you know this ain’t no garbage or garage band I’m talking about.
The long-unavailable second album from biker-metal band Angus Khan — “Angus Khan II: The Wrath of Khan” — is now available on Spotify. Angus Khan was a collaboration band between L.A. punk rock n roll acts The Streetwalkin' Cheetahs and B-Movie Rats that recorded one 2009 album (“Black Leather Soul”, also recently reissued in Spotify) before breaking up in 2012. But not before making one final album that has sat on the shelves...until now.
The sound was biker metal meets glam rock meets ‘70s hard rock boogie and it’s all there in spades on this unearthed sophomore opus. Listen here.
Angus Khan is one helluva biker heavy metal band and “Angus Khan II: Wrath of Khan” is one helluva album, a wonderful 2020 follow up to the most underrated and fabulous “Black Leather Soul”.The Los Angeles-based band’s music has been described as: “Where Angus Young meets Genghis Khan in a back alley fight” and that’ll do me. Both these albums need to be played loud.
Angus Khan was a collaboration band between punk and rock ‘n’ roll acts The Streetwalkin' Cheetahs and B-Movie Rats that spawned “Black Leather Soul” in 2009 and broke up in 2012. “Angus Khan II: The Wrath of Khan” sat on a hard drive for years before being released in digital format.
One More Drink – The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs (Dead Beat Records)
Eighteen years after their last record and a quarter of a century since they formed, the Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs have roared back to deliver their best yet. A baker’s dozen songs, overflowing with guitar power and pop hooks. “One More Drink” kicks harder than a toddler with a tooth-ache having a sugar-deprived tantrum in the confectionery aisle of a supermarket.
The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs might be named for the Stooges but they’re from Los Angeles, a shiny and often cruel place that coincidentally did the Dum Dum Boys no favours, but they mix so many influences you might wonder which box to put them in. Don’t bother. There’s punk,Motor City jams, Cheap Trick-style pop and new wave, mixed in with Motorhead-flavoured metal, boogie rock and speedcore.
When Wayne Kramer was in the ascendancy as a solo artist in the early ‘90s, the Cheetahs were his touring support and backing band for a spell. Five studio albums, two live records, a split with the BellRays,singles with Cherie Curie and Deniz Tek, and another EP were the fruits of their hard slog before splitting in 2002.
Hello I-94 Barflies. What a shitty year it’s been. Charlie Watts’ passing makes me feel old and I type with a heavy heart with the passing a few days ago of my friend, the great guitarist John Nolan (Bored!, Powder Monkeys, Spencer P Jones and The Escape Committee and more recently Powerline Sneakers.) Last drinks, last smokes. R.I.P.
Thank fuck there is music. There have been numerous great releases this past 12 months, so here we go.
2. Snake Pit Therapy – Sonny Vincent (Svart) New York punk’s (almost) last man standing bounces back with his best-sounding and arguable most well-rounded album ever. Sonny has been hidden in plain sight for the many for far too long.
Hello Barflies, another year nearly gone, another Top Ten and what a wonderful 12 months it has been. I got off the farm a few times for my horrible public transport trips to Melbourne. A thousand-kilometer return trip is getting harder and harder to get motivated to do, but some bands are bloody well worth it. Oh, and family and friends also. Big shout out to my gig buddy, The Tasmanian Bushman. 2023 - bring it on! So folks, here you…here’s my humble Top Ten.
X at The Tote X live at the Tote Hotel playing ”X-Aspirations” for its 40th anniversary. What a blast this night was. Steve Lucas’s screaming guitar and vocals are always great but at the old stomping ground, the Tote Hotel in Collingwood, they were something else. A memorable night and the gift of a scarf from Kim Volkman made my evening.
THE JOHNNYS The Johnnys at St Kilda Bowls Club was another wonderful gig. It was made all the better because it was my birthday and Bushy got me a wee bit drunk. And I got a present from Billy Pommer Jr.